Awesome Amy’s Burning Question: “You’ve talked about people gravitating out of your life for a reason… And that it’s always best to let people go when they begin to leave your reality. My question for you is, what if those people are family? Close connections that are drifting out of my life? I acknowledge that I am stretching my own personal boundaries and pursuing dreams that may be out of their comfort zone, but having my parents drift away has been very saddening to me. Having a sister openly choose the friendship of my ex-husband over me makes me feel terrible. The only positive feeling thought I can find to explain this, is that I have to distance myself from limiting family beliefs while I expand my own. Slightly better feeling place, but still feeling a bit bruised. Any thoughts or insights?”
Dear Awesome Amy,
Thanks for asking such an awesome question. Ok, so you’ve been doing your LOA “work”, you’ve been focusing in a way that feels better, letting the limiting beliefs that you hold come up and working on releasing them. Your vibration is rising, you’re feeling way better and the world is starting to respond to you in a different way. Some of those responses are awesome, and you do your newly acquired happy dance. But some of the responses are not so good, which you can handle, too. You’re getting better at setting boundaries and walking away from anyone who refuses to or is unable to interact with you on your terms. And then, there’s your family. Your loved ones. Your blood. These are the people whom you love, despite the fact that they’re always miserable. You feel a connection to them, an obligation to them that you can’t shake, and you care how they feel, no matter how much you try to detach. What do you do when they start gravitating out of your experience? And what if, as in your case, they don’t gravitate all the way out, but insist on sticking around in some fashion and treating you like the red headed stepchild?
It’s still all about boundaries
At the core, the solution to this issue still comes down to boundaries. If you own a nightclub, you’re going to have some rules of conduct and a dress code to make sure that your guests all have a great time. You recognize that not everyone will get in, but that’s really their choice. If they don’t want to follow your rules, they don’t have to, but they can’t party at your club unless they do (they can, however, go someplace else). You are not telling them that they have to change, you’re simply setting the rules for YOUR club. They always have the option to leave. If you don’t enforce the rules to your club, if your bouncer just lets anyone in (maybe because you think you have to or no one will come), you’ll soon end up with people who disrespect your establishment, the staff and the other patrons. Pretty soon, the awesome people won’t bother showing up anymore, because who wants to go to a shitty club, and you’ll be left with a roomful of douchebags.
Setting boundaries is like setting and then enforcing those club rules. You get to define how people must treat you if they want to interact with you. This is not the same as trying to change them, which entails telling people they must interact with you AND that it must be on your terms. When you set boundaries in a healthy way, the option to simply walk away must stay on the table, for both you and them. There is no one in your reality that you NEED to interact with in order for you to have the life and experiences you want to have. You can experience all the closeness, intimacy and connection you want, whether or not your family members participate on that level or not.
Boundaries aren’t something you can choose to enforce periodically. Just like those club rules, if you let even one person in who doesn’t follow them, it can affect the atmosphere of the entire club. One disrespectful douche can ruin everyone’s good time. Letting even one person treat you badly will affect your vibration, which will have consequences in all areas of your life. So, letting your uncle speak to you as though you were an idiot can actually cause you to elicit the same behavior from your boss.
Do you always have to walk away?
Keeping yourself in a situation that dishonors you will send the message to the Universe that you are not worth honoring. The Universe will disagree with you, but will have no choice but to mirror that horrible perspective back to you. So suddenly, all kinds of nasty and abusive people will enter your reality, all in an attempt to get you to realize just how awful that feels so that you’ll finally get some standards. Often, my advice in these situations is to walk away; remove yourself from the offending situation when possible, and when the douches try to gravitate out of your experience, for God’s sake, let them.
But do you ALWAYS have to walk away? What if it’s your mom or someone else that you love dearly? Well, that all kind of depends.
You see, you chose your family. I know, some of you don’t want to hear that, but it’s true. You did not intend to be shackled to your family, or to make how you feel dependent on how they feel, but you did choose them. They are always perfect for helping you release the beliefs you came here to explore. Generally speaking, our family members also have the capacity to keep up with us to a large degree. So, while friends and acquaintances and lovers may come and go as you keep leveling up, your family may well have a much greater capacity to keep playing on your level, at least to some degree. This doesn’t happen instantly though.
Let them catch up to you
The trick is to make it ok for them to gravitate out, but understand that it may only be temporary. Although there are exceptions, your parents would mostly likely not be your parents if they didn’t have the ability to keep on playing the game with you. And when this is not the case, they will often leave during childhood, as part of an agreement to help you explore and shift abandonment issues or the like. If you’ve made it to adulthood and your parents are still around, chances are very good that a version of them exists where they can connect with you in the way you want. But, and this is the really hard part, you can’t NEED them to.
You have to decide that you’re going to be ok without them. And I don’t mean “ok”, as in, you’ll survive. I mean, you can feel really good without them. I know. That’s easier said than done. Let’s take a look at why they would gravitate out in the first place.
Your parents and relatives are just people. They aren’t any more enlightened than you are, don’t have any special wisdom (sorry parents), and aren’t infallible. In fact, they may have MORE limiting beliefs than you do, having been born into a lower vibration than you were (the Universal vibration is always rising, so each generation is born into a higher and higher energy), meaning they may be struggling a great deal more with the concepts that are now occurring to you. This does not mean that they don’t have the capacity to get that clarity, it might just take them a little longer. In fact, one of your life themes may be to help them reach that level of understanding.
You may well be the light in your family that has come in to shine brightly enough to inspire them to finally let go of their darkness, as well. This means that you will be the first to truly grasp the concept of your own power. As such, things may get a little lonely for a while. Your vibration will be much higher than theirs, and as you may recall, this can make those with much lower vibrations very, very uncomfortable. When two people with differing vibrations come together, one party either has to raise/lower their vibration to meet the other, or they have to get away from each other.
Let’s say that your parents have a lot of fear and resistance, and your new happy shiny self is making them want to punch you in the face. You’re shining a light on their crap, and they don’t appreciate it. They were pretty much content in their denial, and your joy is making them realize that all is not as mediocre as they thought. That’s bound to piss them off, at first. Their initial reaction may well be to blame you. They may even try to get you to dim your light through guilt and manipulation, in an attempt to stay in denial. If that happens, stay strong and know that just because they’re freaking out now, doesn’t mean they’ll stay freaked out forever.
In most cases, after the initial shock and accompanying defensive response, and providing you keep your energy high and don’t slide into a worse feeling place just to placate them, your vibration will begin to affect your family members for the better, even if you’re not spending a lot of time with them. You may not be seeing much of them, but they’re not completely out of your life. They’re thinking about you, watching you, and will eventually think about what your energy is bringing up in them. It may take them a while to come around, but they generally will at some point. Again, this will only happen as long as you make the idea of them doing so totally irrelevant to how you feel. But, while you can’t NEED them to shift to a higher vibration, you can use the idea that they might, and your focus on their eventual ability to do so, to help you feel better.
In other words, KNOW that they have the ability to catch up with you, but that as the frontrunner who is inspiring change, you’re naturally not all going to be in the same vibrational place for a while.
Dealing with rejection
Ok, so relatives who have gravitated out of your reality may well come back in at some point. But what about those who haven’t gravitated out, but who are actively triggering you? Should you just disown your sister for choosing your ex over you? Well, you can, if that’s the only way you can get any relief, but I have a slightly different suggestion.
First of all, let’s just acknowledge that just because someone is related to you, doesn’t mean that you have to be friends. You don’t even have to love each other. You have no obligation to each other whatsoever, unless you decide that you do. This means that if a family member is truly being unacceptable, you can totally disown them, or divorce them, or whatever. And yes, this goes for any family member. Now, while not too many of you will have to resort to such an extreme solution, it pays to keep in mind that this “no obligation” paradigm applies even to family members whom you actually like. You are not responsible for how they feel. You can’t be. No one can be. You are not responsible for how they act. And you are not responsible for keeping the relationship alive (you can if you want to, but you don’t HAVE TO). So, if you are engaging with said sister or any other relative or person, you are doing so because you choose to, plain and simple. You’re not being forced to do anything (by anyone other than yourself).
Your sister also has no obligation to be your friend, to be more loyal to you than to someone else, or to choose you over your ex. If she resonates more with your ex right now, why should she spend time with you (when you probably both wouldn’t enjoy it), rather than with someone who is actually able to mirror some of her vibration back to her? You see, your sister and your ex are clearly a better match to each other than to you, which would make sense if your vibration has been rising and theirs hasn’t yet. You’ve left them both behind, so to speak. They’re simply regrouping, processing the impact that the changes you’ve made in yourself are having on them. And since they obviously have something in common (you), at least some of their vibrations are going to match up, allowing them to “get” each other, mirror back each other’s energy, and be an integral part of each other’s growth. Whether or not they take advantage of that opportunity and actually shift to a better feeling place is up to them, but as long as you keep your energy high, you will give them the best possible chance of doing so.
Your sister is not choosing your ex OVER you. You, with your new happy shiny vibration, are not currently a choice for her. You’re not accessible in that way to her right now. Give it some time. She may well come around again, but only after she’s faced some of her own crap and made her own changes (and this happens more often than not, and is happening more and more these days).
Allow them to grow
The idea isn’t that you have to lose the people who are closest to you. You get to have a family, even YOUR family. But you have to allow them to grow and evolve at their own pace. If you’re the first one in your family to truly raise their vibration to a really high place, you have to be willing to let them catch up, and that can take time. Just because you’ve now valiantly faced some of your biggest fears doesn’t mean that they will instantly do the same. Give them the time they need, even if they temporarily need to get away from you (and they often will, especially at first). Keep in mind that, as you pointed out, YOUR capacity for growth may be greatly enhanced by the distance between you and them, as well. Often, we’re unable to make big changes in how we see ourselves while in the presence of those who refuse to view us in a new way. In other words, if your aunt insists on seeing you as a helpless, irresponsible child, even when you’re over 30, it’ll be easier for you to see yourself as empowered and competent and awesome when she’s not around. Once you’ve consistently achieved that state, you’ll elicit a different version of her, one that has the ability to see and connect with the new you. This wouldn’t have been as easy or even possible without taking a little hiatus from each other.
And just as you may need the distance to level up, they’ll often need the same, not because you’re trying to drag them down, but because you’re trying to drag them up too quickly. Your much higher energy will hit them in the face like a frying pan, bringing all their resistance to the surface. They may not be ready to deal with all of that at once, but that doesn’t mean they can’t deal with it at all. That hit you gave them will have left an impact. It can shake them right out of their complacency (something they will not generally immediately thank you for), make them aware of just how crappy they’ve been feeling (ditto), and inspire them bit by bit to start doing something about it. At this point, your happy shininess is just going to annoy them. It’s going to be too much. Give them some space to face their own fears at their own pace, and you’ll often find that they will meet you, at least on some level.
Let them change
Of course, in order to elicit this new version of them into your reality, you also have to be willing to let THEM change. Don’t see them as closed minded and full of limiting beliefs. Don’t see them as unable or unwilling to change, or see your point of view. Focus on the fact that they, just like you, are on a journey, and that they are progressing. Know that they do have the ability, just like you, to get where they want to go. They can be happy. The entire Universe is assisting them with this endeavor. Acknowledge when they make a shift (be careful not to be condescending here), and celebrate those events either with them or privately. Don’t tell the old stories of how they used to be, or how they’ve always been. Look for new stories about them, stories that feel better, examples of how open minded they are (maybe in some other area), of how proud you are of them, of their desire to feel good. Don’t keep them stuck in the old energy, let them shift to the new one.
As you focus on the best possible version of them that you can imagine, as you KNOW that they can move into that version, as you look for evidence of their tolerance instead of their closed mindedness, as you keep making how you feel your priority, enforcing your boundaries and allowing others to walk away if necessary, you’ll begin to notice that your relationships will change. The more allowing you are of them, just as they are NOW, at this point in their journey, the less they’ll push against you and the faster they’ll shift to meet you. And then, when you no longer NEED it, when not having it no longer causes you pain, you’ll get to have the family you’ve always wanted. Because it’s at this point that your family have served their main purpose – they’ve forced you to level ALL the way up, to become TRULY allowing and tolerant, to make your own vibration your actual priority. They didn’t stop triggering you just because you got a bit happier. They stuck it out and pushed your buttons and danced all over your boundaries until you got all the way there. Aw, bless.