I know that there are many of us looking to grow our social circles and change who we choose to interact with daily. I’m definitely one of those people and I’ve been going through a change in choosing who I want to surround myself with and who I allow into my space. This change can be difficult when you’re used to hanging around your everyday friends, but what happens when you feel as if your friends aren’t improving themselves? What happens when you feel their friendship isn’t helping you grow and doesn’t satisfy you anymore?
I have grown from many of my former friends while still being in college. I always found myself around a new group of people each year—I use to believe something was wrong with me the way I never kept the same friends. I was and still, am a growing individual who’s still trying to find her tribe.
Going through different experiences and having different goals put me on a separate path from my former friends. I was no longer into the things they were into and I didn’t want to tolerate some of their bad habits anymore. I was focused more on improving myself because it’s a journey and some people would rather be stagnant (maybe out of fear or other personal reasons). I found myself wanting to be around more ambitious, motivated people who had similar goals and personalities (also ones who were more trustworthy and genuine). Some of my old friends traveled on a separate road with people who were more like them (or who they wished to be like). There were a few who I was no longer compatible with and didn’t wish to deal with anymore. Others, we gravitated away from each other, naturally.
It’s normal to not keep all of the same friends and it’s okay to outgrow friends if you believe that you are personally growing to the point where you are set on a different journey.
It can be difficult to know what friends to choose, who to trust, thinking if you’ll get along, and are these the people for you; I know this all too well.
It was difficult for me to find friends that were truly for me and in many of my past friendships I felt like the “background friend”.
I would have individual friends or a group of friends, but I never felt as close to them as they were to others. I would think about them, make sure to check up on them and even try to make plans with them. They reciprocated the same energy here and there, but not as much as friends should. I constantly felt like the background character in a movie who didn’t mean much to the main characters or the plot.
I never felt permanent in my different friend groups, so the feeling has caused me to not get close to many. I did feel alone for a long time, but I started following some advice that has helped me a lot:
Don’t Be Afraid To Let Go
There are many of us who are afraid to let go of a dying friendship because of history or other reasons. Letting go of a friendship IS, in fact, scary because there’s a lot of uncertainty that follows. “Will I make better friends?”, “Will I be lonely?”, “What if I meet others and we don’t click?”. Fear tends to drive people into staying in relationships that aren’t working anymore. Remember that you won’t click or be close friends with everyone you meet and that’s perfectly fine— Your people, your tribe is out there.
Follow Your Passions
This is one of the best advice that was given to me. Following your passions can connect you to some amazing people. If you like to write, find a local event such as a blogging or writer’s workshop that’s going on. If you’re an artist, try finding a local art museum or art showcases. Surround yourself with the things you love, and you will eventually attract the people who are meant for you.
Know that You’re Enough
Sometimes we let friendships that aren’t working for us anymore define who we are. Just because you had to let a friendship go, doesn’t mean something is wrong with you. Just because you feel as if you’re that, “background friend” doesn’t mean something is wrong with you. It’s okay to hurt and to be scared, but you’re too incredible and talented to hide from the world.
Your people are out there, your tribe is waiting for you.