In a recent post I wrote: “Your best friends will find you accidentally, and stay with you intentionally.” Let’s explore that a little more. The definition of the word “friend” has been stretched by social media, to the point that it even functions as a verb. The term “best friend” sounds more personal and implies that you rank a little higher on someone’s list… but what makes a friend “best?”
Friends and best friends will come and go in your life. Though it appears to be a series of accidents, it probably isn’t. We meet friends at school and work who help us get through the stress. We meet kindred spirits who believe in the same religion or cause. We meet friends who cheer for the same team or just make us laugh. We have lovable but occasionally irritating friends who teach us patience.
We are not just connected by a phone number scrawled in an address book or a few lines of code in Facebook. We are connected by shared experience.
Many of you reading this right now shared an experience with me; we grew up in Kokomo, Indiana; we survived and graduated from North Central HS or Purdue University; we entertained the masses from a DJ booth; we worked together to start up a start-up or propel an enterprise; our sons were on the same soccer team; we learned and laughed at Toastmasters; or we raised money for cancer research.
Here’s the thing… you all count and you all matter. You are all “best” friends because you were there when I needed you. I am grateful for the part you played in making me who I am, and cherish the moments I impacted your life as well. After all, it’s not about the number of friends in your life, but the life in your friends. What new shared experiences could make it even better?
If you have read this all the way to end, you just shared an experience with me. So by my definition we are now friends and here is my “friend request”… take a moment right now to reach out to one friend and thank them for being there for you. A best friend will tell you it’s not necessary, but they will appreciate hearing the words.