I’m sure you’ve heard of the saying, “your vibe attracts your tribe” or possibly the older adage, “birds of a feather flock together.” It is true: your energy resonates at a frequency that matches those with similar energy, allowing you to “mesh.” However, in a world where we barely get to know ourselves, or are allowed to do so – often times seen as selfish or inconsiderate, one isn’t surprised that we end up out growing many relationships that we considered rock solid in our identity (often times staying longer than we really needed to). Remember the saying that people come into your lives for a season or a reason?
Maybe outgrowing isn’t the best use of verbiage because it sounds a bit elitist. Maybe a better way of looking at it is our paths and energy no longer align with people we previously aligned with.
This is the most often times seen in romantic relationships. We may find ourselves falling head over heels in love for what seems like months, to find one day we realize our paths aren’t connecting, we don’t want the same things or generally the things we originally overlooked can no longer be ignored. This is a good reminder: people have the right to leave us at any point, and we too have the prerogative to leave them as well. It quite unfair to say to your partner, “promise you’ll never leave me,” or to your friend, “promise we’ll be best friends forever.” A fair response might be, “I cannot promise you that but I know in this moment I have no current intentions of changing this relationship.” Do not strong hold people into unrealistic ball and chains. It’s not fair and it only feeds our own insecurity and constant need for validation.
So, why do we attach to friend groups who we later feel disengaged from? There are multiple reasons. Let’s first look at our built in need to connect – we as humans are pack animals, and feel a sense of safety through community and value in connection. Many species fill their primitive need for safety via connecting to a pack, herd, etc. So, we have a natural need to fit it with others. Secondly, and hugely important, is society’s deep dark conditioning of codependency. We have been conditioned since birth to be codependent on others and measure our worth through relationships. “Best friend charms,” “documenting our group connection of social media,” or romanticized sayings of “You make my whole world,” “I couldn’t live without you,” or “One day you’ll find someone who really completes you.” I don’t about you, but I can complete myself.
Wouldn’t you much rather find a partner who compliments you rather than completes you?
Thirdly, and finally, we don’t know who we are! We are in a constant state of growth. When we begin to invest in personal growth and make self-care a priority, we start to develop a true sense of identity. It’s scary to truly face yourself (which is why many people avoid therapy). Plus, staying in meaningless relationships allow to us to focus on people who aren’t us (it’s a smoke screen… yes, a distraction, but any empty one). But once we know who we are we truly attract our tribe.
Therefore, the lesson here is, allow connection to happen at different points in your life, but know it’s okay to leave when it no longer aligns with your morals, values or energy. Good examples of these are ending relationships that no longer serve you, or transitioning from jobs or people you no longer resonant with (but take the lessons with you, and find some gratitude in the experience). Allow the journey to unfold divinely. When you find true connection, it seems to last through the ups and downs of life withstanding the hurdles of adversity. Do not mourn the ever-changing cycle of your evolution, embrace it. Do not measure your friends in quantity but rather quality. Thank those who have been part of it, but also know when it’s time go.