Lately I have been overwhelmed at all my girl friends. I am lucky to know some incredibly amazing and inspiring people – and having amazing girl friends adds so much to your life. Girls have a reputation for being bitchy and jealous and tearing each other down. I’ve never had room for that.
It’s funny though, I have met my share of girls like that. When my marriage was falling apart I was in a really low place – I was working really hard to start a career after taking time to be with my kids so that I could support myself. I was studying at night and emotionally I was in turmoil. The day after I separated I was a mess, I went to do what I needed to do but didn’t look my normal put-together self. I had a friend at the time who I considered to be quite close. Throughout our friendship she had made little jabs about my appearance, putting me down but in a joking manner. I had a few girl friends who would do similar things so I just brushed it off. Until the day after I separated. She joked loudly about how bad I looked. I told her that my heart was broken, my life was falling apart and on that particular day, I really didn’t care what I looked like. But she didn’t stop. That was the first time I consciously chose to end a friendship. It wasn’t really a ‘big’ thing in and of itself. I just realised inside myself that I don’t have the emotional energy to invest in people who will tear me down in the very moment I only wanted a hug or a smile or a kind word.
I have always loved the quote “You will be the same person five years from now that you are today except for the books you read and the people you meet.” That, along with “You are the sum of the five people you spend the most time with”. At the time, I remember thinking I want to have people who support me in my life – positive people. I wasn’t sure how to do that, so I put my effort into becoming the type of person that I wanted to be.
It’s really amazing to look back on that now. Now, I look around my life and am blown away by the caliber of people I call friends. I am surrounded by people with dreams and goals and ambitions. People that encourage me in my own pursuits and help me see a different perspective when I’m feeling down. I find it ironic that a painful circumstance was the catalyst for me to learn to invest in people I admire, and not to invest in people who pull me down. A simple lesson for the practical mind, but not so much for the emotional heart. Investing in myself, working hard to follow my dreams, recognising the good in others and encouraging them in their pursuits has been the very best thing in the world for me. Now, my inner circle as well as my larger circle of friends and acquaintances is practically solely made up of the dreamers and doers and go-getters.
I am the luckiest girl in the world.
They say you create your own luck, and I believe you do. But you don’t necessarily realise it at the time. It’s blood, sweat, tears and heartache. It’s choosing to be the best you can be even when you are at your lowest. It’s believing anything is possible when everything seems impossible. It’s valuing yourself and believing in yourself and motivating yourself to always become a better person – and that outlook naturally flows to those around you. You see the good, you value people, believe in them and motivate them. It’s cyclical. But it starts with you.