surround yourself with good people

Surrounding Yourself Around People Who Support You

In this week’s blog, I will discuss my journey of surrounding myself with people who lift me up.  

​​On the crisp autumn day of October 7, I was enjoying the beautiful colors of Aspen, Colorado.  We had been visiting our friends and preparing to pack up to return home because my daughter was going to Israel the next week.  While packing, I heard the news that men and women were at a music festival focused on peace and that Hamas came in and slaughtered many of the musicgoers.  You know how the story continued, so I want to relieve it 

Handling Emotions

My heart sank…. My daughter was trying to move up her leave date and leave on October 7.  At that moment, I first said to myself, “I need a drink.” I did not like that thought.  

See, I am not much of a drinker because I lived with two violent alcoholics in my younger days, so I am super careful not to drink too much. In addition, I know that it is better to feel my feelings than to bury them down.

At that moment, I  made a decision: I chose the path of sobriety, at least for the time being. 

I yearned for clarity, to confront my struggles head-on, and to experience my emotions in their raw, unadulterated form rather than seeking refuge in temporary escapes.

Embarking on this journey of sobriety, I braced myself for personal challenges, but what I hadn’t anticipated was the social ripple effect it would cause. My choice seemed to disconcert those around me, nudging them out of their comfort zones. Friends nudged glasses towards me and kept suggesting that I join them. It was odd as I tried to figure out how to hide this decision from them. 

But my sobriety was more than just abstinence; it was a mirror reflecting back the uncomfortable truths about relationships and social dynamics. It wasn’t just my coping mechanisms I had to reassess, but also the nature of the bonds I shared with others. I was confronted with a stark realization: not everyone had my best interests at heart. Some appeared to be more invested in what made them comfortable rather than what fostered my well-being.

Who surrounds you?

This led to deeper reflections on the company we keep. My mentor, Michael O’Brien, calls this his Pelaton. Have you ever paused to consider whether the people you invest your time and energy in genuinely root for your success? Or do they orbit around you, drawing on your energy without replenishing it? It’s a question worth pondering, for it can lead to revelations about who truly deserves a place in your life.

Many of us heard our parents parted a  piece of wisdom that we likely shrugged off in our youth: “We are the sum of the company we keep.” This nugget of truth holds significant weight, particularly when faced with life choices that set you apart from the crowd. It’s crucial to take stock of your social landscape. Do your friends lift you up, encouraging each step you take? Or do they drain your spirit, leaving you to question your worth and choices?

The sobriety journey is as much about self-discovery as it is about self-care. It’s a time to curate your social circle with intentionality, to choose those who will stand by you, cheer for you when you triumph, and offer a shoulder when you falter. This discernment is your right, your responsibility, and ultimately, your path to a more authentic and supportive community.

My Invitation for you

So I extend this invitation to you: delve into a personal inventory of your relationships. Who are your true cheerleaders? Who are your advocates in times of growth and change? Remember, you hold the power to sculpt your social sphere. Choose to surround yourself with those who reflect the person you aspire to be, for in this reflection, you will find strength and affirmation on your journey, wherever it may lead you. If you want help with this invitation, email me.

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