I saw this quote on another blog – “You are allowed to outgrow people. This includes past versions of yourself.” – Mandy Hale from the blog theenlightenedmind622
We may not think immediately of the term “outgrow” when we reflect on old friends that we no longer associate with and we seldom have enough self-awareness to recognize the old habits that we have abandoned; but both reflect “growth” in our lives. The growth is in wisdom. We outgrew them (or the old us) in large part because we acquired new knowledge and used that knowledge to make changes in our lives.
In some cases, people tumble into “toxic relationships” with others, perhaps a “friend” with some bad habits or prejudiced feelings about others. When you become aware of those bad habit or traits you have a choice to make about remaining friends with them. You may conclude from a thoughtful analysis of the situation that there is little upside to remaining in contact with them and lots of potential downside. If the relationship is a marriage, it is all the more important to be honest with yourself about the good and bad of staying in the relationship. All too many abusive marriages end after too much pain and suffering, sometimes even with the death of one of the partners. Live is too short to stay in toxic relationships.
Outgrowing yourself means that you have taken the time to examine the decisions that you make about things and about people. You have thought about what pre-conceived notions or even prejudices you have allowed to creep into your life which now dictate your actions and reactions. The beginning of the growth that you might be experiencing is the recognition of factors that are controlling our thinking that have no valid basis in fact or proof. Once you begin to examine and question why you think a certain way, you are ready to outgrow the old you.
It is important that you allow yourself that growth as Mandy Hale said. You must give yourself permission. A part of that permission is forgiving yourself for your earlier behavior. You need to own it and then forgive it and move on to the new you. You’ve outgrown the old you.
In order to grow, many things need to be nurtured. The way one nurtures growth in their thinking is to think about it. One needs to take time for reflection on the events of the day and the decisions that were made. It might also be good to question why you are driven in certain directions, maybe towards or away from certain people. Asking your self as you go through the day, “Am I making this decision based upon facts or feelings and what is driving those feelings.” If you find that fear is a common feeling, you need to question what you fear and why. You need to outgrow those fears.
It’s probably a good thing to take time at the start of each day to ask God for the presence of mind during the day to think before acting or reacting. Most people have some set of goals in mind for the day. Perhaps you could add a goal of personal growth by resolving to outgrow old fears or pre-conceived notions. Then you would have something else to be proud of at the end of the day.