Self Care: Eliminate the Drain
There comes a point in your twenties (read: life), that you have to decide how you will handle the flying curve balls and disappointments that you face. Some things are truly out of your control; but you are fully responsible for how you respond and manage through the circumstances.
Life is full of missteps, mistakes, motivation and miracles. Sometimes we handle conflict and chaos with ease, while other times we lose it, completely, and find ourselves unstable and stressed out. Both outcomes are okay, no one has any right to judge you, but it is best that we learn which method is most effective, because we need our energy, and we need our light.
With life, and it’s many paths, we are also exposed to many different people. Some people that we were good to, and others that we weren’t. From my personal experiences, I have come to find that there are two types of people in this world; the drainers, and the energizers (Read: the users and the givers). People who are drainers, often exhibit traits like, manipulation, insensitivity, negativity, and selfishness. Energizers are often refreshing, rejuvenating, uplifting, and understanding. This is not to say that they are always like this, because we all have moments; but they more often than not, prefer the brighter side of things. Drainers are not always that way either, and are not stuck in that title. Sometimes people become drainers because they too have been drained, due to an unforeseen obstacle, a loss of the sorts, they feel undervalued or violated by others, or just because they are going through a tough season.
In my life mantra of Protect Your Peace, I have learned that you need to be very mindful of the company you keep. Will you surround yourself with drainers, and people who always wish to take from you and focus on problems, or will you be among energizers, who give, and pour into you, light and solutions. This does not mean that you have to be ridiculously cut throat, and shred people to pieces when they are overly anxious or exhibiting negative energy; because as I said before, sometimes people are just going through a season, of anxiety and doubt. You do however, have to be mindful of how much energy you give them, and to what extent you can help.
Possessing and using emotional intelligence intelligence is fundamental to success in all aspects of life.
Emotional Intelligence is defined as, the capacity to be aware of, control, and express one’s emotions, and to handle interpersonal relationships judiciously and empathetically (Google)
“If your emotional abilities aren’t in hand, if you don’t have self-awareness, if you are not able to manage your distressing emotions, if you can’t have empathy and have effective relationships, then no matter how smart you are, you are not going to get very far.” – Daniel Goleman
As you are finding your way, and learning how to navigate through relationships and trials; ask yourself are you among drainers or energizers. After you have taken a honest audit of your circle, then ask yourself, are you a drainer, or are you an energizer?
Ask yourself the following questions:
- Are you prone to finding problems, without trying to identify solutions?
- Have you taken personal responsibility for some of the failures you have experienced?
- Have you forgiven yourself for mishandling situations and relationships in your life?
- Have you forgiven others for mishandling situations and relationships that involved you?
- Have you done an honest assessment of where you are physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually? (Read: It is ok, if you are not ok. Things get better if you let them, and you loosen your grip)
- Are you patient with others during their times of distress and pain, the way you once needed that patience?
- Are you sincere and authentic in your relationships with others, or are you just using them to meet your temporary needs?
Once you ask yourself these questions, and hold yourself to a standard of authenticity and progress, you can then move to hold others to that standard. Outside of family, and coworkers, you pretty much have full control over who you allow to stay in your life. Do you want to move forward in hope and kindness, or do you want to be stuck in the doldrums of disappointments?
Embrace the process, no matter where you are in it, and Eliminate the Drain!