A friend of mine recently lost over two stone. She went to visit her best friend, who she hadn’t seen in a while, expecting a big reaction to her very visible transformation. What did she get? Nothing. No shock, no excitement, no recognition, no pat on the back, no “well done”… nothing.
When she told me about her disappointment at her friend’s reaction I wasn’t surprised.
A personal client has also recently lost over a stone in the space of four weeks. Once she thought that after having a baby and with a bad back injury, there was little hope for her. But with will power and the right tools, she is now delighted with her progress so far, happier than she’s been in years, and determined to lose another stone and a half. The reaction of some of her family and friends? “You don’t want to lose any more weight, do you? You look ok now”.
Has something like this happened to you?
The other day I saw a TV program in which two childhood friends stayed friends for as long as one was much heavier than the other one. The moment the heavier friend lost weight, the other one felt threatened and distanced herself. Then, the thin friend gained weight, and the newly slim friend put all the weight back on. They bumped into each other on the street, and seeing as both of them were the fat, they decided they could be friends again.
What kind of friendship is that?
It’s hard enough staying disciplined and focused on your goals day in and day out, but having to deal with other people’s insecurities, low self-esteem, jealousy, envy, or whatever other issues they have can be a deal breaker.
It’s easy to stay on track when you are surrounded with supportive people who encourage you and genuinely want you to do well and succeed. But having people around you either ignoring your accomplishments, constantly trying to tempt you and sabotage your efforts, or draining you with their negative moods can sometimes be the hardest thing.
How can you deal with this kind of behaviour, often coming from those people you love the most?
Here’s 3 ways you can deal with the saboteurs and mood hoovers in your life:
1/ CONFRONT IT: That’s what my friend did. I am sure it wasn’t easy to muster the courage to confront her best friend. Imagine having to ask your best friend why they didn’t say anything at your obvious massive transformation! If you choose to confront the person though, you have to be ready for the answer. It could range from a genuine apology, to an excuse, to a blatant lie. This could be a good time to assertively express your needs and expectations for the relationship. Whatever these are, make sure you lead by example!
2/ IGNORE IT: Ignoring a family member or a friend’s hurtful behaviour can be a challenge. If it’s a once off thing, are you ready to forgive and forget? And what if it’s a regular occurrence? You’ll have to assess if you think you’ll be able to cope with the negativity, or if you even want to be around it at all! It all comes down to your values; those things you hold dearest in a relationship, and those things you will not accept under any circumstances.
3/ GET RID! Sometimes, as hard as it may be, we have to let go of people and things that are simply bad for us. When it comes to family members, work colleagues or old friends, it can be an extremely hard decision to make. A decision I had to personally make many years ago when I left my family and my country to come over to Ireland – one that caused me a lot of heartache, but that to this day I don’t regret at all. Letting go of people you love but that are not good for you so that you can live the life you want is not an easy task. But at the end of the day, it’s your life and you only get one shot at it.