Outgrowing people is when you start feeling like those whose company you used to enjoy no longer give you the same kind of happiness. It may be sad, but it’s also a sign that you need more out of life and the company you keep. If you suspect this may be happening to you, read on to learn about the five most common signs you’ve outgrown someone.
What Does Outgrowing Someone Mean?
Outgrowing relationships happens to everyone, and it is simply a sign of needing a change. It also means you can no longer communicate with someone as clearly and with the same emotion as before – you’re not able to be your authentic self with them anymore.
Feeling guilt about outgrowing someone since there used to be so much that kept you together is normal. However, the more we grow, the more we change over time. Those from our past can’t always follow us through every spur of emotional growth.
Is It Wrong to Outgrow People?
People-pleasers often wonder if outgrowing someone is wrong. However, sometimes, it is an excellent thing. An immature ex, a family member that has different world views, or a friend with a harmful influence – these are just some of the folks you should be okay to move on from.
If you continue to experience guilt and anxiety about leaving someone behind to feel better, feel free to contact our counselors for women and allow them to help you process those feelings. Therapy for women of color is very beneficial in establishing boundaries and respecting yourself in difficult situations.
#1 Holidays and Special Occasions Don’t Feel the Same Anymore
The first big indicator that something is off is feeling as if there’s a cost of keeping someone happy. There may have been times when you were glad to do a lot for them, such as organizing holiday activities and birthday parties; after all, these events bring folks together and allow them to share happy moments.
However, if the enjoyment of being around those you love during the holidays has turned into having to deal with stress in copious amounts, you may need to distance yourself for a bit. As soon as we start giving too much of ourselves, the next step is typically avoiding those we love because they’re asking for a lot.
Outgrowing is often synonymous with establishing boundaries. If you’re learning that you have to place boundaries on the folks around you, it doesn’t necessarily mean you have outgrown the people; just that you want to be above the stress of being with them during the holidays, and so you’ve outgrown the situation instead.
#2 You Make Yourself Smaller or Speak More Carefully in the Presence of Certain Friends
When you’re forcing yourself to calm down in front of someone, you’re clearly not comfortable with them. Black women often minimize their presence in public, which causes a lot of stress and underlying health conditions. When we are repressed and stifled, no amount of self-care ideas will alleviate that pain – you have to attack the root of the issue.
So, in that context – how do you know if you outgrow someone? It starts with realizing that you have to continue minimizing yourself privately, in front of the person that used to let you be authentic. If you feel pressure to be on your best behavior and pretend to be doing better than you are, that’s a clear indication this relationship is no longer for you.
Making yourself smaller, walking on eggshells, and watching what you say in front of a supposed friend is unhealthy. Anyone who loves you will accept you at both your best and worst.
Signs That You’re Showing a New Side to Old Friends
You may not be an introvert generally, but continuously changing the way you speak or act could easily make you more introverted. This is the answer to the common question of why do introverts shut down. Social interactions become exhausting, and you don’t want to see anyone for long periods.
Maybe you keep avoiding calls and messages, pretending to be busy, or making up excuses. This is a sign you’re not enjoying the company of those inviting you or that the activities no longer suit you. If a friend keeps inviting you to go shopping and you dislike spending money, you won’t be comfortable with either. It’s as simple as that.
Continuing to accept invitations from those you don’t want to see is a sign of weak personal boundaries. The longer you break them, the more you’ll fall into a loop of people-pleasing and anxiety. Once you learn that outgrowing friends is okay and just another boundary, you’ll feel more in control of your life, and better things will start happening.
#3 You Don’t Feel Like Sharing Anything New or Interesting With Them
Nowadays, it can seem like we’re always oversharing – this is a clear impact of social media on our daily lives. However, when we meet up with friends, there should be more than just superficial, social media types of revelations.
If you don’t care to talk to someone about more than what’s happening online or avoid giving them the details on new events in your life, they’re not worth the trouble, and you’ve officially outgrown them. Superficial conversations are not worth the effort and time it’d take to meet up with someone, so think hard if you want to do this again simply to respect the tradition of meeting up.
Ending a superficial relationship will cause a butterfly effect on all other relationships – you will have more meaningful talks and make friends that care about your emotions and progress in life.
#4 The Only Thing Connecting You Is the Past or Family Bonds
Can you outgrow someone you love? It is possible but hurts much more than simply outgrowing a childhood friend. Walking away from relationships with those closest to you takes a toll but could make sense.
Feeling distant from a partner or a family member is normal but can be quite painful once it starts happening. You may have outgrown a partner you’ve been with for a while, which can occur in long relationships that do not change in any way. Just because you’ve been together for years doesn’t mean you’re the same individuals as when you first met.
Having a different worldview from a cousin, uncle, or aunt is a common occurrence; it simply isn’t possible for everyone to have identical views and ideologies. Sometimes, however, these clashes can be unhealthy, and even harmful. In overachieving families, for example, you may outgrow those who have been pushing their personal goals onto you since childhood. Others’ expectations are not what defines you, and it is perfectly normal to distance yourself from them.
It Is Possible to Outgrow a Family Member – Sometimes Blood Ties Aren’t Enough
If you start feeling distant from those you love, it can take a while to accept that. This is why it is essential to employ some self-care tips and try to work things out with them before definitely pulling the plug on the relationship.
Letting go of someone you love is very challenging, but you won’t have a choice if it feels right. It doesn’t mean you can’t reconnect again someday when both of you have worked out all your issues.
#5 It’s Hard to Get Over a Conflict, or You Keep Getting Into Arguments With Them
Suppose you made a work friend. The first few weeks were probably much easier to handle at the office, and work stress wasn’t such a big deal. However, the same work buddy later started to argue with you about the simplest ideas and challenged you on your work methods.
If the two of you continuously bicker and argue, that relationship will be hard to maintain. It is alright to respect someone as a person but not get along with them. Black women in the workplace can often be faced with conflict, which is stressful on its own; having someone additionally sabotaging your efforts will not help and should be avoided as much as possible.
Therapy Is the Best Way to Accept Outgrowing People and Learn Why It Happens
Attending women’s therapy means you’re thinking about the person that matters most – you. We understand how tough it may be to make your first therapy appointment, but if you contact us first, we will answer your questions and give you strong arguments on why therapy works best in these situations.
It’s difficult to process strong and heavy emotions alone, especially when surrounded by those you do not want to spend time with anymore. A good therapist provides comfort and life-changing coping strategies. Our counseling for women has helped many in a similar position as you.
Counseling Is a Form of Self-Love and Can Help You Understand Yourself Better
When you call us, we’ll help you choose a therapist. As women of color, we know you’d like to speak to someone who can understand you on many levels, which is why you will have a therapist of color working with you.
Trying out women’s counseling for the first time is an act of self-love and appreciation, especially amid the struggle with depression among African-American women. Learning to take up space and later move on from certain folks and aspects of life is a fundamental right.