When Friends Turn Away

Book extract from: ‘From Bullied to Brilliant – How to Artfully Avoid Fitting In

When Friends Turn Their Backs


At some point in life you may, like many of us, find yourself inspired and motivated enough to embark on a new and possibly intrepid venture either in your career or personal life.

As is usually the way with inspired and motivated (some may say foolhardy) ventures, this undertaking will probably fall well outside of your comfort zone and require courage, vision, commitment, determination and lots of tea to bring it to the light of day.

“Old friends pass away, new friends appear. It is just like the days. An old day passes, a new day arrives. The important thing is to make it meaningful: a meaningful friend – or a meaningful day”

Dalai Lama

When we find ourselves in a transition such as this regardless of our personal power and potential,  it can be all too easy to become fearful or overwhelmed and feel a deep longing for support and validation. Interestingly, at these times you may notice that instead of being enthusiastic and encouraging, some of your close friends and family become unusually quiet and strangely disinterested in you.

This can happen when you go through any kind of transition. When we learn a new skill or reach out for new horizons, the people who are closest to us often become confused by the changes and uncertain as to whether they approve or not.

Human beings are notable for being uncomfortable with change, including the changes they witness in friends and family. Give them time to adjust to and accept the transformation they are seeing in you. There are many reasons for people to withdraw, sometimes all they need is a little time to convince themselves that everything is going to be ok.

As you transition to the up-dated, revamped and revised version of you, although you may possibly feel lonely and rejected, be aware that you will inevitably attract new people into your world. These people will be aligned with your up-dated, revamped and revised way of thinking and will be able to celebrate the place you now find yourself. Your new enterprise itself will undoubtedly capture much of your attention and soften the effects of losing the support of those you love and cherish.

Regardless, the period of loneliness and mourning does not need to last long if you focus on what you want instead of what you don’t want and all true friends and loving family will come back to you in their own time. The others, well, bless the moments you shared together and be grateful for the space you now have in your life to welcome and create something new.

“All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.”

Walt Disney

Needless to say, for all the dreamers out there, never trade your dreams for comfort or companionship. Life is for living, not for biding time and, might I add, it is entirely possible to follow your dreams whilst remaining committed to your immediate family.

You may find yourself bewildered and misunderstood at times, you may have your intellect or sanity questioned, but if you are following your dreams doesn’t it make sense that few can see where you are going or understand how you are going to get there? Besides, living the roller-coaster of life can be terrific fun. I wouldn’t miss it for the world.

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