I no longer sit at tables where I might be the topic when I get up. Read it again. And again. If that isn’t your motto- it needs to be.
I recently attended a social event where in the past, I may have found an excuse to get out of it—lots of women, lots of drinking, prime time for cattiness. I’ve become quite good at knowing ‘my people’ and really sticking to just that. But I desperately wanted away from my family for a few hours, and this was my ticket. So, I sucked it up and walked into the lion’s den- which was really just an indoor golf facility. I visually scanned the room and found comfort in one of my best friends. I noticed one group of girls sitting closely, constantly eyeing the room, whispering directly around their table and never leaving that small group, and that’s when I realized: I am so glad I’m not them anymore.
Trust me, I was. I used to be exactly that. I couldn’t wait for the new person to leave our table so I could talk trash about her. But what I realized was that deep down, it had nothing to do with her and everything to do with me. I was so insecure that my friends might find someone funnier to fill my spot, someone who could find more time for them- that I wanted to paint everyone else in the most negative light that I could. But that’s not me anymore. It took a strong detox and a lot of self-love to realize that my friends, my true friends, love every part of me: the funny part, the super messy, imperfect parts, how smart I am, and that I give honest advice. Whether they want to hear honest or not- they know I will provide it.
My advice to you finding your own sense of belonging: Stop giving a whirl what people say about you. If you wouldn’t go to that person for advice, why do you care what they’re saying about you now? Seriously. I no longer spend minutes or hours worrying or fretting “is someone talking about me over there? I wonder if I didn’t leave a good enough impression? I think she didn’t like me enough.” Because the truth of the matter is: I. Don’t. Care. I don’t care if you want to talk about me behind my back when I leave- that says more about you than it does about me. I don’t care if you don’t think I wasn’t “good enough” to join your group or sit at your table- I am “good enough” for my group, and quite frankly, I’m not looking to expand my friend list at the moment.
So if you find yourself at a table full of people who are wasting their time salaciously talking about other people, if they won’t stop the talk- find a new table. I assure you, you deserve more. Love yourself enough to quietly exit and know that those are not your people.