Friday, April 25, 2014

Hope from Relationships

I have found many golden nuggets of tips and advice in the form of lists or various quotes. I wish there were a way to tattoo some of these right on my brain! I have a friend who keeps a journal she calls "The Best of the Best". In it she writes down all sorts of quotes and things that she has found comfort and wisdom from.

What sort of tips and advice on relationships do you think you'd find in a "best of the best"?
There sure are a lot of different types of relationships aren't there? I wonder if anyone has sat down and classified the differing types of friendships there are?

There are Facebook friendships I have with people I've never met in real life and yet feel a real connection and genuine love for! Wrote about that a bit here...
The casual friends you pick up through shared experiences like working on a community project or various functions, groups or working together.  Some of those friendships stick and even become closer friendships. Then there are those amazing friends who are as close as family and you know they ALWAYS have your back and you have theirs. (See above picture).

I think one of the tough things with relationships is how we usually try to treat others as we would like to be treated. At least that's the way we're SUPPOSED to be doing it, right?  The problem comes when other people would not really enjoy the way we would want to be treated.

For instance, I'm the type of person who wears her heart on her sleeve and tries to keep things in the open. I don't like bullshit. I am not afraid to talk about the Elephant in the room. It's a flaw, but it also can be a gift. There were times I've weeded out a few "so-called friends" with this skill... or curse... whichever it may be. Yet, I also have some very close friends who are just not the type to enjoy talking about "everything". They keep things more superficial, not because they are cold or unfeeling, but just because they are who they are. I love them. I'm glad they put up with me!!

Another example would be that I am the type of friend, that if we go a long time without connecting, I don't start to doubt your love for me. One of my very best friends and I get together perhaps twice a year and it's always like no time has passed between us when we get together. We've been this way since we were ten years old! Others have a more Quid pro quo attitude toward their relationships. They need to have an equal balance of "effort" in the relationship for whatever reason. When this becomes the case, it makes me feel pressured and obligated which are two feelings that don't work well for me in a relationship.

See what I mean??  We are all such different creatures! How much better our lives and relationships could be if we could learn to accept one another for who. we. are? Much easier said than done.

"This is how relationships work: People are flawed in all sorts of ways. We tolerate each others flaws because other parts of the friendship outweigh them--or we end up lonely and miserable because no one measures up."
Readers Digest

I have gained a lot of Hope and wisdom through the relationships I have. The casual and the "best of the best!".
I'm very thankful for finding True Friends.
That. is a gift!

With that, I leave you with some relationship suggestions. The "best of the best".
Some are mine, some I've picked up along the way. I don't live all these out, but I'd sure like to!


~Show everyone kindness and respect.
~Relationships are more important than groups or causes or religions or politics.
~Forgive people and move forward.
~Ignore nonconstructive hurtful commentary. Don't give such commentary.
~Accept people exactly the way they are.
~Make sure your True Friends accept you exactly the way they are.
~Obligation does not a good friendship make.
~Stay in touch with those who matter to you.
~Sometimes when your casual friends ask how you are... it really is okay to say "FINE" even when you're not.
~Pay attention to how you treat and think about yourself.
~Don't be afraid to use boundaries and let others know what those boundaries are.
~Realize who your True Friends are.
~Think about what it means to be Loyal to your friends. Do it.
~Be truthful unless your truthfulness is going to make you a pain in the ass.
~ALWAYS go to your friend rather than asking another "friend" something you want to know about them.
~Listen more talk less.
~Give advice ONLY when you're asked.
~Say what you mean and mean what you say.
~Don't cave into others' opinions of someone you've chosen to call Friend.
Many times a large group of people (no matter how "good" they appear to be) can be wrong.
~Don't bother with petty arguments.
~Allow others to make their OWN decisions WITHOUT the consequence of losing your friendship.

~Cheer for others even when you may feel that little pang of jealousy. If you do it enough that stupid little green monster will eventually disappear.
~Give people you know the benefit of the doubt.
~Be yourself, but also remember that you don't have to reveal your True self to anyone you don't want to.
~Appreciate each relationship for what it is. Don't focus on what it is not.
~Give without any agenda or expecation of gratitude. Give openly and from a joyful heart. That's what giving has always been meant to be.
~When you have questions about someone's behavior toward you do the brave thing... ASK THEM.
~Give things time when you've had some slight uncomfort between the two of you.
~Let things go that need to be let go of. Sometimes this means the entire relationship.
Sometimes it just wasn't meant to be. What was that phrase again?? "If you love someone, let them go, if it comes back to you..." (something like that.)
~Never let yourself be controlled by what you think others' opinions of you are.
~If you want friends... BE a friend. If you are a friend withough expecting anything in return, you more than likely have a lot of friends.


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We have this Hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.
Hebrews 6:19