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From the Archives: Avoid Energy Sucking Vampires

August 4, 2018 by Charlie Hedges − 0 Comments

“Whatever excites you, go do it. Whatever drains you, stop doing it.”Derek Sivers

Vampires surround you almost every day. And they want your energy!

3 Kinds of Relationships

There are three fundamental kinds of relationships. The first and best are Replenishing Relationships. These are the relationships with the kinds of people that energize you. You always feel better after spending time with them. The second type is more commonplace. They are called Neutral Relationships. They are generally composed of neighbors, most colleagues at work, and other people you relate with because of something common in your lives: school, sports, boards, etc.

The final and most dangerous category is comprised of people to be avoided to the best of your ability. I refer to these relationships as VDP’s: Very Draining People. VDP’s will most certainly suck the life out of you. There was a time in my life that, because of my job, I had more VDP’s than any other type of relationship. How did I manage the problem? I quit my job! One of the best moves I ever made.

Vampires

In his informative and fun little book, Show Your Work, Austin Kleon calls these people Energy Sucking Vampires. He writes…

There’s a funny story in John Richardson’s biography, A Life of Picasso. Pablo Picasso was notorious for sucking all the energy out of the people he met. His granddaughter Marina claimed that he squeezed people like one of his tubes of oil paints. You’d have a great time hanging out all day with Picasso, and then you’d go home nervous and exhausted, and Picasso would go back to his studio and paint all night, using the energy he’d sucked out of you. 

[One famous artist] practiced what I call The Vampire Test. It’s a simple way to know who you should let in and out of your life. If, after hanging out with someone you feel worn out and depleted, that person is a vampire. If, after hanging out with someone you still feel full of energy, that person is not a vampire.

No doubt you have a clan of VDP/Vampires draining the life out of you. You know what? You are not required to give them permission to do so. Although you may want to hammer a wooden stake in their hearts, there are other ways to manage these relationships.

Managing Vampires

Take charge of your Vampires. Here are a couple ideas:

  1. Simply get rid of or avoid Vampires completely. Adios Vampirinos!
  2. Set boundaries with ones you can’t avoid. Don’t allow them to take charge. You can take over control of that relationship. Boundaries are permissible.
  3. DON’T FEEL GUILTY for dropping or rearranging the relationship. It’s YOUR life for crying out loud.
  4. Finally, even if you are ministering to someone, when they become too draining it may be time to say your goodbyes.

Don’t Give Vampires Permission

To Suck the Life Out of You!

Photo courtesy of tommasolizzul at istockphoto

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