“Believe me, every heart has its secret sorrows, which the world knows not, and oftentimes we call a man cold, when he is only sad.”
–Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
About a year-and-a-half ago, I lost a good friend. He had been a friend for years and we went through many things together. He was with me when my kids were born, through my divorce, and changing careers.
In fact, he was the only person who stuck with me through everything over the past decade. He was the one constant in my life and I could depend on him to be there no matter what.
He was there for my battle with depression and anxiety. On the nights I would drink away the pain I was experiencing, he was right by my side. Through the hangover on the next day to drinking again the next night, he was there.
If you didn’t know him, you would think he sounds like an incredible friend. I mean, few people have friends that are with them through thick and thin. But he was there for everything.
So when he was gone, I was confused. Losing this friend wasn’t something I expected.
But after the confusion, I realized something.
I’m glad he’s gone.
It wasn’t until after he left I understood I hated him and how terrible he was for me. He was toxic. He was the reason for my anxiety and depression. He was the reason I drank so much and hated my job, my life, and everything else. I concluded this friend was the source of my misery.
And now that he is gone, I am much happier.
I exercise frequently and the depression and anxiety are an afterthought. Instead of drinking, I run. I am finally pursuing what I want to do in life, and I am overall a much better person, healthier, and alive.
My mind is no longer flooded with negativity and sadness. My life has completely changed since this toxic, miserable person left. Losing this friend was what I needed.
Because I’m happy.
I’m happy I lost this friend. Losing this friend was good.
Because this friend was me.
I was the anxiety-ridden, toxic friend. I was the one who was depressed and miserable with my life, my job, and everything else. And I was the source of my misery.
So I told my toxic self to leave and get the hell out of my life.
And he did.
I am a new person now that my friend has left and I will no longer allow friends like him back into my life. It’s one of the best decisions I’ve made. You can make that decision too.
If there are things about yourself you don’t like, get rid of them. Take action to change your life. Make progress each day on something that matters to you and benefits your life. If I can do it, so can you.