You don’t have to be all things to all people. Even if you bend over backwards, there will always be those for whom you can’t do enough…or at least do enough right. This pertains not only to relative strangers but also people who you would expect to be in your corner. Sometimes you have their support until you start enjoying success at what you’re trying to accomplish then all of sudden they are nowhere to be found. Is it jealousy? insecurity? something else?
I was in that situation many years ago after I had been treated for breast cancer. It’s the experience that put me on my health coaching path because I knew I had to make some changes in my own life to be here for my family. I had a friend who was not as overweight as I was at the time who was fully supportive of me…in the beginning. However, once I started having more success than she was having, the dynamic completely changed. It went really south after her husband paid me a compliment, even though it was very innocent. The friendship never recovered and before it was over she tried on several occasions to derail my efforts. While it’s unfortunate that she was unable to be my friend when I was having success, she didn’t consider that it was a struggle for me too and I had much more at stake than she did. I refused to give in and she couldn’t deal with that.
In my position as a health coach, I find that so many people don’t want help, even when they ask for it. I’m fairly sure I don’t try to force my advice or lifestyle on anyone else but I also won’t compromise on the choices I have made for my own life. People seem to feel the need to almost apologize to me if they make less than stellar food choices in my presence, even though I’m often not even paying attention to what they’re eating. I purposely will look away so they aren’t uncomfortable. I believe they’re judging themselves and the decisions they’re making at the time and it really has nothing to do with me. Regardless, I won’t be changing my approach to my health just to make someone else feel comfortable about their own choices.