One of the greatest and most challenging lessons of growing up is learning it’s ok NOT to be everything for everyone. When I look back at how I approached any and all of my relationships in my teens and twenties: romantic, friends, family & work, it’s incredible I managed to make it through without combusting.
I spent so much of every day worrying about meeting a “yes” criteria (one I recognise I created brilliantly on my own) that I spent so much exhausted time on people and tasks in my life that didn’t deserve it and in hindsight didn’t expect it. The reason behind this is equal parts: my personality and an inherent expectation of women in our society needing to do everything at once in order to be successful and deemed “a good woman”
Fast forward 10 years, I’ve travelled, had failed relationships, watched friendships fade, had cancer, met my wonderful husband, had my first child, left corporate work behind and started a successful business with one of my closest friends.
This is what I’ve learned…
- Use your loving energy on people who deserve it, who in return appreciate who you are and the time spent on your friendship. That’s not to say you need to measure a relationship based on what you get in return but time is precious, and sometimes you can expend so much energy on one friend who really doesn’t appreciate it while ignoring the ones who are always there for you.
- You don’t need to be everyone’s everything – gosh it’s exhausting always saying “yes” – don’t do it. As women, we sometimes think saying no makes us less capable, this is complete bullshit and a perception created by society dictating the gender principles setting a bar so high for women that it’s inevitable we will all fail. Cut that ‘yes’ cord, and spend more time working towards your own goals or just enjoying life.
- Social media is not an acceptable show of support & friendship. Yes, it’s lovely to have people congratulate you publicly and talk about how amazing you are on Facebook but If they’re not calling you or texting you personally they are forgetting a fundamental element of being a good friend “communication”.
- Forgive yourself. Now on the flip side, if you’ve neglected an important relationship IT’S OK, you’re only human and let’s face it sometimes life happens and we feel like our world is the only one rotating. When you stop and think “shit I’ve been a really bad sister, brother, friend, lover” don’t try to create the best excuse just pick up the phone and call and don’t start with apology word vomit trying to fill every gap with an excuse. Just ask how they are and move forward. A genuine friendship can endure anything.
What have I learnt from relationships in my thirty-something years? Possibly not too much, though It does seem that they tend to be full of tiny, hidden, funny and intelligent lessons every day so just listen to your gut. you can only ever be wrong or right and on that rare occasion maybe somewhere in between because whether you like it or not shit happens.
Article by Bree Pagliuso – Co-Founder/Director of TWOSIX Wellness
In 2014 I wiped my hands free from my corporate job in Finance and completed my yoga teacher training and jumped head first into www.twosixwellness.com.au dedicated to all things health and wellness, since launching our online magazine in 2013, we have been working to inspire everyday Australians to look after their health. But this is only one part of the TWOSIX brand. In 2015 We expanded our offering to corporate services, allowing us to actively help people achieve health & wellbeing goals while at work. the TWOSIX Workplace Wellbeing sessions cater to corporate individuals who are time-poor and seeking an improved work-life balance.