Sunday, 7 August 2016

Friends .. don't always come in the package you expect

It's been six months now since I was regularly posting on this blog. And I still haven't quite got to the stage where I am ready to post every week again. But anyway, hopefully the blog will be ready for something of a re-birth soon. In the meantime, today I want to talk about a subject that is sort of close to my heart .. and sort of not.

The reason I say this is because I have never found it easy to make friends .. well, I guess I find it easier now than I ever have, but I still don't always find it easy to form close friendships, and I still do enjoy my own company and need time to myself.

My friendships have changed a lot over the last 10 years - obviously I made a big change by moving up north where I didn't know anyone, and it is not easy to keep in touch that much with people once you move away. Facebook has been a big help though. Then I went through a time of self-discovery, a time where I rubbed some people up the wrong way when being one of the hosts on City Socialising, and really it took me a little while to learn social skills having been in my own world until my early thirties. There were some people I fell out with during my first years up north, and some who I am still friends with, even though I don't see them much.

To cut a long story short, I moved to a different town in June 2014, at a time when I was at quite a low point in my life - having fallen out with a family member, and having had some fairly stressful jobs. I knew some people in Huddersfield - which is part of the reason I moved there - although now I don't have that much contact with these people - but essentially it was a case of starting over again.

Of course, I went through my brother's death a few months later and being catapulted into uncertainty after (rightly) quitting a job that was even more stressful than the previous bad ones. I went through a period of two or three months where I hardly saw anyone, which wasn't nice. After this, I started hanging out with some people I met on Meetup - one of whom I am no longer friends with after it became very apparent that some of their attitudes and behaviours were not conducive to unity and getting on with others, and that person has sadly alienated themselves from a number of people. I have certainly learnt a big lesson not to blindly believe that other people are bad just because someone else says so, and also to be a bit more discerning as to who I hang out with.

However, what I have also learnt is to be open minded and to mix with people who I may not have normally mixed with in the past. The people on meetup are the ones I spend the most time with, and I've also re-acquainted myself with some lovely people on there who I hadn't seen in a while. One of them rightly said that we are a bunch of misfits .. different ages, different personality types, different backgrounds .. but somehow I've clicked with them. I used to think that my closest friends would have to be 'spiritual', and whilst I do also have some very good friends who are also interested in the spiritual journey, the meetup group came together because people just wanted to enjoy good social events and spend time with other decent people and build friendships. Just because you're spiritual or religious, does not mean all your friends have to be the same type - an easy trap to fall into. Perhaps, if you look outside the box a bit, you may find some very rewarding friendships. There are some good people out there.

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