Friendships: The most important “everything” in our lives!
PATHS WE TAKE and PEOPLE WHO CROSS OUR PATHS
My posts are a little random, but they relate to what I’m passionate about and this one is about friendships. I drafted a post about career paths last night and as I was writing it, I realized that every career path I took was based on a friendship with someone. Have you had the same experience?
I’ve always been one to push my comfort zone and do things to improve, whether it’s fitness, education, personal development, conquering my fear of heights, career progress, speaking in front of people, overcoming shyness, going places solo not knowing anyone, and so on, there is always something to improve. Pushing ourselves out of our comfort zone more makes us more independent, self-reliant and builds confidence after we challenge ourselves and complete whatever it is that challenged us. You never know what you are capable of until you push yourself further! This is so important to me – and Nike’s slogan sums it up best: “Just Do It!”
STRANGERS BECOMING FRIENDS
It’s comfortable to be self-reliant and independent, which I believe I am, but I’m definitely not a loner! I love having friends around. In fact, when I’ve gone places in the past, I may go solo, but somehow I manage to find a new friend group! When I was in college, on St. Patrick’s Day one year, I had a class that day but nearby there was this Irish Parade that was happening shortly after my class had ended. I didn’t have any friends who could go, so I was a little nervous, but I wanted to be there, so I went by myself. It was a little awkward to be honest, but it didn’t last long. Nearby was a group of guys and girls my same age and one of the girls asked me if I was there by myself and I replied yes, so she welcomed me to join her group of friends. We all got to know each other that day and became great friends over that summer: we started meeting on the weekends to roller blade the 7-mile loop around Forest Park, then head out for dinner and drinks. We ended ended up celebrating the 4th of July together that year too, taking a trip to Lake of the Ozarks and we had so much together. Recently, I headed to a concert before my friends showed up and ended up meeting another group of people who welcomed me to join them. I didn’t this time because I would be meeting up with my friends shortly, but the point is, people are drawn to create friendships, even strangers!
LIFE TIME LASTING FRIENDSHIPS
My cousin was always the best at this, she always had a huge group of friends and stayed active with her friends from childhood through adulthood, adding to the group as she met more people. I think one time at a Cardinal’s baseball game, her friend group practically covered an entire section! As people develop families, it’s easy to get “too busy” to maintain those friendships, and I was guilty of that, but thankfully, I had great friendships that picked up right where we left off. But, I believe that it’s important to maintain friendships at all times, find the time because it is important, you simply need to find a good balance.
THE VALUE OF FRIENDSHIPS
Friends are amazing; what we can do for each other: support each other toward goals, broaden one another’s horizons in careers, encourage each other, enhance other relationships, be each other’s sounding boards for ideas, help out when needed and the best part of all is just to have fun and let loose, be that crazy self that you can only be when you are in your comfort zone! Friendships are too valuable to ignore and as a group can come up with some amazing adventures!
Friendships with people having different backgrounds, different age groups, and different cultures simply enhances your life experience. There is so much we learn from each other and it all makes life more enjoyable!
Recently I was with a friend group who had talked about planning weekend trips where everyone would write down a suggestion for a weekend trip and put it in a bowl then one suggestion would be chosen and that would be the surprise trip! That sounded like a fun idea and one that families could use too! Everyone gets input and it’s a random selection. I haven’t tried this yet, but plan to!
My friends and I also started a closed group on Facebook for “Events and Activities” where we can share stuff we hear about and everyone has the opportunity to go. It works well when you are trying to coordinate with 25 or more people- just post it and see who’s interested/who can make it and no one is accidentally left off an invite! And those who can make it, excellent, and those who can’t; there is always next time!