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Leaving Something (or Someone) You Love

It’s all in the mind!

Welcome to today’s episode of the ‘School of Self-Image’ Podcast with host and self-image coach, Tonya Leigh, where personal development meets style. This a go-to podcast for women who desire to transform their self-image so that they can create mind-blowing results in their lives.

Will you agree if I say love can either be the most beautiful experience or the most painful when being left behind? These kinds of experiences are part of one’s life which is inevitable. It’s in our nature to feel and be part of the process. But at the end of the day, it’s still your choice.

Leaving something (or someone) you love is a situation that most of us have experienced in life, right? As I know the emotions and thoughts might be overflowing, but you really have to decide whether to be stuck where you are or make a stand to move forward with your life.

It all comes back to your choice ~ are you gonna be the same version of yourself forever? Or are you gonna leap yourself up, act smart, and accept the situation for good?

So if you’re unsure yet of which one to choose, listen to find out how you can turn this leaving situation into something positive and bright!

What You Will Discover with Self-Image Coach Tonya Leigh:

  • 1:34 - How to figure out the reason you’re leaving
  • 4:17 - Why you should start to take responsibility
  • 6:10 - How to know if a person, situation, or experience belongs in your future
  • 8:29 - The importance of having a niche
  • 10:17 - Pointers #1: Don’t second guess yourself
  • 12:26 - Pointers #2: Be ready and be willing to feel the discomfort of leaving
  • 14:29 - Pointers #3: Spend time being grateful for that person or that situation
  • 16:41 - Pointers #4: Make sure to have your own back
  • 17:51 - Pointers #5: Be okay with people being upset and disappointed
  • 18:04 - Pointers #6: Have the time to look toward where you're going
  • 21:24 - What is your greatest act of love


Connect with Self-Image Coach Tonya Leigh:

Episode Transcript:

It's easier to leave something or someone when it's bad, it's toxic, it's not serving you, but leaving something or someone you love, that's difficult. And yet that may be what is required for you to live your most extraordinary life. And I'm sharing my thoughts on this topic in today's episode. So let's dive in.

Welcome to the School of Self-Image, where personal development meets style. Here's your hostess, master life coach, Tonya Leigh.

Hello, hello my friends. I'm recording this before I leave for Scottsdale. I'm batching a bunch of podcasts because I'm about to unplug for a whole week and hang out with the members of the School of Self-Image. I'm so excited to meet you all. I know it feels like we already know each other and we sort of do. I mean, you all know me because I show up every week and I tell you all the things, but I also feel like I know so many of you, especially those of you within the membership because I coach you, I see you within our private group and I do feel like like attracts like. And so the people that are attracted to my work, I feel like in some ways we have a lot of similarities. So I am so excited to celebrate with you all and Scottsdale. Now and other news.

Today's podcast is all about leaving something or someone you love. I'll be honest, I was pretty hesitant to record this. In fact, my content manager, we had a meeting and she was like, "I think you should do a podcast about leaving your relationships." And I'm like, "Girl, how many times do I need to talk about this? I've left it. I've moved on like I'm in the future." 

And yet I know this is something that so many of you struggle with and it's something that many of you have asked me about. You'll say things like, "Things are good, but I just don't feel like I belong here anymore." And I get it. I know what that's like and I have a record of leaving many things that are really, really good. And sometimes I have left things that were really good for the wrong reasons. So before I talk about my very simple process of leaving something you love or someone that you love, I want to just share my thoughts about what you need to think about before you make that decision.

You need to ask yourself, are you leaving for your growth or are you running from your growth? Ooh, I'm going to repeat that. This is so good. Are you leaving for your growth or are you running from your growth? There have been times that I have left things because I was running from myself. I was running from my own growth. I had not done my work in that situation. And so I was running to the next thing, expecting that next thing to fix me, to be the answer. And as you all probably know, if you listen to this podcast, things outside of you aren't the answer. You are your own answer. But when you think the answer is outside of you, you're constantly going to be running in search of it. And that will often cause you to leave things that you love that are probably good for you.

And I've done this in many areas of my life, but I've definitely done this in relationships. You're being with someone you love and you're looking at them and you're like, "God, I love you, but I just feel so unfulfilled. I feel so unhappy. So the answer must be for me to go find another relationship or to leave this relationship." And that's not always the case. Sometimes maybe, but you will only know if you take responsibility for how you feel and you work on yourself in that relationship, sometimes. And see, once you start fulfilling yourself and creating your own happiness and not expecting someone else to do it for you, you may find that you are in the perfect relationship for you. Or you may find after you've done that work, you're ready to go with love. You have grown as much as you want to and you're being called towards something else.

You're being called towards a future. This vision that you have for your life that you will never be able to actualize in the situation you're in right now. But the big difference is you're not stepping towards that future, expecting that future to fix you. You're not going to that next relationship expecting that relationship to fulfill you. You are stepping into that future, into that next relationship fulfilled and wanting to expand and express yourself on a bigger level. Can you all see the difference? If you're leaving something you love because you think something outside of you is going to fix your feelings, you will forever be running. 

But if you learn to manage your emotions, if you learn to feel them and understand them and to create the feelings that you desire on your own, and then you decide to leave someone or something you love, it's a very different energy driving that decision.

And it's very important you all that you pay attention to the energy behind your decisions, because the energy fueling your decisions is going to be the energy that creates your results. And so whatever's fueling that decision, whatever the result is that you create is going to be filled with that emotion. The other question that I like to ask myself, and this requires that you get radically honest with yourself because our brains will try to lie to us, because our brains love for us to stay where we are. Have you noticed that? Our brains want us to stay where it's comfortable. And usually what's comfortable is what's familiar, which is where we are right now. But the question is this, does this person or this situation or this thing or this experience belong in my future? I told my content manager that I wasn't going to talk about this anymore.

I'm like, "I feel like I've talked about this enough, but I'm going to mention it one last time." Which means I'll probably mention it a hundred more times. But nevertheless, when I left my last relationship and I left my little cabin in the woods, when I got really honest with myself, I knew that living there and being in that relationship was not a part of my future. I had a sense of completion. I had grown as much as I felt like I could grow in that situation. And I knew it was time for me to leave and to leave with love, which is exactly what I did. Now, I've had people want to argue with me about this concept saying, "If you really love something or love someone, you won't leave it." And I think about our children leaving the house when they go off to college.

They love us, but they know it's time to leave. They know it's time to grow, it's time for the next chapter. And so I do believe that you can love something, love someone, and it's completed and it's time for the next season, for the next chapter of your life. But again, you're not leaving because you are looking for something outside of yourself to fix your feelings. You're leaving because you're ready to expand and to grow even more. There's a big difference. I've even noticed with some of my coaching entrepreneurial clients, they will have a niche that they love. They've decided that they want to work with this certain group of people. This is what they're passionate about. And when it's not working out when they thought it should work out or how they thought it should work out, their tendency is to want to run to another niche thinking that that next niche is going to fix their problem.

And what I always suggest to them is that they do not change their niche until they've made their current niche work. 

Because here's the secret, the success is within you. And when you have a successful self-image, you can make any niche work. But just like we run from one relationship to another, we may run from one niche to another expecting that next niche to fulfill us, to be the secret. Or we may run from one job to another, one friend group to another. But you know the saying, wherever you go, there you are. And so before you leave anything, just make sure you're leaving for the right reason, you are leaving so that you can grow and evolve and place yourself in expansive environments. You're not leaving to find something outside of you to fix your feelings. So once you decide that you're going to leave and you know that this is the best decision for you, whether you're leaving something or someone that you love, here's what I suggest that you do.

After you've made the decision, you do not second guess yourself. Back in 2020, I also left something else that I loved, and that was my old brand, my old company called French Kiss Life. So I left a relationship, a house and my old business all within the same six month period. And I made that decision and as soon as I made it, my brain wanted to convince me that I was making a huge mistake, that it wasn't going to work, that I'd worked too hard, that I was throwing everything away. My brain was offering me so many reasons to go back on my decision. And that's the thing, it's way harder to leave something that you love. I loved my old brand, still do to this day, just like a lot of the other things and people that I have left, I still love deeply. But life was calling me to the next version of myself. And I took the call.

So when I make a decision, any decision, I decide how I'm going to feel about it. And so I decide to have my own back. I decide that I'm going to feel confident. I decide that we are moving forward. I tell my brain what to focus on because if I don't, I will spend so much time in misery, second guessing myself, which is optional. It's not something that we have to do and it's not necessary. And what happens when you do that is all the energy that you could be flowing towards your decision is now being channeled towards the past, what you've decided to leave. And then it becomes harder to actually leave it. So that's the first thing, decide that you are leaving and get behind that decision. The next thing that you must do is be ready and be willing to feel the discomfort of leaving. Even though it may be exciting what you are walking towards, it's also scary because it is unknown. You don't know exactly what that future is going to look like.

And you may also have to process feelings of guilt. That's a big one. When we're leaving something that's good and something that we love, our brain will offer us lots of reasons to feel guilty about it. So we have to work through all of that. 

And what I'm saying is that when that happens for you, just know that nothing has gone wrong. That's actually your brain trying to trick you into going back on your decision and staying. Because if you feel enough discomfort and if you feel enough guilt, then maybe it won't be worth it. That's what the brain will try to convince you to believe. But what if it is? And what if you got really good at feeling awful emotions? Imagine all of the things that you could do. The times that I have left something or someone that I love, it's been full of discomfort.

And there's also this grieving process that you must go through and we want to skip that. We just want to get to the good part. But being willing to feel the discomfort, expecting it and not making it mean that you shouldn't stay true to your decision, but just understanding that this is part of growing and it's also part of your brain trying to keep you where you are. When you know that and it comes up for you, you don't react quite drastically. More than anything, what you learn to do is just to sit with your feelings and understand them and stay committed to your decision. Another part of my process when I am leaving something or someone that I love, is to spend time being grateful for that person or that situation. I like to look for the lessons. I like to celebrate the memories. I like to pay homage to what I learned and what was revealed to me and all of the goodness, all the goodness of that situation.

Now, what I've seen a lot of people do, and I've certainly done this in the past before I knew better, but one of the things that we do is we like to focus on all of the bad, maybe what wasn't working, what we didn't like, to justify us leaving. And I don't think that's necessary. I think we can celebrate it and look at how it was successful, and again, the lessons that we learned and how we grew in that situation and leave in a positive energy because I want us to take that positive energy and fuel it into where we're going. Now as I'm talking, I can almost hear some of you asking the question, "But Tanya, what happens when the other person isn't excited about you leaving, or the job or the situation? People are expressing that they're not happy that you're leaving, which often is the case."

If the situation is good and you're choosing to leave, then the other person or the people involved may be a little confused by your decision and they may not like your decision and they may even throw a temper tantrum about your decision, and they may be upset and very angry about your decision. And here's what I have to say to that. They get to feel whatever they're feeling. It is not your job to control how they feel. The two examples that are in my mind right now of relationships that I have left, they were upset. They didn't want me to go, they didn't agree with my decision. 

And that's why I had to believe in my decision. I had to have my own back because I had two choices. I could disappoint them or I could disappoint myself. And listen y'all, I have spent a lot of my life disappointing myself in order to not disappoint others.

And I'm just done. I don't want to do that anymore. It's not the way to live an extraordinary life and it's living a lie, and I just don't want to live a lie. I want to be truthful to who I am. I want to be truthful to where I'm being called. I want to be truthful about my desires. And you can't do that and keep everybody around you happy. You have to make a choice. And that choice is very uncomfortable, but so is not honoring what you really, really want. So my simple answer to that question is you have to be okay with people being upset and disappointed. I know it sucks, but you've got to learn to be okay with it.

The final suggestion that I have about leaving something or someone that you love is there's a certain point where you have to look forward. There's a certain point, and I don't know when that is for you, but you've grieved. You've felt the emotions, you have celebrated the relationship. It's time to look towards where you're going. It's time to put all of that energy into the next chapter. And again, you can't do that if you're sitting around second guessing yourself and feeling regret. At a certain point you've got to tell your brain, "Hey, listen. Listen up. This is where we're going. Now, let's fuel all of our belief and energy into that direction." A great example that I'm going through recently is I am moving. I don't know if I've told you all this, I can't remember. I know I've told my membership, but I'm moving from Denver and I can say I love Denver. I really, really do. I could stay here and be happy, which I can be happy many, many places. But Denver has a special place in my heart. I love the mountains, I love the people here.

I love the restaurants. I love... I just love what Denver offers, and I'm choosing to leave. And I allowed myself to grieve. And I saw my brain, especially in, was it last week? We were driving through Cherry Creek and the fall colors were ridiculous. I was like, "Why haven't I ever noticed how gorgeous these trees are?" And then we went out to this new restaurant in Cherry Creek that was delicious. I mean, since then, that was last week. I think we've been like four more times. It's so good. There's like this one salad that I could eat every single day. And so I watched my brain. I watched my brain want to scare me. I watched my brain want to put me into a place of doubt, and I was just like, "No, this is amazing. I love where I am. I love being here, and I've made the decision to leave."

And so ever since then, I've just been channeling all of my energy into thinking about my decision, how I want to think about it, the next phase of my life, how I want to feel about that, because I know the secret you all. You get to decide how you feel no matter where you are. And you can also place yourself in places where it's so much easier to feel the way you want to feel. So the work is elevating your inner world, how you're thinking and you're feeling as well as your outer world, what surrounds you. And when you do that consciously, you will just continue to up level your life.

The final thing that I want to say about this topic of leaving something or someone that you love, is that at the end of the day, it's you that I want you to love the most. And that sometimes requires that you leave people and situations as a vote for your own self-love, as a vote for your future, as a vote for your desires. We may be asked to leave situations and people that we love in order to not leave ourselves. And maybe, just maybe that is the greatest act of love, being honest about who you are and what you want, and loving people even when they're disappointed, even when they don't approve. Have a gorgeous, gorgeous week, my friends and I will see you on next week's episode. Cheers.

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