This post was originally featured on my blog What the Health Now? before being transferred over to Three Times Per Day.
I once overheard a conversation that went something like this:
Person A: “Everyone at this school is socially awkward. I’m socially awkward, you’re kind of socially awkward…”
Person B: “What? I’m not socially awkward. I just hate everyone.”
Okay, I mostly wanted to post this exchange because I found it hilarious but I also realized there was something blog-worthy in here.
Sometimes, for no particular reason, a friend whom I have been very much enjoying spending time with will just suddenly start annoying me. He or she has not done anything to me, their behavior has likely not changed, but suddenly it feels as though I am metaphorically gasping for air every time I am in close proximity to this person. Slowly, I find little things annoying me and eventually I can’t even force myself to answer their text messages and I have to suppress an eye roll and force a response to everything they say.
I’m not saying this is rational or fair, I’m just remarking on my experience after recently discovering one of my friends experiences the same phenomenon.
For people like us–or maybe this is a common thing–our relationships with others can be viewed as cups that are filled with water as you spend time with that person. When the cups are full, you are sick of that person. Continuing to add water just causes the cup to overflow and causes a mess. Instead, you need to let that cup sit and wait for some of that excess water to evaporate out before adding more. With some people, the cup is more…uh..exposed to the sun. Thus, that cup evaporates faster, sometimes even so fast you seem to never grow sick of them. With others, it’s so cold that the cup is frozen full.
Did you follow that?
I think that by viewing these friendships as cups of water, it’s easier to stay patient and avoid dramas. When I can see my cup is getting full, I know it’s time to take a little breather and let some water evaporate before I have a big mess everywhere that I have to clean up. Sometimes this means I need to push that cup a little further into the sun with an open conversation or a lot of vigorous exercise, like boxing.
I don’t know that this is a common experience, but if it is I think it helps to know others feel the same and realize it’s not mean or rude to wait for some water to evaporate–it’s necessary. Well, unless you want to continuously be on clean up duty. Some people like doing that shit.