Have you outgrown your circle of friends? Is it time to “move on” from certain people?
We all have friends we’ve known for years. Some of them we’ve known for decades. You probably follow them on social media and send them Christmas cards. But, how many of those friends do you actually see on a regular basis? Do you talk to them regularly?
Here’s the million dollar question – do you WANT to talk to them regularly?
There are phases of our lives where certain friends are invaluable to us. But, that doesn’t mean they will always be our “go to” friend.
We have people in our lives during stages or events that we can’t imagine going thru with anyone else. Those people will undoubtedly be special to us forever. They supported us, lifted us up or even cried with us. But, is it possible we’ve outgrown some of those same friends?
Then, there are people we become very close to because quite simply they are very close. Like your college roommate. You can’t imagine how you survived your Freshman year without her. Would you have been friends had they not “assigned” her to your room? What about that awful job you had a few years ago? You probably had a co-worker you could commiserate with about the work conditions and your old boss. You may never have started up a friendship with them had they not been sitting at the desk next to yours.
Life changes are inevitable. When those changes come, you will have new people near you. A move to a different house, the start a new job or hobby or attending a new church. Some of those people will become great friends, life-long friends, and some won’t.
Those same life changes also mean you will no longer be close to people you once saw or spoke to every day.
Sometimes friends move away from each other and only get to talk once in a while. When they do talk it’s as if nothing has changed. You pick up right where you left off. No matter how long it’s been between phone calls or visits, you jump right back in step with each other.
But, there are others with whom you’ve shared experiences (college, work, your old neighbors, etc) that you’d rather just keep the memories and not really stay in close contact with them. Not because you don’t like them or don’t care about them. It’s just that you’ve matured or your life has changed in such a way that you don’t see eye to eye like you did in the past.
Give yourself permission today to move on. Let go of the guilt.
I talked to someone recently who met up with an old college friend for dinner. After she met with her friend, her comment to me was “It was so nice to see her. She looked great and I’m really glad I went. But, we really don’t have anything in common except old memories.”
There’s nothing wrong with feeling this way. Part of getting older and maturing is realizing that while we need good friends (read more about that here), not all of the old friends are going to be a comfortable fit in our current lives. That doesn’t mean we don’t want the best for them or wouldn’t give them the shirt off our backs if they needed it. It just means we’re going in different directions now. By all means, keep them on the Christmas card list!!
Life brings changes, sometimes those changes show us that we’ve outgrown our circle of friends. Maybe now is the time to surround ourselves with new people that will make us better versions of our current selves.