Yes, those are lyrics from a Britney Spears song. What of it.
I’ve been trying to compose this post for weeks, but every time I sat down at my laptop and started to type, a little niggle in the back of my mind stopped me. What if I offend someone with the things I say? Why can’t I write a happier post, and stop coming across as such a negative person? Is this really something worth posting about?
Yesterday I had a rare moment of complete clarity. I was in a situation where someone was making me feel utterly miserable – on the verge of tears – and I decided that it was time to cut that person out of my life. With that decision, came another – to finally post. That little niggle is no longer there, because I no longer care about what anyone will think of what I say. I am entitled to feel the way I do. I’m in an unpleasant situation, and I’ve had enough.
A good friend once told me that it takes a year to truly get to know someone. How right he was. I’ve been fortunate enough to meet many wonderful people since I started uni a few years ago. I can happily say that I think very highly of most of these people; they are great friends who continue to make my life better everyday, and I am genuinely glad to have met them. There are others, however, who do not.
There are people in my life who put me down on a daily basis. People who make me feel bad for being me. People who take more than they give, and see no problem in hurting those around them if it means that they get their way. These are the kinds of people who, for many years, I’ve been putting up with. I tell myself; they have no other friends so I should be nice to them, maybe they are just having a bad day, or maybe they have a point. It has taken me years to realise that, regardless of the ‘reasons’ behind the terrible things that these people put me through, I do not have to put up with it. If there is someone in your life who is making you unhappy, why should you have to accept that?
For years, I have struggled with the idea that wanting these toxic people out of my life makes me a bad person. I constantly felt like I was being judgemental or shallow. However, yesterday it finally hit me; I am allowed to be happy. I am allowed to decide what kind of people I have in my life. It’s my life, after all. No one else has the right to dictate how I feel. I am not selfish, shallow or judgemental for wanting to surround myself with positive people. I don’t know why it took me so long to realise this, but I am so glad that I finally have.
If you’re in the same situation that I am, I implore you to think about the way those people are making you feel, and ask yourself, ‘is it worth it?’ Is it worth feeling miserable after every encounter with them? Is their company worth the constant hits at your self esteem? When they tear apart your beliefs, your opinions and your feelings because they are too shallow to comprehend the fact that other people are allowed to think differently from them, is it worth being around them? The simple answer to these questions is no. Toxic people are not worth your time. You deserve better. So, do what I did; walk away. Your future self will thank you for it.