“Become wise by walking with the wise; hang out with fools and watch your life fall to pieces.” Proverbs 13:20 (MSG)
Who do you walk with?
There are many verses in the Bible centred on the topic of friendship and making sure that we have the right type of people around us.
What type of friends do you have around you?
Sometimes we need to take a step back and really consider why we have certain people around us. Because we may have what I refer to as a deadweight acquaintance in the disguise of a friend.
What is a deadweight acquaintance?
- Someone who adds nor brings anything to your life
- Someone whose foundation is built on negative vibes
- Someone who is not interested in helping you grow and develop
- Someone who loves to take but does not like to give
- Someone who is far more self-interested than friendship orientated
As harsh as some of these points may sound, this may be the reality for some of you reading this. And the older you get the easier it is to identify these types of people.
A lot of the time we are friends with people because we have known them for a long time or just because there is no real reason to not be friends with them. And this is ok. But sometimes we have to make the conscious decision and effort to make sure that we surround ourselves with like-minded individuals who are on a path to greatness, especially if we also want to be on this path.
We cannot fulfil our purpose and reach our potential by surrounding ourselves with people who have no real purpose being in our lives.
I am not telling you to “end” your friendships. But what I am suggesting is that you consider the possibility that some people are only meant to be in your lives for a particular season. Some people are meant for a particular time, maybe to teach you certain lessons.
Anybody who you call a “friend” should be just that.
This is what I believe friendships are about: Friends should slay and grow great together. They should encourage and motivate each other. They should offer advice and support each other whenever they can. They should also not be afraid to tell each other when they make mistakes and how they can improve whether personally, professionally, academically and so on.
But it is not only about the other person, it is also about you. You need to consider and think about what type of friend you are and where you can improve. Self-reflection is so important and not only can it help improve your friendship but also your character and your personal growth journey. I always appreciate when my friends correct my mistakes and tell me when I have offended them unknowingly. It is said that good communication is the key to great relationships (including friendships). So make sure you check yourself before you check your friends.
When people say friendships are difficult I always disagree. They should not be difficult. They should be easy and natural. If a friendship is difficult maybe you need to consider if it is really a genuine friendship.
As Mark Twain said “Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you too can become great.”