The gift of Frenemies
A Frenemy is someone who might look on the surface like a friend but who does things that you might expect from an enemy, or someone who at the very least doesn’t have your best interests at heart. We have Sex and the City and Gossip Girl to thank for that particular word, a mash up of friend and enemy, passing into popular use. But believe it or not, it’s a phenomena that has long been recognised in spiritual traditions that have a slightly different way of talking about what’s going on and what to do about them.
To begin with, how do you know if you’ve got a Frenemy? It might take you some time to work out that you’ve got one because at the start they appear to be a friend, but over time you start to notice more and more things that make you feel uncomfortable when you’re around them.
Tell your best joke and they’ll be the one rolling their eyes when everyone else is laughing. When it matters, they aren’t really listening or even paying any attention to you at all. They can criticise your appearance whilst pretending to be helpful, ask you whether you think you’re really up to it when you tell them about a job or promotion you’re going for, and often you’ll find out that you somehow got left off their invitation list when they were arranging get togethers in your social circle.
In a nutshell, you can tell that you’ve got a Frenemy when you come away from spending time with them feeling a bit less, maybe slightly down on yourself, or just tired, as though you’ve been spending too much psychic energy being on the defence.Which you have.
Really, it’s all a psychic power game and the intention is to drain you to gain power. So what can you do from a spiritual perspective?
1/Don’t take it personally. This piece of Toltec wisdom reassures you that it’s never about you. If you detach from the situation when you’re with them, you’ll probably begin to notice that you’re not the only one they do it to and you might even notice that they don’t do it to everyone.
This is a real opportunity for you to get curious and learn something about psychic energy between people or what psychologists call the dynamics of relationships.
Are there some people they never do it to? Are there others who just let the acid comments or cold freeze roll over them without seeming to be affected at all? What’s the difference between all of the different kinds of interactions that happen? If you can stay detached and just watch quietly, you could learn a huge amount!
2/Have compassion for them. That might be a tough call when they are the ones delivering the barbs, but it’s usually because they are feeling insecure and bad about themselves deep down.
Practice forgiveness, letting go and imagine them bathed in a pink light of unconditional love when you aren’t around them and you might even find the psychic energy shifts and they start to behave quite differently when you’re with them again.
3/Have compassion for yourself. Being spiritual doesn’t mean that you have tobe a doormat, and I always say that you can love someone unconditionally from a good, safe distance!
The Shamanic approach to life tells us that our outer world is a reflection of our inner world. Shifting our energy can make dramatic changes to the way that people treat us. Do a double check to make sure that you aren’t giving your power to them and are giving yourself the perfect amount of nurturing and support. You might find that the put downs melt away like magic!
5/ Draw the line. It’s up to you to decide whether there’s enough good stuff between you to allow the friendship to continue, or whether you want to spend your time and energy with other people who just don’t do the same things.
If you do decide that you want to withdraw don’t be surprised if they play the victim, it’s probably best not to have a showdown about it. Say your piece calmly. Gradually phase out the time you spend with them and up the time that you spend with others who make you feel good and psychically energised.
If you’re in the same social circles, you can just make sure that you always seem to be the other side of the room to where they are. Don’t be tempted to gossip about them or get drawn in to any associated
drama as that creates a psychic energy field that will actually make it harder for them to change for the better, if that’s what they are going to do.
6/ Find the treasure. It’s difficult when feeling betrayed and especially if you have been giving your love and energy to a dishonest friend but bear in mind that, even though we might not enjoy these kinds of relationships, they can hide rich spiritual treasures beneath the surface. The Dalai Lama says, “In the practice of tolerance, one’s enemy is the best teacher.”
Who knows, you might just have a soul agreement with this person so that you can drive each other up the wall in order to eventually bring out the best in both of you! Remember that at a soul level, we are all connected and only every really dealing with different aspects of the whole.
Try these things and you could find that you transform, they transform, the relationship transforms and you end up blessing the day you met them as you now can value yourself and you may finally have the self love to run like the wind and find true friends!
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