When it comes to self-care, we work out, try to eat well and get a good night’s sleep. We do our part in society, trying our best to be a good parent, spouse, partner, co-worker, neighbor, friend. We make certain choices that we know will be beneficial to the well-being of our life.

Just as important as the things I’ve listed above, are the people we choose to surround ourselves with. There is a proverb that says, “Tell me who your friends are and I’ll tell you who you are.” On the most basic level, our peers, colleagues, friends and family directly influence who we are as a person. We are who we hang out with.

I’ve discovered that if you hang around with happy people, that happiness rubs off and you smile a little brighter. On the flip side, if you hang around with people who are negative, then the grumbles rub off and your natural light dims. Let’s face it: nobody likes a party pooper except Negative Nancy and Debbie Downer.

Don’t we want to be happy, positive people who inspire others to be happy, positive people too?! Wouldn’t the world be a better place if we approached everyone, even those who hurt us, with love?

In their most honest form, relationships are reciprocal, symbiotic, well-intentioned, and full of love and light. When we are around people who are good, they strive to push us to become better. When we are around people who are positive, we feel the infectious nature of their energy. Light produces light. Love fosters love. Kindness inspires kindness.

So, what happens if we realize that some of the people we're surrounding ourselves with aren’t all that great for us? Sometimes, it’s best to softly cut ties, to ensure that who we are and our personal values do not become jeopardized. After all, we only have one life to live, and we owe ourselves the self-love to walk away from that which no longer serves us. We can still send them love and light, from a healthy distance, while we move forward to better days.

It’s about letting go of those who consistently make you feel bad, anxious or drained.

Relationships are everything—a direct correlation to our present and future happiness. The people we choose to do life with either reinforce our self-worth or chip away at it.

We all need the energy and emotional well-being to show up for ourselves and others. It’s a circle. Let’s choose to be love, cultivate good and surround ourselves with positive people.

About Kate
Kate Keyt is an Arizona based lifestyle photographer and blogger. She has a passion for light and capturing the joy in others. Learn more at katenellephotography.com.