We all do it. In all its glorious forms. Bitching. Judging. Mocking. Criticising. Trash-talking. And making others feel bad for the things which make them feel good! But no matter what we call it, and no matter how good it can feel to let off a little harmless steam every now and then, making a habit out of negativity seems like a waste of precious life energy. FUCK THAT ATTITUDE. Because heres the thing: we have ALL been on the flip side too. Whether you live in a big town, or a small town, it's likely you know the feeling you get when you find out things are being said about you behind your back. And when it feels like your the talk of the town and things are filtering through to you like Chinese Whispers, it can feel like a pretty big deal and it is natural to be offended!
From a practical point of view, anyone who bitches about you is not worth even one thought, and anyone who believes stories about you is not worth your bother either. To not give a fuck is to stare down one of life's most terrifying and difficult challenges, and still take action. Most of us struggle throughout our lives by giving too many fucks in situations where fucks do not deserve to be given - too many fucks about the rude lady at the dairy who gave us all our change in 10c pieces. When your partner puts the keys away in the wrong place. Your sister said something mean about you behind your back. Meanwhile, we are miserable, we have no friends, our dog hates us, Donald Trump is President and yet we’re pissed off about 10 c pieces and your sister 'making' you feel like shit.
If you go round giving a fuck about everything and everyone without a conscious thought - you are going to get fucked.
What I'm talking about here is essentially learning to prioritise your thoughts effectively - how to pick and choose what matters to you and what doesn't based on your finely honed values. Because when you give too many fucks about things you don't value, you will feel entitled - that everything is supposed to be exactly the way you want it to be. This is a sickness, and it will eat you alive.
When I say I just don't give a fuck, I mean that I don't care about challenges to overcome, I don't care about pissing people off to do what I think is right or important. I'm willing to be different. I'm willing to stare hardship in the face and pull the finger back at it. I don't care about adversity, or failure, or embarrassing myself, of shitting the bed a few times. I just do what I believe in, because I know it's more important than I am, than you are, and bigger than emotions and ego.
Whether we like it or not we are always taking an active role in what's happening 'to' us. We are always choosing the values by which we live and the metrics by which we measure everything that happens to us. These metrics aren't right or wrong, only our version of reality. We don't always control what happens to us, but we always control how we interpret what happens to us, as well as how we respond. Whether we consciously realise it we are always responsible for our own experiences.
If you experience any repetitive or painful thoughts around all of this, simply see that they don’t solve anything, without condemning them. Neutrally notice futility. Trying to control what other people think, how they react or what they say is a massive burden, and basically an impossible task. I don’t use the word impossible often, but people think what they like before you can even react to it, so it is not in your control in the first place. Not only is it futile to try to control people’s opinions, but it is absolutely exhausting. You don’t have to be anyone’s manager. Leave the burden to them. We can tell a lot about a person by what they choose to see in us, but remember, that that is their choice. Not yours.
So move on and continue living your truths, for your truth is yours. Nobody else's.
In some ways it's sad for me to write this, as this post has been inspired by a toxic friendship, that has been toxic for a long while. Some people grow apart, and maybe our paths will cross again in the future when she has grown a little bit too. It makes me feel sad, that she doesn't have any relationships that are less about fluff and more about substance to learn from.
This is not something I would usually choose to put on Social Media, however, I think it's something many of us can relate to! Just last night Melissa Chalmers posted this on her Instagram...
I'm going to write this diplomatically as to not directly offend anyone, that is not my intention. However, I'm sure many of you will be able to read between the lines here.
Sometimes in friendships you grow together and build an even stronger friendship but sometimes you can grow apart and this is natural. Growing apart is a natural occurrence and it doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with either of you, it just means that you and your friend have changed and this has meant that you have new values and interests now. Or it could be that you and your friend have grown as people, but you have grown together and your friendship is stronger than ever, as is with most of my friendships, and relationships in general!
It's natural to wonder if you’re a cold-hearted jerk for throwing away years of friendship. People are really invested in this idea of time being the ultimate marker for closeness and I think it’s sort of BS. “We’ve been friends just for so long, you know?” Yeah, so what? We’ve been friends for years but for the last 5 it's been completely one-sided. Do you keep it going, do you force the connection, just because it’s been going on for so long?
Sometimes you just grow apart from people. You get older, your personality matures or devolves, and all of a sudden you find yourself not having a whole lot in common with someone you once did. This is just a casualty of growing up. The reality, however, is that you will always love and care about them. You just don’t necessarily feel the need to have them in your life anymore. The catch up phone calls are becoming forced, you’re grasping at straws trying to come up with conversation topics. They live in the same place, you don't talk, and they aren’t involved in the day-to-day of your life which makes things difficult. You begin to dread these catch up sessions because not only are they forced but there’s this underlying tension you are both trying so hard to avoid. The more you try to pretend the friendship is the same, the more obvious it becomes that it’s changed. There’s no easy solution for this.
All friendships are different and are built on different levels of interests and trust. It is important to remember that it is okay to let these people go if you no longer get on as well as you used to, or if the trust and mutual respect is no longer there. The worst kind of relationship of any kind is a toxic one and there is no point hanging onto those "friendships" that cause you distress or feel like an incredible effort.
This is my experience. In friendships I place strong value on mutual respect, effort, trust, and support. I've found that a lack of boundaries always welcomes a lack of respect, and yet that's all we desire as women. To be respected, but so many (including myself at times) still tolerate the inexcusable, instead of trusting the truth which you know in your heart and leaving whats toxic.
Don't break your own heart by letting another consistently disappoint you. It's not ok for you to be the one putting in all the effort. It's not ok to give and give and support and not get the same in return. It's not ok for others to be judgemental and rude towards people they don't know. It is not ok to be completely self-absorbed and inconsiderate. Most of all, it is not ok to act with the intention to hurt another. Weeds grow when surface talk, slander, petty problems, bicker and judgement are the weight of your words. And it is ok for me to walk away from this friendship.
Part of growing up and developing emotional maturity includes knowing that 90% of all situations don't require your comment or reaction! So I have learnt to outgrow petty problems, instead of attacking them. I try not to let emotions overpower intelligence. I mean what a complete waste of energy, that could be invested purely on the positive important things in your life. Seriously though, we are capable of being so much stronger, rather than constantly feeling the need to justify. Be secure enough in yourself to just be calm & rise above the bullshit we all get dealt at times; because your ability to be offended is always proportionate to your intelligence, so never let others make you look foolish.
I choose not to get involved, and just wish others well, with the maturity to genuinely mean it. There is so much more to life! Meaningful relationships are only as meaningful as the depth, width and substance of you conversation. Flowers bloom when you talk about real life, real issues, real love. It's a work in progress but I am so grateful for the beautiful women in my life with beautiful minds. More genuine communication and friendship is what I crave and when I nurture the right relationships it's what I receive!
A lot of this generation's anxiety stems from this grave incapacity to just be yourself & not give a shiiiiiiit what anyone else thinks or does! You do you boo! Put 120% into the things that light you up. You only rob yourself of happiness when you take others opinions to heart - why should someone who doesn't know your inner turmoil, or even someone who does, have an impact on your choices?
I honestly believe as an adult, you choose the type of life you lead & it's so crazy to me that people STILL invest in others/things that don't even make them consistently happy.
I choose to be someone who encourages, compliments and congratulates others for their blessings, who says "I'm so proud of you" and always has something supportive and encouraging to say, regardless of how it makes ME feel.
I feel SO inspired by beautiful women living their truths and chasing their dreams! I encourage you to make it your mission to stop giving a fuck - this choice alone will be liberating! Be the type of person who makes everyone feel like a someone. There's already enough low-key mean people who hate others being happy/successful. When all we really need is more genuine LOVE and SUPPORT.