Sunday, December 27, 2015

Don't #reminiscent on the #past but #look #forward to the #future!

I am sure you have heard the expression “I got out of bed with the wrong foot” well this is how I feel about 2015, I think I started it with the wrong foot!

And I am not talking about my bad knee which has caused me a lot of issues since the beginning of the year and to date still not fixed. But this, together with other bits and pieces at the time didn’t help and me start 2015 with the wrong foot.

I am, by nature, a very positive person. And I believe that we all are masters of our own destiny and how we feel and think has a great influence on this destiny. After having an injury on my knee last year I decided, quite rightly, to stop running and see a specialist. As a running junky that I became, I began 2015 having withdrawal symptoms and fell into a bit of a depression. Running gave me lots of energy, making me feel alert and enthusiastic and more importantly it gave me time to think and clear my head during the exercise. Not having this, took away that moment where I could think clearly, get ideas for my writing and let some adrenaline out! I began to slowly put on weight and the next thing you know I began to feel tired, with less energy and unable to get out of bed feeling good and ready for the day. To date, I have gained almost 7 kilos and done very little writing, and every time I have to get up I feel I haven’t had enough sleep or been out parting all night (something I don’t do anymore, and I don’t think I could on my present state!)

But why am I telling you all this? It feels I am writing a letter of complaint to the weight watchers or the knee fixer up people. But in reality I have been thinking about this for a few months and this is the opportunity I have been looking for. Let me explain.

I think the last time I wrote a blog was probably three months ago. And I have not completed any scripts or stories until recently and only because I was in the annual New York Midnight script writing competition I enter every year. My knee still not better. I am struggling to loose those 7 kilos I have gained. With my knee not showing any signs of recovery, at least for the near future, and unless I go into an extreme diet, I am not likely to loose the 7 kilos I have (in fact I may gain more with the holiday season ahead of us) and I know I have to do something before the bells chime twelve times on the 31st December and I am facing 2016.

I am not a believer on New Years Resolutions, in fact I think they are a waist of time but I do think that how I start 2016 will have a great impact on the rest of the year as I have come to learn in 2015, and I guess learned it the hard way!

I believe I have to change my attitude and face the fact that I may not be able to run again at least for a while, that I may have to find different ways to get my energy back, alternative ways to have time to clear my head and organise my thoughts to get new ideas to write blogs and scripts. I know that I want 2016 to be as productive, exiting and rewarding as previous years and it all starts with me, on that first minute of 2016 when I get out of bed with the right foot.

Back in 2013 I set myself a challenge to write a blog every week in 2014 and the previous year I wanted to write my another epic musical, in 2011 I worked on my first film script and event before that in 2010 my first ever musical! Where I failed in 2016 was not having that drive, that vision, that passion that helps us achieve things. I have been the victim of my own negativity and this drove in turn the lack of inspiration and energy.

2016 I feel like Arnold Schwarzenegger, “I’ll be back” and this time no feeling sorry for myself. I am taking the next 5 days to prepare myself to welcome 2016 with a positive attitude, an energetic outlook and inspiration to do something great.

If you, like me, are glad to see the back of 2015, then join me in forgetting about the past and looking forward to a bright and prosperous year ahead and make sure you welcome 2016 with the right foot, and that is with the right attitude, the right spirt, the right energy and the right goals, it's all about getting that right foot right!

Saturday, September 26, 2015

The #ugly #face of #humans

I have always been fascinated by human behaviour (I wish I had been a bit more focused at school and I could have become a psychologist) but instead I became an actor, which, to some extends, studies human behaviour. And throughout my life I have always found interesting observing how people react in certain situations. This is particularly interesting in some places such as airplanes, trains and buses, I guess in any confined space where you have to share your personal space with others.  I have been lucky enough to have the opportunity to travel extensively over the last 8 years and this has allowed me to see and experience some of this “radical” behaviour us humans display in these confined spaces. These experiences have been the subject of many of my blogs and scripts as I have seen some things often beyond believe and you know you have to put that in a movie!

But this week I’ve been exposed to an “ugly” side of us humans I had never seen before. And I guess I had never witnessed it because like every other human, I also have this “ugly” face. And what I experienced this week made me realised how egocentric we all are and how these confined and crowded places make our behaviour change.

Two weeks ago I had a knee surgery and I was asked to rest for two week from my hectic travel. So I have been confined to the safety of my house with a sore leg and trying to get back to normal. I have always been a fairly active person so I have been dying to get back to work. On Thursday I had to go to London and I was looking forward to getting out and about. Still with one crutch in hand, I set off from my hometown to London looking forward to be back on my own two feet.

I arrived very early that morning and I decided to take the tube to work.  I was determined not to feel sorry for myself and just go slow and get there. That morning was fine, not too many people and I managed to get to my destination feeling quite accomplished and ready for my day. I guess part of the recovery process is to believe you can do things and it makes you feel good. As it had been such as success I thought I repeat the same on my way back and take the underground again… I guess I was wrong!

I do not want to pretend to know how a person with a disability must feel, I could never do that, but having a recently operated knee and limited mobility with the aid of a crutch, I never expected to encounter what I did that Thursday afternoon in the underground. I truly came face to face for the first time in my life with the “ugly” side of us human beings cutely aware of it by my temporary disability.

It was rush hour and there were, as usual, thousands of people trying to get home. And everyone has to get somewhere and everyone has their own agenda, I know, I’ve been there. And must of the time people are rushing to get the next train or bus and time is of the essence to make sure you make that departure time.  And then those who are not in a rush have their music on and close themselves in their own world, not paying attention to anything or anyone around them. I was trying to get home too, I also had my own schedule, I had left the office well in advance, as I knew it was going to take longer.

But as soon as I hit the station I began to experience this “ugly” face of human beings, wrapped in their own world and not caring for anyone else around them. Let me walk you though some of the things I experienced.

·      Ticket barrier, people push themselves to get through these as fast as they can, I had a crutch, my bag and my sore knee, I was slow getting through the barrier. I nearly got pushed to one side by a woman who clearly didn’t care I was struggling to get through this narrow space before the door would shut on my leg!
·      The escalators, people want to run down and will push their way through those who chose to stand still, I was trying to jump onto the moving step when someone brushed passed me, pushed my bag out of the way and almost made me lose my balance as I step onto the moving escalator!
·      I had to wait for three trains before I was able to board, it was crowded, and most people push themselves forward and squish themselves before the doors close. It’s hard to do this with a crutch, a bag and a sore knee! Eventually someone made a space big enough for me to be able to get on the train otherwise I think I still be there!
·      Getting off the train! That was interesting! I had my back to the door and when it opened, I did not fall backward because there is a god out there! I had to turn around, slowly and then slowly get off the train. Well a sea of people behind me push and if it hadn’t been for the person who made the space for me I think I would have been flat on my arse!
·      But the “ugliest” of all was a man I encounter going up a staircase, he takes the “ugliest” face of humans award! On the last leg (pardon the expression) of my journey there is a set of stairs you need to claim to get to the platform where I change trains. This staircase is usually crowded in one direction where everyone is going, with the exception of a few (4 or 5 people) who are travelling the opposite way. These 4 or 5 individuals usually take the side and try and make their way down pushing their way through hundreds coming the opposite way. It makes sense, no doubt, that they stick to the rail as they try to come down the steps. It only make sense until you meet someone coming the opposite direction with the hundreds of people holding onto the rail because he has a crutch on the other hand and is clearly struggling to get up the stairs. I was already exasperated by all the previous encounters and being pushed as I was not claiming the stairs fast enough when I came literally face to face with this ugly human being! He said to me “excuse me” and I looked at him and said, “I can’t move!”. He then looked at me and at this point you’d think he would have realised my predicament, so he said, “I need to get down” I paused and I thought is he serious? I looked at him and then he said again “excuse me!” so I slowly moved to one side letting go of the rail and feeling just a little bit nervous. He walked down and I then moved back and held onto the rail but of course not before two or three others pushed passed me seeing a gap and an opportunity to rush! I stopped, shocked more than anything, when I heard a person saying “are you ok? Do you need some help?” I thank them and said no and I carried on my epic journey to the coach station to get back to the safety of my home!

This experience made me realised how selfish we can be, I knew we were but not to that extent, and how these environments bring the worst in us. And I say us because I’ve been there; I am one of those commuters pushing my way through to catch the train. I am also ashamed that it has taken this experience for me to realised this “ugly’ behaviour we display every day, that it has taken for me to be in a situation many people are in permanently to realised how hard it is for them.

As a writer it has given me the ability to see another side of humans I can now relate to. As a human it has made me more aware of everything around me.  I hope this blog can help all of us to realise that we should be aware of our surroundings and know there are people out there who may need our help also get somewhere.

Friday, September 4, 2015

Should #Talent be shared?

a video song of Maestro Sergio Snyder, Pianist
A tribute to a very talented man, he shared this joy with thousands in his life!

When you listen to Beethoven’s 5th symphony it’s hard to imagine how could anyone write such a magnificent piece. And when you look at a Picasso or Monett, makes you think of the hours they spent with every single stroke of a brush trying to bring life into their pictures. The inspirational performances of actors, dancers, musicians and singers make us stand for five minutes clapping our hearts out in admiration for their craft. Enjoying a carefully crafted meal from an award-winning chef and it's delights in our taste butts and leaves us wanting more. A beautiful pair of custom made shoes, a designer dinning table, a high performance sports car, are all personal possessions people seek and desire to own because of it’s unique craftsmanship. All of these are made or produced by very talented individuals who are masters in their craft and bring joy to people through their art. Whether it is in the form of a song or a piece of clothing, all are representations of someone’s talent that have enriched our lives.

Now imagine a world without Beethoven’s 5th symphony? I guess if he hadn’t exist we wouldn’t know any better and probably life would have gone on, but how tragic it would be not to have the joy of listening to such master piece! I guess everything around us, if it hadn’t been written, produced or invented, we wouldn’t know we were missing out on such magnificent things, and perhaps others would be available to us.

But what does it all mean to us? And why is it important to know that talents should be shared? A few months ago I wrote a blog called “talent, gift or ability” in which I debated that you cannot learn talent, it is something you cannot teach and you are born with it. We all have talents, and they range from writing a master piece to managing a team or even driving a car or cooking a meal, whatever your talents are, these are the things you are good at and makes you who you are.

But talent’s worst enemy is lack of self-confidence and fear of failure. These stop even the greatest from bringing their talent to the world. If Mozart thought his music was rubbish and he was not good at it, we would not have the pleasure of enjoying his work today. Yet he knew he had a talent and wanted to share this with others, but was there another “Mozart” out there, just as talented but with a lack of self-confidence; I guess well we will never know and perhaps we have all be deprived of the joy of enjoying his/her work.

The real debate here is - if you have someone who has a real talent and enjoys his or her gift but lacks self confidence and does not wish to share it with others because of fear of rejection or failing, is that ok?

Everything we have and enjoy today is because a talented person wanted to share their gift with the world. If Michael Jackson had decided he loved signing but would confine it to the shower, the pop world would be very different today and non of us would have made a fool of ourselves dancing to Thriller pretending to be a corps!

We all have different talents, and as long as we are aware of these, it is our duty to share these with the world.

If you know you have a talent, but doubt yourselves I implore you to go out there and don’t let fear kill your gift, and share with the world what you are good at. We all have a role to play in life and after all talent is a gift we have been given, a gift we have to share with the world.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Worlds Apart

There are #moments in your #life that make you think, think hard of what life is all about. And I get those moments very often. I guess these are the bursts of #inspiration that drive me to #write and put my #thoughts on paper.

But recently I had one of those #moments that got me thinking very deeply, so deeply that I felt I had to write about it. However, I have been struggling the last couple of weeks, thinking about it but more importantly on how to express what has been in my mind.

I like to bring to you the moment that got me thinking of what life is all about in the form of a short story; a story is called “worlds apart”

“Ben” shouted my mother out loud as she always does, “come back inside and get yourself cleaned up before dinner” “don’t shout mother” I wanted to reply, I find it extremely annoying being shouted at, “I’m not deaf you know”. “Five more minutes mum, please?” is what I actually said to her. “Five more minute, not more” she shouted back! What’s the matter with that woman there she goes shouting again!, “I’ll come in when I want,” I wanted to shout back, but I didn’t. Honestly, I can’t stand the way she always shouts… I wish I was somewhere else, far away from here! I hate my life!
I love being outside… I relay love the garden at this time of the year. I guess I’m going to grow up to be a gardener; I love the smell of freshly cut grass, flowers booming with colours and aromas you only smell in the summer. I love to see all the small insects crawling all over the place and the occasional butterfly. If you want to see beautiful butterflies you have to go down the riverbank, it’s just a stroll away from our back garden, literally moments away… but I’m not allowed beyond the gate, mum says it’s dangerous, that I can drawn! What a lot of rubbish!
“Ben! How many times I have to call you? Don’t let me come out and get you!” Yes, there she goes again! I really hate my life! “Ben, come inside right now!” if only I was somewhere else… beyond that gate!

“Abdulla” shouted my mother out loud as she always does “stay away from the door, you know it’s not safe being out there” “don’t shout mother” I wanted to reply, I hate it when she shouts, “I’m not deaf you know” is what I wanted to say but I might as well be, with all the noise outside, I can’t stand it! “I’m just here mum, by the door, there hasn’t been any sirens for a while…” “Ok, but stay inside” she shouted back, honestly what’s the matter with her, why does she always have to shout?  I hate the way she always shouts; I wish I was somewhere else, far away from here! I hate my life!
I really love to be outside; Even though it’s very hot and humid, I love being outside and feeling the heat on my skin, warming up my body, I love the feel of being able to run free, without a care in the world. I wish I could be outside, playing, football. There is a great field just a crawling distance from my house, moments away. There I can kick the ball so hard, I could score a goal from midfield. If only mum let me go, there are no sirens right now, so why does she say is dangerous? What a lot of rubbish!
“Abdulla, How many time I have to tell you to move away from the door! Don’t let me tell you once more, stay away!” Yes, there she goes again! I really hate my life! “Abdulla move away from the door now!” if only I was somewhere else… beyond this dam door!

Ben and Abdulla live parallel lives –

Ben lives in a “safe” world, a world most of us know. Yet despite this he hates his life and wishes to be somewhere else. The most danger his mother has to worry about is he escaping through the back gate and drawn in the river… a terrifying thought for any mother I his world.
Abdulla lives in a “dangerous” world, a world most of us would never know. He hates his world; understandably, he is not even outside his front door and wishes to be somewhere else. The most danger his mother has to worry about is he escaping from the house and being killed by a bomb… a terrifying thought for any mother in his world.

Ben and Abdulla live worlds apart, yet there is very little that separates them. Their desire for being outside enjoying their childhood, their annoyance towards their mother and the wish of being somewhere else, all parallel. Yet the worlds they live in could not be so different, so apart. Right now, Ben is in his world and Abdulla in his, their desires and dreams are the same, their environment completely different.

For me what came into my head as I walked along the riverbank on a perfect summer’s afternoon was where did it all go wrong? Why am I able to enjoy this moment without a worry or a care in the world when somewhere else there is terrible conflict and suffering? At that moment someone, just like me, may be hiding for fear of being killed. Why can’t our two worlds be the same? We are the same two human beings with feelings and desires; yet not everywhere we live is the same… why?

Saturday, July 18, 2015

There is always a reason why…

It’s been two months since I last put pen to paper… and there is a reason why.

And to be honest the reason is not a valid reason but a reason nonetheless, which is what promoted me to take time off my busy life and put some of my thoughts down on my good old blog. It pushed myself to finally get back on the saddle and ride my writing horse, something I really love, and have always had time for.

I wanted to share with you all my thoughts this week based on the fact that in life there is always a reason why we do or not do something, and that the challenge we face, more often than not, is finding far more reasons why we should not do something instead of why we should. It is human nature to divert from what we should be doing, often by finding those reasons why we should. Let me perhaps explain a little with a couple of examples.

Last year I had a magnificent year, I was on top of my game. I wrote a blog every week, I trained every day on the treadmill, which led me to complete my first ever half marathon and I wrote two scripts. And I managed to do my full time job too! This was all driven by my fundamental believe that you can do anything you want and time is there for us to use it wisely. Being disciplined with yourself is essential to achieve this and knowing that in life is much easier to say no than to say yes; therefore you need to remain focus to say yes rather than no. And why is it easier to say no? Because is the easiest alternative and by nature humans always look for the easiest solution; not always a bad thing, this is why we have progressed so much! However saying “I won’t run today because it’s raining” is the easier alternative rather than drive to the gym or indeed run in the rain! “I don’t have time, I’m just too tired” energy comes from believing you have it. “I can’t do it” because to be able to do it requires time, effort and commitment – which would you chose? Always the easier, NO! In other words there is always a reason why… why we can’t, but don’t forget there is also always a reason why… why we should!

So 2014 was my year of YES but 2015 has been the year of NO. Somehow I have managed to lead myself to find reasons why I can’t! It all began with my knee injury, which has put me out of running since last December. This has been a real blow to my self-esteem and energy and after 4 months of physiotherapy I now have an appointment to have surgery in September. It won’t be until year-end that I will be able to run again! And somehow I managed to talk myself into finding a reason why I can’t find alternative ways to stay fit, which has led me to gaining 5 kilos and making myself deeply unhappy!

At the same time I began to slip away from my writing and my newly acquired passion “Vloging” There is a connection here; my lack of commitment to stay fit is affecting my commitment to my passion and I have fallen into a deep circle where there is always a reason why… I can’t or don’t have the time to do something. And despite people reminding, often by commenting “we have not seen your videos recently or your blogs” or “how’s the fitness going” I kept on finding reasons why.

And it’s not about being busier or not being able to run, those are just circumstances in my life, its about being in the right state of mind to drive myself to make sure I have time and energy to do all of the things that I like, which I always have had in the past, nothing has changed!

I began this blog saying I had not put pen to paper for two months and there was a reason why. The reason was not valid but a reason all the same: I have talked myself into believing I had no time to write or Vlog, when time is the one thing I have! I guess the beauty of writing blogs is that one-day you can look back at what you wrote and think, “I have fallen victim of my own preaching and did exactly the opposite of what I believe” It’s good to know that no one is perfect!

So today I am finding a reason why I need to get back on track. And the reason is simple; it gives me great satisfaction and keeps me mentally healthy. Ok I can’t run until I have my operation, but I can do other types of exercise and watch what I eat! (at this point I have to credit my very wise, supportive, understanding and always right wife who knows best and has been telling me to do something else to stay fit… sorry you were right, again!) And ok I have a lot of work, but there is always enough time to write, even if it is just a few lines!

And finally I must remember the reason why I write, and that is “because someone out there reads!”

So I’m back, and there is a reason why…

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Precious life

I went to the doctors last week to have an annual medical examination. It is part of a new initiative in the UK where they are trying to get as many people as possible to get a check up and see how healthy they are. I myself had never had a medical examination before, it’s not one of those things I ever thought about getting done, so I saw it as an opportunity to have someone check me and tell me where I’m in my health.

Needless to say, thanks to my change in life style over the last few years and my personal commitment to staying healthy, the nurse was very complementary and informed me that I scored 4%. If you are not sure what that means, as I was when she informed me, 10% or below is considered to be healthy, so I guess I’m in pretty good shape. I discussed with the nurse how my lifestyle had changed from giving up smoking to the fact that I was overweight only a few years ago and did not exercise.  She praised me for my commitment to the change and remarked that if I had not made that shift on my life I would have probably scored 20% or above, which is considered a health risk and she would have been referring me to a doctor to try and help me reduce the chances of dying! (She didn’t put it as blunt as that but I know that’s what she meant)

I reflected on this as I left the doctor’s surgery and walked back home; It was a nice morning, not too cold, the sun was shining and I became acutely aware of everything around me. Life is beautiful and being here is something we often forget, we often forget how precious life is. She was right, I should be proud of myself, as I have reduced the risk of dying. And staying healthy is one of many ways to ensure we treasure our precious life; keeping a balanced lifestyle free from stress and pressures is another way to make sure you see at least your 80’s birthday. There is so much we can do and it only takes a little bit of commitment. But you become more aware of how precious life is when you also realize you are not always in control and no matter how healthy you live there are external factors that may end up that precious life.

As well as reflecting on my surroundings and the positive results of my health check, I remember some sad events that took place a few days earlier. Sadly two people I knew had passed away, both unexpectedly and one of them in an accident. Hearing this terribly sad news also remind me of how important is to live your life every day as if it was your last. You can look after yourself in an effort to live a long and prosperous life, but in an instance it can be taken away from you by events you have no control over. I’ve known this for a long time; I myself was involved in a car accident years ago from which I escaped unharmed, but often we forget this and waste precious time with things that are meaningless and add no value. We get into arguments and fights with loved ones, we leave things for another day when every day the clock is ticking and we may no be here tomorrow to see them done. Yes we can do our part to ensure we live a healthy and balanced life, but life itself can be taken away in an instant, and there is nothing you can do about it. One moment we are here, then next we are gone and it can happen to anyone.

This blog is intended as a reminder to all of how precious life is. If you are unhealthy right now, you can change that today to increase your chances of a long and prosperous life. You can also start now to live today as if it is your last day; don’t wait till tomorrow, as tomorrow may never come. Enjoy, love, sing, laugh out loud, listen to the rain, feel the sunrays on your face and most of all treasure every moment you have, don’t get angry and if you do, get over it straight away, don’t waist your time, don’t give up and don’t leave for tomorrow what you can do today. Spend your time with someone precious, precious enough to share your precious life.

Remember yesterday is history, and you made it, tomorrow is a mystery and may never come, but today is a gift and that’s why it’s called the present!

Saturday, May 16, 2015

No #news is good news.

Last week as I travelled to the #USA on a business trip, I had several hours to kill and I decided to pick up the newspaper and do some reading. I like to keep up with what’s going on in the world but usually I do this through watching the news on either #BBC or #CNN.

I’m not sure how many of you read daily #newspapers but I was astonished at the incredibly amount of depressing context and news gathered together in a handful of pages. This particular newspaper, the #DailyMail, seemed to concentrate on everything that has gone wrong in the world! Literally from cover to cover all you had was negative stories focusing on the most depressing outlook. These stories ranged from anything in #Politics (which is always depressing) to all sorts of personal issues of people’s tragic lives.

I understand that what sells is sensational stuff and people want to read things that are far from their reality, but why would you want to put yourself through such a depressing time reading such negative stories? I honestly felt like giving up on the world after I put the paper down, it seem a terrible dark place. I don’t know if it was particularly this week but everything seemed to go wrong form events such as the riots in #Baltimore, the glooming #elections in the UK and the #earthquake in #Nepal but all of these an other non-world shattering stories filled the pages, one after an other, with more and more drowning sorrows and negative connotations. I swear that the editors of the paper where going for all negative news.

As I placed the paper on the pocket of my seat I felt excused as if I’d just been to the end of the world and back, travelling through dark waters and mysterious forests! I closed my eyes for a moment, I needed to find some peace within me, I was feeling down, tired and in a right odd mood. I began to think to myself, I had an 8-hour flight, it was a Saturday, I had left behind my family after a short 18-hour stopover at home to change my suitcase, I was still excused from my previous trip and I knew that after this week I had also a fly to my next destination with another 18-hour visit at home to hand over my dirty laundry and get clean shirts… MAN! I was feeling just like the newspaper, negative and full of bad news!

Most people that know me would agree that I am a fairly upbeat person and I always see the positive side of things. I was excited to be going to the USA and the Saturday flight was giving me an opportunity to meet an old friend for dinner before heading to my meeting on Sunday. I also love travelling and I have never been put off by tight schedules or crazy o’clock departure times I tend to do. And even if I just see my family for one day, I try to make the most of that time together. I believe that everything in life is an opportunity so you grab that opportunity and go along with it. So why was I feeling all of the sudden so down? It didn’t take me that long to figure it out!

For years I have been training people on the power of positive and negative thinking and how you can easily be influenced by the external world, and those around you can also change your moods. Someone gives you positive energy by his or her attitude and you feel energised, someone shares his or her negative mentality and it brings you down! Having read so many negative stories in the newspaper had a massive effect on me and had sent me to a deep negative place I was struggling to get out of. It was a strange feeling, as if I had just sat down with the most negative person and they had showered me with all of their negative power. I guess it was just that, except that instead of a person it was the written word! As soon as I realised this was what was keeping me down, I quickly searched for positive influences, burying the newspaper in the nearest bin. I turned to one of my favourite sitcoms “The Big Bang Theory” #bigbangtheory and I was out of my dark hole in no time, feeling both good and inspired (I wish I could write comedy like that) bring my spirits up.

I am sure reading newspapers is an essential part of our lives, and perhaps I picked up the wrong newspaper, on the wrong week, but one thing is for sure, I’m sticking to watching the news on TV to get my daily up-to-date dose of what’s going on in the world and I’ll leave the tabloids for those who enjoy getting depressed on a daily bases!

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Fostering Friendships

This week I have said goodbye to a new friend as she stops being a work colleague and we begin a life long friendship!

Throughout our lives we meet all sorts of people with whom we come in contact. We may see these people for only one day, or perhaps two, may be even a month one year or could be a lifetime, but each and every individual forms part of our lives and we have different relationships with all of them. I categorise these in three buckets:

·      Everyday fillers – those who you know as part of your everyday life
·      Essential Relationships – these you need to function every day
·      Long Life Friendships – rear and add meaning to your life

Everyday fillers

These individuals are those you don’t care much but they are part of your life – in other words you deal with them as part of your transactional everyday life. They may be customers, neighbours, work colleagues or people you come in contact with during your day; you are polite to them and they are polite to you back. They make little contribution to your live or have no effect or impact on us, they are there as part of our routine, but will not miss them when they are gone. You may see these individuals for one day or a lifetime, but you never forester that relationship and never moves form a greeting or chitchat to anything meaningful.

Essential Relationships

Then we have those who we interact more and build a relationship with and become essential for us to function. Those may again be customers, work colleagues, schoolmates, or simply someone we see on a regular bases in social circumstances (a bar, a club or at the occasional dinner party). We may share things in common; our children go to the same school, we visit the same church or live in the same area. We probably care a little bit more about these individuals than the everyday fillers and, unlike the fillers; they have an impact in our lives. This is usually as a result of us choosing to build a long-term relationship (we worked together for a long time or have lived in the same street for years) we have clicked with them and have form an alliance that makes us feel comfortable with them.

With this people, while we are with them we enjoy their company, due to the more in-depth relationship their behaviour affects us (we slightly care about what they think or do) but at the end of the day when they are gone we would probably not miss them and may never see them again, unless circumstances brings us together in the future in which case you are pleased to see them. But you wouldn’t go out of your way to keep in touch. Social media has widen the scope to stay in touch with people so perhaps we will continue to communicate with them but this essential relationships become everyday fillers, we don’t really care and we just scroll pass their posts on Facebook unless we want to bitch about their new job, friends, houses or holidays.

Long Life Friendships

These are those we care about, and have a massive impact in our lives. These people are generally those we have chosen to be part of our lives. This group are instrumental to our day-to-day life, long term plans and in general they are part of who we are. We enjoy their company and respect them for who they are; we care about their opinion and we value their input. These individuals may not be in our lives every day, but they are present and always there. Everything about them matters and distance or time has no effect on how we feel about them, they have a special place in our lives.  We, and they, have chosen to build a long life relationship and will forester that relationship for the rest of our lives.

And fostering relationships starts as everyday filler, moving to an essential relationship before you become a long life friend!

Many of the people I consider important in my life started as everyday fillers, becoming essential relationships and gradually I cared enough to continue having them in my life. They moved from someone I knew to someone I liked to someone I care about. And I may only see once these individuals in a blue moon, but having them as part of my life makes a difference and I work hard to continue fostering those friendships for a lifetime.

I am grateful for all the people I know and have met in my life, whether they are everyday fillers, essential relationships or long life friends, I think being able to have people around you is important to keep us going and remain sane. Foster each of those relationships individually and how you want them to affect your life, they will make you who you are and bring that richness in your everyday life.