Written by: Audrey Mischa Kirk
My friend once sent me a quote that read, “You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with… choose carefully!” Who do you spend the most time with. Did this even mean the people I work with daily. I don’t have a choice to be surrounded by the people I work with. The answer is YES! I was bartending at that time. My co -workers were wonderful people who were on a very different path than the one I was on, my goals just didn’t quite align with their goals. I left the bar shortly after because it never quite suited me. I used to tell my friends about my dream to visit Australia. They laughed at me. I got new friends and told them my same dream, they encouraged me. Being around like-minded people makes you feel great! Those small seeds of ideas are planted over light-hearted coffee dates with friends and with enough support and encouragement those small ideas begin to come alive. They grow feet and arms and even begin to move and dance with anticipation wondering if you will keep giving them enough nourishment to grow. I feel blessed to be surrounded by so many empowering people. I have grown as a person because of them.
One of the 5 people you spend the most time with is your significant other, if you are in a relationship. Everyone is different. There are no two people who are the same. Every relationship is different. There are no two relationships that are the same. What some people need from their partner in order to grow, others may not need. You have probably heard of this saying. “Good for the goose but not for the gander”. My dad would often say this amongst many other silly sayings. I can’t emphasize this theory enough. As a very open minded person many confide in me knowing that judgment is always impaired. I have a unique way of seeing people. A unique way of seeing the world. I don’t see people where the eye meets but instead I try to see them much deeper. I see everyone no matter what age or gender as a light, as a soul who is just merely searching for their purpose. I try not to take things too personally as I know many peoples journey may at times seem selfish, but it is their journey and what indeed is selfish is to stand in the way of their growth.
I love learning about the dynamics of relationships. I am blessed to have clients who confide in me and open up about their personal lives. When people describe their relationship to me I am happy to learn that people are so exquisitely unique. Each relationship is a perfect mixture of two individuals forming a partnership. It makes me sad that some hold on so tightly to societal norms placed upon what a perfect couple should embody that they suffocate their very own happiness.
Some relationships allow you to be authentic, while others unintentionally cause you to change the version of yourself that you love. Although it is easiest to blame someone for not allowing self-growth, it is you YOURSELF who has not allowed it. Your voice was not loud enough. Your dreams were not clear enough. You sacrificed what it is your soul yearns for to make someone else “feel” happiness. You are the only one in charge of creating what you need in order to grow. I have seen the burdens and heartache that can unintentionally place upon a partner and urge you to step back. Be sure you are allowing one another breathe and evolve into the best versions of yourselves. Be selfish in taking time to do what is right for YOUR soul, but also selfless in allowing space for your partner to do the same.
You must stand strong and independently and create space for yourself before you can give to others. You cannot pour from an empty cup. You must first take care of yourself first. The relationships that seem to be the strongest allow gradual positive change and encourage one another to grow, explore, and create.
“You’re married Audrey, you can’t just travel the world anymore”. I have stopped surrounding myself with these types of “closed minded” people that put bars and constraints on the type of relationship I will and will not allow for myself. Your passion may be fishing, or cooking, or shopping, sailing, hiking, bull riding, bull fighting (Whatever it is that brings you the greatest joy) fight for it and know that there are open minded people who are on the same boat as you who have made it work. Perspective is everything. Also remember to be a two way street, encourage your partner to do what they love and chase their dreams as well. You cannot just take without giving the same amount of room for growth for your partner as well.
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