Boy do I have plenty of experience in this one. I used to direct my energy towards keeping up with the ‘demand-like’ nature of these expired relationships, and ‘demand-like’ only because they no longer made my heart sing or inspired my participation.
I would also incessantly revert to the question “why aren’t they being a good friend/partner anymore?” and “why can’t they understand?”. But that was exactly it, they couldn’t understand because we (or mostly I) had shifted to alternative value sets that transpired into how we did or did not live our lives. They no longer matched.
Clutching onto these relationships because of what they used to be or with blind loyalty is painstakingly exhausting. It’s also extremely detrimental to our health. It doesn’t allow our inspiration, creativity, and joy to flow. Even worse, it infiltrates our relationships that are of value because if we’re not careful we spend time venting and projecting onto them. Yuck!
Letting go of these relationships to ensure the best version of ourselves is bloody tough; whether it’s the heartache of an intimate relationship break down, or as I’ve personally experienced, a friendship or family member that can hurt just as much. Maybe it’s leaving a workplace that injects so much positivity into your life, but isn’t worth the toxicity, bullying, or suppression that’s also present – been there too! It could even be a person who used to inspire or mentor you, but hasn’t chosen to continue growing in themselves like you have.
Sometimes it is about using judgment, willpower, and self-respect to put some new boundaries in place and redefine what that relationship can and can’t be to you in the future, compared with the past and present.
Probably the most challenging blockage in this process can be the fear of a blank space in your life. Fear tells us that they may not be a person who fulfils you anymore, but “they are still a person to engage with and rely on”, and “what will I do instead? What if I don’t meet anyone else?”. But is that enough of a reason to put your heart’s true desires on hold?
It’s a bittersweet space where you’ve accomplished so much personal growth, certainty, and love that you’ve truly elevated the quality of your life, yet it means letting go of what has become depleting and won’t support your authentic dreams if you wish to continue.
Remember that by standing strong against what is not right for you, you are opening the floodgates to what is. You’re not just letting go and mourning the loss of something, you’re celebrating the availability to take on more of what fans your ‘fabulous-you’ flame. A good spring clean never killed anyone!