In sessions, I periodically ask clients to imagine rings of friends/family around them. Those in the closest rings represent those closest to you that share your values and beliefs and they have proven to be trustworthy. "Proven" is the key word here. So often we make new friends and "assume" they are trustworthy and honest when in fact they may not be. We may be so trusting that we too easily give people the benefit of the doubt. Be careful if you have a history of doing this. You could be setting yourself up to be hurt....again and again. Don't accept anything less for yourself. Be sure to evaluate those individuals in the inner circles regularly to be sure they still represent the qualities you need them to have.
In the second set of rings, you may have friends/family that possess some of the qualities you admire but also qualities you are still not sure about. People in these rings may not have earned a spot in those inner circles yet. Maybe they share your passion for adventure but they are unreliable when it comes to showing up on time or bringing the right equipment or they always assume you will pay for everything. Does this bother you? It should. A true friendship should be about shared responsibility the majority of the time. Use these disappointing situations to talk about the friendship with the other person if you are not happy. The other person's reaction will give you a clear indication whether they "want" to be in your inner circle or not. You may need to keep them at a distance and know their reliability level is not as high as you would like it to be, so you keep them in the second set of rings. You may also decide at some point that this individual has earned the privilege to be "promoted" to the inner rings.
In the outer set of rings, you should keep people you barely know or people you may be associated with through work or community activities or your neighborhood that would not necessarily be a good friend but you have to interact occasionally due to a commitment. These people may not possess many of the qualities you need in a friend; or you are not sure yet about their qualities because they are new to your circle and they have not yet earned their spot in your inner rings.
Sometimes we long for a friend, especially when we move to a new community to start a new job or go off to college and we make friends with the first person we meet. While that person may fill a void immediately, as time goes on, know you have permission to decide in which circle they should be placed and that you have the power to move them closer to you or create more distance as you see fit. You have the power to control this. Do not suffer in silence if you are not happy with a friendship. Be yourself in every friendship. If someone does not like what they see in you and want you to change.....do not change for them. Do not change for anyone else. Only change things in yourself when YOU see fit. If you are in a relationship where you are giving that power to the other person, call me and we should set up a session to sort through the situation and get you in a better place.
Thank you for taking the time to look at qualities of a friend ... From The Positive Perspective.
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