Who’s making YOU their priority?

“Never allow someone to be your priority while allowing yourself to be their option.”  – Mark Twain

I have been doing a quite a but of soul searching of late. I’ve been thinking about who I have in my life, and why and how, and I’m starting to scale back.

And a lot of this scaling back is based on the Mark Twain’s quote. I’m thinking about whom I’ve made a priority, and whether that person has reciprocated, and made me theirs.

It’s about making decisions around, for example, how inclusive a person is in involving me in his or her life. Am I the one doing the organising of social events, or the asking to various activities? Am I the one making all the effort? Does that person make me feel less than wonderful? Do I feel used? etc. etc.

If the answer is yes to all, then it is clear that I am not a priority to that person and the relationship (such that it is) is based on false pretences. And that person needs to be eased out of my life, or kept very much on the periphery.

That is not to say that I am keeping mental checks and balances, but I don’t think it’s unreasonable to want  an emotional return on investment. Life’s too short to be spending it with people who suck you dry.

0 comments

  1. I have often wondered if the ability to invest something of one’s self in friendship is something that comes with emotional maturity. Actually, that is a bit of an excuse I’ve used to keep people in my life from whom I get a ‘pay off’ (thank you Dr Phil) of some kind or another – whether that be confirmation of some deeply unconscious belief (I don’t deserve better than this/I am an introvert/I am not socially acceptable etc) or an ego-boost (he’s so shallow but he’s soooo hot & don’t we look good together?!) . One of the biggest reality checks I’ve had has come through having to explain to inquisitive young minds why ‘so-and-so is my friend when he/she is always late/lets me down/is rude’ etc.

    You’re so right, life is too short – may as well be honest with ourselves rather than let ourselves be sucked dry.

    Excellent post Di!

    1. Thanks, Dan! I think as humans we ultimately just want to be approved of and liked, so we will compromise our own values and standards to be in someone else’s esteem, how ever dysfunctional that is. I think the trick is to give someone a go, and if it looks like there is a pattern of non-reciprocity (or emotional vampirism) then we can make decisions around that. But sometimes, this is much easier said than done…

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