Do you ever feel that people gravitate to others for no real reason? They have more friends, seem to be the centre of fun and enthusiasm, the life and soul of the party, yet on the other hand, you seem to struggle to get people to hang around for long. Does it feel that you are like that fat kid at PE at school, you know, that last one to be chosen every time (by the way, that was me)?
There may be some reasons why people gravitate away from you, and towards others. Similarly, it may well be that you just steer clear of some people, you may not know why exactly, but it just feels better to avoid them.
Here are 5 reasons which may give you the answer, then you have something to reflect and work on...
1. An association with drama - maybe you cannot help but create tension or have a quick temper. Take a step back, and don't get involved. I know a parent at school who is always in a (perceived) crisis, which to be honest, whilst I am driven to help others, in this case, I just steer well clear. Drama for drama sake!
2. Selfishness - that person who is always first to everything, and scoops up the last of everything. The sense of greed an entitlement is far from enticing. I can think of a chap who is always first to the vegetables at a dinner, always taking his fill, and keen not to find someone else having more before he does. After years, it now appears humorous, but to others, it may not seem quite as amusing.
3. Flakey - are you that person who is continually changing plans, making excuses, or just not turning up? We have a couple of rules in our friendship groups : 'yes is yes, anything else is no', and 'if there is more than one excuse for not doing something, it is probably made up (because the first excuse was not strong enough or even true!)'.
4. Are you fake ? - also known as white lies, or forced compliments. It is obvious when people are genuine, so when they are not, there is a level of unease which creeps in. I heard of someone who went to a hairdressers, and every time another customer left after their treatment, the staff picked holes in them and criticised for all they were worth. She left wondering what they would say about her - they never got a second chance!
5. Too competitive - Yes, its good to have a competitive spirit, but out and out determination trying to beat everyone at everything every time soon rubs people up the wrong way - especially when winning lacks grace.
6. Too High Maintenance - that person who thinks the world owes then everything, who needs everything to be perfect, and wants people to constantly dance to their tune. Seriously, where is the fun and friendship in that.
7. Rudeness - when someone you are with is rude, guess what? that rubs off onto you. You are associated by your friend's behaviour. Take a waiter or waitress, they generally do their best, they have a lot to deal with, and being rude is not going to improve anyone's day. It may make the offender feel good about themselves, but what does it say about you by sitting back and accepting that behaviour? There is a saying that if you do nothing about a situation or behaviour, then you are condoning it.
8. The Downer - that person who is always moaning, groaning, and looking on the bleak side of life. Everyone has issues, and it is essential to talk to a trusted friend or confidant, but not continually sharing it with the world. Keep doing that, and there will be nobody there for you when you need it most.
At some stage, we have all probably had elements of the above creep into our personality, and hopefully, by reading through the list, you can identify with each one, and reduce or eliminate it from your life. It also helps to spot those type of people heading towards you - possibly because all the fun and uplifting people are heading in the other direction. Join them, not be left with the doom monger of unhealthy behaviour.
Are you one of those people who wonder why they can’t seem to keep a friend? It’s possible you have certain traits which others find annoying. Subtle actions may be producing negative tension between you and your friends, without you even realizing it!