The truth is, everyone is going to hurt you. You just got to find the ones worth suffering for.
― Bob Marley
As my therapy clients progress from stabilization to self-actualization and thriving, an inevitable impasse occurs. What was once relationally gratifying, or simply tolerable, no longer satisfies the evolving standards, views and goals that accompany their psychological growth. They discover that their commitment to ongoing personal development requires quality bonds that encourage self-expansion.
Discordant aims and ambitions organically create distance. Change within leads to change without. This is often a painful quandary to be in. The realization that loved ones are no longer in alignment and that paths are diverging, may ultimately lead to cutting cords if relationships cannot be redefined, or if they prove to be a hindrance to fulfilling needs and potentials.
In the most unfortunate scenarios striving for more engenders resentment and mockery from friends and/or family who are threatened by the individuation process. They may consciously and unconsciously maneuver to get you to return to the status quo. Those feeling left behind may not have the aptitude to reflect on their insecurities. Hence, they may be compelled to sabotage, manipulate and even betray. Efforts to secure an established pattern of dependency can induce desperate measures. This is a repetitive theme for recovering addicts who experience seemingly innocuous provocation to drink or drug by those closest to them.
As the individual committed to her potential finds people falling to the wayside, she begins to question how one goes about connecting with intellectual, emotional and spiritual equals? She finds herself longing for those who possess similar perspectives, and who match her level of energy and purpose. She opens up to the possibility of forming relationships with other emotionally healthy people immersed in a state of becoming, and who are intent on inspiring each other and raising each other up to the heights of one’s abilities. She wonders about those who like herself seek out deeper meaning in adversity, who persevere and speak the truth. She longs to connect with folks of humility and empathy who live by their standards, who nurture their intellect and their psychological and spiritual development.
Concomitant to these hopeful ruminations are loss and loneliness. The commitment to knowing one’s Higher Self means making painful choices. Before she can receive what she hopes for relationally she must gestate with a time of transition where solitude is embraced. Here she learns to accept that loss is part of the ebb and flow of life. In enduring her loneliness she connects to the depths of herself and her inner world. Ultimately she trusts she will be led towards those who believe in themselves and who will believe in her. Letting faith and instincts be her guide, she comes to unapologetically define what meets her elevated relational needs.