A couple days ago I was hanging out with one of my best friends who haven’t seen me in over eight months. He told me: “You’re very different. You’ve changed a lot”

The last few months have been simply amazing. And the years to come is most definitely going to be one of the most exciting years in my life. Even though I started my journey on life coaching and NLP many years back, it’s only this year that I’ve decided to take it up professionally. And thanks to a very good friend of mine in London I had the opportunity to attend one of the world’s best life coaching and NLP trainings. It changed my life forever. And it changed me a LOT!

A blessing

I’m blessed to be surrounded with family and friends that would support me with whatever decisions I make. If they have any objections they voice them. But as along as my decisions are ecological, they’re always there for me. Even when they sometimes don’t agree! (It gives them the opportunity to tell me: We told you so!)

This a blessing because everyone who embarks on the path of self development needs a supportive environment. It’s critical and without it, long term change almost never occurs. This is why I believe I’m blessed having such a great family and amazing friends.

However, contrary to my case, I’ve worked with and met many who when they follow the path of self development and start growing find themselves falling apart from the ones they perceived to be close to them, be it parents, friends, colleagues or partners. How so?


Crab fishermen don’t put a lid on the bucket they’re using to catch crabs. Because once there’s a few crabs in it, if one crab tries to escape, the others will pull it back.

When you grow, begin to understand yourself and identify exactly what you want, you become restless. You become excited about the opportunities waiting for you out there and you just can’t wait to get up, get out and explore the world.

Unfortunately, sometimes partners, colleagues, friends etc. don’t feel the same way. And every time they sense your ambition to leave the crab bucket, they would reach out and pull you back in. If you’re ever in a situation like this, what could you do?

A way out?

I know many who broke up with their partners or fell apart from their friendships because their partners or friends were crabby. Regardless of why partners, friends, family or colleagues are crabby it’s important to figure out how to deal with the situation when it arises.

  1. In the midst of trying to get out of the bucket it’s easy to forget about everything and everyone else and just focus on yourself. Don’t! The people in your environment could already be gems that you might overlook; even if they’re not growing as you’d want them to be. Remember what we discussed in an earlier blog entry? Look both ways.
  2. If you keep your relationships in mind while you focus on getting out, you might still be tempted to put them on hold. This could result in creating a gap between you and others around you. The longer you put your relationships on hold, the wider the gap gets, the more difficult it is to mend. This is especially true when it comes to your partners. Make sure you keep your partners informed about your growth. This will give them a fair choice of whether to accompany you on your journey of growth or not.
  3. Remember it’s your partners’ own choice. Forcing the change on them could backfire. Your responsibility is simply to get them in the know, not to force it on them.
  4. If the people in your environment choose not to grow, you might just want to leave the crabby bucket. How far away you want to get from the bucket is up to you.
  5. When you leave the bucket, make sure you build a new environment that supports you in your growth and magnificence. Make new friends, build new networks and join new groups. That’s one of the reasons why I created the meetup group here.

Next time, we’ll be talking about frogs!

Until next time,

Tarek N

Copyright (c) 2009 www.TarekCoaching.com

Facebook comments:

  1. Del

    Wow………….what a great article, I can really relate to the article especially about Crabs and being pulled back in.

  2. stavey

    Thanks for this reminder.. It is so easy to carried away when we are focusing on a new project. But the TRUE excitment comes from knowing that we are able to share our achievemts with those we LOVE & CARE about.

  3. Markus Butzer
    Markus Butzer04-08-2010

    Wow You did a really good job on this thing.

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