Things have changed. Okay, well, specifically, I have changed. A lot. Like, whiplash amounts. And I’m still trying to catch up, still trying to reposition myself into understanding who I am now versus who I was a few months ago. Because, change is a funny, nuanced thing. It’s never at all what you expect it to be. And the consequences and outcomes of your changes are never what you could have predicted. Especially when you’ve changed for the better.
In fact, unfortunately, when you’ve changed for the better.
Sometimes I think about why there aren’t more people running, sprinting towards greatness. Why there aren’t more people continually evolving into something better, stronger, and happier. I wonder this a lot as I read or listen to stories about miserable jobs and unsatisfying home lives and dreams that have been left to decompose. And, I think I’m starting to understand why some people just stay, as they are, and stop aspiring for betterment. I think I get it. I think I see why it’s not a matter of capability, but rather a matter of personal choice.
Because changing for the better constantly and drastically, well, for lack of a better word, can completely suck sometimes. As much as you want to believe that everyone around you will be supportive and gracious about this new and improved you, it’s sometimes not the case. And, that’s disappointing. It’s terrifyingly disappointing, in fact, when you realize that relationships you’ve treasured had been built by the you that you didn’t respect. And that these relationships survive only when their veins are pumped with negativity and unyielding insecurity. That conversation grows silent if you have nothing to complain about. That sharing the positive without the negative won’t always be met with a welcomed face on the other end.
And, so I get it. I get why people don’t change, why they wouldn’t be willing to sacrifice their relationships for their own well-being. Maybe they didn’t understand that them playing small isn’t serving anyone’s best interest. But, it’s easier said than done. It’s easier to say you’d love to be great and you’d love to straighten out your own edges, but when it happens? It’s not always the sweet and delicious heaven you’d been waiting for.
Because when you change and you change for the betterment of yourself, your people may get threatened. They may feel jealous. They may want you back on their level. They may miss your self-destructive love life. They may not be comfortable with your new way of approaching dating and career and friendships. They may not be prepared when you stand up for yourself. They may just simply not be prepared.
And you’ll be sad. You’ll realize that, in changing, you’ll have to weed through toxic relationships. You’ll have to understand that not everyone can stay, not just anyone gets to have an audience with you. Because, you’ve changed and you’re happy and the last thing you’d ever want is for someone to come crashing into your life and threaten what you’ve spent years building.
Because all you’ve ever wanted is to feel peaceful and happy and to stop analyzing every word that anyone ever says to you or around you. All you’d ever wanted was to stop falling for the wrong men, to stop swallowing your feelings, and to stop acting like what you want doesn’t matter. All you’d ever wanted was to believe you’re worth loving and that you’re good enough. Is that not what everyone always wants? To believe? To believe they are worth more? And all you’d ever ask for from anyone in your life is for them to support you and be happy when you tell them that you finally figured things out and you put in the godawful amount of time to fix yourself.
And so you tell them. And, most importantly, you show them.
And you end up saying to yourself, “Well, that wasn’t exactly the reaction I was hoping for…”
And you tell yourself you need to move on. Otherwise you’ll be stuck in this forever. This cycle of change, regress, change, regress. You’ll breathe in their insecurities for too long. You’ll start to believe, again, that they’re insecurities must equal your insecurities. These things, these attitudes, these negative thoughts… they’re too contagious. Too powerfully contagious.
And so you move on. You break ties. You forfeit loyalty for your sanity. Because, well, what other choice do you have?