This Is What It Means to Be Surrounding Yourself With the Wrong People

an image of eight friends seated arms wrapped around each other looking over the horizon
Photo by Duy Pham on Unsplash

When we think of the wrong people, we might naturally assume that they must also be the stereotypically “bad” people.

In essence, we might think that they are the ones who encourage bad behaviours and habits.

We might also think that they are morally questionable, unethical, degrading, and prone to gossiping, violent actions or bullying tendencies, amongst others.

And while the wrong people can simultaneously also be the bad people, these two concepts aren’t mutually exclusive.

To surround yourself with the bad people is to surround yourself with people who are actively making the world a worse place.

In entertainment, the “bad” people are usually the antagonists.

Think of popular villains like Voldemort in the Harry Potter series, or Gollum in the Lord of The Rings saga, or even Loki or Thanos in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (although, Thanos’ actions might actually be justified. I’d argue that half of you need to go — just kidding).

Anyhow, these are people who are notorious for encouraging selfishness and evil. Their main aim is to essentially, significantly, reduce the quality of life for mostly everyone else besides themselves.

Unfortunately, the wrong people in our lives aren’t as easily identifiable in comparison to the bad people in fiction.

The wrong people in our lives don’t come dressed in alien clothing or possess supernatural powers, or make overly dramatic and concerning speeches threatening the demise of the whole universe.

Instead, the wrong people in our lives are simply just the ones who have difficulties in truly seeing us.

These are the people who just can’t quite figure out what makes us tick. These are the people who cannot, and do not, evoke our highest and best selves. We essentially cannot flourish in their energy.

It’s not their fault just as much as it’s not ours. It’s just a matter of a misalignment of souls.

To surround yourself with the wrong people is to surround yourself with people who do not make your soul sing.

Acclaimed author and Jungian-psychoanalyst, Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estés, beautifully describes the consequences of associating oneself with the wrong people in her New York Times bestselling self-help book, Women Who Run With The Wolves, she writes —

“If a [person] attempts to be a part of an organisation, association, or family that neglects to peer into [them] to see what [they are] made of, one that fails to ask, ‘What makes this person run?’ and one that does not put forth effort to challenge or encourage [them] in any positive manner… then [their] ability to thrive and create is diminished. The more harsh the circumstances, the more [they are] exiled to a salted barrens where nothing is allowed to grow.”

And this is why it is crucial that we surround ourselves with the right people — the people who effortlessly match our souls. It is the only way we can grow and reach our highest potential.

However, identifying the right people for us can be a bit daunting since rightness of a person isn’t necessarily equivalent to rightness of a person for us.

Yet, deciphering this doesn’t have to be complicated because the answer is truly simple:

The right people are the ones who will make us feel truly seen.

The right people are the ones who will make us feel understood, acknowledged, affirmed, and recognised.

The right people are the ones who will not make us feel like the outcast but rather, cultivate an ambience of belonging.

The right people are the ones who won’t ever put us in positions to betray ourselves, but rather, continually encourage us to be our unadulterated selves.

You’ll know when you’ve reached them.

You’ll know when you’ve reached the right people because you will feel fruitful and abundant.

You will feel replenished and revitalised.

You will feel creative and ingenious.

You will feel ignited and uninhibited.

You will feel zealous and alive.

Suddenly you will feel growth and all its possibilities in ways you’ve never considered nor comprehended before.

You will feel as if you are a force to be reckoned with.

But most of all, with the right people, you will not spend an eternity translating your soul.

𝕌𝕟𝕥𝕚𝕝 𝕟𝕖𝕩𝕥 𝕥𝕚𝕞𝕖, ℕ𝕠𝕝𝕨𝕒𝕫𝕚 (:



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Nolwazi Sangweni

Nolwazi Sangweni

Writing helps me think. Words rejuvenate me.