One of the many things I love about my job is that I too are constantly learning and often it’s through working with clients and understanding their take on something that gives me an unexpected gem which I can then pass on.
The drama lama was one of those such gems.
Whilst talking to a client, they were explaining to me how they had a friend who seemed to constantly have some sort of drama going on in their life. it didn’t matter if you called, if you text, if you left it for weeks to speak, the conversation would always start with “I’m exhausted at the moment, there’s so much going on, so many people around me need me…..” and so it went on. It would always transpire that the dramas (not always) were not actually their drama to sort out BUT they felt the need to get involved and then would need to tell everyone else how worn out they were from it.
So, this client is then talking to another of her friends about their mutual friend – with me so far? And this other friend explained it as such; “its’ because X likes to invite the drama lama to her house. The lama doesn’t actually live or belong there but it makes her feel better/special/needed/wanted if the drama lama pays a visit, but the trouble is, once it’s there, it tends to stay around leaving X feeling worn out and wishing they hadn’t invited them around!”
I have to admit, at this point I actually laughed out loud and had this vision of some Peruvian lama all dolled up in it’s finest, trotting around to a front door, banging on it with their hoof and then just letting themselves in, plonking themselves on the sofa and announcing “I’m here to stay!”
I asked my client about what her friend suggested they do and it was really quite simple – don’t invite or entertain the drama lama and if it turns up, politely ask it to leave. In real terms, if it’s not your drama, don’t get involved, actually, mind your own business!
I should just explain this a little more. I am not for one minute suggesting that if someone you love or care about or someone that you can see needs help, actually asks for your help that you turn around and send them packing. No, that’s not it. However, you do need to check in with yourself as to whether this is a problem that you can support them with or whether it’s a drama that has been blown up out of proportion and that they’ve probably told many people about it and actually it’s not for you to sort.
We all know those people, the ones that either attract or create drama, the ones that actually enjoy the drama lama living at their house. That’s not a criticism, for some people it’s how they function but you don’t need to then feed their lama and you certainly don’t need to be entertaining it! Believe me, if you don’t feed the lama they will find someone else who will.
We can be supportive by putting sensible boundaries in place. We don’t have to solve everything, rescue everyone. We can be kind, we can be helpful but we also have to take care of ourselves otherwise we are no use to anyone. It can be a hard lesson to learn, especially if we are a programmed people pleaser but by not feeding the lama and therefore the drama it either has a tendency to fizzle out or it moves onto someone else and you are not left feeling completely frazzled.
Pick your moments, support what you can where you can and send the drama lama off on their merry way to live at someone else’s house. You’ll be amazed at how much energy you conserve and how lighter you feel.