Cultivate Friendships Instead of Collecting Them.

“Cultivate friendships instead of collecting them. Deepen and clarify existing relationships before adding new ones. Go slowly in getting to know someone, allowing the friendship to unfold rather than burst into bloom. Share your secrets sparingly; guard the secrets others share with you. Invite friends into your home thoughtfully and as a meaningful gesture of friendship. Nurture and protect the lives around you.”

This is another excerpt from the book I am reading, “Entre Nous” by Debra Ollivier.

In this particular chapter she is talking about the French girl’s heart. She mentions quite a bit through every chapter that French women are particular about quality over quantity. Now, in some regards I completely agree and then in others I somewhat disagree. I prefer a bargain, give me 10 dresses at $10 each rather than one dress for $100. That’s me. But I do agree with her on the subject of guarding one’s heart and personal life.

We are so quick to let people in, to trust, to wear our hearts on our shirt sleeves. We are quick to say “I love you.” We share so much information and personal details online now. People we’ve never met are welcome to our Facebook and learn more about us than we may even realize. We are open doors, allowing ourselves to be vulnerable and taken advantage of. We get hurt easily because we’re not careful. We don’t see the value and the quality in ourselves anymore! I have seen people who have 800 friends on Facebook…c’mon, really?

What the author is trying to say is exactly what is written above, and I agree. If someone were to spend years trying to get to know me (no, not through Facebook!) and JUST me (maybe a couple others but not a few hundred others), I’d feel honored. It’s like being in the top ten on American Idol. You start to feel like you have value because you’re not just one of so many people, now you are really just one of maybe a handful of chosen people that this individual WANTS to get to know.

I think we take friendships and relationships WAYYYY too much for granted these days. We are okay with the expression that “Friends are like season, they will come and go.” We’re comfortable now with the big “D” (Divorce) because it happens so often. Why bother fixing something now when you can just go out and replace it? That’s our mentality.

Call me old fashioned but I think I would have done just fine back in the 50’s! Getting to know people through home visits, phone calls, and letters. Having a group of close knit friends. Not becoming so proud that I have to “say” I have hundreds of friends just to make myself look popular.

I think I may make it my new “Resolution” this year to focus on the people who mean the world to me. People who care, people who challenge me and motivate me. People who love me. I think I will try and dedicate more of my time to them rather than to the hundreds on Facebook who are simply there to pry. Yes, I think I will.

~Tanya~

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