Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Failure to Launch

“A good friend is cheaper than therapy”
-Author Unknown

When I reviewed my list of principles and New Year's Resolutions, the one line that made my heart happy was "build a network of solid friends." So far, I have utterly failed at this goal for the year. I haven’t been consistent at all. I need to stop hanging out with girls as much and invest that time in to building deep relationships with people I connect with on an emotional and spiritual level. I need to work more on building deep connections with friends & family and less seeking romance. Ironically as a result of investing all of my time looking for companionship that I have actually sacrificed (or at least ignored) the most obvious source for company: good friends.

I also haven't done a lot of planning around this goal and as a result, my progress here has suffered. Below are the easy things I should be doing that I have dropped the ball on:
  • Get out of the house. I spend a lot of time online after work, especially now that I have let my gym membership lapse. In the past two months I have done an ok job of getting out of the house more, but during my last relationship I didn’t do a lot. I let myself fall into a small little world.
  • Attending interesting lectures/events/groups (USC lectures/presentations, visiting new churches, scheduling visits with friends, going to new fitness clubs, keeping my discussion group going). If I am going to something I find interesting, chances are other people there will also have similar interests. These events are also generally good places to go to break the monotony of life and learn something new.
  • Be a better friend:
    •  Scheduling lunch/dinner/drinks with people I already know and find interesting. The hard part (making a connection) is already done. Just build on what’s there
    • Sending notes/cards/gifts to friends to check in on them and to see how their lives are going. I don’t do a good job of letting people know I care and some might even think I don’t.
    • Encourage existing friends. Am I helping them to live up to their potential or just using them as a way to entertain myself or fend off lonliness.
    • Don’t hog the conversation. I have a tendency to talk too much and not listen. I am depriving myself of learning anything new and being the type of company I wouldn’t want around.
    • Care about people more than ideas. Sometimes I will place “being right” over the people in my life. Usually this is over a personal disagreement, but sometimes I allow it to happen over dumb things like political views.
  • Be more open to the people I meet each day. Smile & strike up a conversation. In these instances I also need to be less confrontational. Just nod my head and smile.  

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