Growing up, I never thought much about burning bridges or what it meant to put effort into maintaining any relationship. I mean, I didn’t care. Expecting a kid at the age of 15 to understand the seriousness of nurturing and building a relationship is somewhat beyond their scope of maturity. Kids are just kids. After 15, I knew what it meant, but I still didn’t care; I wanted to be alone and build myself and mostly didn’t think of whom I ended up hurting.
Every relationship I have today, I’ve spent and dedicated a lot of time & effort to building it. It did not happen overnight. It took patience and understanding of what the other person liked, loved, or cared about so that I could find a resemblance to care for similar things. I write this today because people nowadays barely have any patience left to spend any time building any relationship. Honestly, it’s just sad and worries me if this will become a norm in the future for everyone. People are ready to move on and switch from people in their life whom they never truly get time to learn about anyone on a much more genuine level. I still am in contact with a few of my college friends from undergrad and grad; we all have different lives, but we still find time to talk once in a few months. Nothing ever feels forced.
I am very cautious about people who move on, never respond back and suddenly pop up reading something I posed on LinkedIn or somewhere; view my profile, and then message me, “Haven’t heard from you in a long time?” What is an excellent reply to this? “Well, you didn’t care or bother to reach out; I got tired doing it every time.“
Relationships take effort. There are no shortcuts to any relationship out there. Make no mistake; I am not only talking about romantic relationships here. It can be friends, work, family, or even general friendly acquaintances in our day-to-day life. Genuine relationships are worth fighting for, but you cannot be the only one fighting; sometimes, you have to realize that, cut your losses & move on.
A relationship is nothing if all the feelings, sacrifices, contributions, and hard work are only coming from one end. Someone’s lack of effort is not a call for you to try harder. When someone’s genuinely interested in you & your wellbeing, they consistently demonstrate their interest and leave you no doubt about it. I know I’ve said this before, but nobody is busy in this world; everything is a matter of priority; you aren’t a priority if they don’t have time for you.
I like consistency. Don’t introduce me to anything you can’t keep up with.Brenda Cárdenas (Poet)
A few people I’ve come across can like giving you a sense of dopamine or euphoria and then yank out everything from underneath your feet as if nothing happened. It can hurt for the time being, but it probably is the best for the long term. You probably do not want such people in your life who aren’t consistent in their efforts.
I recently realized that people would want you to be in their life because of envy or jealousy. It can sound ridiculous at first, but it only took me a few steps back to see the bigger picture. Jealousy isn’t always materialistic. People envy how others love you, show love to you, and have a love for you. People envy the way you handled a situation that they couldn’t. What would’ve broken them didn’t break you. They envy because something they couldn’t get past was a breeze for you. You are allowed to terminate your relationship with toxic people. You are entitled to walk away from people who hurt you. You don’t owe anyone an explanation for taking care of yourself.
Growth means choosing happiness over history, and never looking back.