This blog subject is more of an inquiry. I am fascinated by the way people feel connected to each other. I want to explore why and how we do it.
In my experience, there is a “gut” feeling about friendship, an actual electric moment when I interact with a friend.
First, what a friend is, needs to be defined. Many of us have different criteria for friendship or just use the term friend in a different way. My definition is someone who is able to make you feel wonderful simply by their presence. Family, neighbors and people in line at the grocery store, all have the capacity to be my “friend”.
As I’m writing this, the feeling of friendship is becoming clearer. I realize that a similar sense of humor is one of the top ways that I connect with people. This likeness makes itself known in moments since I am always joking. Next is a connection of interests and/or knowledge. An example of the latter is the guy who engages me in a discussion in the isle at the supermarket because he notices my Star Trek t-shirt and knows the exact episode the image was taken from. Suddenly we are comparing Captain Kirk with Captain Picard much to the chagrin of the shoppers behind us.
I believe people have a team mentality. Trailer truck drivers honk at each other for the “team”. If you ride a motorcycle or display NY Giants emblems etc., you instantly connect with others who do the same. Individuals belong to so many “teams” they have many friends whether they realize it or not. A few examples of our teams are; political views, age group, hobbies, marital status, etc. . I never have heard of anyone connecting in every way. That would be boring at the very least, because the next way people connect is by challenging each other. If you connect with a person, a human response is to test that connection. Every time we understand and accept each other’s unique individual differences, we learn and grow closer. When we have many common experiences and share more than just a couple of “teams”, then we enter the “best friend ” zone.
Best friends cannot possibly be made in an instant. Time is required. What I think is the deciding factor for a best friend is the invested interest we share for each other’s success and happiness. This is why I want to point out that your family is most often the place to look for most of your best friends.
Thanks to all my friends and those who I have yet to meet. You validate my interests and I cannot wait for the challenge.