one is the LONELIEST of numbers – how to PROTECT our FRIENDSHIPS


friendship quotes

 

So what’s the deal with friendship?

Do we need 10-20-30-40 friends, or are they merely acquaintances?

They say – A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out.  – Walter Winchell  five person on bike

For more encouraging quotes from familiar people, such as Hubert Humphrey, look here: FRIENDSHIP QUOTES

Back to – what it means to be a true blue FRIEND.

Karen Carbo in PSYCHOLOGY TODAY speaks to many of the pertinent issues with friendship:  “The conventional wisdom is that we choose friends because of who they are. But it turns out, that we love them because of the way they support who we are.

What gives meaning to your life?

Friendship figures at the top of the list.

Karen goes on to say – “The dynamics of friendship have remained mysterious and unquantifiable. Like romantic love, friendships were thought just to happen.  Self-disclosure characterizes the moment when a pair leaves the realm of buddyhood for the rarefied zone of true friendship.  “Can I talk to you for a minute?” –  May well be the very words you say to someone who is about to become a friend.  Reciprocity is key.  Those who know what to say in response to anotherfingers with numbers person’s self-disclosure are more likely to develop satisfying friendships.  Our friends are there for us through thick and thin, but rarely cross the line: A friend with too many opinions about our wardrobe, our partner, or our taste in movies and art may not be a friend for long.  We have with our best friends on a “beyond-the-call-of-duty” expectation. If we suffer an emergency—real or imagined—and need to talk, we expect our best friend to drop everything and race to our side.”

So this sounds great but, how do we keep long-lasting friendships?

We’re often unable to find the time and energy to maintain friendships.  We want to remain, friends, but it requires work.  Clearly, our good friends show up.

“Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy and art, friendship has no survival value; rather it is one of those things that give value to survival.”
C. S. Lewis

At  Friends, they describe friendship this way –

women hugging in friendhip

” If you look in the dictionary it will tell you that the definition of friendship is a state of being friends; friendly relation, or attachment, to a person, or between persons; affection arising from mutual esteem and good will; friendliness; amity; good will. Friendship for most people is a combination of affection, loyalty, love, respect, and trust. True friendship is when someone knows you better than yourself and takes a position in your best interests in a crisis.  Friendship goes beyond just sharing time together, and it is long lasting.”
– See more here: Definition of FRIENDSHIP

So many people have used their hands as a sort of symbol of FRIENDSHIP.

Maybe because most people feel if you have fivefriends doing high five close, loyal friends that you can name on your five fingers – then LIFE is GOOD!

“Laughter is not a bad beginning for friendship, and it is by far the best ending for one.”
Oscar Wilde

Anais Nin put it beautifully when she said; 

Each friend represents the world in us, the world not born until they arrive. And it is only by this meeting, that a new world is born.”

So are there rules for being a good friend?

They seem evident, in a way, but then again – they are the very things that destroy friendships.:

hand with writing


Examples
of RULES for our FRIENDSHIPS:

  1. By all means be the one they can count on, to be honest
  2. Be open with each other – nothing should be off base
  3. Have their back – their best intent – always
  4. Never get involved in kissing or inappropriately touching – their love interests – duh
  5. Friends don’t compete – they don’t need to
  6. Friends care when no one else seems to – they’re the ones that show up when you move
  7. Friends enrich our lives – do not drain them – they are no burden, but, a blessing
  8. Friends don’t always ask for favors – they respect you above all else
  9. Friends want to get to know our other friends – they are not possessive or lacking in self-esteem
  10. Friends relish in our successes – they’re aware their own will come
  11. Friends are there when all the chips are down – they don’t make excuses not to show
  12. Friends laugh with us – cry with us – they stay for it all – when no one else can muster the energy to be there
  13. Friends don’t dominate our lives – they have no need to control  – they realize their role in your life
  14. Friends have other friends, besides us – they have varied interests and so in turn – a variety of friendships
  15. Friends fold when it’s best – to agree to disagree – they don’t confront, aren’t demanding, and NEVER extort
  16. Friends come and go – some for a reason, some for a season and some are our – forever friends – know this
  17. Friends learn to let things go – we all offend each other some way or the other – the test is letting it go
  18. Friends don’t feel the need to remind us of our failings – our mistakes – they’ve made them too and also want no reminders

 

funny 5 finger diagram

five toed shoe

Now – this is quite FUNNY:

You have five fingers (and senses and toes) for a REASON

To show the world, you’re going to be okay.

To pick out your dearest family members

For those bitches that push you too far

For the special one – when the time is right

For your best friends and the promises, you’ll never break

 

five fingers hillarious

 

Then there’s this – “FIVE FINGER Contract” –

1. Lower all fingers, except the PINKY FINGER. Explain that this finger represents “SAFETY,” as it is the smallest and most prone to getting hurt. Everyone must follow safety guidelines and look out for one another. (i.e. no running, pushing, etc.- unless activity calls for it.) Stating that you don’t want broken bones or hurt feelings.

2. Raise RING FINGER (while keeping PINKY FINGER raised). Explain that most married couples wear rings on this finger to represent “COMMITMENT.” You’re asking that each person commits themselves to the activity and, at least, trying it.

3. Raise MIDDLE FINGER (while keeping PINKY and RING FINGERS raised). Explain that typically held up by itself, the middle finger usually means something negative and harmful. However, during this activity, it means something “GOOD AND POSITIVE.” Meaning: don’t put yourself down and don’t put others down. (i.e. don’t call yourself stupid because you didn’t understand something and didn’t call others babies or dumb because they whined or failed the task.)

5 finger prayer

4. Raise INDEX FINGER (while keeping PINKY, RING and MIDDLE FINGERS raised). Explain that when this finger is used by itself, it usually means “DIRECTION.” Listen to the instructions to be given (by the group leader) and things will run smoothly.

5. Close fingers and raise THUMB (like giving a “Thumbs Up”). Ask the group what this means. (Answers will range from a GOOD JOB, HAVE FUN and OKAY. All of which are acceptable.)

6. Lastly, open up your hand to expose your PALM. Explain that this is a “CHALLENGE BY CHOICE” activity and that no one can “make” them participate… not adults, their friends, or you, the group leader. If they agree to the “FIVE FINGER CONTRACT,” then sealing their approval to abide by the rules will happen when they “HIGH FIVE” another person. (Pay close attention to the crowd as shy or rebellious people will tend to not “HIGH FIVE” anyone… so make sure they do.)

Then there are friendship poems all over the place.  Here’s one that seemed apropos-  The Best of Friends

5 sensesBy: Jill Wolf

The best of friends,
Can change a frown,
Into a smile,
when you feel down.
The best of friends,
Will understand,
Your little trials,
And lend a hand.
The best of friends,
Will always share,
Your secret dreams,
Because they care.
The best of friends,
Worth more than gold,
Give all the love,
The heart can hold.

 

 

oprah winfrey on friendship

 

It’s so true – what Oprah is saying – right – everyone loves a winner!

When everything’s coming up ROSES, nobody refuses your invitation, but, when you’ve stalled out in life, where do they go?

It’s up to us to keep this in mind throughout our life. People who come into our intimate arena – too quickly, compliment – too freely, overextend themselves – too soon, are usually too good to be true.  Darn it.  I hate it when that happens!  We’ve all been there – that’s for certain.  We meet someone and think WOW – they’re fun.  I’m so GLAD they seem to like me.  We admire them – we believe we might not be worthy of them.

Then – the shoe drops and where are they?

They’re nowhere, just GONE.

Friends come in all sizes and shapes, with varied backgrounds.

 One common thing they all have is CONCERN for you.

 

Someone once said – “there are no accidents in life.”  Isn’t it true?no friendship is an accident

Why do we meet someone on the street, or at school or in a hospital, that ends up being our friend?  What draws us to them?  Does it matter?  Not really.  What is important is that we have them.

Studies show people with friends, age better, often feel better, certainly adjust better to negative experiences.

Whether we’re battling cancer or the death of a family member or God forbid, DIVORCE – without dear friends, this would be so devastating.

keller on friendship

 

This quote from Helen Keller says it all, doesn’t it?

Everything is much more manageable when we can share it with others.  We weren’t meant to be all alone.  If we were – why did so many people end up with us?

Take an extra thirty minutes today to call your dearest friends and let them know how much they’ve helped you get through things in your life, just how THANKFUL you are for their friendship!

prayer of friendship

 

The beautiful thing about friends, whether they remain in our life for long or float away is that – they teach us about ourselves.

They enable us to stretch – to grow – to learn from others.

They help us to keep on keeping on when all we angst to do is give up!

They smile when we can’t seem to if our life depended on it.

They are our friends; that’s the bottom line – we must safeguard that.