(Caerlaverock Castle in Scotland courtesy of Wikipedia)
On the call the other day, I was connecting and checking in with someone important to me. They were describing an old relationship that did not end well. They had been hurt. Words were exchanged. The relationship, although important, had essentially ended.
Because of some recent circumstances, they needed to connect with this other person. Connecting after a falling out is never easy. They were wrestling with how to proceed, and the feelings associated with the time that had passed.
As we talked, I explained that sometimes we need to create Moats. Moats are protections for our core relationships. We keep those inside safe, and others are kept at a healthy Distance.
Distance is the natural by-product of a Moat. Those relationships can be good, but they have limits. Those relationships may be “not so good” but the Distance helps you keep your emotions and expectations in perspective.
Those inside are kept healthy and safe (including you).
When discussing how to move forward, we realized that Moats need Drawbridges.
Drawbridges allow us to let people in when needed. Drawbridges allow us to connect with the greater world by making a decision to lower the bridge.
The Moat still exists, but the connection can be made. When the time has passed, the Drawbridge can be raised again, when and if needed.
We all have Moats. The logical by-product of these Moats are Distance.
It is the Drawbridge that helps us manage both.