“The struggle is real” series is about certain struggles that I’ve been through or currently going through. My first topic is
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Do you ever just long for real, authentic friendships? A ride or die? Squad goals?
Just to give you a little background on myself. I am very extroverted, I LOVE people. So much so, that I can be “friends” with a fly. How can an extrovert struggle with friendships? Isn’t that an introverted person’s problem? I’m here to let you know, it’s not! Many people struggle with friendships, no matter what “vert” you are. Our struggles may seem a little different but the underlying topic is the same! I still struggle with friendships from time to time but here are a few things I’ve learned about friendships:
Friendships Are a Choice.
I didn’t learn about this until a few years ago! Choosing your friends can be hard but is so crucial! You will have TONS of acquaintances in life that you love, care for, and are rooting for. True friendship should be intentional and it takes work. It’s so important to be intentional with your friendships because eventually you become the people you allow to be close to you. Your environment and who your surround yourself with actually builds who you are. You have the power to choose who you want to build life with.
You Need Grace.
Before I thought I had to talk to my friends every other day or at least once a week. As I grew into different seasons of my life, from being single, to being married, and into adulthood, I realized, people have lives! I expected to talk to my best friend ALL the time when I was single because it was normal. As you grow into new seasons, your expectations will change. With my friendships I’ve dealt with disappointment because I had different expectations than they did. It was a wake up call, Life does not revolve around you, and people are just as busy as you. That doesn’t mean you can’t make the time, but you need to have grace in your friendships. Don’t take it personal if your friend hasn’t reached out to you in a while, they may be going through things & need your support more than ever. Reach out to them! At the same time friendship is a two way street. So if you realize that it’s starting to become one-sided then you will eventually lose that friendship. Friendships are about building your bond. If the bond isn’t being built, then it needs to be cut.
End Toxic Friendships.
Letting people go is actually the BIGGEST & hardest struggle. How do I know they shouldn’t be in my life? When is enough, enough? A few indicators for ending a friendship is when a friendship starts to become one sided, if it stresses you out more than it helps you, if you can’t trust them, if they are always so negative towards you, if it becomes competitive, and if they talk to you only when they need something. Letting go of friends can be so hard. But forcing a relationship further than it needs to go makes it harder. Things that often cloud our judgment is your history: they know too much, they used to always be there, we are like a family. What happens is, you continue to force a toxic friendship & then eventually, it doesn’t end well. I had to let go of some of the people that I loved the most. It was extremely hard. But God never left my relationships void. He always gave me people that needed to be in my life.
Friendships Are Needed.
As human beings we were created for relationships & community. Friendships are people you can be yourself around, people you can open up to, and people that will be honest with you. They are people that will celebrate you at your best, and love on you at your worst. They are present in different seasons of your life, they will motivate you, push you, and are great listeners. They make us want to be better people. Friendship does take work, but it’s worth it. It’s not about how many friends you have, but about the quality of your friendships.