Welcome aboard another journey to a Steady MIND!
As I told you, this blog series does not only cater to Generation Z. As a 23-year-old, I fall into that demographic and speak from the perspective of the culture I am surrounded in. Here we go.
Friends. Some, our greatest blessings. Others, our worst influence. Many of us have them, but all of us have experienced them.
When we think of relationships, we automatically lean towards those that are romantic. However, we often do not realize how the dynamics of platonic relationships can drastically affect us.
Like romantic relationships, friends can be an asset or a liability. Friends can keep us focused or lead us to distraction; they can teach us love or pain, show us loyalty or dishonor.
Scripture tells us how a sweet friendship refreshes the soul (Proverbs 27:9). Friends are important. No one thrives in isolation. However, we must make sure we surround ourselves with the right friends.
The qualities of a good friend are vast. While we may have people around us, many of us don't truly have "friends." Most of us have what I like to call "consistent company."
Consistent Company: people who are always around but don't add value to your life. They are always "there" but never available when you truly need them. This is not friendship.
True friends bring value and constructive criticism. They bring hope and lead you closer to purpose. They should care about your betterment and advancement. What are your "friends" doing for you?
Do they make you aware when you're heading down the wrong path? Or are they the influencers that lead you astray? We must take the time to carefully assess the mental, spiritual, emotional, and physical value that those around us bring to our lives.
Toxic friendships are not always filled with drama. Instead, there are some that just silently eat away at you, leaving you unfocused, unrecognizable, and unfulfilled.
We all need people in our lives who can give us support and constructive criticism. People who can help recenter us when we aren't our true selves or walking in God-given purpose and focus.
But what we DON'T need is people around us just for the sake of "being there." I'm fully aware that loneliness can lead us into many dark spaces.
But we must learn the value of weighing out our options. Time sitting alone in reflection will always be better than sitting with the unfocused in distraction.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with distancing yourself from people. And quite frankly, there is not always a need for an explanation. We must do what's best for our present and future by surrounding ourselves with people who bring us joy, peace, and productivity.
Whether you’re at the age of 4 or 44, take this time to assess what your "friends" bring to the table?
Are they an asset to your environment? Good friends are hard to come by, but you are in for a ride filled with growth, longevity, stability, and accountability when you find them.
A good friend is an anchor to a Steady Mind.