One of the most integral elements of human relations is friendship. No matter how much of an island we may be, at some point we will desire a ‘friendship’ to dock. Friendship is very essential in multiple aspects of our lives. Friends make us smile when we feel low, they encourage us when on a daunting mission, and friends point us to a lucrative direction. At least this is what friendship should be all about and more as we look at it from a positive perspective. It is somehow human nature that we cannot do by ourselves and to tick we need friendship, most of all nobody wants to be put to rest by a stranger.
Friendship is a tool that shapes us in so many ways. The kind of friends we choose play a role in what we may become. Energies, attitudes and personalities can be so contagious. A significant part of me today is because of the people I surrounded myself with. There is some music I listen to or some shows I watch because of some friends I met. There are also some things I believe in, do, some kind of way I talk and some things I say which I inherited from friends. This is something we can all relate to.
So the influence of our friends is something we can’t overlook. What kind of shows or music did your mates introduce you to? What kind of beliefs did they expose you to? What kind of behaviour and attitude towards life do you and your friend(s) share? The answers could be positive or negative. We realise how a significant part of our personality is influenced by friends. How we will present ourselves to the public will be determined by the substance we feed on with or from our friends.
The way I see it, friendship should be mutually beneficial. These days people are friends with others not exactly that they share mutual interests, but that they seek some sort of benefit or validation. I came to realise some girls wanted to be friends with prettier or popular girls so they too could seem relevant. Some guys want to be friends with another because they are wealthier and will help them in times of need. I have nothing against these agendas as long as you reciprocate the benefits.
What you do not need are burdens- friends who impede your progress. This is where we begin to draw a line between healthy and toxic friendships. As youths we are trying so hard to build something for the future. I don’t think there has ever been a generation where youths have had huger aspirations. People have crazy dreams mostly because of the provocation they see on social media and television of the good life celebrities and other ‘happy’ and wealthier people portray. If one ever has to achieve those goals and aspirations, they ought to be careful what kind of company they choose to keep.
If your friends are no visionaries, you are off to a bad start. It is important you choose friends that support you, believe in you and bring out the best in you. I think the most important thing really is to find friends that make you happy most of all. Talking of burdens, you do not need to be around people that the touch of evolution always misses. You cannot be the same person you were two years ago. Growth is the most important thing. The more your friend grows the more you will be pushed to do the same, unless you are foolish enough to see that as a threat. You can’t be around people who always make other people the center of their discussion. You need to be around people that discuss ideas, make plans and believe in compassion. If the activities within your circle stay the same, you need to exit.
Learn to be thrilled by your friends’ accomplishments. This brings me to this point of unnecessary competition and jealousy. In friendship, never be imprisoned by the disease of jealousy. No matter how bad things seem for you, but great for your friends, be happy for them and simply wait your turn. Friendship is not a competition. Be kind, be generous and support your friends no matter how much your life sucks compared to theirs. Being a fake friend is evil.
However, great friendships are hard to come by, let alone maintain. Just like we seek a good partner in a romantic relationship, it will be imperative to find a great friend. A huge task i must add. Friendship may be beautiful, but also what sees our decline sometimes.As i conclude this article, I leave you with a quote and excerpt from The 48 laws of power by Robert Greene which is law number two:
“Never Put too much Trust in friends”. “Be wary of friends, they will betray you more quickly, for they are aroused to envy. They also become spoiled and aroused to envy. They become spoiled and tyrannical.“