I got a chance to catch up with my British mate last month and as usual, talking to him is like light bulbs going off in my head one after another. That is after I have asked him to repeat himself five times due to his damn accent, but I love him anyway. We have been around each other for a number of years now… we have a history together and we have ridden the roller coaster ride of life and supported each other through it. We have not been in each other's pockets but been around when it really counts. He is one of my closest friends and one that I hope that will be around for a long time but that has not been the case with all my friends.
It honestly is a life-changing experience to chat with him, it takes many drinks and wonderful conversation to really sift through our thoughts and emotions. He too is a soldier like me but his experience has been a harder one than mine, after being blown up in Afghanistan he died but the universe knew there was way more for him so ...... back to life, extended coma loads of medical issues and few years on he is living his best life and is damn fucking clear on his boundaries. I know I don't want that kind of brick wall to wake me up, so what makes me live my best life and what will it take to be real and authentic and get damn clear on my boundaries?
I have really changed my whole outlook, how I deal with issues, self-love and with the sabbatical from work last year and the realisation of how much I wasn't living my life or being true to me I put in some serious work to change that and I feel I have grown so much. I am very clear on what I want in life. What I am willing to accept and what I am not.
This, however, has come with some casualties in the friend department. I know we all don't like to change to some degree, but my old friends liked the old Kylie. I was reminded of the circumstance if someone is taking more out of the relationship then you are then they are a parasite and needs to be terminated. This is a harsh reality but a true one. It was so clear that some relationships were built on all that I gave that person and when I started to implement boundaries there was some pushback. This was occurring from my closest of friends – this was painful as hell and really not what I had expected with all my changes. I could not see how the change in me was not positive and not a great influence on others around me.. does not everyone want to grow and change and live happier?
What do I mean by change, I have gotten real, raw and hell authentic. I have removed the mask and really exposed those emotions, faults and inner pieces of me to the world. I have taken an alternative path with learning great practices that help me go through my every day. I have completely changed my friend circle to one that is supportive of my adventure. I honestly feel empowered talking to this group of people! Now, this is the life I want to live.
So talking to my mate on friends, we started with how to declutter and remove those that were not the best interest for our higher good. So we talked about Facebook first and how he sets his group limit to 100 friends on his personal page. How did he decide? So he looked at each friend and said to himself :
1. Do I want to sit down to lunch with that person?
2. Have I spoken to them in the last 18 months?
3. Have I seen them in the last 3 years?
In his mind, if you have not seen them in the last three years was like them not showing up to work, and we know relationships require work. So after facebook, we looked at it the same way with phone contacts, declutter away. Totally different for business pages but your personal page this is a declutter to set boundaries of having the closest of friends, friends you want to see and talk to. I know that some rules apply differently to overseas friends but I truly need to make the effort to be in contact with them if they are to stay in my close 100.
Yesterday I started with Facebook and with his rules in mind, I started with 300 friends and within 10 mins that was cleaned down to 190…Oh, that felt good! The boundary and the feeling were wonderful and something that I honestly had not thought about, but I need to surround myself with people that empower and support each other and I had this mindset of holding on just in case. That holding on feeling like the items in the garage in the boxes. What was the purpose of this? One day I might need them? Why do we box our different types of friendships? Was this my ego or had I never thought of decluttering before... If I don't make room for new people I will always surround myself with old relationships that are no longer working.
If we declutter our wardrobes, spare rooms, study, garage, kids' toys for all things new then why am I not doing this with a friend list? I have learned recently that it is hard to let go, you want people to grow with you and be on your bus but there is so much in that past that stops that. For some of those friends, we need a funeral for closure, this is a serious critical step for our goodbyes otherwise we live in relentless mourning for what was only our perceived favourite outcome. Then make the decision of cutting that away and opening up space for new friendships. That old age saying for a season or for a reason! I truly believe in this. I held on to so much guilt separating myself from toxic friendships. There is sadness but when that space becomes clear and you feel good about your boundaries for me it has enabled to let new people in.
So, I joked with my mate on how easy it was to hit unfriend on Facebook, we talked about making plans to see each other annually! I giggled and said "well I know what happens when we hit 18 months" his response was you better not be thinking of getting rid of me. Our journeys are similar, we have shared the pain, we have supported and helped each other grow. We love and accept new changes in each other, this is a friend I want in my life.
I have decluttered, and I have some vacancies for friends opened up right now. I move through life knowing not everything is guaranteed and friendships can be quick, love and grow with what you have, be ok to say goodbye! I have clear boundaries, I know I am enough, I know I am loved, and I truly know I can move on!
My friend advertisement – Seeking people on my bus, must be real, raw and authentic! Be able to give just as much as receive. Be ok with alternatives, turn up to work on the friendship and not be afraid to call BS when needed. Be able to create a space for us to talk and actually listen to each other. To let each other learn without being an expert or trying to solve issues for each other. Only serious applicants need to apply.
I want you to be happy in your career; with my workshops we can tackle any issues that stop you from reaching that. You won't need a sea change but love who you are and what you do.