I saw a quote that made me wonder about friendships/relationships. The quote dealt with people who make excuses that they are too busy to respond or don’t put forth an effort to maintain contact. If a person is interested in being a part of your life, then they will make some effort to be in it.
This involved both self reflection and viewpoint on people I deal with. I realized that because my husband and I enjoyed spending the majority of our free time together without the involvement of others I am in the habit of doing things on my own rather than calling a friend to go with me. Now that my husband is deceased I need to train myself to make contact with people, become more social. Habits are hard to break and I am concerned that people may view my lack of initiating contact as lack of interest. I need to break the mold and step outside my safety box into new thinking.
I realize that people who reached out to me about getting together for dinner, etc. may think I’m not interested in maintaining the friendship when I don’t reciprocate with similar suggestions, when in reality it is because I need to reprogram my brain to reach out to others for friendship. I will say that when people suggest a get together I am happy to join them. I am also responsive on social media or email, and will make first contact on social media. I am not totally unsocial, I just have areas that need improvement. I did take a step in the right direction last week when a couple artists were talking about going out to dinner after an event and I asked if I could join them. It was a wonderful, fun evening.
Now on the other side of the coin, we all know people we have made the effort to maintain contact with and yet the responses are not forthcoming or we get excuses of “I was going to write/call/respond but have been busy.” I can understand that from time to time, but when the lack of response become repetitive you have to wonder where you fall on their list of friendship priorities. Somewhere you have to draw the line and decide you are moving on and if they want to be a part of your life they will notice your disappearance and seek you out. If they don’t you haven’t lost anything.
We live in a busy, fast-paced world where people don’t interact on a personal level so much as on a social media level. We need to re-establish the art of friendship. Reach out to people. Respond when they reach out to you. When you are with a friend put down the phone and talk to the person you are with. Make people you want to spend time with a priority in your life. If people don’t make you a priority in theirs then you know where you stand and it is time to move on.