There’s a movie called Friday that came out when I was in high school. The character Felicia is a crack head who bothers her neighbor (Ice Cube). He coins the phrase, “Bye Felicia” to make her go away and leave him alone. The phrase has become a pop culture term to use when someone is annoying you or someone is irrelevant to your life. Saying “Bye Felicia” is a way to give someone or something the brush off. In reality, “Bye Felicia” may be appropriately applied to life and situations that are toxic or ill-serving. Read on.
Life is full of rabbit trails – situations or people that waste your time, energy, and focus. I call these people life vampires or time thieves. Time is precious and something or someone that drains energy from your life deserves a hard look at whether or not they need to be in your present. Women are especially notorious for giving, giving, giving and letting others waste personal resources that could be devoted to something constructive in our lives – but instead we are eaten up with someone else’s issues. That just doesn’t work, right?
Is it okay to be so very selfish to organize our lives into something that works for us? Are you self-centered to protect your sanity by excluding the problems of other people? Does saying “Bye Felicia” to unnecessary drama make you a – wait for it – bitch?
No. No. And No.
We are entitled to put our feet down in situations that don’t work for us, in situations that are exceedingly draining, and in situations that cause undue stress and strain on us or our families. Bye Felicia, take the issues elsewhere, it isn’t working for me is okay to say without beating yourself up with feelings of guilt. You’re not selfish, you’re exercising your right to sanity.
I recently was involved in a situation that didn’t work for me. It wasn’t even my issue. I tried to kindly make suggestions and even offered to broker a solution to the problem. It started to make me sick, my stomach hurt, and I was worried about it for more than a week. I have a long fuse and a kind heart. I hate conflict so I tried to weather the storm – at great cost to my health and peace of mind. But the others weren’t getting my message, or maybe didn’t respect me enough as a human being to really care about how their drama made me feel. Finally I had a Bye Felicia moment with the situation and decided to remove myself entirely. Other people’s problems should be other people’s problems – it wasn’t working for me. Bye Felicia.
This could be applied to a work situation, a friend situation, or in your relationship with your partner. I say to you to that it isn’t selfish or even rude to tell someone else that something just doesn’t work for you. Start a dialogue about the fact that your feelings/time/schedule should be considered.
It doesn’t mean that we can’t have compassion or empathy for others. It doesn’t mean that we don’t hate injustice or mean people. It does mean that sanity and inner peace deserve to be defended. If someone else’s problems are making you more upset than them or taking more of your time than their time – Bye Felicia, that just doesn’t work for you.
Removing as much conflict, stress, or unnecessary issues from your life does many positive things. Most importantly you can focus on your own life, your own problems, and channel your energy where you’d like. You are free to relax and your mind is free to enjoy the calm. Also you have more time to focus on constructive ways to spend time – volunteer to help others, say a kind word to a stranger, read an extra book to your child at bedtime. Cluttering your mind with the unnecessary kills your productivity and the ability to see your life objectively because you have all these stupid other people’s problems dancing in your head. Women are bad, really bad to shoulder the stress of those around them. This never ends well for the poor woman. Your family needs you, your job needs you, your community needs you. Some drama queen or a frivolous situation that is completely out of your control doesn’t need you – it only demands your attention – there’s a difference.
My point is to encourage you to eliminate as many possible things from your life that just don’t work for you. By shrinking the load of the unnecessary all of a sudden life comes into sharper focus. Believe me. Less stress does wonders for the mind. Practice saying Bye Felicia to as many irrelevant time thieves and life vampires as you can. It is hard to do but that first good night’s sleep following the elimination of silly issues makes it very worth it. Bye Felicia, that just doesn’t work for me.