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Surround yourself.

The energy you surround yourself with influences the energy you carry. Surround yourself with those who push you, cheer for you, challenge you and love you. Surround yourself with those who are courageous and those who make you grow. -Kelsey Kiel
The other day I was reading an article about allowing yourself to leave the people or environments that no longer serve you. We are allowed to let toxic friends go, we are allowed to surround ourselves with love, and people who encourage and nurture us. We are allowed to pick the kind of energy we need in life.

Now more than ever, do I recognize how true this is.

I often felt like I was the girl without a "tribe" which is interesting to hear myself say since I've always felt that I have quite a few different circles of friends that I naturally fit in with. In that sense I would say I'm pretty independent. When many of my college friends were going away on spring break, I found myself traveling to visit family instead. Not sure if that was the introvert in me, or my social anxiety, but I preferred to be doing my own thing. Which is still the case today, but now I view it a bit differently.

I can count my closest friends on one hand - the lifer kind of best friends. However the catch is that none of them are really friends with each other. Now, that is not to come across in a negative way, they are just from different circles of friends. Each season of my life has brought me each one of them when I needed them most, and each of them has impacted my life differently - in the absolute best way possible. I think about this quote a lot - "They say you are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with." I interpret it as, the people who have poured into you the most, have helped to mold you into the person you are.

I remember talking to my therapist one time about feeling left behind in a certain season of life. How a few of my friends were in long term relationships, getting married, buying homes, moving to big cities, and just getting on with their adult lives (for lack of better terms). I distinctly remember not wanting to spend time with them, not because I didn't love them dearly, but because I felt so far behind in the season of life I was in. She told me that "Too many people are unhappy because they do not accept the things or circumstances that they cannot change or have no control over. This leads to unnecessary frustration, disappointment, and suffering." What I couldn't do, was prevent my friends from moving forward, but what I could do was change my surroundings. What I mean by that is, I began to spend more time with some of my other friends in a different circle who were much more in the same season as myself. They were not all in relationships, some were just finishing school, and others had no idea what they were doing with their lives - how I felt most of the time. What I learned was that I wasted way too much time comparing my season of life to someone else's; I am not alone even if it feels like it sometimes.

When a flower doesn't bloom you fix the environment in which it grows, not the flower. - Alexander Den Heijer

In life we are faced with choices, grow or remain the same. If you are not happy where you are, change your environment and then watch yourself grow. Be sure to surround yourself with people who lift you higher. You don't need a lot of people to be happy - just a few who appreciate you for exactly who you are.

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