I’ve decided I’m going to change my perspective on friendships.
My old perspective (superficially): if it isn’t deep, intimate, and returned in kind, it’s lacking.
My new one;
- Give what’s being given.
Don’t press for more if more doesn’t seem welcomed. Return what you get in kind.
- Some friendships are meant to be deeper and richer than average, some aren’t. Be okay with this.
Don’t turn down a good relationship just because it doesn’t go as deep as you’d like it to.
- Finding good friends is down to luck.
Don’t be hard on yourself if you don’t have the kind of support you’ve always been after. You just didn’t get lucky. You can be in the most friendly place in the world and still be unlucky about who you end up in close proximity to. And you can’t have the kind of friendships you’ve always wanted with just anybody.
- Don’t let your hopes for the ideal friendship taint a great relationship.
Not everyone is going to be your best friend; not everyone should be. Don’t force friendships into your “perfect friend” mold. It’s going to strain the relationship (sometimes to the point of breaking) or disappoint you.
- You may never find the kind of friendships you were always after.
That’s life, and that’s okay. You can be sad about it, that’s okay, too. But realize that the ideal you were after is a very rare thing indeed, and that you had lottery odds of ending up in that kind of a relationship – no matter how easy movies and TV shows make it look to find someone to be that close with.
And a few things I’ve known for a long time that I’ll throw into the mix of lessons I’ve learned about friendships;
- Cut toxic people out.
Don’t hesitate to do this; and no, it doesn’t matter how long you’ve been friends with them or how much they seem to rely on you. It needs to be done.
- People change. It’s okay to grow out of friendships.
Life takes us all in different directions. We choose to go different directions. People’s interests and passions change over time. Sometimes you can stay connected to old friends throughout it all, sometimes it’s better to let go because doing otherwise would be forcing things. Don’t be afraid to do the latter.
- You can find new friends all the time.
Don’t let yourself believe you’ll never make new friends again. Chances are you will without even trying. In this world of connection (and yes, thanks primarily to the internet) – you’ll never know who you’ll meet next.
Anything I’ve missed?