How’s that for a blog title? You’re probably thinking…”Way to depress me Sarah:(” Sorry to bare the bad news, but I received an advice question from Ang this week about an issue she was having with her circle of friends. So I wanted to share my approach to friendships.
To summarize Ang wrote:
I am just having trouble with my social circle and mostly my friends from home changing. I know we all grow and become different, but this is a hard pill to swallow. It seems like because we are so critical of ourselves, trying to fit into the expectations of society, that we just push that criticism out on others.
First, friendships with other women are one of Gods many great gifts. If you’re a woman who doesn’t have female friends you are missing out. The problem is that great friendships can be difficult and can go thru many changes. No one seems to tell you that in 7th grade when you meet the person you think will be your best friend for life that there’s a good chance that friendship will end in divorce. Yikes…I’m not saying that we should have a jaded view of our friendships or hold back but I wish that someone had shared these attitudes toward friendships with me years ago.
1) Commitment without Attachment. My friend Sammy Simpson shared this with me a couple of months ago and I love it! Commitment without Attachment can apply to every relationship in your life, business, love, family, etc. I spent years trying to figure out why certain women didn’t like me or why a strong friendship I had for years seemed to disappear overnight. Now I commit to my girlfriends by being loyal and honest but I’m no longer attached to the outcome. I’m no longer in the business of making her like me, or chasing her down to find out why she stopped calling.
2) The term ‘Best Friends’ can be a toxic statement. Love me or hate me for this, I believe only a small percentage of people will have the same best friend for life. Instead, I think we have more like ‘best period friends,’ these are friends that we’re really close to during certain periods of our lives or when it comes to certain life issues like love, money, or family problems. When you use the term ‘best friends’ it has the potential to set us up to hold onto friendships that may no longer be working.
3) Like marriage, friendships work when you know who you are. Friendships are like a good marriage, they really work well when both people know who they are and what they’re willing to put up with. When you know you, you know if you’re willing to be friends with someone who wants to borrow money all the time or use you as their emotional dumping ground. Both are fine as long as you are aware.
4) Make new friends. I make new female friends all the time and I’m really enjoying it. I use to have the attitude, ‘I have enough friends,’ but now I’m more open. Meeting new women opens your eyes to other issues and outlets to life…maybe think about changing your attitude towards friendships.
Email me your advice question on any topic:) firstname.lastname@example.org