As I grow older, I have started paying more attention to things that I used to take for granted… and that is making friends.
I have always been very critical of people… all people.Â While some might say this is normal, I would go so far as to say my example would almost be to an unhealthy level.
When I meet a person for the first time, I immediately begin dissecting them.Â Their mannerisms, movements, tone of speech, eye movements, etc.Â I listen to the stories they tell and, in my mind, begin challenging them for potential realism, validity and probability.Â All this in a matter of the first few moments that I have met a person.
Hindsight is always more clear than the vision before you at the time something is happening.Â Thus, as I look back, I see many situations where I killed potential friendships before they ever started.Â This attitude that I have towards people that I am meeting for the first time was and is unfair to them and to myself.
This has brought me to the point of this post.Â A lesson learned, so to say.
- Accept people for who and what they are.Â People are not always going to be what you want them to be, and sometimes the best friendships can be borne from diversity.
- Listen to what people have to say and take it for what it is worth.Â If you do not think that it is the truth, keep that to yourself.Â Over time, the truth always comes to the surface.
- Once a friendship starts, just like a plant or any other life, it requires feeding and nurturing.Â You need to make it work.Â Don’t assume that “I called John this week, it is his turn to call me.”Â That does not always work.Â Friendship is a two-way street and takes both parties.
- Don’t let little things get in the way, and in the case of good friends, nothing is more important.Â With few exceptions, all other considerations are secondary to friends.
Making good friends is, in my opinion, not too much different than relationships with your family.Â My closest friends ARE part of my family.Â In my life, the few friends I have, and they know who they are, are every bit as much a part of my family as my Mom, Sister, Brothers and Wife.Â There is little difference to me here.
Some friends you make will not be as close as others.Â You will learn to keep them, without letting them KNOW this, at various distances from you, emotionally.Â This is not to be callous or mean, but because there are times when you can feel that a person is responsible enough to handle that level of closeness.
There are times, also, that you need to let them go from your life because they become vexacious to your soul and your family.Â There is one case where I have done this and the reason was because the path he had chosen led to the loss of his family and drove his friends away.Â Even though it was his own fault, it was one of the harder things I have done in my life.Â Telling a person to not be a part of your life when you have known them since high school is difficult.
All this being said, my newest goal is to teach myself to be less critical of people.Â To try and make more friends and be a better friend to others.Â To stop trying to find a reason to NOT make a person a friend, as I tend to do with my mental dissection of those I meet.Â I do not expect this to come to me overnight, but I do want it to happen.
I hope that you appreciated my sharing this with you.Â I hope that you have something to add, as your comments are always welcome.