When your friends or family are unsupportive.

Throughout my life, I have tried many things. Therefore it goes without saying that I have failed at many things too. I have been very lucky, in that I have an incredible support group. My parents and siblings have always believed in me. Often more than I believed in myself. I was lucky enough to marry one heck of a supportive husband who let me try new things even when he didn’t understand them. I’ve had supportive people in my life from a young age, but even so, there have been times that I’ve had to deal with unsupportive behaviour from others around me. It made me think about those of you reading, and if perhaps you fall into any one of these ‘maybe’s’. I wanted to share what I’ve observed over the years, and how I push through, no matter who isn’t cheering for me.

Maybe you have that one family member who makes jokes about what you do. That business you want to start, the fitness routine you are on or the healthy eating lifestyle you are committing to. They poke fun at it or make sarcastic comments here and there. All in all, they make you feel shitty about whatever it is you have set your mind to do.

DO NOT. I repeat, do not let them get to you. I’ve had this happen to me, and what I can say is that it’s hard at first. You want to defend everything you’re doing, you want to show them all the facts about why this is a good idea, you want them to be on your side. Because, you know, they’re family. Aren’t they all supposed to support you? Truth is, no, not all of them will. In my case, it was one, in your case, it might be many who stand against you. No matter what, fighting back is exactly what this person wants. They may secretly want to see you fail so that they can feel better about never giving it a shot themselves.

“Look, I knew she wasn’t going to finish that workout program, that’s why I didn’t start, I knew it wouldn’t work” Do you see how sad this person’s life must be, that THIS is the monolog in their heads?

Nowadays I choose to focus on the support and love I receive from the rest of my family. And it’s a big family! Because they are louder. It just depends on who you choose to listen to! If you do fail, because we all know failure goes hand in hand with trying new things, they’ll be the ones saying “I know you’ll succeed next time, I believe in you,” rather than “I told you so.” They are the people that matter, they are your support group. Don’t let their voices be drowned out by the negativity of one sad human being.

Maybe you have that close group of girlfriends, and in your mind, they should be your biggest supporters! They know all your secrets, they know what you’re like at your best and worst times. Why then, when you tell them you’re starting a home business do they refrain from cheering you on, or even supporting your business if they’re in the market for something you offer/carry.

Home Businesses have grown dramatically over the last few years. It seems like everyone you know is making or selling something now, and guess what, this isn’t a bad thing at all. There are these large movements to support local shops, to stay away from big box stores and support those mom and pop shops because we’ll be helping our local community’s economy. Well, guess what, your friend’s business is just that. It’s a place where your dollars go towards their little girl’s ballet class fees or their next family vacation.

It still shocks me when I tell someone about how amazing I think (blank) is because of what it’s done in my own life and have them blow me off when they hear they can get it through me. But then turn around and buy it from Walmart or Amazon. (WHAT?) When one of your closest friends does this, I’ll admit it, it hurts. If you take it personally it can seem like a clear statement that they don’t believe in what you do. That they don’t support you as much as you originally thought, and that at the end of the day, they don’t want to see you win.

Don’t let this negative train of thought ruin the plans you have for your business or service this month. Don’t waste your precious energy on trying to figure out WHY they did it, just take it as a learning moment. Were they clearly aware they could have bought this product from you? Did they just see it at the store and were reminded of your recommendation and picked it up without any malice in their actions?

You see, it isn’t all about you. It’s about the end result. If your friend is now eating healthier because of something you recommended, or they are getting a better night’s sleep because of an essential oil mixture you endorsed, just be happy for them. Yes, it hurts sometimes. But when we focus on why we do what we do, all of this negativity goes away. When you focus on helping people and making their lives better, no matter what goods or services you provide, you will feel more fulfilled with all you accomplish.

You can’t control what other people do, but you can control how you react to it. And this is by far the best way to let icky moments pass and prepare yourself for all the goodness that is to come!

Here are some tips to help you stay motivated no matter what unsupportive behaviour comes your way:

I wrote a post about dealing with unsupportive people in general. In it I break down many of the reasons people choose to be unsupportive. I wrote it after receiving some messages from women in my wellness online group about their family or friends playing these unsupportive roles in their lives. If you liked this post you may find some more insight in this ither one too. Check it here: Dealing with unsupportive people.

Remind yourself of your Why.

Why are you doing what you’re doing? Focus on that and only that. With a strong enough why you can achieve anything no matter what life throws your way.

Write down your goals and don’t let anything or anyone sidetrack you.

Push that negative family member’s comment aside. Brush off the fact that your friends don’t support your business and keep going. A goal that is not written down is just a dream. Read up on how to make the most out of your month and crush those goals!

Read personal development.

I recommend Personal Development often.. Show me a person that is not succeeding and I will show you a person that isn’t reading personal development.

Connect with others doing what you’re doing.

Find other entrepreneurs, bakers, business women. Whatever your field, there is a group out there waiting to be found. If you really can’t find one, then make one, you may be what other’s have been waiting for.

Believe in yourself.

Because at the end of the day, this whole thing depends on you and how much you care about it. Believe, be positive, be efficient with your time, work hard, and work from a good place in your heart. The rest will come as it must. I wrote this post about moving on from failure. It may help you learn to believe in yourself again.

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18 Comments

  1. March 22, 2017 / 2:41 pm

    I think I am really fortunate that I have not really experienced unsupportive family and friends. Your advice to find like minded people to connect with is spot on

    • Mariangelica
      March 22, 2017 / 3:32 pm

      This is great Deborah! I’m so happy you’ve been able to get by without these experiences!

  2. March 22, 2017 / 2:56 pm

    Believing in yourself is HUGE and surrounding yourself with like minded people is also a major must…As I have gotten older and wiser I have found out who my true friends are and who will be there for me. It’s not fun to realize it and it sucks and it hurts, but in the end you really only want those around you who truly care about you and will be there no matter what. Great post!

    • Mariangelica
      March 22, 2017 / 3:34 pm

      Hey Acktive Life, yes, i’m so with you. It’s not a fun exercise to go through, but sometimes we have to surround ourselves with people who deep down want to see us succeed! Who are true representations of women lifting other women up. Sometimes the people we thought would fill those spots don’t fill them anymore. Thanks for reading!

  3. March 22, 2017 / 8:07 pm

    This can be such a tough situation to deal with. Thanks so much for sharing your insight!

    • Mariangelica
      March 22, 2017 / 11:11 pm

      Thanks for reading!

  4. March 22, 2017 / 8:55 pm

    I became vegetarian just more than three years ago. To this day, I still deal with close family members who poke fun at my lifestyle choice. I have acquaintances question my protein intake (ugh!). And I see Facebook friends post satirical content about vegetarians/vegans/gluten free eaters. It’s hard to handle, but I’ve learned that I can only do what is right for ME, and it’s not my job to convince others to “join” me. That said, I do have quite the support group! My boyfriend especially has been so incredible, especially in regards to my vegetarianism. In fact, he has even begun eating less meat on his own, and took it upon himself to be meat-free for the month of February <3.

    • Mariangelica
      March 22, 2017 / 11:14 pm

      Christina thanks for the words!! Yes yes and yes! I also experienced this when going vegetarian. (I’m sure it’s a common issue amongst our kind :)) you’re right. We can only focus on us and not on trying to get people to “join” us. life is much easier that way. Thanks for sharing. Happy you have a loving support group! It makes everything so much better and easier to deal with!

  5. March 22, 2017 / 9:13 pm

    This is one of the reasons why I always try to be supportive. It sucks to not have support and it is honestly not that difficult to be someone’s cheerleader vs debbie downer.

    • Mariangelica
      March 22, 2017 / 11:11 pm

      I like that line. It’s not very difficult being someone’s cheerleader. Love it!!

  6. March 22, 2017 / 11:06 pm

    Great post! You will certainly get unsupportive behavior. But I think you are so right that it’s really not about yourself but either that person’s negativity or the end result.

    • Mariangelica
      March 22, 2017 / 11:10 pm

      Exactly. It’s bound to happen so “Bless and Release”

  7. March 23, 2017 / 12:35 am

    Amazing post, much needed. I’m forever indebted to my large support group I’ve had along this crazy entrepreneurial journey but believing myself and never giving up has been key for me as well

    • Mariangelica
      March 23, 2017 / 7:47 am

      Thanks so much girl. We got to give it up for our support groups!

  8. March 23, 2017 / 7:29 am

    This is such a great post, and just what I needed to hear. Thanks for sharing your insight as well!

    • Mariangelica
      March 23, 2017 / 7:46 am

      Thanks for reading! Appreciate it!

  9. March 23, 2017 / 12:48 pm

    I haven’t eaten meat since I was 15 (and that was a LONG time ago lol!) and I still have family/friends who poke fun.
    You have to make your own way!

    • Mariangelica
      March 24, 2017 / 10:06 am

      You sure do! Way to go on being vegetarian for that long!!