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Are you the trash can of your friends?

Mar 01, 2022

On a day, when your friend again calls you and dumps all their emotional trash onto you, you don’t feel joy at all. It’s a nagging feeling of AGAIN?? The same problem as always? On and on they go when you’d rather go for a walk or take a bath or even get some work done. But now you have this complainer and whiner at the phone and it SUCKS.

Well. The good news is: YOU decide who is allowed to talk with you on the phone, for how long and about what. 

The bad news is: YOU have to decide all that and tell your friend directly and boldly, otherwise, you know it… nothing changes. You were patient long enough.

But Ronja, this is scary. My friend maybe won’t be my friend anymore if I don’t let them complain and whine about their problem? Let’s sort this out right now, ok? Because YOU are worth doing what you love and care about and your time is the most valuable asset you have in your life. Setting boundaries is not easy, I know. We do so much work on this topic within the Joy Academy. Boundaries are necessary everywhere! You will see, with time, they come more naturally. They don’t feel like a contract anymore, because you OWN them with your natural authority.  

In this episode we focus only on THIS one fact of you being the trash can on the phone, ok? If you want the full picture, you are so welcome to join the Joy Academy and work - dance - walk through creating your dream in all areas of your life.

So the biggest trick for me is always to think through the situation with: What do I actually want? What would be ideal for me?

It would be ideal to do what I was planning for me. I go on this walk. I take that bath. I get my work done. What are my options for that phone call then?

I love to write down at least 8 options : ) Check out my book “The Joy Compass” for that chapter.

  1. Don’t answer the phone (Yes, that IS an option! You deserve this possibility to just not answer that damn phone!) and not react to that call at all.
  2. Not answering the phone for the next 10 times that friend is calling and you “wait” for the further reaction.
  3. Not answering the phone but texting: I’m busy right now, but we can talk next weekend (insert time you really want to talk)
  4. Answering the call but telling this friend clearly in the beginning: “Hey, I have 10min to talk. What’s your matter?”
  5. Answering the call and telling your friend everything about last weekend/that event happened in your life/the news… just talk as much as your friend usually does and then end the conversation soon after you finished your “telling part”
  6. Answering the call and just listening and being really aware of what this friend is talking about. Being really present and observant. 
  7. Answering the call and telling your friend that they have to listen really closely now, you have an announcement: “If you want to talk about that topic we discussed 1001 times already, I DON’T want to talk about this.”
  8. Answering the call and telling your friend: Look, I love you, I want to be here for you, but I’m done being your trash can for your emotional baggage. You need to get a therapist for that issue and then we can just focus on our wonderful friendship again. I can’t listen to this problem another time. 

Did you nod at one or another point? Do they all feel yucky and NOT aligned to you at all? 

That’s GREAT! My biggest and highest value within my work is: YOU know the answers for your life, not me. I for sure don’t tell you how to do things, because I know it and you don’t. That would be soooo wrong. What I love to do is bring your thoughts into motion, to point out different ways of seeing things/circumstances/situations. I also love to do exercises and meditations, so that you have easy access to YOUR inner wisdom and your own solutions, which fit perfectly to your life.

I told you in the intro that the Joy Academy helps you to let go of the things that aren’t serving you and and change from the inside out, so you can create the magical life YOU want to live and experience more joy every single day.

This trash can-situation is exactly an example for the work we do in the Joy Academy. This situation is not serving you, you want to change it. So you change from the inside out… Yes, telling your friend what’s really going on or calling them out or setting that clear boundary, that is a BIG change and you have to give yourself full credit for this. But if you are brave enough to change the things which are not serving you and you focus on what you really want, you create your magical life and experience more joy every single day!

Before we go, I just want to share one more quick story.

I learned from my husband Ken, who is a master of boundary-setting, that it is ok to tell somebody: Nope, I’m not interested in this story anymore. We have a friend who has had an on-off-relationship with his girlfriend for years. They split up 2 times per month, threw the keys of their apartment at each other and had ugly conversations in text messages…it was awful! It ALWAYS was THE topic he complained about… eeehm…for…yes…years!! So Ken went first, he told him: “Look, it’s over. I don’t want to be informed anymore if you are currently together or if you just split up. I’m not interested to hear about this at all! Do you get it? Not. With. Me.”

Woooow, I was so impressed. That’s actually ok to say that?? : ) 

I needed another two years to get really tired of that conversation. The BIG BIG point for me was to realize: He didn’t want to change. I mean all the good tipps and tricks, the heartfelt advice…he wasn’t listening anyway, so what’s the point of then being the trash can for his complaints? Finally I did the same as Ken. I told him: “Listen, now I tell you the same as Ken did. I’m out. This topic will not be discussed anymore with me. Period.” It’s so interesting how that works like a charm! I couldn't believe that it took me so long to set this boundary!! He even paid for coaching later and THEN actually listened to my advice. Humans are complicated mammals. : ) And our experience on this planet is so wonderfully complex and has so many layers but WE, YOU, I get to decide how this ride shall look and feel and be! Please claim your POWER within the comments and write: “I create my own reality!” Of course I would love to hear even more about your experience of deciding that “being a trash can for emotional baggage” is OVER.

If you want to transform every area of your life and create MORE love, connections, clarity and JOY, join the Joy Academy today.

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