What if YOU Just Don’t ‘Fit In’?


Today’s post will present a positive perspective on social circles, ‘fitting in’, and ‘managing’ your relationships.

Do you ever feel that you really just don’t ‘fit in’ with regard to some of the relationships and social circles that you are currently involved with?

Perhaps you feel that you cannot be your self around certain family members, friends, colleagues, or other folks with whom you regularly associate.

From one perspective, the feeling that you ‘just don’t fit in’ with these folks may actually be a good thing because it can lead you to let go of relationships that don’t meet you and build ones that do.

My own story around not fitting in

For a good part of my life, well into my early thirties, I just didn’t feel at home with many of the people with whom I associated.

Naturally, I began to conclude that I just was ‘different’ from everybody else.

You see, I thought a lot about life; it’s meaning, purpose, and beauty.

I also really enjoyed the company of others, being in nature, playing music, dancing, and to some extent, ‘the party scene’.

My quandary:

I desired ‘meaningful’ relationships with people who wanted more from life than material wealth, favorable circumstances, and free time to have ‘fun’.

I craved connection.

At age 26 I joined a spiritual community and began rigorously practicing yoga, meditation, and related activities.

At last I thought that I had found my ‘tribe’ and that my search for meaningful social connection and community was over.

Alas, ‘social nirvana’ was not to be found here either.

You see many of the folks in this ‘spiritual community’ seemed to be caught up in perfecting rather than living the practices.

My quest for truth and meaningful connection had landed me in a group of well meaning folks who were too caught up in their own ‘inner work’ to be present with life.

What was missing was balance.

It finally dawned on me that I simply needed to be far more selective about who I spent my precious time with.

How about you?

Does your ‘relationship tree’ need some pruning?

For my part, I now have a much smaller group of friends each of which meets me in a ‘different way’.

I have ‘pruned my relationship tree’ and now very consciously choose who I spend my precious time with.

My family has become folks who are comfortable in their skin, socially conscious, and simply appreciate and enjoy the richness of life.

Some ideas for pruning your relationship tree

You may want to start by making a list of all the people with whom you currently associate, including family members, relatives, colleagues- everyone with whom you currently associate.

If a relationship with a particular person is strained, uncomfortable, or just doesn’t seem ‘right’ you may want to ask yourself some questions:

  • What do you bring to the relationship?
  • What do they bring to the relationship?
  • What activities do you enjoy doing together and why?
  • Is the relationship ‘obligatory’?

Obligatory relationships are common among family members, colleagues, ‘old friends’, classmates, church members, etc.

  • Do the activities you share together contribute to your well being and health or detract from it?
  • Have you grown apart?
  • Do you find the relationship to be ‘one sided’ or draining?
  • If the relationship is not meeting you, is there anything that you can do to rekindle the fire of your connection?

This is an especially powerful and relevant question to ask if you are in a less than satisfying romantic relationship.

I invite you to give yourself full permission to let go of any relationships that do not meet you.

This will make space in your life to build relationships that are more mutually fulfilling.

Please pay particular attention to relationships that do not contribute to your happiness, well being, and growth.

We all grow and change and relationships that met us at one point in our lives do not necessarily meet us today.

One last point:

I have found that mutually fulfilling relationships require effort, give and take, and, most importantly, mutual respect.

I hope that you found this post useful.

See you next week!

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Comment by Prudence
June 14, 2013 @ 6:57 pm

Great article! Thanks for writing it 🙂

Comment by Prudence
June 14, 2013 @ 6:57 pm

Great article! Thanks for writing it 🙂

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