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Making Life Better With Friends
By Leigh Anne Tuohy, October 11, 2011 09:00 AM
Who is that special person in your life who you call a friend? Do you have one? Do you wish you had one? Do you know how to be one? How many times has someone asked you what you look for in a friend? Did you know how to answer?
Friendships seldom happen in a hurry. Statistics show that people with friends are less likely to develop physical impairments and as a bonus are likely to lead a more joyful, productive life. Friendships don't develop overnight. They require time, energy, loyalty, listening skills and unselfishness. When you meet someone for the first time, your history with them is like a blank book. You will be the one who fills in the pages; you can be the hero of the story or you can be the villain of the story. It's up to you. If you look around and you are thinking, "You know, I don't have a lot of friends," it probably means you are too busy, so hit that pause button because you are missing out on the good stuff. You should savor each and every opportunity you have to make a friend or be a friend because when that chance is over you will never be offered it again.
A kind word to someone can spark a friendship. Then lead by example; you are the one they will look to for direction. True friends are rare, and speaking from personal experience, they leave their imprints on you and become a part of you. Just remember if you plant that small seed, and water it and feed it, the seed becomes a huge tree.
After The Blind Side came out, it was so interesting and comical to me how many "acquaintances" asked me about the scene in the movie where Sandra Bullock was having lunch at the Country Club with a group of ladies. They would strike up an awkward conversation with me and then very casually and nonchalantly say, "That wasn't me in that scene at the country club (slight hesitation), was it?" I got such a kick out of that and still do. If you had to ask me that question, you are not on my Christmas card list!! Those individuals are not friends or at least not my description of a friend. There are people in my life who, from the moment I laid eyes on them, I loved them and appreciated them for being special. Just knowing that they are out there somewhere doing good puts a smile on my face. I know they are being a great source of joy and putting other's needs ahead of their own and putting their agenda last, as opposed to first.
Life is often filled with so much pain, bad news, drama, injustice and on and on, that we often overlook the simple joy of a friend. Friendship means not keeping score, it's not a game. Put the scorecards away when it comes to being a friend. The reward you reap will be beyond your wildest imagination. I love what E.B. White wrote in Charlotte's Webb. "Why did you do all this for me?" Wilbur asked. "I don't deserve it...." And Charlotte replied, "You have been my friend. That in itself is a tremendous thing." Be a friend to someone; it is truly a tremendous thing!
Photo credit: Trina Alexander
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