Keys to the Castillo

I Never Had Many Friends. This is Why.

Table of Contents

“If you want a friend, get a dog”

 

Harsh words from one of the most cunning and ruthless fictional characters ever conceived – Gordon Gecko, from the movie Wall Street.

 

It seems like most people never take the time to thoroughly analyze and evaluate an absurdly crucial aspect of their lives – their interpersonal relationships. Namely, who your friends are. The people you choose to associate with and share your time with.

 

For many years, I assumed that friends would always be there for you. They would treat you with respect and support you in your times of need, regardless of the circumstances.

 

That’s what you would do, right?

 

Unfortunately, that’s not how it works.

 

In this article, I wanted to dive deep and give you some insights as to how you should be screening people out, where they fit into your life, and perhaps most importantly, what to do if you feel like you’re outgrowing them.

 

What are friends for?

 

Well, not all friends are created equal. See, I used to believe that I had little to no control over who I attracted into my life. The person you are will draw certain individuals in, and repel others at the same time. For me, in school, I mostly found myself with people who exhibited the following traits:

  • Stable, healthy family background
  • Generally well-behaved, apart from some delinquent actions here and there
  • An inclination towards learning new things
  • A desire to achieve at least moderate financial success

However, in hindsight, I also found that a lot of my relationships were quite unhealthy as well.

 

Take a look at this list and check if you’re experiencing any of these feelings with your ‘friends’ at the moment.

 

  • They always put you down, even if it’s ‘playful’
  • You feel strange speaking to them in a one on one setting, unless under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • You aren’t invited by them to social events
  • They treat you as an inferior

 

I speak from experience. Now, sure, any rational person would wonder – why remain tethered to a relationship with anyone where you don’t feel happy or empowered?

 

Part of it stems from a scarcity mentality. I know that was the case for me. Even though there are tons of people out there, I felt like it was too difficult to break out of my comfort zone by ditching the few so-called ‘friends’ I had and blazing my own path.

 

Thing is, that’s the only way to do it. Otherwise, you will continue to feel constrained and cornered by the very people who are supposed to be supporting you and enriching your life.

 

In a nutshell, that’s what friends are for.

 

Supporting you, and enriching your life. It can be as simple as lending their ear to listen to you explain your problems, and providing you with an insightful outside perspective, or tying you over at the end of the month so that the landlord doesn’t kick you out. Their contribution to your life can even be as minimal as sitting down and having a meal with you, instead of you sitting down to eat all alone.

 

If your friends, the people who you choose to allow into your life, aren’t meeting these two basic criteria, then maybe you need to kick them to the curb.

 

Now, there are, of course, levels to this shit.

 

In fact, you might not call someone who you chit chat with once in a while a ‘friend’, and that’s fine. You might also be the type who prefers the comfort of many, rather than just a handful of loyal confidants.

 

I fall into the latter category. Even though I experimented with trying to expand my circle to include a number of different people, it eventually became exhausting to keep up with everything that was going on. On top of that, I learned that once you refuse an invitation often enough from someone, they will usually assume you have no interest in spending time with them.

 

Another subject I wanted to touch on in this article is how much choice you really have in who you let in.

 

First off, not everyone’s going to like you, and in this case, that’s great, because now you don’t have to waste time determining whether or not the person in question is worth a damn, because fate has already decided for you.

 

You can then immediately shift your focus to examining the people around you who don’t have an irrational issue with you.

 

Before I go on, I want to clarify that it’s wrong at all to want friends in your life.

 

Humans are social beings. We crave interactions with others. I know that if I spend a whole day sequestered at home without speaking to anyone in person, I tend to feel upset and lethargic.

 

The point of this article, however, is that you want to engage in quality relationships, and not have to feel like you ‘have to’ deal with people when you don’t really want to.

 

I can’t even count how many times in the past I would reluctantly agree to go out with people even though I knew the experience would be boring and I would have rather stayed home and read a book. I used to think it was abnormal, and it is… if you’re with the wrong people.

 

I’m no psychologist, but maybe that’s the issue that a lot of self-proclaimed introverts have. It’s not that they feel drained when out with people, but it’s actually that they’re not spending time with the right people. As I said above – if I was going out with the wrong people and feeling like my time was being wasted, you bet I’d prefer to isolate myself.

 

Getting back to the ‘right people’…

 

Try creating a list of what you’d find ideal in a friend. Here’s mine for reference:

  • Shares a sense of humor with me and enjoys laughing
  • Dependable and has a sense of integrity
  • Has own goals and objectives in life
  • Has control over own life or is at least in the process of doing so
  • Understands the value of money
  • Produces as much or more than they consume

Nobody is perfect, but you need to have standards for the people that enter your life. The more points they tick off on your list, the better.

 

To sum it up, friends can either make or break you. I encourage you to take a moment today to thoroughly analyze the friends you’ve chosen to surround yourself with. How you met the individuals in question is also crucial, because if you want to achieve your vision, you must be the cause, not the effect. You cannot just allow anyone or anything to appear in your life. You need to take control, and you can easily start today by taking account of who is in your life.

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