Thursday, September 14, 2023

When Friends Fall Out

 I talked to an entrepreneur the other day who was very excited about but his business, but disappointed in his friends.

It seems that the more successful this entrepreneur became in his business, the more some friends shrank back. They didn't share the excitement of his success... In fact, some seemed to resent it.

This type of behavior concerns me, on multiple levels. Entrepreneurs run on adrenaline and confidence. They need positive energy, from within and without, to keep going. When friends don't align their energies with yours, you slow down. It's like running on broken ground.

There's no one cause for this lack of support. Some friends may begrudge the time and attention you're lavishing on your business. They may feel left behind. Others may feel jealous of your success. Some might even feel they could have had the same success, maybe more, if they had only stepped up to the plate as you did. Human emotions are complicated.

As entrepreneurs, we have to stay focused and reduce the negative energies around us. But that doesn't mean cutting off friends who are less than supportive. Here are two things you might try:

* Reach out to any friends who seem to have become more distant lately. Find time to spend with them. Don't talk about business. Make sure you're talking about their lives, their successes, their challenges. Really listen. Show that nothing has changed, you're still you, and this personal relationship really matters to you.

* If someone is being overtly negative, call them out. Let them know you value their friendship, and how important it is for an entrepreneur to feel supported by their social group. Doubts, resentment, negative energy are all lethal to entrepreneurial gusto, so let these friends know you really appreciate their positive support. 

Lots of so-called experts will advise you to cut negative people out of your life. I'm not an expert, so I won't tell you that. But do talk to them. Let them know you care. Let them know how important it is for you to have the support and confidence of your friends.

Business will eat up as much of your time as you let it. Make sure to consistently make time for yourself and your friends. The break will do you good, and the positive vibes will strengthen you.

Entrepreneur or not, be the best friend you can be.