Mentoring, Mindfulness, Personal

Waving the White Flag

Traditionally, the waving of the white flag is considered a sign of surrender – but for some situations, for the purpose of this blog, and my current life situation, I see it as a sign of maturity. Here I am in my life, happily waving a white flag. You see, there comes a point in your life, where you are able to more realistically assess situations, and experiences, and let go of things as necessary.

One of these “things” is relationships. I know I touched briefly on relationships a couple of blog posts ago with “Round & Round,” but stick with me here, this is a different experience (I swear)… Starting with a confession: I have always been the type of person to hold on to things really tightly; a friendship that has played it the course, boyfriend situations that have turned sour, maybe even that pair of jeans I might not ever fit into again – always holding onto some sort feeling/hope/longing.

While this has been gradually diminishing over the years, I most recently realized exactly where I’m at with “waving my white flag of maturity.” I’ve come to realize that celebrating in the excitement and successes of those that not only are IN my life but have been in my life at some point, is exactly the route I want to take. I used to have this view on relationships that I needed to come out bigger or better on the other side. It was a ridiculous competitive streak; an ex could be successful and happy, but maybe just not as successful and happy as me… And if you find that last statement funny or can relate, you absolutely need to follow these people on Instagram

I have always been the type of person to hold on to things really tightly; a friendship that has played it the course, boyfriend situations that have turned sour, maybe even that pair of jeans I might not ever fit into again…

Now, I celebrate the achievements of not only the people I love but the people I have loved too. I’ve realized it’s funny how much emphasis we put on holding on to things and competition in life. I have looked at how we hold onto things not because we want them necessarily, but because we don’t want someone else to have them. We put materialistic importances on the silliest of things – like those jeans that we once fit into, paid too much for, and don’t want anyone else to have. We hold onto this competitive edge to look the best, accomplish the most, and “come out on top.”

But here’s the thing…Here’s the groundbreaking discovery…

I don’t care.

I don’t care what you do. I don’t care if tomorrow you quit your job, move halfway across the world, and decide to sell friendship bracelets on the side of the road.

I don’t care if you choose to stay single for the rest of your life, surrounding yourself with 15 cats and eating Mr. Noodles in your tub at night.

I do not care in the least if you choose to make a decision that is best for you, even if I don’t understand it.

Because it’s not for me, it’s for you, and I can respect that. The only thing I ask is “are you happy?”

It doesn’t directly impact me in the least what you choose to do with your life. Do I hope to keep those I love near and dear to me? Of course, I do! I don’t want my closest friends to move away, or alienate me from their lives, but if they choose to and they are happy, then I will respect that. That’s the joys of waving the white flag. It’s staying involved and/or supportive from a distance, without clenching onto something you shouldn’t.

Celebrate the victories of everyone who crosses your path (and even those who don’t). Pick people up when you see they are down. Toss those jeans in the Salvation Army pile and smile when you think you might have seen them on someone. Remember the good times, and enjoy the life developments and successes of exes and old friendships.

Life truly is about perspective. And the perspective is sometimes so much more beautiful when you surrender, focus on yourself, and enjoy the view looking in.

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