In a world where people easily get caught up in social media and their social media lives, I wonder if it has become even harder to find authentic friends, let alone have at least one of those friends become (queue the music) The Bestie. Since 19 February is Best Friends Day, I figured this would be the perfect opportunity to talk about friendship and the levels of friendship. Let’s get to it, shall we?
KNOW YOUR PEEPS
Before I formally introduce you to my bestie, I want you to do an evaluation of your inner circle people and immediate outer circle people. Why? Because I have heard and read countless accounts of the best friend betrayal horror story. No one likes to be betrayed. And, when you’re emotionally involved, the sting of that betrayal is deep and last long. Most of the time it boils down to knowing the person who you are calling bestie.
Some people are constantly growing while others run in place. Some friends are helpful with recommendations but they could also be nosy and a gossip. Some friends may devote their time to the church but aren’t diving deeper into being their true selves. What I am saying here is that the better you understand the dynamics of the people around you the better you can address them and understand what they can and cannot do for you. This isn’t about using someone; this is about understanding where your friends (and potential best friend) are mentally, spiritually, and physically in life and respecting them in that space. By doing so, you can make the conscious decision to either spend a majority of your time with them, keep it to a minimum, or leave them alone completely.
KNOW THE PART THEY PLAY IN YOUR LIFE
What I’m about to explain will not settle well with some people. I know this because I have talked about it in the past and some people let me know that it didn’t sit well with them. While I respect their opinion, my opinion still stands and that is we need to place our friends in categories. We need to put them in categories to understand how we can add value in their lives and how they can add value to ours. And, I’m mentioning that with the utmost respect. Let me explain.
I have a friend who is very mild mannered and shy. We go to various art exhibits, lunches, and even traveled together. I would not ask her to come along on a weekend girl’s trip when I know we will be drinking, going to upscale lounges, and dancing. Drinking alcohol and dancing isn’t her thing. So, I’ll mentally take a note that she is my art exhibit buddy. So, I’m mentally placing her in the arts category. The value added here is that we are creating unique opportunities to make pleasant memories, become more cultured together, and cultivate our friendship accordingly.
On the other hand, I’ll use myself as an example since I mentioned what we can offer our friends (keep in mind that we are building friendships and solidifying a bestie overtime). I meet people from various backgrounds and we each had very unique childhoods. I had a great childhood, my family had parties often, I never wanted for anything, and, one of my personal favorites, I was learning how to speak French at age 4. I’m not saying that my life was peaches and cream all the time but I really don’t have anything to complain about regarding growing up. So, when I meet someone who had experienced unfortunate events growing up, I listen. I listen because that’s what that person needs and wants at the time. It’s not for me (and it’s rude) to just start rambling about my childhood. I listen. That’s one of my gifts. I lend an ear to understand the depths of that person and who they are looking to become.
MEET THE BESTIE
I met Caroline via a mutual friend almost a decade ago. We went to the same university around the same time but we met after we graduated. The campus isn’t big. I felt like we may have just missed each other or walked passed one another while talking to someone, queue the Twilight Zone music. Sometimes I wish I could go back in time and watch the friendship blossom. It’s interesting how someone can enter your life unsuspectingly and alter it for the better.
THE 10 QUESTIONS GAME
Because #whynot ?
1. What’s your happy song?
Caroline: Right now – “Thunder” by Imagine Dragons
Tia: “I’ll Tumble For Ya” by The Culture Club
2. What’s your definition of a bestie friend?
Caroline: Someone who is loyal, listens, and is consistent throughout the years. No judgment zone filled with champagne.
Tia: My definition of a best friend is someone who acknowledges one for who they are, helps them to grow, isn’t judgmental, and has their back.
3. When did you know know Tia/Caroline became Best Friend from just Friend?
Caroline: I can’t pinpoint a single moment that garnered Tia that designation; rather, it was a series of events that took place over a few years that establish her as The Bestie. Her consistently having a non-judgmental ear and devoting time to maintaining and growing the friendship that has really solidified it.
Tia: I wracked my brain to find an exact point in time, but what I realized was that it was a series of life events where we learned a life lesson, have grown personally, or just said screw it, let’s do it our way.
4. What’s your favorite thing about Tia/Caroline?
Caroline: We were in Universal Studios at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and it was Tia’s birthday. It was around closing time and she had tried this ice cream from earlier in the day at Florean Fortescue’s Ice- Cream Parlour and all she wanted on her birthday was to eat this ice cream one last time. We had an amazing day throughout the day – we are Harry Potter fans. We rushed over to get the ice cream but the attendant told her it was closed.
Tia went from being a jolly 29 year old to looking like the saddest 3-year-old kid. I went to talk to the attendant and we got in. The elation on Tia’s face the moment when she got her ice cream was immeasurable. Tia finds joy in the smallest things in life (especially with food). One of the things I like about her is finding joy in the mundane things.
Tia: I love that Caroline’s superpower is the ability to help people discover their best qualities and amplify that. She’s the one who tells you to own it when you think it’s weird or not going to work. She’s the team member who reminds you that stress and worry aren’t going to make you go any faster in life but your abilities that will outshine any situation.
5. What makes you feel unstoppable?
Caroline: The perfect outfit.
Tia: When I brush teeth followed by mouthwash and I say, “Wooo I got that top of the mountain fresh breath.”
6. What’s your philosophy in life?
Caroline: Travel far & frequently. Love passionately & faithfully. Appreciate those around you – flaws & all. Enjoy the moments.
Tia: Enjoy life to the fullest by having many life experiences with people who you adore and who adore you. Have many life experiences for your highest good, not at the cost of other’s misery. With each experience, have a takeaway and teach someone about what you learned.
7. What’s the one thing that people tend to misunderstand about you?
Caroline: Because I don’t openly share all of my struggles and hardships, people tend to assume that my life has been easy and discount the amount of work I’m done and what I’ve accomplished.
Tia: That I’m high maintenance. In actuality, I like nice things, I’m passionate about self-care, and I view life in a more positive/opportunistic way that tends to rub people the wrong way.
8. What are three things you want to do or accomplish this year?
Caroline: Travel. Start a baking business. Win the lotto.
Tia: become more physically fit. Enter a relationship with an amazing guy. Continue to grow my business to new heights.
9. What do you like to do for your downtime?
Caroline: Travel is my #1 always. I also love to bake and make it my business. I love, love, love to read and watch movies.
Tia: I really enjoy watching old school murder mystery movies and classic detective shows.
10. Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Caroline: Vacating on a yacht in the middle of the Mediterranean wearing a white bikini and having a huge empire, successful business.
Tia: Owning multiple successful businesses. Having a few children with my amazing husband. Owning multiple homes. Traveling the world for business and humanitarian efforts. Star in a movie.
HOW HAVING A BEST FRIEND HELPED ME IN LIFE
Having a Best Friend goes beyond having a “human diary” where they know everything about you. Having a best friend has helped me to become more comfortable with myself. When I’m overloaded with thoughts or tried to piece together my emotions regarding something, I call Caroline and we talk it out. Having a best friend who has some of the traits Caroline and I mentioned above grants me that space of saying what’s on my mind without worrying that I’ll say something wrong. I get to learn more about myself and the situation I’m in at the time. It’s a relief to know that you can talk to someone who isn’t preparing a default response because they think they know everything or they impose their views on you. It’s a relief to visit Caroline and do nothing but drink Prosecco and watch movies. It’s a relief when someone just gets you and nudges you in the right direction, even when you can’t see it at the moment.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
- You and your bestie will become spiritually linked. Caroline and I are both night owls, have very similar mindsets in life, we don’t need words to communicate at times, and, recently, we bought the same Christmas gifts for each other and opened them at the same time.
- Your best friend will never lead you astray. If your best friend is constantly getting you into unfavorable situations and surrounding you will unsavory people, then it’s time for a new best friend.
- Arguments and disagreements will be at an all-time low. Caroline and I don’t agree on everything, but we never had a full blown heated argument. Some people will think that you and your best friend are phony because you will be in agreement with each other most of the time. Um DUH! That’s your bestie. Of course, you will be in agreement 99% of the time.
- Some people will be envious. This goes without saying. I’m mentioning this because I want you to be mindful of what you talk about around other people. Some people will pretend to be happy to hear about what you and the bestie are up to, even if it’s relevant to the situation.