Thursday, April 30, 2009

Getting Rid Of The Excess

I have become a firm believer in getting rid of whatever is not working in my life. I now appreciate quality as opposed to quantity. I prefer to have three good friends that I can count on then a life full of meaningless relationships.

About twenty years ago, I began deliberately cutting off toxic people from my life and I feel great about it. My definition of a toxic person is someone who drains you emotionally or who, consistently, makes you feel worse after you are in their presence than you did before you were in their presence. Two examples immediately come to mind:

My one girlfriend was an emotional basket case. When we were kids I had to convince her, at least once a week that she should not commit suicide. She also claimed to have chronic back pain and winced and groaned from the pain regularly. Finally one day Michael Jackson came on the television (back when Michael was hot) and, mid groan, she practically back flipped to the television and started jamming. I realized, right then and there, that she had no back pain and no intentions of killing herself.

Even as adults she took more than she gave and was emotionally draining. Finally, we got into an argument and instead of always being the one to call first because she was so fragile, I never did call and I even changed my number. I felt badly about it at first because we were friends for so long but knowing someone for a long time doesn't mean that you have to be saddled with them forever.

My second example was a girl that I met in college. It took me a while to realize that she didn't care much about female friends and that her boyfriend was all that mattered to her. She and I were roommates and her boyfriend roomed with my boyfriend. When the guys weren't with us they hung out together going to parties and they even started up a social fellowship for the guys on campus. Instead of us having fun too, all she wanted to do was sit in the apartment obsessing over her guy or sneaking around campus peering through windows trying to catch her boyfriend in the act of cheating or something. What a waste of time! It took me a minute but I had to cut her off too.

My excess weight was also something that I realized that I had to get rid of. Like friend number one it kept me emotionally drained and unhappy. Like friend number two it had me sitting around at home wasting time because of my lack of confidence. I cut the fat off for my emotional well being and I never looked back.

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