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8 Signs You Aren’t Falling Behind But Just Going The Right Way

8 Signs You Aren’t Falling Behind But Just Going The Right Way

Sometimes, we find ourselves stopping and reflecting on whether we are getting ahead and getting what we really want in life, or if we are just letting life pass us by. You may find yourself stuck in situations by choice. But being stuck does not necessarily mean that we are falling behind. Compare yourself to the waves that are quietly contemplating, waiting to throw the next big one at the right time. Consider yourself going in the right direction if you see yourself in these situations:

1. You’re still busy exploring and haven’t settled yet.

It could be that you haven’t made up your mind that you will stay at your current job within the next 10 years. Or that you have not gotten married yet because you are not sure if your partner is the right one. Or stay in the same city until you are 50. The main lesson is, it is good to keep exploring for better things rather than settling. Some 40-year-olds that I know are still unsure about what to do next in their lives so they plan to stay in status quo for a little while. And that is ok. Rash decisions most often yield rash results. So it is better to stop and explore what else is out there.

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2. Your savings haven’t gone up much because you want to see the world.

They say that traveling is the only thing that makes us richer. And I couldn’t think of anything truer than that. Traveling though, is a financial decision. If you decided to travel while your legs are still strong enough to let you, do not blame yourself if your bank account is not inflating that fast. The trade off to that is a more culturally rich you. There is no better teacher than traveling.

3. You are ok with failing because you know you’ll gain more after.

Never be afraid of risks. If you fall down, get back up. And when you are back up, let yourself be a better person from the experience. The lessons that we learn from failing are necessary to make us successful. And if we let ourselves get scared of failing, we will never leave our comfort zone. Nobody that has ever succeeded has stayed in their comfort zones. If they did, we won’t have airplanes or computers or cures for certain diseases because all of those were created by people who allowed themselves to fail.

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    4. You daydream a lot and are constantly inspired.

    They say that an empty can is the one that makes the most noise. If you find yourself switching to quiet mode and your mind starts wandering and daydreaming, know that there is nothing wrong with that. It is a sign that you have a creative imagination and a successful future starts with a creative mind. You can go as far as your mind can go.

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    5. You don’t work just for money, but focus on the meaning of work.

    You might find yourself stuck in a job that does not pay as well as another profession. But it is what drives you and it nourishes your soul. Money is a necessity, but the happiness that it gives is temporary. It’s like buying a car that you have been excited about. And after a year of using it daily, it just becomes an ordinary thing to you; no meaning. So find work that is meaningful.

    6. You haven’t met someone that really suits you, but refuse to compromise.

    It is better to be alone than to be with the wrong person. The sadness that you are feeling because you are alone will be nothing compared to the pain that you will go through if you are with the wrong person. If you are not settling because you have not met the right person yet, it just means that you put value on yourself. And in order to find the right person, you need to be in love with yourself first. The right person will not make you a complete person; it will take two complete persons to be in a complete relationship.

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    7. You chase your passions even if success is not guaranteed.

    I have read articles about people in their death beds wishing that they went after their passions. I cannot say this enough. You have to do what makes you happy whether or not success is guaranteed. Because there are no guarantees in life. And also, success does not only come from outside; it also comes from inside of you. Success can be that feeling of being fulfilled when you are doing what you are passionate about.

    8. You let yourself take breaks to recharge because you work better afterward.

    Burn-out is an epidemic. Let us not bury ourselves in work, or in planning the next big thing. We all need to take a break because mentally, physically, and emotionally, we will all perform better after we stop and rest. Better to be strong and steady than be fast and weak.

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    Sarah Bonander

    Writer, Human Resources Professional

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    Last Updated on July 15, 2020

    How to Let Go of Toxic People in Your Life

    How to Let Go of Toxic People in Your Life

    “Entitlement is an expression of conditional love. Nobody is ever entitled to your love. You always have a right to protect your mental, emotional, and physical well-being by removing yourself from toxic people and circumstances.” -Dr. Janice Anderson & Kiersten Anderson

    It’s not always obvious if you have someone toxic in your life. A toxic relationship is one that is harmful to you. A toxic person can create distress to the degree you feel inadequate and isolated. So, what makes a toxic person?

    A toxic person has toxic behavior, meaning it’s not that the whole person is toxic[1]. It’s what they do that counts. Most toxic people run from accountability and misrepresent reality to you. They misrepresent your worth and your ability to heal from them can be stifled the longer you keep them in your life. You have a role to play with it as well; if your values are dismissed by them and you don’t act on it, you have allowed room for toxicity to grow.

    When you are in a toxic relationship, you feel less than. You feel as though you are not worth anyone’s time or effort. You feel unheard, and sometimes you feel unsafe. You don’t feel good about yourself in a toxic relationship, whether it be with a partner, friend, or family member.

    You may stay in a toxic relationship for a number of reasons. You may believe yourself to be a burden, have a lack of boundaries, resist change, fear conflict, try to be a people pleaser, find yourself codependent, or are partially stuck in a pattern or unhealthy cycle of abuse.

    Letting go of toxic people may not be easy. In order to do so, you have to know why or how they are toxic to you and read between the lines that they do not have your best interests in mind.

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    Letting go of toxic people is hard because you are good and want to see the good in others. You think their apologies are authentic. You have trouble believing they are being dishonest. You don’t spend time healing from it. You get pulled back into the pain because you don’t want it to end. However, if you feel like something isn’t right, it probably isn’t right.

    You should walk away from a toxic person because you need to preserve your peace. You need to feel like yourself again. And you need better support.

    Letting go of toxic people can involve four major steps.

    1. Recognize the Red Flags

    Red flags are signs a person is being toxic. It’s when someone shows characteristics that you should feel caution about. It’s when you feel any level of dissatisfaction and distrust. Trust your gut. When you recognize red flags, you can evaluate whether a person is trying to manipulate you or not. This gives you some level of control over what you allow in your life. The earlier you detect these behaviors, the better off you will be.

    Red flags can include:

    • They always put themselves first.
    • They point out imperfections and sabotage your self-esteem.
    • You may feel drained or used when you’re around them.
    • What you give isn’t reciprocated. They don’t return the goodness you provide as a friend.
    • They ignore your boundaries and get angry when you tell them “no.”
    • You catch them in half truths or outright lies when you confront them about anything.
    • You are the villain; they are the victim.
    • Second chances always lead to repeated patterns of behavior.
    • They may engage in abuse.

    2. Set Boundaries

    There are emotional boundaries that one can set, but there are also physical ones[2]. You can leave any time. Setting boundaries is also an important part of self-care.

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    You shouldn’t walk on eggshells. Tell them how you feel. Are they respecting you, fulfilling your needs, and listening to you? If not, it’s time to set up a healthy emotional distance and start letting go of toxic people around you.

    There are levels to this. You have your inner circle, which could include family, and then you have acquaintances and strangers. If a toxic person is in your inner circle, it’s time to pull back and put up some boundaries for them to follow. If they can’t hear you out, you can cut off the connection completely.

    You can give second chances, but you have to be careful. If someone knows they can get away with something, they will do it again. If there’s any chance for the relationship, they have to know not to cross certain lines.

    3. Invest in Yourself

    You deserve to know you are worthwhile. Try to remember that things will get better and that anything is possible. How do you do so? Invest in yourself.

    This means self care, goal setting, surrounding yourself with positive support, and feeling a sense of peace. Your greatest ambition should be to love yourself. Without self-love, letting go of toxic people will be difficult.

    Every relationship is a risk, but if you know yourself and what you will allow, toxic people will have less of a hold over you. If you are a giver or people pleaser, you are most at risk to being in a one-sided relationship. You shouldn’t be punished for caring, but sometimes trust needs to be earned. If you have self-love, you are treating yourself the best way possible. You know that others need to meet your standards; otherwise, they don’t get to be a part of your life.

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    It’s possible that you can love yourself and still not see the signs. It can be difficult for some to be aware that toxic people exist. However,, if you know how much you mean to others in your life and what you are worth, you will be less likely to take on a relationship that is harmful to you or repeat negative patterns. Self-love is how we get out of toxic relationships, but it’s also how they never begin.

    4. Know When Forgiveness Is Possible

    There are times a person will prove their worth to you. They may make a mistake that makes them seem like a horrible person. They may forget to be good to you because of their own issues. They may just have no example of what a healthy relationship looks like. They may have an inflated ego that really comes from insecurity. The list goes on.

    If they apologize, that’s a start. Look at their actions. Are they changing for the better because they really want to change or just seeming to in order to manipulate you? A person may control others with their image or perceived personality, but if you see through them, you may be able to discern the degree to which they are willing to be there for you.

    If they start to do the right thing, you may begin to trust them again. Don’t start forgiving them until time has passed and you are sure there is growth, even if they show vulnerability or remorse. You can give a second chance if they truly have an awakening. Otherwise, it’s best to get out. Don’t let them walk all over you; let them walk out the door.

    If you do give a second change and they still refuse to change, you have every right to remove them and continue the process of letting go of toxic people. The moment you even want to leave may also be a good time to get out. You don’t have to compromise yourself in order to care for them.

    Forgiveness is the release of resentment or anger[3]. Forgiveness doesn’t mean reconciliation. You have to go back to the same relationship or accept the same harmful behaviors from someone. You don’t have to let them back in. You don’t have to do anything you don’t want to do.

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    Remember, forgiveness is ultimately for you, not them. You don’t need that person in your life in order to forgive them, and if you give them a second chance, proceed with caution.

    Final Thoughts

    Recognize the red flags, set boundaries, invest in yourself, and know when forgiveness is possible. This is how you cope with a toxic person impacting your life. You have power in the direction of your life and the people who accompany you as you move forward. Use it.

    If a person is worthwhile, they will prove themselves through their actions, not their words. If they cross certain lines that really harm you, you owe them nothing. You have every right to feel what you feel and to be upset. Honor your feelings and communicate them because it’ll only continue to keep happening if you don’t.

    If this is happening to you, it’s time to put a stop to it. It’s time to take control. It’s time to live for yourself, not for what others say about you. It’s time to set your standards higher than they’ve ever been before. And most of all, it’s time to let go.

    Resource reminder: A physically abusive relationship is ALWAYS toxic. There are resources for you. Always speak up.

    If you are in such a cycle or domestic violence or abuse reach out for help. For example, there is The National Domestic Violence Hotline (https://www.thehotline.org/) which can be reached at 1−800−799−7233. There are other ways to get help if you simply ask for it. 

    More Tips on Letting Go of Toxic People

    Featured photo credit: Hannah Busing via unsplash.com

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