The Power of Friendship

How many friends do you have?

No really, how many friends do you have? Like actual friends, not just people you know. Not your Facebook friends, not your Instagram followers, not your Snapchat friends. Like real friends.

Here’s another question: How do you know if someone is actually your friend?

In a world where people are accused of being fraud or phony on a daily basis, doesn’t it get hard to know who really is your friend? I was asked this question today;

“How do you tell the real friends from the fake ones?”

My answer was simple,

“Real friends are willing to give you everything, while asking for nothing in return.”

But what if someone gives you their onion rings because they hate onions, and don’t ask you for your french fries? Is that a friend? Thankfully, the nature of friendship runs much deeper than onion rings and fries.

Often times we struggle with making time for friends. We find it difficult to create a work-life balance that is beneficial to both the social and professional aspects of our lives. Such difficulty often results in a feeling of guilt. Guilt for not “making enough time” for our friends. Guilt for being “too caught up in life”. For some of us, this guilt might even lead to uncertainty.

“If Joe and Sally think I’m working too much, then maybe this isn’t what I should be spending my time doing.”

It’s real easy to feel the pressure of expectations put forth by our friends. Friday’s are for movies, Saturday’s are for watching the game, Sunday’s are for laying around on the beach, and any other way to spend your time is absolute nonsense.

I wanna take you back to my answer to the question I was asked today,

“Real friends are willing to give you everything, and will ask for nothing in return.”

So is the person that is asking you to put aside everything you are working towards to do the things THEY want to do really your friend?

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying everyone should just submit to what we want to do. Or that we should impose our will on others simply because they should listen to us because we’re friends. But the real friends in our lives will understand that we’ve got things to do. We have priorities. We might have things to do that just can’t wait. We might (dare I say it) have something more important things to do than watch a movie on a Friday night.

So take a look around you. Are you surrounding yourself with real friends? Are you surrounding yourself with people that make you want to be better? Are you surrounding yourself with people that make you happy to be doing what you’re doing? Or are your surrounding yourself with people that make you feel bad for the things you’re doing. Are the friendships in your life pushing you to be better? Or are they making you question your life decisions? Friendship is one of the most important and invaluable things we as humans have access to. Make sure you’re putting it to use in the best way possible.