I linked up with a friend earlier this week who I hadn’t seen in over a year. We talked for 3 hours or so and it was such a great conversation! In general, as I’ve gotten older I’ve noticed how the content of my conversations have evolved–for the better. I don’t have the feeling that I’m wasting my time when I’m on the phone with people these days. Not only is my time too precious, but I watch the company I keep and keep the weeds out of my garden so to speak. I did some reflection after we parted ways and wanted to share the components I found in our conversation that made it so rich. Now I realize that I don’t have 3-4 hours to talk to people everyday, so my average conversations comprise only a couple of these things. Nevertheless, I am thankful for the people in my life that enrich me and keep me sane along this journey.
So we mostly cracked jokes on each other but that’s just the nature of our relationship. The point is that there was lots of laughter. Both with and at each other lol. If we can’t make each other laugh, what are we doing?? Laughter is nature’s medicine.
Whether catching up after a year or after a day, equally important. We obviously had a lot to catch up on bc it had been so long. Something I valued was that we didn’t only catch up on school/work, we also got into the social, spiritual, emotional, and physical health aspects of our lives. We talked about books and podcasts that we were into, etc.. It’s good to go a little deeper every once in a while and verbalize some of the things that you usually keep in your head.
I feel like in the health care profession, our lives are built on goals and plans. But honestly, my life is at a major transition point full of unknowns, and my friend is done with school and now working. So there are a lot of new/different kinds goals to set! We talked about life timelines, plans to move away, career goals, investment plans, all kinds of stuff. Mine weren’t as concrete; I have to speak in hypothetical terms because I’m not sure where I’m going to end up for residency yet. And really there’s no way to plan life to the T, but I’m not one to just blow with the wind, so I keep these things in mind despite the fuzzy future lol. Again, things you just keep in your head until someone gets you to verbalize it all.
Advice & encouragement
This is at the heart of most of my conversations these days. Adulting is hard! Especially in this field where my money operates like a one way valve lol. Sometimes just a check in and some words encouragement is all I need from a friend. Having someone who is supportive and encouraging in my corner is so valuable to me. Just remember it’s a 2-way street! You give and you receive. If you find yourself always on one end of it all the time–re-evaluate.
This is all about opening up and trusting someone with your truth. Not everyone deserves this from you, and you don’t deserve it from everyone. You have to prove yourself worthy of this privilege with time. And I feel like the conversation has to have the right vibe to get to this level. Although it could also be as simple as admitting that you’re nervous about a test/speech/interview coming up and allowing the other person to encourage you. We were able to share some personal stories and talk about some insecurities we had.
This is what separates play-play friendships from the legitimate! If not your friend, who else would you have challenge you? Well, maybe your bf/gf/spouse if you’re in a relationship. Parents don’t count lol. Anyway.. My friend said, 2018 is about to end, what lessons have you learned this year? What’s been the biggest take away from this year? Which really made me think deeply. I appreciated it because, as introspective as I am, I otherwise wouldn’t have thought to ask myself those things.
I hope you enjoyed the read and consider giving this some thought on your own time. There are other things that make a conversation rich that I didn’t include here. The point remains: The company we keep shapes us, so it’s important that we keep people around us that will increase us, enrich our lives, and make us laugh when we need it most.
“A friend is one that knows you as you are, understands where you have been, accepts what you have become, and still, gently allows you to grow”
Wishing everyone a wonderful week!