what is it. what does it mean. this is one of the key questions in life. who are the true friends and who are not. going past the natural connection part – how do we determine which friends are true. some say it is an easy answer. they say true friends are the ones that stick by you through it all. they don’t abandon you when times are tough. they don’t forget about you when new friends come along. they want to be around you and they make an effort. they ask you questions about yourself and your life – they want to know. they will go the distance to be there in your most important moments. they are the people you are most comfortable around. they give as much as you do and can give more when you give less. they don’t judge you, even if you stumble. at the end of the day, a true friend is the one sitting next to you now and in the future. if they are still there, then you will know if they are a true friend.
no back and forth
when you talk to someone, there must be a back and forth conversation. it cannot be a one sided conversation. you must ask questions and they must ask questions. you can’t keep “pulling teeth” forever in a relationship. it is ok to have pauses or silence when with others – that is healthy and normal – even signifying that your friendship has reached a new level of comfort. but that takes years to reach. if you have no back and forth conversation at the start of the initial interaction – then this person is not your best fit for friendship. there must be a natural flow in the early conversations. if there is not – then give it a few more tries – and if the same scenario – simply move on. life is way too short to stick around folks that don’t provide a back and forth conversation. you are not being rude, you are being honest. it is good for them and it is good for you.
you will come across many people in your life. some will do things that you don’t agree with. some will do things to show that they don’t like you. don’t try to understand why people don’t like you. don’t react to things that they do. this is their problem, not your problem. you want to say something to them. you want to understand why they don’t like you. you want to know what you did to them. you want to clear things up. for close friends – go clear it up. but for acquaintances, don’t bother. they are an acquaintance for a reason. the immediate click or connection is not there yet or might not ever be there. you have noticed that they are moving away from you. could be something you did or said. could be their first impression of you or their recent impression of you. regardless – no need to react to them. it is better not to say anything. you have now learned that they are not right for you. be a very casual acquaintance to them when you come in contact, as sometimes contact cannot be prevented. so be casual and don’t react. be happy that you now know which way things are going. keep your info inside and don’t react.
thank you notes
i have an idea. think back across your life and think about all the people you have met – then think specifically about the people that made a difference in your life – that did something for you to make your life better – that did you a favor without expecting anything in return. you can narrow it down to the big events or milestones in your life. who helped you reached that milestone? who helped you do that event? who were the key people that helped shape who you are today. now sit down and write each of them a brief thank you note – just thanking them for the exact thing they did to help you. it doesn’t have to be a long letter – just a quick note. they will be pleasantly surprised and you will feel good that you let them know that you have not forgotten what they did and you never will. get those notes and do it now – before it is too late.
ok to say no
this is a struggle we all go through in life. our natural instinct is to say yes to everything because we don’t want to disappoint anyone – especially friends, family. so when asked to do things or go somewhere – we say yes, yes, yes. when you are young – it is ok to say yes because you don’t want to miss anything and you want to fit in. but be cautious that you do not go too far down the peer pressure path and do things that could be dangerous. as you get older, you still look to please – so you still say yes – but then you start to think that you don’t really want to do this or that – but you feel that if you say no, you might lose ground with that person and eventually harm the relationship. however, you also start to realize that life is way too short to say yes to everything – and that time is running out – and that you need to start picking and choosing what you will do and who you will do it with – you want the choices to be based on this idea – do what YOU want to do – don’t say yes to please people. so it is ok to say no – because you have to live for you and not anyone else. if a person is offended because you said no, then they are not a true friend – and will not be there at the end of the day anyway. it is ok to say no – and once you start saying no, then you will feel liberated – and it will become easier to say no more and more. this applies mostly to friends and not family. family is another animal – you need to do things even if you don’t want to – it is your family obligation and duty.
we all make mistakes – we know that. we might say or do something in the spur of the moment that we could regret later. we might have made the wrong decision when a friend asked us to do something – and you feel like you didn’t come through for that friend – you let them down by the choice you made. but at the moment your gut told you to do what you did – you went with instinct – so in effect you were not wrong – but in the process you let someone down. from that point the only thing you can do is tell your friend that you didn’t mean to let them down – you just went with your gut and maybe you made a mistake. you have to move on and let the chips fall where they may. if it is a true friend, then all will be good. if not, then that is the way it goes because if you were to do it all over again, you would rely on your gut and make the same decision. this is life and mistakes happen – all we can do it accept what happened – try to repair any problems that came from it – and move on. do not dwell – this was supposed to happen and you are meant to move on. you are who you are and you can only try to make the right choice in the future – but when you make that choice, you will always make the choice that is in your favor – it is human nature – you can’t go against your instinct when making decisions because if you do – you will not be you anymore – you will be what others want you to be – and in the end we are alone in this world and we have to stick up for ourselves and what we believe is the right thing to do.
friends will come and go
and most of the time there is nothing you can do about it. once in awhile your mind will drift back to the friends you used to have. you will wonder what happened with that friendship – why are you not friends anymore. it is hard to pinpoint what exactly happened. most dissolve due to inactivity over time – you lost touch as you went down different paths. we can say this is the natural flow of life – you have certain types of friends in certain times of your life. sometimes these friendships are not meant to move from one phase to the next. that is ok – and you accept the fact that you are not close friends anymore – that you might not ever see or talk to that person again. and the friends that do stand the test of time are the ones you naturally connect with – that think more like you, that want to keep the friendship going, that work to keep it going, that are your loyal friends through thick and thin. you are lucky to have these type of friends – they are part of your world, they are like family. but there are always the friends that you used to have that you wonder why you are still not close – is it something that you did or is it something that they did. you can’t try to pinpoint why – all you can do is accept it and move on. it is not your fault – it is life. you may re-connect and if you do, then you know it was meant to be a friendship for the ages, you can try and reach out but if they do not reach back, then you know. you cannot force these things – everything happens because it is supposed to happen or not happen. you must continue on and you must not dwell on it. do not feel guilty, do not feel like you did something wrong. this process will always continue – even with the new friends you meet – some will go and some will stay. stop trying to figure it out and stop beating yourself up about it – everything is the way it is supposed to be.
what i have discovered in life is that reconnections happen all the time and are a big part of friendships. when you are in your teens and 20s, you make friends so easily –none of life’s complications interfere with your daily mindset. you basicially don’t worry as much about paying bills, etc. –you just have fun. this makes you an open person –meeting people and making friends all the time. you don’t ponder on every word that a person says –you are less paranoid or skeptical. these friendships happen during your most impressionable years and are very strong and long-lasting –you go through life discovering events with each other and this seals the friendship bond for life in many cases. but as we all know –life goes on and you often lose touch with these friends –you basically grow up, get married, move, etc. –you still have a strong bond with these friends, but you lose touch and lose contact. then one day, you see this friend again and all the old vibes come back and you have an easy connection with them. you know it is still there because there is no awkwardness or getting-to-know period –you just go back to where you left off 10, 20, 30 years ago. this is the reconnection happening. the bond is re-established. you now stay in touch and start to do things together again. you see this as meant to be and as destiny. this new/old friendship helps round out current friendships and helps fulfill your friendship needs for life. when a reconnection happens, make the most of it –this is what you are supposed to do in life……..reconnect.
when a friend says good-bye
life is a funny thing when it comes to friends. you start off like a romance –strong, fun, full of life and endless possibilities. you have the best laughs and share some great moments. you build up trust and get to know everything about each other. time goes on and you might meet some other new friends, but not as good as this friend. but you do spend time with these new friends and your old friend has other things to do as well. you spend less and less time with this friend until one day, your friend has said that you changed and we might as well go our separate ways. this does happen –but it is not the normal process. typically, you move on without acknowledging that things have changed–though it is harder to do this in a small community. the bottom line is that life is full of surprises and you should be prepared or unprepared for anything to happen –a death in the family, a financial windfall, a friendship fading away. you think to yourself – “i have not changed” –why would they say that? it is because the thoughts in their mind have changed. they think differently about the us –they think we have changed, when in reality it could be the other way around –the person saying “you have changed” is the one who has actually changed –or their perception of the friendship has changed. the bigger you make your circle of friends, the more chance of someone feeling left out. what can we do? nothing. we can only live our lives as life comes to us. it is sad, very sad when a friend says good-bye –but like a death, you must move on for yourself and your loved ones. ciao, it was fun.
we were mean
when you were young, you were mean to people. yes, we are all nice people and have nice friends. yes, we had fun growing up, making many friends, laughing all the time. but guess what –we didn’t please everyone all the time. we did step on some toes, we did piss some people off. and this is because our minds were still growing. we would say things without thinking –and these things would sometimes hurt people. we acted mean towards others to impress others –this is what high school kids do without even thinking. so what does this mean? it means that first we must not hold guilt because we acted this way –we were trying to survive in the high-pressure environment of school –we had no choice but to go with our instincts. if you see someone from your past that you were mean to –say your sorry –why not. chances are most people won’t even remember because you are not all they talk about. but, there will be people that do remember and will always think of you as an ass. not much you can do about that. one big thing you can do is talk to your kids –tell them not to be mean to others –because they will –it is human nature. tell them that hurting others to impress others is not the way to go –be nice and be yourself. help your kids and help yourself in this area.