Wednesday, 30 May 2018

Wisdom and Wellbeing: How to Deal with Copycat Friends

I've been chatting with a few women lately about friendship twists and turns and one particular situation that has come up a lot - friends that imitate you.

I'm not just talking about liking the same pair of shoes or eating out at the same restaurant, these are particular experiences where women they know as friends, or former friend are changing their own lives to replicate theirs in every last detail including look, lifestyle and even copying career and business ideas.

Now I've actually experienced this myself recently and although I'm trying to be relaxed about it and view the situation as a compliment, after all when you see someone you know experience so much joy with something good in their life why wouldn't you want a slice of that too? I do totally understand how unsettling and frustrating it can be too, and it's easy to react to the situation with anger and malice which can leave the friendship feeling very toxic.

I do believe though, that there is a more productive and gracious way of handling this common friendship dilemma and so I sought insight and wisdom from an expert who knows all about this kind of relationship glitch, and so read on for her top friendship tips to deal with copycats:

Hey I’m Gemma, blogger at I’m on a mission to cure loneliness amongst women and to empower you to build self-worth, spark up your social life and ultimately make rewarding and real friends. Dealing with a copycat friend can be really difficult. Remember the days when you thought as soon as you left school problems stayed there and as an adult you wouldn’t have to face them? Copying is one of those things. But fast forward into your adult life copying is still just as frustrating which is why Karen has kindly allowed me to put together this guest post for you to help.

All is not lost when it comes to copying and you can indeed continue happily with your friendship. As an adult you should be aware that the copying mostly comes from an innocent place. The copier is likely to be suffering with limiting beliefs, low self-worth or feeling lost in their own life. It can also come from feeling admiration towards you. Below I have put together 5 ways to deal with a copycat friend so that you have a simple strategy to resolve your frustration.

Here are 5 ways to deal with a copycat friend

Continue to be you

Don’t stop being authentically you because someone is copying. You are inspirational to your friend which is why they are copying, so do not let this impact what you are doing. For example if they are trying to imitate your lifestyle or your goals just keep going. Someone copying will never make it as far as someone who is genuine and passionate.

Use it as motivation
If someone that isn’t a friend is copying you, use it as motivation to grow and succeed. If it is a friend that is copying you, use it to inspire others. A positive mindset can change any situation even in situations where you’re feeling frustrated. Use these copying antics as a positive and use them as a self confidence boost that you are doing well and someone wants to be like you.


Don’t react, respond! Copying is sure to make you feel frustrated and angry but don’t approach your friend with this attitude. Decide what is going to make you feel better. You can approach the situation letting your friend know that you are aware she’s copied, ask her why she copied or let her know you feel upset she has copied. Honest conversations can be hard to have but are totally necessary.

Offer to help

Check your friend is ok. They may be suffering with problems you don’t even know about. Help them build their self-worth, be their cheerleader and offer to do things like take them shopping or set their own goals. People that copy tend to be lost and need a little help or guidance to get them back on track to living their own life. 

Move forwards or take a step apart

If you have identified someone in your life as being toxic and deliberately copying you to sabotage you, detox them from your life. Block them on social accounts and carry on with your life not having to worry about them. If it is a genuine friend that is copying you and in the unlikely situation that after having a conversation with them and supporting them hasn’t stopped the copying, you may wish to distance yourself from them. You don’t necessarily have to have a friend breakup, but just create a little more space between you to relieve your frustrations and save your friendship.

Copying really is a sign that you are successful. Many business owners know that they are successful when others start to copy. People that copy will not succeed further than you and they can never do exactly the same because they aren’t you. They won’t have the same passion for the things you love so will soon move on and go copy someone else. Let it go, stay positive and keep doing you.

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