Here’s an excerpt from the Oola Guys:
Challenge 6: Friends
Over the years you form relationships with many different people whom you consider your friends. And for better or for worse, the more time we spend with our friends, the more they shape who we become.
Positive friendships push you to pursue your dreams, but toxic relationships pull you further away from your OolaLife. Oola: Find Balance in an Unbalanced World talks about the importance of setting boundaries so you can harness the pure love from healthy relationships.
Today’s #OolaYLChallenge is to look at your current friendships and disengage from a negative one.
When you set a boundary in a negative relationship, you make more room for positive relationships.
I have long been a fan of the poem that says friends (and people in general really) are brought to our lives for a reason, a season or a lifetime. They come to teach us something about ourselves, humanity, or life. To help us overcome obstacles, to build our character, to test and build our strength, to ignite our passions and more. It’s always impossible to know at the start of a relationship which one they will become. And it’s always hard when they don’t turn out to be the one you thought.
Y’all…my husband is my soul mate and I feel truly blessed to have him as my lifetime love. There is a song…”God Gave Me You” and every single word of that song. 🙌🏼 Those words hang above our bed flanked by newborn photos of Anna and Casey. They are my calm in every storm and he is my rock here on Earth. My gift from the Father.
Then there are the folks who become instant family. No matter the time, distance or life circumstance….they are always there….hovering and waiting in the background guaranteed to be there no matter day or night to help you thru a crisis, to talk you off the ledge (figurative or literal) and to hide the body if necessary 😂 Thank God for these angels in my life. My two besties, Sarah and Dani, have seen me at my best and loved me at my worst. They know my hopes, dreams and fears. They are fiercely protective and I know without hesitation that whether I want to vent, celebrate or fall apart…their arms and ears are open (along with the wine corks) and it’s a judgment free zone. I trust their counsel above most because they are truly my family.
Then….I think the military life is particularly “littered” with seasonal relationships simply because time, distance and life stages tend to cause a drift that eventually dilutes the relationship. It’s no one’s fault. It just happens. And we are left better off because we had this relationship that sustained us for a time.
And finally…the reason friends. Some were never really our friends and we just had to grow into ourselves to know this (think the mean girls in high school who you desperately craved approval from….or maybe that was just me). But others become deep, meaningful relationships that you thought would last a lifetime. Trust isn’t always easy to give but once lost…well, it’s damn hard to recover. When you realize that these relationships can’t weather the storm…that too much damage is done and trust is broken….ouch. Its that abrupt ending when you are left wanting more…that’s when the pain comes. Sometimes it triggers a positive change (in our lives, in ourselves, or towards the next chapter)…sometimes the end IS the positive change. And, like it or not….sometimes we were THEIR reason and we were the toxic relationship that had to go. No matter the ending, eventually we are able to see the lesson or to simply be grateful for the time/opportunity of having them be part of our lives.
But, I can say, without hesitation, that I’m so grateful for everyone I’ve ever known. Even when it hurt. Because they shaped me and this road. God doesn’t make mistakes. Two more songs…”I Hope You Dance” (and if you haven’t read Brene Brown’s “Daring Greatly” stop reading this and go get it) and “God Blessed The Broken Road” 😭❤️🙌🏼 These songs epitomize my friend philosophy.
I’ve had a “declutter” theme for the last two years. I’m constantly striving for (and often failing at) more positivity and less “stuff” in my life- physical (materials and obligations), emotional, mental. I’m a work in progress (the struggle is real). And, I’ve come to realize (even more lately) that I need to give more energy to those sustaining relationships. So, today as I put a couple drops of Friends™ essential oil blend on my palms, inhale, and say, “I am blessed with empowering, healthy relationships”, I am reflecting on these relationships and committing myself to doing a better job of prioritizing them and being sure they know how eternally grateful I am that God brought them into my life to stay. ❤️
And I’ll leave you with this little video cause I think it’s particularly relevant to this whole Oola Challenge…