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  • Writer's pictureTai John

Choosy Choosy

Updated: May 17

When you take another trip around the sun, people always ask what wisdom you gained with the completion of one trip & the start of another. As I neared the end of my 28th lap, & began my 29th, wisdom that highlighted my twenties was, "Choose people who choose you."

I used to take immediate offense when people didn't reciprocate the energy & effort I put into our relationships. I used to believe that a lack of reciprocation was a way of telling me that I didn't matter or was of no value. Reciprocation in my eyes resembled validation. It took me to become more receptive to understanding that everyone has different ways they express their love, respect, & value for someone. And if it is not expressed in the same manner doesn't make it any more or less valid. With this newfound awareness, I also learned to differentiate between someone's love language & what that meant in the context of our relationship. Meaning, did they find any value in our relationship to share their love language with me or take the time to understand mine?

I realized that in some of my relationships, I held certain individuals to a higher regard and value on them than they did me. As hard as it is to realize that some people don't value you in the same manner in which you do them, it's not something that can be changed. I knew very well that I couldn't change people, nor has it ever been my intention, I can only lead by example and show others how I want & feel I deserve to be treated. Sometimes talking alone isn't the way to get that message through, action is.

Boundaries. I started setting boundaries left and right like Oprah, "You get a boundary!" "You get a boundary!" "You get a boundary!" Not on no tit for tat, more so, "I can't believe I've been swimming in red flags for so long, all I see is red." It's the most pathetic and embarrassing out-of-body experience to continually watch yourself be ignored, unheard, misunderstood, & uninvited by the individuals that you place such a high value on. But, it's also the most eye-opening experience. I was blinded by the image & idea that I created of individuals rather than seeing & accepting them for who they presented at face value. People will always show you their true selves. It's your due diligence to be present, open to receiving & understanding, then choose to accept them as they are & stay or walk away knowing that this individual is not serving you in the ways you need.

With receptiveness, understanding, & acceptance comes the freeness of not harboring hard feelings towards anyone. My only way out of the ocean of red flags I was submerged in, was to accept these individuals for who they showed me they were & understand that whether they were a lesson or a blessing, they contributed to my overall growth in some way, shape, or form. They made me better not bitter. That's the power of letting go, it softens a hard heart & fuels the mind with the wisdom it needs to make rational & healthy decisions. I needed to let go of the individuals I was constantly chasing & expand my tunnel-vision gaze to see all the individuals who have been there all along, showing up and showing out repeatedly. I had to accept that I don't have to chase to be chosen with family, friends, work, or opportunities. I have so much going for me & so many people who love me & I should be focusing on those things & those people rather than those who do not.

With the wisdom, I gained as I finished my 28th lap & began my 29th, not chasing to be chosen, I've felt lighter, free, happier. I wake up every day & I choose myself. I choose to always strive to be better than I was the day before. Despite whatever I am personally going through, I choose to put I aside so I can be fully present & available for my patients in the ways they need. I choose family members who choose me. I choose friends who choose me. I seek the potential of an intimate relationship where my person & I choose one another.

We all have choices in life & decisions that have to be made. It's not about having enough hours in the day, as we have all heard, "We have the same hours in a day as Beyonce." It's about your willingness to choose who & what you value putting your energy & efforts into. Anytime I feel as if I am giving parts of me that are only being received & used without the fuel to fill me back up, I choose to focus myself, my energy, & my efforts elsewhere. There is no excuse. We all make time for who & what we want to. And, if you didn't know, it's okay to be choosy. Be choosy with yourself, your time, energy, efforts, & anything else you find yourself giving away effortlessly or giving to those who may not be deserving. You have the power to put together all of the pieces that create the optimal life you want to live. Choose wisely.

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