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Tag Archives: Friends

Giving It Away

6 Mar

We interact with many kinds of people as we go through our lives. We have friends, associates, co-workers, neighbors, family members and so on. Everyone has their own ideas about how things should go and some of them may have ideas about how we should live our lives. How much influence they have over us depends on many things. Our relationship status differs if they’re a friend, if they have authority over us, or if they’re someone very close to us. They may remain on the outskirts or our lives, or be with us much of the time. Our connection to them varies depending on how they relate to us and how much we want or need them. Those who are important hold a lot of influence and if they want us to do something it may carry a lot of weight. Although we’re certainly entitled to live our lives any way we choose, if those close to us exert pressure to conform to their ideas or ways, we may buckle and go along in an effort to keep the peace and make everyone happy. It’s nice to please others, but if we must give up who we are in order to accomplish it, we may lose a lot. Everyone’s unique and our desires and dreams are important. If others don’t share our vision, and we set our goals aside to accommodate their views, we’ll never realize our greatest potential or achieve our dreams. It’s impossible to live two lives at once. We can’t be everything to everyone and true to ourselves at the same time. Our relationships are important but our personal lives must take precedence when choosing the paths we’ll follow. We deserve every happiness and by being true to who we are and what we want, will achieve it.

Some of the most powerful relationships we have are those within our families. Our parents, siblings, children, spouses – all are very important and their opinions and advice may be very influential and significant. We want them to be happy and show respect for the relationship but if we go against what we feel is best for us, our lives will reflect their values and not our own. We never need to do anything we aren’t comfortable with, no matter who is asking. We can be respectful and kind, and still make decisions that express who we are.

There may be times when we’re confused or unsure, that we depend on others to show us the way forward. Relying on their help and advice when we need it is wise, but we are strong and capable and can do anything we desire. We know how to get information and help when we need it, and then walk forward on our own. Even if the road gets difficult, we can find our way through. We have all the confidence and wisdom we need to go anywhere and do anything.

Today if you’ve been going along with someone else’s decisions and doing things their way, remember you know yourself better than anyone else. You know what you want, and have everything you need to achieve it. Decide where you want to go and take a step forward on the road that will take you there. Trust yourself and be confident. Your life is important and you don’t need approval for anything you desire. Step forward and claim your dreams. Everything is possible and you will succeed.

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Genuine Article

20 Apr

There are a lot of influences on us every day.  Some people inspire us to do good things and be our best, and others can pull us away from what we really want to do.  Every decision we make takes us somewhere and brings some sort of response.  If they take us where we want to go and bring positive growth we continue to move forward.  But sometimes they stall us in our tracks and even bring sorrow and problems into our lives.  We all know who we are and what we want.  If we focus on being genuine in our decisions, looking at them clearly and without bias, and staying true to who we really want to be, we have a better shot at making the best decisions possible at every turn.  But the influences around us can be strong and have a powerful pull even when they are pulling us in the wrong direction.  We can get confused and take a wrong turn if we aren’t careful.  There are a lot of roads in life and we direct our path through the choices we make.  If we pay attention, and stay focused on our goals, we can continue to move forward.  And each step forward takes us closer to where we really want to be.

The people closest to us may exercise a lot of power over us.  Friends and family may want us to do something or be some way we don’t want to choose.  If we are very close to them and love them, their opinions may mean a lot.  And if what we want is different than what they think we should have, problems may arise.  Because we care about them and want to prevent conflict and preserve good feelings, we may choose to go along.  And if we do, we may be able to wing it for a time, but eventually who we really are and what we really want will surface again.  We can continue to play along but true happiness comes when we are genuine and honest with ourselves and those around us.  If we disagree with something we can choose to decline.  There may be tension at the beginning but if we stay true to our course, and they love us, eventually they will respect our choices.

There is sometimes great pressure to conform and be like others.  Nobody really wants to live in a cookie cutter world, but there are times when it seems easier to get along if everyone agrees to the same models.  No two people are exactly the same and each of us has a unique perspective to offer.  Although it might be easier if we were all the same, the only way to make that happen is to discount our uniqueness.  This world is a big, diverse place.  Each of us has something to offer but we can’t offer it if we are busy trying to fit someone else’s mold.  If we are genuine and honest about ourselves, and with those around us, we might not look the same, but our unique influence will bring unexpected blessings and enhance our experiences.  We are perfect being ourselves.  We can be confident enough to express that and find joy in being one of a kind.

Today if you don’t feel you’re doing things your way, you can change.  Your presence is a gift to the world, and we all need to know you just as you are.   Be confident in expressing your individuality.  You bring a perspective that is uniquely yours.  Be genuinely you and you’ll leave a perfect impression everywhere you go.

Who’s your friend?

1 Jul

We meet a lot of people in our lives, we make friends, we have acquaintances, and we build relationships. It’s important to share our lives with those around us, and we enjoy the camaraderie that comes from sharing time with our companions. It’s great to have friends. But sometimes we think we have a friend in someone, and then something happens, and we realize the relationship is different than we thought. Sometimes we think we are building a friendship with someone we believe we can trust, and then sadly discover they were only interacting with us for another reason. Perhaps because we were able to introduce them to others who will move them ahead at work. Or maybe they only needed to interact with us to gain some information they were seeking. These things happen, and when they happen to us, we can feel hurt, and used. It’s never appropriate to use others for personal gain, and it’s especially hurtful when it’s done pretending to be our friends, but it does happen, and it’s very disappointing. It’s important to try to figure who our friends really are so we know where we stand.

We want to feel sure about our relationships. Who are the people who spend time with us just because they care about us? Who can we can count on if we need help? Who will care if we are hurt? I had a friend once who told me he was traveling across country one time when his car broke down. He had it towed to the nearest town but couldn’t afford the repairs, and was stranded. Desperate, he called his best friend back home, and told him the story. Without a moment’s hesitation, his friend told him, “Stay right there. I’m on my way.” And with that he jumped in his car, and drove hours to help him. I knew a woman once who was housesitting for a friend when she had a grease fire in her kitchen. The cabinets above the stove were destroyed from smoke damage. She loved her friend and didn’t want her coming home to the mess, or having to make a claim on her homeowner’s insurance. So she spent the next several days refinishing the cabinets herself, and restoring them. Someone else I know sat with her best friend through cancer treatments that went on for months, and then spent every evening with her, sitting by her bed until she recovered, just offering her time and support. We’ve all had people like this in our lives, and they have been very valuable to us. We’ve also had people in our lives who pretend to be our friends, but really don’t care. It doesn’t take long to figure out who our friends are when things go wrong, and it’s important to know. It’s also important that we are true friends to those we care about. Everyone needs people they can count on. Someone who has our back, someone who supports us no matter what, and someone who loves us, warts and all. That kind of loyalty is a priceless gift. We should cherish it, and we should return it whenever possible.

Today there will be all kinds of people around you. Think about them. Who are your real friends? Once you determine who they are, cherish them, help them, and show them you care. They will return the same back to you, and your life will be so much better for it. We’re all in this together. Don’t forget that. We need each other. Being a true friend is the very best we can offer. Extend your hand, be the best friend you can be. There is nothing more valuable.

I was just kidding.

5 Apr

I had a friend some years ago that I enjoyed doing things with.  She was interesting and fun, and we had a lot of laughs. I enjoyed being with her but only until someone else joined us.  Whenever someone else was with us, she would criticize me continually, make fun of me, and generally make me look like a fool.  I would ask her about this afterward and she always said the same thing, “I was just kidding.”  Hmm.

Tonight on the phone I was talking to a friend who was very stressed out about a party she was planning, and made a comment about another friend we have.  I know this person quite well and he is notorious for making bad decisions.  I said something about being careful trusting his decisions because we’ve seen where they can go.  She laughed and said, “Well that’s just because you always think the worst of everyone.”  I told her that wasn’t a very nice thing to say to me and it certainly wasn’t true.  “Oh I was just kidding,” she said.  Hmm again.

There are a lot of people who make cutting remarks, criticize, and say uncomplimentary things, and then excuse their behavior by saying they were just kidding.  It really isn’t funny to do these things, and it’s not an appropriate way to kid around with people we are supposed to care about and like.  I’ve been thinking about this behavior and wondering what fuels it.  Is it because the other person is stressed out, like my friend tonight?  Is it because the other person doesn’t like something about us but isn’t brave enough to say so?  Is it because there is a jealousy issue?  I really don’t know what the reasons are but I have known a few people over the course of my life who have adopted this “just kidding” mantra when they hurt other people’s feelings.

My friend from years ago – I eventually ended my association with her because I didn’t like the way she treated me when others were around.  I got tired of her “kidding.”  So, because she couldn’t stop, she lost a friend to spend time with.  Is it worth the cost of a friendship to say hurtful things in passing, covering it up with that phrase?  Is it worth losing a friend?  I don’t think so.

Life can be complicated and difficult.  It can be stressful and we all make mistakes.  We trust our friends to be there when the going gets rough, and we rely on them to have our backs.  As friends, we should do those things as well.  It seems it would be best not to fall into the “just kidding” trap.  We should be respectful, supportive, and truthful.  Our friends depend on us the same way we depend on them.  We should be the ones that set the standard.  We should be the best friends we can be.  Friendship is a great gift.  It’s not something to be squandered and toyed with.  It’s a gift.  We should treasure it. And that’s no kidding.