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10 Ways To Let Go Of People Who You No Longer Need In Life

10 Ways To Let Go Of People Who You No Longer Need In Life

You know it’s time. You’ve been needing to divorce the toxic people in your life for months now, but you can’t quite bring yourself to do it. There’s so much history between you, and besides…if you get new friends you’ll have to break them in and catch them up on your story. And who has the time – or the energy – to do all that? And what if no one else shows up to fill the friend void and you’re left all alone…again? But you know these are people you no longer need in your life, and at this point alone is better than five more minutes of misery in their presence. Change can be terrifying, but here are a few ways to take the sting out of the transition from draining to fulfilling in no time flat:

1. Honor YOU!

Society will have you believe it’s everyone else first and you get the leftovers – if there are any. Wouldn’t it be so much more rewarding for everyone if you were whole enough and fulfilled enough to give love and kindness from your overflow, rather than having to dredge up some from an empty reservoir? When you hone in on the pleasures of life you enjoy most – both personally and professionally – you’ll become more refreshed and eager to surround yourself with supportive, uplifting and like-minded people.

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2. Spend time alone.

Time alone with yourself just sounds scary. Nobody really ever wants to stop long enough to look in the mirror, so you just keep going with the status quo. You’re so busy being busy that you lose who you truly are, as well as the dreams that make you unique. You try to fit into a mold that was cast for someone else, and it rarely ever works out well for you. Taking some time to just sit and be with yourself refreshes the soul and mind and helps you figure out who you are and what kind of people you’ll allow in your circle from that point on. If like attracts like, become your own best friend, and soon enough people who truly honor and support you will show up for you.

3. Refocus.

While it’s necessary at times to see things for what they are, continuing to be around people who cause you pain and stress – or who can’t help you through yours because they have so much of their own – can literally be detrimental to your health. Begin to focus on the qualities you desire your friends to have, and before long you’ll be surrounded by people who want to support you as opposed to keeping you stuck in their quicksand of doom.

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4. Determine the floor.

As you begin to honor yourself, many people on the elevator of life will have to get off on a floor far below your penthouse. Be okay with setting your boundaries and allowing the unhealthy friends to live where they’re choosing to live, even if it’s 32 floors beneath you.

5. Discover healthy void-fillers.

Now that you’re a little more in tune with your true self, you’ll have an idea of ways to fill the voids your toxic friends were once filling. Do you like to dance? Take a hip hop class. Is pottery your thing? Connect with a meet-up group for potters. Spending time fostering your passions leaves little room for unhealthy relationships with people who no longer serve you.

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6. Hire a life coach.

Each day you’re doing your absolute best just to survive, and every now and then you get stuck on how to make tomorrow better than today. A life coach is someone who can give you the tools to dig you out of your past habits and thoughts and begin to plant healthy, more fertile seeds of thinking. Whether you use a life coach to help guide you through the tilling phase of gardening, or stick with them through all seasons, it’s imperative to have a qualified support system coaching you through each phase of the process.

7. Read Brené Brown books.

Or watch her Tedx videos on YouTube. Dr. Brown has been researching shame for over 12 years, and she is spot on with the way she’ll gently encourage you to honor yourself enough to let go of everything that is not for your highest purpose – including people.

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8. Spend time with family.

Many times toxic friends start out as escapes from having to deal with your family. In all honesty, dysfunction is the norm when it comes to family dynamics, so embracing the love of your family rather than running from it will also help you release the people who aren’t healthy for you.

9. Journal.

During your alone time, journal. Write about everything. There are very few things more powerful at sorting through your wants and want-nots than putting pen to paper. It clears cluttered spaces in your head for more positive thoughts and “a-ha moments” than any other action on the market. You’ll be able to quickly process each relationship and the lesson it taught you through journaling, making it easier to speak your truth with love and respect to the person whose time it is to move on from your world.

10.Take a break.

Maybe the people you need to let go of are just folks who have been too close for too long. Absence truly does make the heart grow fonder, and it also helps you see their good qualities you were attracted to in the first place. Being too close to someone for too long can lead to resentment and nitpicking, so honor both yourself and the other person by giving each of you time to breathe, reassess and reconnect once you’re both in a better space mentally, emotionally, spiritually and even physically.

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Last Updated on April 6, 2020

10 Powerful Ways to Influence People Positively

10 Powerful Ways to Influence People Positively

Most discussions on positively influencing others eventually touch on Dale Carnegie’s seminal work, How to Win Friends and Influence People. Written more than 83 years ago, the book touches on a core component of human interaction, building strong relationships. It is no wonder why.

Everything that we do hinges on our ability to connect with others and formulate deep relationships. You cannot sell a house, buy a house, advance in most careers, sell a product, pitch a story, teach a course, etc. without building healthy relationships. Managers get the best results from their teams, not through brute force, but to careful appeals to their sensibilities, occasional withdrawals from the reservoir of respect they’ve built. Using these tactics, they can influence others to excellence, to productivity, and to success.

Carnegie’s book is great. Of course, there are other resources too. Most of us have someone in our lives who positively influences us. The truth is positively influencing people is about centering the humanity of others. Chances are, you know someone who is really good at making others feel like stars. They can get you to do things that the average person cannot. Where the requests of others sound like fingernails on a chalkboard, the request from this special person sounds like music to your ears. You’re delighted to not only listen but also to oblige.

So how to influence people in a positive way? Read on for tips.

1. Be Authentic

To influence people in a positive way, be authentic. Rather than being a carbon copy of someone else’s version of authenticity, uncover what it is that makes you unique.

Discover your unique take on an issue and then live up to and honor that. Once of the reasons social media influencers are so powerful is that they have carved out a niche for themselves or taken a common issue and approached it from a novel or uncommon way. People instinctually appreciate people whose public persona matches their private values.

Contradictions bother us because we crave stability. When someone professes to be one way, but lives contrary to that profession, it signals that they are confused or untrustworthy and thereby, inauthentic. Neither of these combinations bode well for positively influencing others.

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2. Listen

Growing up, my father would tell me to listen to what others said. He told me if I listened carefully, I would know all I needed to know about a person’s character, desires and needs.

To positively influence others, you must listen to what is spoken and what is left unsaid. Therein lies the explanation for what people need in order to feel validated, supported and seen. If a person feels they are invisible, and unseen by their superiors, they are less likely to be positively influenced by that person.

Listening meets a person’s primary need of validation and acceptance.

Take a look at this guide on how to be a better listener: How to Practice Active Listening (A Step-By-Step Guide)

3. Become an Expert

Most people are predisposed to listen to, if not respect, authority. If you want to positively influence others, become an authority in the area in which you seek to lead others. Research and read everything you can about the given topic, and then look for opportunities to put your education into practice.

You can argue over opinions. You cannot argue, or it is unwise to argue, over facts and experts come with facts.

4. Lead with Story

From years of working in the public relations space, I know that personal narratives, testimonials and impact stories are incredibly powerful. But I never cease to be amazed with how effective a well-timed and told story can be.

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If you want to influence people, learn to tell stories. Your stories should be related to the issue or concept you are discussing. They should be an analogy or metaphor that explains your topic in ordinary terms and in vivid detail. To learn more about how to tell powerful stories, and the ethics of storytelling, take a look at this article: How To Tell An Interesting Story In 4 Simple Steps

5. Lead by Example

It is incredibly inspiring to watch passionate, talented people at work or play. One of the reasons a person who is not an athlete can be in awe of athletic prowess is because human nature appreciates the extraordinary. When we watch the Olympics, Olympic trials, gymnastic competitions, ice skating, and other competitive sports, we can recognize the effort of people who day in and day out give their all. C

ase in point: Simone Biles. The gymnast extraordinaire won her 6TH all-around title at the U.S. Gymnastics Championships after doing a triple double. She was the first woman to do so. Watching her gave me chills. Even non-gymnasts and non-competitive athletes can appreciate the talent required to pull off such a remarkable feat.

We celebrate remarkable accomplishments and believe that their example is proof that we too can accomplish something great, even if it isn’t qualifying for the Olympics. To influence people in a positive way, we must lead by example, lead with intention and execute with excellence.

6. Catch People Doing Good

A powerful way to influence people in a positive way is to catch people doing good. Instead of looking for problems, look for successes. Look for often overlooked, but critically important things that your peers, subordinates and managers do that make the work more effective and more enjoyable.

Once you catch people doing good, name and notice their contributions.

7. Be Effusive with Praise

It did not take me long to notice a remarkable trait of a former boss. He not only began and ended meetings with praise, but he peppered praise throughout the entire meeting. He found a way to celebrate the unique attributes and skills of his team members. He was able to quickly and accurately assess what people were doing well and then let them and their colleagues know.

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Meetings were not just an occasion to go through a “To Do” list, they were opportunities to celebrate accomplishments, no matter how small they are.

8. Be Kind Rather Than Right

I am going to level with you; this one is tough. It is easy to get caught up in a cycle of proving oneself. For people who lack confidence, or people who prioritize the opinions of others, being right is important. The validation that comes with being perceived as “right” feeds one’s ego. But in the quest to be “right,” we can hurt other people. Once we’ve hurt someone by being unkind, it is much harder to get them to listen to what we’re trying to influence them to do.

The antidote to influencing others via bullying is to prioritize kindness above rightness. You can be kind and still stand firm in your position. For instance, many people think that they need others to validate their experience. If a person does not see the situation you experienced in the way you see it, you get upset. But your experience is your experience.

If you and your friends go out to eat and you get food poisoning, you do not need your friends to agree that the food served at the restaurant was problematic for you. Your own experience of getting food poisoning is all the validation you need. Therefore, taking time to be right is essentially wasted and, if you were unkind in seeking validation for your food-poison experience, now you’ve really lost points.

9. Understand a Person’s Logical, Emotional and Cooperative Needs

The Center for Creative Leadership has argued that the best way to influence others is to appeal to their logical, emotional and cooperative needs. Their logical need is their rational and educational need. Their emotional need is the information that touches them in a deeply personal manner. The cooperative need is understanding the level of cooperation various individuals need and then appropriately offering it.

The trick with this system is to understand that different people need different things. For some people, a strong emotional appeal will outweigh logical explanations. For others, having an opportunity to collaborate will override emotional connection.

If you know your audience, you will know what they need in order to be positively influenced. If you have limited information about the people whom you are attempting to influence, you will be ineffective.

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10. Understand Your Lane

If you want to positively influence others, operate from your sphere of influence. Operate from your place of expertise. Leave everything else to others. Gone are the days when being a jack of all trades is celebrated.

Most people appreciate brands that understand their target audience and then deliver on what that audience wants. When you focus on what you are uniquely gifted and qualified to do, and then offer that gift to the people who need it, you are likely more effective. This effectiveness is attractive.

You cannot positively influence others if you are more preoccupied by what others do well versus what you do well.

Final Thoughts

Influencing people is about centering your humanity. If you want to influence others positively, focus on the way you communicate and improve the relationship with yourself first.

It’s hard to influence others if you’re still trying to figure out how to communicate with yourself.

More Tips About Making Influence

Featured photo credit: Wonderlane via unsplash.com

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