Jim Rohn said “You’re the average of the five people you spend the most time with” and he was right. It’s so important to evaluate your closest friends and understand how they impact you. Surround yourself with negative people who are down on life and you’ll soon fall into a downward spiral, too. But even if you know you need to cut certain people out of your life, doing it isn’t easy. To help you move on with your life, here are 3 tips to help you cut ties with a friend without feeling guilty.
If you find yourself wanting to spend less time with your friends, it’s likely because you’re making changes in your life which are taking you in a new direction. Whether you’re trying self care challenges, aiming to be more productive or setting yourself new goals, change creates more change. The people who were aligned with your old lifestyle might not necessarily fit in with your new life. And that’s perfectly acceptable. You just need to know how to handle it.
How to cut ties with a friend
1. Acknowledge it’s part of life
Life changes people and no matter how much you try and hold onto the past, you can’t. If the only connection you have to your friend is your past, it’s not going to sustain you for very long. You can still have a wonderful, supportive friendship, but you don’t have to spend every minute of the day together. Accept that you’re both moving in different directions and let your friendship find it’s natural rhythm instead of forcing it.
If you’re not sure how to tell a friend you want time apart, read 4 Essential Keys to Effective Communication in Love, Life, Work–Anywhere.
2. Understand others might not follow
Just because you’re making big changes in your life doesn’t mean the people around you should, too. Not feeling supported by friends is awful, but you’ve got to remember that we all see the world differently and we all have our own priorities. If you’re trying to lose weight or save for a big investment, preaching your new ways to your old friends won’t do any good if they’re not interested. Sometimes it’s best for everyone involved if you cut ties with a friend.
To help you decide if it’s the right time to walk away, read Boundaries: When to Say Yes, How to Say No To Take Control of Your Life.
3. Appreciate it shouldn’t feel like a chore
When you start to feel more obliged to see a friend than excited, something’s definitely up. If you feel bored, uninspired or unsupported about seeing a certain friend, look into how long you’ve felt that way and why you still maintain your friendship. Unlike romantic relationships, friendships are non-exclusive and have more flexible boundaries. Not all friendships are meant to be incredibly strong or last a lifetime. And that doesn’t mean your friendship failed – it just means for this period in life, it’s complete.
If you’re worried about being lonely after you’ve cut ties with a friend, read You’re Codependent – How To Stop Worrying and Love Yourself.
Have you ever had to cut ties with a friend? Leave your comments and tips below on how best to do it and help others struggling through this tough time in their lives.
To learn about people across the globe who’ve got to where they are today by cutting negative people out of their lives, take a look at the Stories page. To share your own inspirational story, click here.