I felt really pulled to write this after a conversation with my husband a few days ago. He said something quite profound that really opened my eyes to the deep down reasons as to why we can find it hard to support other people through their life decisions, and the harmful effects that our words and sometimes silence can have on them and their own self-worth.

This is a reminder to be conscious of your words and actions when it comes to the lives of others, as well as your own life, and to approach these situations with kindness, compassion and love.
If you feel like you’re at a stage in your life where you’re considering or wanting to make changes, but those closest to you aren’t being very supportive, then please share this with them. This is written for those people, in the hope that they too will open their eyes.
I’m one of the ‘lucky’ ones (although I don’t believe in luck), who has a couple of people in my life who wholeheartedly support me and encourage me to do what I want, which truly makes life feel much more comforting and less stressful. When you have this, it’s sometimes easy to forget that not everybody else does.
My husband and I have been through stages in our lives where loved ones did not support our decisions, and there’s still plenty of people in my life who don’t, and who I can’t be completely open and honest with, which can be tough. We’ve experienced several hard times in our lives where we were faced with big life decisions to make. The pain was bad enough when we weren’t even sure within ourselves if we were making the right choices, but to have some of the people closest to us not being supportive, just made life that much more difficult and confusing.
When you disagree with, don’t support or even mock the life decisions that other people want to make, particularly people who you love, what’s it’s really saying is that you don’t respect them.
You don’t respect them enough to believe that they know themselves well enough to make the right choices for THEM.
In a way, it’s almost saying that you know better than them. When in fact, you don’t. Nobody knows someone better than they know themselves.
You may have good intentions. You want the best for your loved ones and you want to protect them from getting hurt or from ‘failing’. But the only person who’s hurting them is you. You can never assume to know what’s best for them, because you don’t know everything that’s inside of them. You don’t wake up as them every morning, have to drag yourself to the job they hate, or experience the thoughts and feelings they have.
You are not them. They are their own unique being with their own emotions, thoughts, beliefs, passions and desires, and you can’t even begin to understand the things that they do.
What are you worried about? Why are you scared for them? Is it because you’ve been too scared yourself to make changes in your life, or maybe you tried in the past and it didn’t turn out the way you’d hoped? Don’t force them to play safe and live a life they don’t love just because you don’t feel comfortable diving into the unknown.
I’ve seen this happen with so many people, and particularly in the coaching industry. It tends to be one that people don’t understand, and so when they don’t understand it, they make fun of it or think it’s stupid.
It doesn’t matter if you say something in serious or joking tone. They both have the same effect.
One single sentence can kill someone on the inside.
Your words -and equally your silence or avoidance- can literally change the way somebody sees themselves. FOREVER.
It can devalue their self-worth. Once they believe their ideas and opinions are stupid or have no value, they may then see themselves as worthless.
 Please don’t be that person.
Please don’t make someone’s life even harder for them that it already is. They’re probably already experiencing negative conflict in their minds, being extremely self-critical and full of doubt and confusion.
This particularly applies if it’s your partner or child. Can you imagine how demeaning and disheartening it is for them to experience their loved one not believing in, respecting or trusting them?
Most unsupportive behaviour tends to surface because of money worries. Most of us fear that we won’t or don’t have enough. But please remember that money ISN’T everything. Money is not worth living a shitty life for, where you dread turning up to work everyday in a job you hate. As a society we all slog away through the daily grind and put up with it because we think that’s how we “should” be living. It’s just the “normal” thing to do.
But why should we? Who says?
Don’t tell anyone what they “should” do. What you think they “should” do is just your perception of what’s right. It’s an opinion, not a truth.
I heard a quote this week from an amazing Connie Chapman podcast I listened to which was so fitting and just keeps popping back into my mind.
“Only take advice from people who have what you want.”
Don’t ever tell anyone what to do, because you don’t truly know what’s best for them.
Let them create and follow their own path, instead of leading them down yours.
In the end, it may seem to be the ‘wrong’ decision, but that’s a lesson they need to learn for themselves. If they never try, they’ll never know, and they’ll spend their whole lives wondering what might have been.
But in my opinion, there are no ‘wrong decisions’. Everything happens for a reason, and while it may put you through pain for a little while, you’ll come out of it and be better for it.
I studied to become a teacher, and after two years of teaching I decided to leave and pursue Naturopathy. That didn’t work out either, because after a year of study I realised it wasn’t for me and I changed paths once again. Were those years a waste of my time and energy? No way! The things I learnt during that time (especially about myself!), and the experiences I immersed myself in have helped shape me into the person I am today.
Every moment of our lives have lead us to the point we’re at RIGHT now. Never have any regrets, because if one moment in your past happened differently, then you would not be where you are. I love looking back and remembering the difficult periods in my life, but seeing them from a different perspective and realising how they lead to something else amazing in my life. Give it a try!
If you want them to be happy, let them choose what they want to do.
Let them express their true selves.
Never hold someone back from following the path that lights them up. You’re doing the world a disservice, because we all need them to do what they love.
We need to support each other.



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