Last week on the blog, I wrote about how important it is to live a life filled with true, authentic friends. I also said those friends positively impact your work. If you want to start reading there, click here. If you want skip that and jump right in, keep reading.
THE NEXT STEP IN FRIENDSHIP
In last week’s post, I laid the foundation by saying your best work comes when you have true, authentic friendships. But today, you’ve reached the next step in your life-with-friends journey. Today, you need to know friendships help you do your best work because of one reason — friends give you a proper perspective. Now, there may two questions buzzing in your head after reading that:
- How could friends help me?
- What’s wrong with my perspective, anyway?
Well, I’ll do my best to tell you my answers to these questions. Let’s get started.
HOW FRIENDS HELP US (AND OUR MESSED UP PERSPECTIVE)
Friends help you and I maintain a proper perspective because life is messy and we get in our own way. Life being what it is — with its ups, downs, questions, and concerns — put us in dire need of a proper perspective. Often, we need someone else to help us sort out the tangled mess of our emotions, all so that we can remember the truth about our situation. That’s what a good friend can do. They can help you move past what’s messy and remember the truth of who you are and what you’re facing.
“That’s what a good friend can do — help you move past what’s messy and remember the truth of who you are and what you’re facing. “
We all need friends in our corner to help us remember the truth. But more than that, we need good, authentic friends.
Take a moment and imagine your core group of friends. I mean your ride-or-die friends. Got ‘em in your mind? Great. Those are the ones you want by your side in the midst of life happening to you. If all you have are the flaky friends, the no-show, only-want-something-from-you friends, you have some work to do! To do your best work and live your best life, fill your life with friends who are for you being at your best. Fill your life with friends who want you to succeed, friends who genuinely care for you. Anything less won’t cut it when you’re a mess of emotions and struggle. And believe me, I have faced struggle myself and had friends to help me out of it.
MY STRUGGLE — I’M (NOT) A MASTER FRIEND-MAKER
I mentioned earlier how I know about needing friends because of personal experience, and I do. I am naturally an introvert, so I can get into a rut of doing life all by myself. Now while it’s good I’m introverted and there are strengths associated with that, last week’s post still applies to me — I’m at my best when I’m doing life with other people. I am still learning to build a deep bench of good, authentic friends. One of those friends for me is my friend Roger.
MY FRIEND ROGER
Roger and I first met when I was in a two-year church internship, and he was their Facilities Director. Roger and I seemed to hit off, probably we had the same gentle, caring personality, and we started to get together once a month. Since then, Roger and I have both moved on from those roles. He’s now retired, and now we get together every few months. When I was in- between jobs earlier this year, Roger always wanted to know how my job search was going, and more importantly, how I was doing. He was a source of hope for me in those uncertain days. And you know what? Having Roger in my corner helped me be that much more diligent in my job search. Because Roger was there, I kept going, when on my own I would have given up.
THE WAY FORWARD
Here’s the truth — for you to do your best work, you need someone in your life like Roger was for me. You need a good, caring friend who’s out for your success. Friends can be a powerful force in your life, if you let them be. They can be a force for good or for bad. Aim for caring friends.
And now, the hope — good, caring friends are only a coffee meeting or a phone call away. Just reach out! On the hard days, you will be glad to have them by your side. We are relational beings, made to do life with others.
If you want to make wise career decisions, embrace the gift that good, authentic friendships can be.
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