Thursday, January 24, 2013


I want you to write down the names of people you think you have a deep connection with. People who you feel comfortable to call in the middle of the night if you need them (Let's leave out family members for now). Did you write it down? How many names did you come up with? My list has less than 10 names.

I read in a book 'The power of habit' that a human brain is capable of handling 12 close relationships at any given point in time.
Considering the busy and stressful life that we have today how many people can you devote quality time to? Should one spend their time and energy on the people who made it to the list and deepen those relationships or variety adds spice to life?

What do you look for in a close friend? Is being close friends a mutual feeling or someone who you think is close to you may look at you as just another friend in town?
What are the ingredients of forming a close friendship?

Genuine interest in others life - they feel the need to share with you and the feeling is mutual
Acceptance - of the decisions one makes
Comparing - This does not work in friendships, 'Oh, I have a better/worse house, life, family than you do', 'You have less problems than I do'
Respect - As every other relationship in life respect is important in friendships too, belittling a person in public or private does not work. 'I struggled to be where I am today, you were simply lucky', no that doesn't work.
Grow as a person - Any relationship is successful when both people in it grow on various levels be it mental, emotional, spiritual, intellectual, physical... If you use a person as a crutch all the time without giving support it does not work
Reciprocation - Generally if all or most of the above things are satisfactorily established then there is reciprocation. That means if just one person cares to keep in touch, call, check on you, invite you, make you a part of their life events and basically take an initiative to meet and maintain the relationship then it may not work, it has to be two sided.
And most of all the experience on both sides need to be enjoyable.

So getting back to the list - let me ask you is it permanent or it changes with time and situations? If it changes then what happens to all the interest, respect and your emotional bond with the person?

I have seen lot of factors affecting friendships - common interests, habits, food/beverage/activity choices, change of a relationship status - single/ married/ with kids, job status - working/ non working and geographic location to name a few. Sometimes one just finds new friends who match the above points better and you are out of their circle. And last but not the least with age one's needs of discussions may change i.e. from sharing 'oh last night I was so wasted' to something thought provoking and profound.

If something goes wrong in the friendship specially with someone in your list it can hurt for months, the pain is similar to a heartbreak. Does it need 'quantum of solace' to get over it? Or you just forget about it pretending nothing happened?

If things go sour where does the love go? I think it stays, it stays in the core and its just that people move on.
I want to dedicate this post to all of those who were or are on my list. You or I might have chosen intentionally or unintentionally to part ways, my apologies, but I want to let all of you know that you are the part of very beautiful memories that I have today. Thank you for your friendship!

1 comment:

Priyaranjan Anand Marathe said...

I think it's also about the sacrifices you are willing to make for your friend.