Monday, January 31, 2011

New Friends

Finding, making and keeping new friends becomes a challenge as we step into the threshold of adulthood.

Why is it so hard to make new friends?
Firstly, there is limited time and an infinite list of things to do & all are high priority screaming for our attention yesterday. And friendships need time. Friendships need to be nurtured and that requires effort. So if one needs to give time and effort for new friends, it is natural to wonder whether it’s really worth all the time and effort ? Many of us have a hard time even keeping up with old friends, so where’s really the time for new ones?

Secondly, we become set in our ways and views of the world. And have pre-conditioned ourselves to what we like and what we don’t like and what kinds of people are acceptable in our lives. So it’s mighty hard to find the right fit. And we are not willing to make amendments.
Thirdly, you need to have something in common to sustain the friendships. Mostly, adults prefer to take a long term view and like to associate with people with something in similar – Could be similar interests, similar problems, similar values, similar goals, similar intellectual frequency, similar priorities….. And these are again not easy to find

But still, it’s important
It is important to make new friends as you sail through life. They can be real or in the virtual world.

One of the most important reasons is that you become aware of alternate perspectives. You become more aware of the world around you. Of other ways of life. Of alternate cultures. Of diverse traditions. Of genuine emotions. Of real thoughts.  And you need not necessarily be influenced by them, but the sheer awareness leaves you a lot more enriched. You become conscious of people’s lives – their struggles, their sorrows, their joys, their endurance…. And that’s amazing about the human spirit – It never dies!

The next important thing is to make new friends in professions apart from yours. Somewhere along the way, we make friends mostly in the same line of work. And then, we all speak the same language. After a point, there is hardly anything new or refreshing in conversations. Having friends from alternate professions broadens your horizon a zillion times over. You learn so much simply by engaging with them – even if it is small meaningless talk. Their world view is just so different.

And then, in a low moment it’s always great to have someone you can reach out to. Just to listen, to give you an alternate view, to extend a helping hand, to lend a shoulder, or to just be there when you need it the most

So make new friends
And treasure the old
As all friends are usually god-sent
And come with a heart of gold

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