Throughout our lives we come into contact with people that either attach themselves to us or we to them. Whether friend, relation, or situation, a -ship is established. Time is invested and secrets and deepest desires are shared. These -ships take on lives of their own. You start to read each others' minds and finish each others' sentences. It's like, "Dang! I think I just met the other half of my brain or the twin to my flame", and then… time happens. Space happens. The pages of your autobiographies become misaligned. At this time, you should ask yourself: Is this relationship a brace or a tether?
See, a brace… a brace gives support and reinforces what's weak in order to make it stronger. When one in the -ship begins to lose focus of their goals and dreams, the other kindly reminds them and gives assistance in redirecting misguided energy. A brace sees misalignment and steadily corrects it. They will 'pull your coat tail' when you're dead wrong, but in a private manner. A brace can be depended upon when the journey seems daunting and too tedious to complete alone.
Now a tether? While a tether is a strong tie, it's a tie meant to restrict movement. A tether, when pulled, can choke the life out of you. While a tether at first glance, seems to provide protection, those that are attached see promise ahead of them (i.e. a new mindset, greater opportunities, avenues for development), trek toward the promise, and are yanked back to their post (i.e. guilt trips, projections of fears, dismissal of desires, cyclical consuming conversation… you get it?).
If you find yourself at a relational cross roads ask yourself: Am I a brace or a tether? Have I connected with a brace or a tether? And remember, some investments will not yield a strong return no matter how long you wait it out, but others will lend back more than you could ever fathom with work and persistence. A win can be found in a loss or a gain. Food for thought. You do the dishes.