There are 3 big realities within relationships.
These realities will either strengthen our bonds or keep us skimming at the surface of what could be long-lasting friendships to see us through the toughest of situations.
How real are we willing to be?
There’s a girl at church I admire from afar. She’s fashion forward and willing to take risks with her wardrobe. She’s fun and outgoing. And when another friend is sick or in need of something, she’s the first to step up with cards and visits or start a fund to offer assistance.
I’m not any of these things. That’s why she caught my attention. When it comes to fashion, I’m all about the staples. The basic black with a white blouse and jacket. And when I do go out on a limb with a bright new scarf or some crazy color, I secretly wonder if she would approve.
As for outgoing, I’m an introvert. And though I love people and great conversation, I’m often awkward and uncomfortable where I either talk too much or never say a word. So my admiration comes from within myself where I secretly wish I could change.
The other day this same friend posted a picture on her Facebook page. She wasn’t perfect.
In fact, she joked about how imperfect it was after her own attempts to capture a magical moment with her kids.
She looked beautiful and accessorized as always. And, to me, her kids still looked great. But what I loved about the image was its reality. I looked at the picture and laughed at her kids’ unwillingness to participate in her quest for perfection. I found myself relieved by her own frustrations behind the smile. I could relate. And that’s where I connected.
Friendship is about reality.
It’s real people with real problems facing real life together. Yet, so many times we try to fake it. As adults, we hide ourselves for fear that if anyone saw the real within us, we’d be rejected.
And through my own attempts, I’ve discovered 3 realities that keep us from finding the real within our relationships.
1. Perfection keeps us separated.
I’m not perfect. When I try to appear perfect I make others uncomfortable.
[Tweet “Rather than make friends, my attempts at perfection keeps me alone. #BeReal”]
2. Gossip makes us nervous.
We view knowledge as power. When we learn something we are naturally inclined to share it. Whether good or bad, we talk about other people in order to feel powerful within our relationships–as if we are needed only to keep others informed.
However, gossip keeps us guarded. It makes us question our relationships. It keeps us from ever confiding in each other, even when we desperately need someone to listen.
3. Fake parts make us envious.
I don’t mean plastic surgery parts, though deep down somewhere I’m probably jealous of those too.
I mean fake attitudes and fake appearances in order to save face. The problem is, when real and fake are so mingled, we can’t tell the difference. Though we are trying to protect ourselves, we actually become more vulnerable. Though fake parts are really our own insecurities, they are redefined within our relationships as competition—a competition that neither of us can ever win.
So today, I honor my fashionista friend who’s not afraid to get real. And that’s what I most admire.
Have you experienced these realities within your own relationships?
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