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Earlier this year, in the thick of the Coronavirus lockdown, I was having a really difficult time. I was stressed about work, worried about the health of my elderly parents, and emotionally I was all over the place. On a scale from 1 to 10, I was a different number every day of the week (and sometimes I was different numbers over the course of a single day). And yet during this incredibly difficult (unprecedented!) time, whenever I would have a video call or a phone call with my closest friends and beloveds, I felt more grounded and hopeful.

Now flashback to before COVID, when I had just finished a stressful week of speaking engagements in the US and was about to launch into another hectic week ahead. I was feeling anxious, not to mention exhausted! I called my boyfriend to tell him how I was feeling and, being the amazing, patient person that he is, he calmed and reassured me.

On this same trip, during the plane ride home, I noticed a bright bed of clouds surrounding the plane. As I was looking at these clouds, an instant feeling of warmth washed over me, as the beautiful image reminded me of the incredible people I have in my life who are always there for me, especially when times are tough. As I pulled out my phone to take a picture of the clouds, I felt an overwhelming moment of gratitude for my pillars of support.

I call these people — the ones who, when I think of them, make me visualize falling onto a fluffy cloud, like I’m snuggling into the warm embrace of a loved one — my “clouds” or “cloud relationships”. “Clouds” are the people around us who are kind, compassionate, and empathetic. They’re the ones who support and love us unconditionally. They are like a soft and comforting safety net, gently and generously supporting us through everything.

Cloud relationships are the opposite of toxic relationships. It’s so important to have “clouds” in your life because they help to both lift you up and keep you grounded. And let me tell you, I am so grateful for mine.

As we continue to navigate this difficult year, it can be easy to get wrapped up in moments of struggle. But it’s important to remember that while life is hard, it’s also beautiful, and sharing our pain with our “clouds” gives us a safe space to voice our concerns and opinions and can help with relieving our emotional burdens, remind us of our purpose in life, and encourage us to find the motivation to keep pushing forward.

Your “clouds” can be anyone in your life — your bestie, partner, or a family member — and could differ depending on the situation. The important thing is that you feel comfortable and secure with them and like you can be your most Authentic Self.

Some of you may already know who your “clouds” are, but if you don’t, I invite you to reflect on the last few times you confided in someone or sought advice (Check out my Empower Page on this here). Ask yourself:

  • How did the conversation affect you?
  • How do you feel when you talk to this person?
  • Do they celebrate your wins with you?
  • Do they speak truths or encourage you when you’re feeling insecure?
  • Do they lift you up and make you feel better, even in a difficult situation?

By asking yourself these questions, you might discover patterns emerging and notice that some of your connections are more supportive than others. You will find your “clouds”. When you do, treasure them, because these are the people who have chosen to love you and will lift you up in the moments you need it the most.

I'm Ritu.

I’m an award-winning life coach, empowerment speaker, author, and inclusion expert dedicated to helping you live your best life.

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