(VIDEO) Jordan Peterson's Rule #3: Break-up with Friends Who DGAF About You


  1. It's ok to outgrow friendships.

  2. friendships should be reciprocal.

  3. Stay close to friends who listen and who have similar levels of ambition.

Why do we outgrow friendships? How can we identify the good friends who G.A.F about us?

You get a new job, you’ve just started dating, or you’ve decided to start a new business. You can’t wait to tell your friend. But 2 minutes in the conversation, you wish you just kept your mouth shut. Suddenly, your stomach turns, you’re deflated and now you’re second guessing the validity of your ‘good news.’

Jordan Peterson uses this chapter to encourage us to ‘make friends with people who want the best for us. He points out that not every one of our friends wants us to succeed. They don’t like it when others achieve more than the group’s status quo. They belittle your good news because they subconsciously, or consciously, want everyone around them to be just as miserable as they are.

This chapter took a lot of reflection. It helped me understand the changes in my friendship groups from high school, uni, my professional life and now as I’m near the end of my 20s…. about to enter into my 30s in a few years eek!

He got me thinking about 3 things:

1.    Outgrowing Friendships

2.    Mr or Mrs Nego (Negative)

3.    How to Identify Healthy Relationships

1. Outgrowing Friendships

 TBT with Paris and Kim

TBT with Paris and Kim

We’ve all had school friends that were like family, but now it’s been 10 years since you said hello. As we grow more into who we are, we often grow apart from who we once were. As a consequence, we may drift away from the people we were once close to.

 Paris who?????

Paris who?????

Maybe they wanted to get married at 23 and you wanted to travel or move cities. Maybe you all wanted to become a C-Level Execs but now you’re beginning to hate the corporate slog. Maybe you both wanted sugar daddies, and now you’ve realised you don’t want to be hooking up with an 80 year old at 30.  

Outgrowing friendships usually isn’t out of spite. It’s merely an incompatibility with the values or direction in life you’re now taking. So, take a step forward and find people who share your passions and aspirations for the future. Join a meet-up group, try new sport, volunteer in a field of your interest. Meet new epic people.


2. Mr or Mrs Nego (Negative).

Friend 1: “Julie is so in love, maybe Tim will propose soon!”

Friend 2: “Ergh, let’s see how long this will last. Anyways, she’s always been desperate to get married.”

There are people you will meet who are flat out negs. That’s aussie slang for 'negative people'. They will be quick to belittle your idea, goals, progress or achievements. Jordan Peterson points out that it’s because it’s a reminder of their perceived inadequacy ie. Why didn’t that happen to me? Why does she or he deserve it.

Here’s what Papa JP had to say:

Don’t you hate that. They ‘oh I told you so.’ Like DUDE, come on I’m already feeling like shit and the last thing I need is a ‘FRIEND’ reminding me that I fucked up. Anyways, Papa JP reminds us that we need to be aware of these people in our social groups:

“They are dragging you down because your new improvements cast their faults in an even dimmer light… when you dare to aspire upwards, you reveal the inadequacy of the present, then you disturb others in the depths of their souls, where they understand their cynicism is unjustifiable.”
-pg 83.

I think some might argue, ‘well you need to have friends who provide you hard facts and reality.’ But there is a way in which you can communicate this. That’s not through gloating about the failure of a relationship or business. It’s through listening and trying to move forward with them. Friends don’t let friends live in the past, they don’t allow you to be reminded of the negative things that have happened. They focus on getting you to closer to your goal, they’re not negos.

3.How to Identify Healthy Friendships.

When you do find a good friend, make sure you water that baby and let it grow. Here’s 3 qualities to look out for:

1.    Do they Listen?

Observe which friends lend and ear vs those who are quick to talk about themselves when you bring something up.

Eg. You might be asking for relationship advice and instead your friend uses that opportunity to vent her spleen out on another fight she had with her BF and completely turns the conversation ‘Megan show.’ Friendships should be reciprocal. If you find that they are always talking about themselves, it’s time to let that ear leech go.

2.    Do you both have similar levels of ambition?

Find friends who have the same level of ambition as you. Now that’s not necessarily the same goals. What Jordan Peterson is talking about is drive to succeed or to see the world in a much better place.

“If you surround yourself with people who support your upward aim, they will not tolerate your cynicism and destructiveness… People not aiming upward will do the opposite… They will become jealous when you succeed…they will over-rise your accomplishment with a past action of their own”
-pg 82.

Don’t let stragglers make you feel shit because you want to do something different to their ideals of ‘success’. Some people can’t see outside of their box, so they think what you’re doing is impossible. It might come from ignorance or a deep rooted issue within themselves which you don’t know about. So next time they say something belittling, ‘thanks for your opinion’ and distance yourself from those anchors.

3.    Are they open to constructive criticism?

Some of your best friends will be those who can take criticism. It’s a personality and character trait which represents humbleness and desire for growth. The friends who are open to developing their own character, are the gems you want in your life. Aww I’m getting all fuzzy thinking about my friends haha.

Watch how they take advice or critcism. Are they defensive or are they rational and open to listening opposing views of their own. No-one in this life has shit figured out. We’re all in this crazy thing together, each of us just trying to make a buck, find love and eat some donuts once in a while. So anyways keep those close to your heart who aren’t afraid to let go of their ego.

That's all for Rule #3! Let me know if you guys are enjoying the videos as well as these blog posts : ) xx

Liz PalComment