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Saturday, April 17, 2010

Learning from Relationships

Question: what do you tell a person who has lost everyone close to them ?

no one died, but all the relationships ended on a bad note.

Click on comments to see Laura's advice.


Eleventh Hour LLC said...

Dear Dana,
It is always helpful to first validate and acknowledge your friend's situation. You can say something like, "There have been a lot of changes in your life recently. How are things going for you now?" This gives your friend the opportunity to express herself and helps you to understand her perception of these ended relationships. It may be that she is happy some of them ended. I believe people come into our lives to teach us things. Maybe your friend learned how to be assertive when she ended a negative relationship. It is very empowering to be able to send negative people out of our lives. Maybe she learned valuable money lessons by realizing she was paying for other people's stuff just to try and keep them in her life. It is helpful as the conversation gets going to be able to help her see the lessons learned from each person who is no longer in her life. They each taught her something about herself and something about life. Maybe you could say something like, "It seemed like John always needed to know where you were all the time, how does it feel to be free of that?" Or something like, "It seemed like you were always paying for dinner when you guys went out, how does it feel to have extra money in your pocket these days?" Being able to acknowledge our own character flaws also helps us to grow. It takes two to start and end a relationship! Maybe your friend is not flexible when it comes to making plans. Maybe she is the one who wants to know where people are all the time. Maybe she is the one with money issues. It is so important to learn about ourselves from others. You can help her with this self-evaluation by saying something like, "It seemed like John didn't like it much when you called him frequently throughout the day. What do you think about that." If she can self-reflect on her own part in the demise of these relationships, and implement what she has learned from each person, then her next relationship may be healthier. Good luck and let us know what happens.

Eleventh Hour Moments