Now this is probably going to be my least popular blog post & will probably lose me a few friends but I think it’s an important one and a good life lesson.
Friendship is a funny thing. I am certainly no saint but I hope I am a good friend and I definitely treat others as they treat me in most cases.
From the day we first leave the comforts of our parent’s safety net and step into nursery the journey of friendship begins.
What makes a friend??
In those early years I think it’s often the first person you see or are seated next to.
“Hey let’s be friends”
“Friends for life”
During those single digit years, friendship is easy you don’t really have to do much you just see your friends at school and you have a laugh then come home to your family.
I remember one of my brothers telling me he was no longer friends with someone and I think I was annoyed more as I thought they would make a great friend.
As you move into your teens, Friendship gets a little more serious, as for the first time we question. “Who is friends with me?” We actually care. These are the years we try and impress our friends with cool gear, cool clothing and if possible cool parents! I remember getting a hyper colour t shirt (the ones that would change colour with a handprint) and showing it off to every kid in school. Popularity becomes a big part of friendship.
I remember turning 18 and being so happy, school was over, I was legal to drink at every bar in town and I had loads of friends. Hmmm actually scratch that last bit.
I had friends from school but unfortunately although you remain friends you aren’t always the best of friends. Within 2 years the people I saw everyday, I didn’t see very often at all. Not anyone’s fault just the first eye opener that friendship can be fickle. Life moves fast and friendships come and go.
But…… hold that thought because it’s not all bad.
You see some of the best friendships are those you made at school but because life gets in the way you just lose touch due to moving away or working away from your hometown or let’s be honest you just move on in life. No bother, Thanks to social media friendships are re made and old ties are bonded.
I went into the workforce and made new friends and moved and then made other friends and moved countries and made more friends & so it continues. You keep some and you lose some but social media often keeps the friendship going or in some cases doesn’t allow you to end them……
Which brings me to the main point of this post.
I have finally at the age of almost 38, realised what real friendship is and what people mean to me.
In the last month or two I have blocked & deleted several people on Facebook, not just unfriended or secretly unfollowed (it’s easy to tell) 🙂 I flat out blocked them. “Done” I said. Ok perhaps occasionally when I may have been slightly drunk at the time, but I was satisfied.
Well until the next morning when I was hit with a pang of the guilt’s
“C’mon Matt it’s just Facebook”, “They’re not that bad, are they?”, “Maybe you were too harsh” I had this conversation with myself several times before suddenly thinking
Why the hell do I have to be friends with everyone?
Is it my star sign? I’m Libran and it definitely makes me want everyone to just get along.
Is it my career? working in HR – so staff engagement and people are a huge part of my life
Or is it my need to please people?
AHH Guilty as charged!
Yes, Sadly I think it’s mostly the latter, but I don’t think I’m alone.
So firstly what does it take to get blocked in my books? Well posting things which I find inappropriate, rude or nasty is the easy one, another is attending an event I created and not acknowledging me or speaking to me whatsoever and the other is treating me as the “gay friend” one minute I’m in and the next I’m out ( no pun intended)
So they are my killer blows, what are yours?
Think about what you expect from people, think about people who let you down, who make you feel uncomfortable or make you doubt yourself. How many people are you thinking about?
I bet they are all on your Facebook friends list, Right!? Social Media allows people into your life.
How often do we accept these things from people in life and on social media??
I’m not talking about people you don’t see very often, sometimes they are the most solid friendships, you’ve been there through the good and the bad. We all have friendship circles and that’s all a good part of life. I know for a fact there are people I haven’t seen in months & years and I could walk into a room and pick up exactly where we left off.
The people I’m talking about are not what we consider friends.
Why do we allow these people to remain in our lives when we don’t consider them friends. Why do we allow ourselves to let so called “friends” treat us badly or disrespect us?
But the BIG Question that I’ve had to ask myself is…….What value do you add to my life?
If you can’t answer these questions about someone it’s time to hit the delete button
I Challenge you, actually I Dare you.
Maybe it’s time for a Friend Evaluation.
PS If it’s me then it’s been Real 🙂