POPSHIPS

    Web Series with FriendSHIP and RelationSHIP Expert 

                                   Dr. Melanie Ross Mills

Incorporating pop culture examples into our daily relationships.

What about our ships?

Friends! As mons, we're all trying to find our way. 

What can we do as moms to “cast off” together? 

 

  • Be as honest as we can with the moms that are trustworthy and honest too. I’m telling you, even the perfect super-model moms that drive the perfect car, have the perfect spouse, perfect children, perfect house in the perfect neighborhood ARE NOT PERFECT. Everyone will experience a battle, hardship, trial, struggles. No one gets through motherhood without the opportunity to be humbled. 

 

So for the rest of us (the non-super models) with motherhood challenges...

 

  • Spend time with the honest moms and see the beauty and the opportunities for growth. It really helps. Nothing against the perfect moms, but we need some real chit chat. The imperfect moms are the best! They give us freedom to admit our children aren’t perfect and we will never be perfect.  

What about our ships?

 

Fears can hold us back from taking the most exciting, life impacting risks that could change the direction of our ships. Leaving us feeling regret, FOMO, and the "what if's."  

 

How can we work through fears that hold us back?

 

  • Embrace that we will never be perfect. Ship wrecks are bound to happen. We can’t avoid them and we usually can’t CONTROL them.

 

  • Communicate our emotions, mindsets, feelings that contribute to our root of fear.

 

  • Decide. Make a choice. Remind ourselves that we can’t go "out to sea" (move forward) if fear is our anchor. We will get stuck. 

 

  • Lift your heavy anchor and sail forward in one small step. Each lift of the anchor makes us more confident for our exciting sailing adventure.

What about our ships?

 

It’s always worth the time and energy to look at whether or not we need to abandon ship because we’re slowly sinking OR batten down to secure the hatches because we’ve got a friend worth treasuring

  • Do we celebrate our friend’s successes or do we experience jealousy, envy, competition? 

 

  • Do we know why are we hanging out with the friends we are hanging out with? Define it. 

 

  • Are we bonding out of commonalities, convenience, co-dependency, personal agenda’s, tradition, expectations? 

 

What’s connecting us with our friends? 

What about our ships?

 

Friends! Have you ever found it difficult to admit your mistakes? Own up, man up, woman up? Assume responsibility? 

What are some ways we can own our “ship” when we’ve gotten off course? 

 

  • Accept that we’ve made a mistake. 

  • Admit that we’re in the wrong and/or messed up.

  • Ask for forgiveness where needed.

  • Be willing to make the efforts and changes needed to earn trust back… get back on course. 

Getting back on course isn't always easy. Most of the time it requires sacrifice, honesty with ourselves and others, and a truly changed heart. 

What about our ships?

 

We all need anchors in our lives.

For those that we do have, how can we let them know we appreciate them?

 

Each os us are much better off being anchored to family, friends, mentors, coaches, life impacters that accept us for who we are. Not because of what we do, will do, or have done. 

We are changed people when we experience a love that is not based on conditions, seasonal, or circumstantial. A love that transcends our mistakes, mishaps, misguided times in life. 

 

We are gifted to have a few anchored people in our lives. Who are your few? You know, the ones you'd call from jail? 

 

  • Write down three people that come to mind.

  • Write down why they are your chosen three. 

  • Reach out to them and let them know why they are valuable to you in your life. Thank them for loving you just as you are. 

We all need anchored friends that will sail through life with us, weather the storms, and offer us a get out of jail free card. 

What about our ships?

Waters can get a little turbulent when we're trying to enter a new friend group. Especially if we're misunderstood, being judged, or perceived inaccurately.

How can we avoid ship wrecks and sail smoothly

during this transition? 

 

  • Cultivate a natural curiosity when getting to know new people. Don’t make it all about you. You might feel tempted to talk a lot about yourself, but hold back a little. Get to know your new group of peeps. Listen. Ask questions. Take an interest.

  • Try not to complain. It's a downer. Add to the group environment as an asset. Embrace your strengths and let them enjoy your company. Share your life. Let them get to know you. You don’t need to over share (not yet at least). Let them enjoy your company. 

  • Be patient. Building bonds takes time. Let life take it’s natural course, but put in the effort you need on your end to reciprocate. 

  • Relax and appreciate the strengths of your new friends. Identify which ones have the potential to be good friends. Keep the unsafe friends at bay, but appreciate them for who they are because we all have the opportunity to change. 

What about our ships?

We've all been there at times. The friends that are too busy, too self-focused, too drama laden, or even pain ridden to ask us about our own lives. Feeling as if we're two ships passing in the night.

How do we handle self-absorbed friends? 

Seasonal self-absorption of one-sided living? 

 

  • Give them space to work through this time. 

  • Love them where they are. 

  • Lessen (and/or let go of) expectations.

  • Make sure we're engaging in other friendships that are taking an interest in our lives. 

 

Life habit or self-absorption?

  • RUN! Just kidding (kind of). It’s tough to be close to someone that lacks the awareness or a desire to become more self-aware.

  • We have other friends that pour into our lives, which helps us place less pressure and limit expectations on our self-absorbed friends. 

  • Healthy friendships are reciprocated and exchangeable in interest's, caring, supporting. 

The goal is to have our friends hop on our boat too! 

What about our ships?

How often have we been faced with the tough decision of supporting a friend when we don't necessarily agree with their decision, causing "rudder" confusion!? Learning how to support without enabling is a life friendship gift. 

How can we can “adjust”our direction when our friends’ “rudder" is going in a direction that we might not agree with?

 

  • Share from our hearts IN LOVE (not judgement, fear, emotionally charged). Let them know how we feel and state our concerns. 

  • Listen to our friends' perspective on the matter and be sensitive to validating their feelings. 

 

  • Discuss how we can come together in light of not agreeing with one another. 

 

  • Let our friend know that it’s only because we care that we’re expressing our concern. Remind them that we’re there for them even if we have to implement some boundaries. We might need to distance ourselves in certain circumstances, but this doesn't mean we don't care deeply for them. 

 

It’s not our job to get our friends into “ship shape,” but true friends speak the truth in love with room to grow. 

What about our ships?

 

We adore our mom friends that remind us to feel comfortable in our skin and embrace the "fine lines" that have traveled through life with us. Its always fun to be reminded that our "little stripes" remind us of our gifts in life.  

How can we continue to celebrate our “little stripes” together? 

 

  • Observe and identity the strengths in our friends. 

  • Accept and appreciate the life challenges that have made our friend's strong and victorious. Let's celebrate these victories together! 

 

  • Speak the praises! Don’t just think about how awesome they are, speak it, write it, say it. Often times we think these encouraging thoughts and they stay in our heads and hearts. Express them. Write notes. Send texts. 

  • Brag on your friends to other people. THIS ONE IS MAJOR! It's super easy to speak critically or stay quiet. It's always a good time to brag on our friends. 

 

  • When we see the good in our friends, let's get excited! You don’t judge the stretch marks, you appreciate them. 

 

If we aren’t building one another up, we're in trouble. This is what we need in friendship in order to cruise together. 

 

What about our ships?

 

Have you ever considered a Friendship Report? A way to check in and see where you stand, examine where you could improve, and connect in new and deeper ways?  

 

Let's grab our friends and make a game of assessing where and how we can cultivate deeper bonds in our friendships. 

Together, create our own categories that apply to our friend style, approach, and priorities. 

Category Ideas: 

 

Keeping on another’s confidences     

Making one another laugh            

Being spontaneous                

Wing man/woman capabilities           

911 Availability            

Building one another up               

Having one another’s best interest in mind  

 

This is a fun girls night out exercise and it’s a great way to check in and make sure our besties aren’t wanting to JUMP SHIP!

What about our ships?

 

We all love to feel supported by our friends. We all love the freedom to be vulnerable when needed and strong when called upon. Supporting one another puts wind in our sails.

 

How can we continue to give one another grace as put all of our “boat” pieces together so the we can “float” through life together and solidify deeper connections? 

 

  • Give one another room to grow. 

  • Seek to understand what’s going on below the surface. Often times our side-ways responses are about something that’s going on below the surface.

  • Make an effort to experience life together. Laugh, play, be real. 

  • Be the friend to others that you to would like to have for yourself.

What about our ships?

 

The false accusations that give us the pit in our stomach, the hurt feelings, the lack of control over what others will think of us. Uggg... if we could only defend ourselves and make it all back to normal.  

How can we handle being falsely accused? 

 

Some things we can think through:

  • Is it worth the headache and heartache to gather our proof?

 

  • Are we better off by letting it go? Sometimes we have to let it go and trust that the truth will be revealed in the end (whenever that is). The truth can be revealed in some way, shape, or form (but not always). 

 

  • Be wise in moving forward - Be aware of what we’re up against. Paying attention to how we’ve handled the situation and how they’ve handled the situation. 

 

  • Move forward accordingly and learn all that we can from the situation, mistakes, misunderstanding, poor choices, etc. 

What about our ships?

 

Friends! How many times have we “jumped ship” before we even knew if we could sail somewhere amazing?!?! 

 

What can we do if we’re unsure if a friend (or more than a friend) is on board with us? 

 

  • Be honest with ourselves and admit what we’re truly feeling and what we REALLY want. Label it. 

 

  • Work through our “worst case scenario.” What’s the worst thing that can happen? (Example: My saying is, “They can’t eat me.” Seriously, what is the worst thing that can happen?)

 

  • Ask ourselves - What’s the BEST thing that can happen? Explain in detail, write it out, and name it.

 

  • Grab our support system and let's go for it! Why not, someone's go to... why not us? 

What about our ships?

You know when someone REALLY want be friends with you and they don't measure on your friend barometer? You know when you are super to drawn to someone and you aren't on their friend radar? 

 

How do we handle a friend not wanting to hang with us (and they haven't figured our we're wonderful yet). 

 

  • Free ourselves and accept that we aren’t their ship type and that’s okay.

  • Look forward to the next ship that comes along.

  • We don’t need to force friendship. It might be hard to accept at first because no one likes to feel rejected or not accepted.

  • We remember that this opens us up to a new ship that’s headed our direction. 

 

So let’s lift our anchor and head to a new port!