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What is friendship?

Updated: Oct 12, 2020

This topic is such a movable feast in terms of definition and quantifiable meaning. I read a funny caption on Facebook today; “I wish I had friendships with girlfriends like I do when we are all drunk and in the girls bathrooms”…

For most people, friendship would be defined as ‘someone you hang out with or talk to a lot and that you disclose your deepest, darkest secrets, without them judging you and loving you regardless.  Offering you their wonderful advice, built on a true understanding of what “you” are like and what’s best for “you”.

Sounds perfect, but guess what? This is probably a little unrealistic. Perhaps only a very few of us attain this level of friendship.

Friendship quotes
What is a friendship?

Friends are really like acquaintances. People that come into your life for a short period or long period. To help you, maybe to teach you something, to become a soul mate, or just to pass time. Some “friends” you’ll travel through your life with or maybe even create a family with.

Some of our greatest emotional extremes come from our friendships. We place a lot of pressure on what we feel in the friendships in our lives. But as our life progresses we all grow and change. We start life being brought up in a certain “filter system” and grow up probably radiating to like-minded people. Friendships that are challenging we tend to walk away from, but not without first learning a lot about ourselves.

If you keep attracting the same bad type of friend, one after the other (including romantic friendships), then you may need to look at why you’re attracting them in the first place. It actually says more about you than them. Know the saying; ‘Do what you’ve always done and get what you’ve always got’?

There is more to this than you realise. When you realise that you may in fact be attracting the same type of friend each time, you will find that you’ll begin attracting a totally new type of friend into your life. Believe me, this is usually a sign that you are on the right path.

If a friendship feels good, it generally grows easily. That’s not to say that you won’t sometimes be challenged. That can be a great thing as well.

It actually just boils down to what our definition of friendship is. Making sure that your friend is there for you is not as important as what friendship you offer to them.  Don’t be selfish and don’t always take.

I bet that most of you reading this will be thinking about all those friends that take and take. How often do you show concern, talk and help them, to only find that on reflection they have absolutely no interest in your life and never enquire about your’s?

In terms of that realisation, set your own boundaries.  Life is not about your Facebook page and how many “likes” you have and therefore friendships you have.  Its about connections and quality friendships.  My mother has wisely always told me that “if you can count all your friends on one hand, including your family, you’re doing very well.”

Maybe start culling the ‘users’ and the ‘takers’ and give quality time to those dear, sincere friends; you could probably count them on one hand now!  Believe me, your life will become more meaningful and calm.

Alex Andrews

Life & Transformational Coach

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