The depth of a friendship is only as deep as its foundation. Let me break it down with a basic example: if you begin a friendship with someone solely based on your disdain for your co-workers then that is what that friendship is most likely going to be about. When you are with that friend, guess what you are going to talk about? How can this friendship possibly breed positivity or bring out the best in you? A friendship can literally define you, as a person. The other day, I had an epiphany about friendships and it made me begin to re-evaluate every person that I consider a friend. Through this evaluation, there were some pleasant discoveries. I am going to break down how I perceive some of my friendships and how they have helped me evolve into who I am today, consider these to be exhibits. Perhaps they will help you when you are ready to evaluate who is in your life. I feel it is necessary cause honey the non-contributors, they have to go.
Stage One: Closed Mouths Don’t Get Fed
Okay so, we could consider my evolution by thinking of the life cycle of a butterfly. During the beginning stages of my adult life into my early twenties, I would consider myself to be in the egg stage. As an egg, I was unsure of myself and even had low self-esteem. I struggled with understanding my worth and who I was destined to be in society. I would often suppress my natural need to be creative and different in order to “fit in” or not rock the boat so to speak. The real Mila was being suppressed and screaming and inside of that egg dying to be released. During this stage is where I surrounded myself with people, most who I would consider friends, that were completely opposite of me. They were humorous, outgoing, outspoken, and even wild. These were the people who shook that egg, they woke something up within me. After years of struggling with who I was versus who I wanted to be, it would be found that these friends had created a monster. A beautiful one.
Stages Two and Three: You Are Wonderfully Made
During my larve and pupa stages which occurred in my mid to late twenties, I started to own who I really was. During these stages, in addition to the outspoken friends that I had met, I met a few friends who would help me find my confidence. The friends who helped me start actually living like all of those blog posts and nice sounding quotes about self worth that I had been reading. These friends were girls that I thought were drop dead gorgeous and got all the stares from guys and girls alike when we would go out clubbing. They taught me that I was no different than them and would scold me for putting myself down. The friends that were with me during this stage, they were and still are the most valuable. Learning how to build up my confidence was the most important part of my evolution. It was during these stages that I learned that confidence trumps almost everything else when considering attraction. Confidence and knowing what I am worth literally had positive impacts on every aspect of my life from romantic to career. These stages were the most vital part of my evolution.
Stage Four: Hero
Today, I am flying, I am a butterfly. I know that I have come out soaring and am full of color because there are friends in this stage who come to me for advice and encouragement. The friends that I have acquired during this stage may still be considered to be eggs. I feel honored to be able to nurture eggs while still maintaining the friendships of those that I found while evolving or cocooning. Yes, there are days that I feel as though my wings have been clipped but I just remember the evolution and that gives me the ability to soar on.
I can now say that if you are holding on to negative or meaningless friendships, maybe you should reconsider. How can they help you evolve? The sole thing that I consistently give thanks for daily, is the ability to evolve because it’s a beautiful indescribable thing. I am forever indebted to those who were with me during all of my stages and even as the evolution of Mila continues.
“Go and love someone exactly how they are. And then watch how quickly they transform into the greatest, truest version of themselves. When one feels seen and appreciated in their own essence, one is instantly empowered.” – Wes Angelozzi