While this hasn’t been the case historically, I know that I have become very selective about the people in my life who are closest to me; those who get access to the most vulnerable and tender parts of me.
Sometimes, I think of these more intimate relationships in my life as jobs that people might apply for, and what I might include in my job description if I wanted to fill a vacancy.
For example, the position of “Best Friend” would include skills like “great listener,” “wicked sense of humor,” “playfully empathic,” and “owns a second home on Fiji.”
(Just kidding about that second home.)
The position of “Life Partner” would include “attuned and responsive,” loves travel and nature adventures,” and – to be honest – “organized, neat and tidy.”
Yes, one of my central commitments in life involves loving all humans as they are.
That doesn’t mean, however, that just anyone gets invited into the closer corners of my life – especially into those relationships that I want to have fueled by reciprocity, playfulness and vulnerability. In those, I am very, very choosy.
On the podcast this week we talk about the internal and external skills necessary for discerning who shares which parts of our lives, and how to navigate situations where others might want more, or less, than we do.
Sometimes people are in our lives as peers.
And some are even projects.
Don’t have time for the whole episode? Here are the show notes so that you can find any part that you’re most interested in!
Looking for more articles on maintaining boundaries with those closest to us?
How about this: Two Questions for Assessing Your Relationships