One thing my true friends know about me is that I'm loyal and that I put a high value on my friendships. I remember shocking one of my work associates several years ago when I told her I could count all of my friends on one hand. I say she was shocked because she actually gasped and said "Surely not! You have tons of friends!" I sincerely believe that she considered herself to be my friend - until she heard my definition of a friend: "A true friend is one I could call in the middle of the night to bail me out of jail and she would without question." I'm sure she realized in that moment that she would have not been my one call from the county jail. And I'm sure she was also quite relieved, although she was not only surprised, but also slightly offended. Funny that I can still see her look of disbelief with her mouth open and jaw dropped.
Perhaps you've taken inventory from your list of friends before... or hey... maybe you're only focused on your list of followers or subscribers.
That's easy to do as we live in a society of "online social media friendships" - in a superficial and deceptive world of relationships. We often keep a distorted view of who our friends really are.
We are hurt by shady posts or snide comments. We take posts personally - and some do actually post them as a personal (passive aggressive) message that is meant to pierce a specific individual right through the heart. We find ourselves caught up in deep controversial discussions through texting rather than face to face - or at minimum, voice to voice. And if we did take the time to reach out, we would probably be "ghosted". Or we refuse to have any deep meaningful discussions about anything with anyone - online or otherwise. We live in a shallow world full of deception, fake news, and skewed information. There is no wonder it is often unclear who our friends are and who has our best interest at heart. And it's also no wonder that many are very lonely and left wondering if anyone really cares at all.
Because I'm a natural networker, and one of my strongest gifts is to be a helper - and because I attract much of my business with the use of various social media platforms - I could easily find myself scrutinizing posts, comments, - and the lack thereof. After all, I care deeply for others and want very much to help everyone to be better and want to surround myself with those who will help me do the same. I am passionate about what I believe to be true, trustworthy, meaningful, and supportive. And I'm very open to share. So, yes. I am vulnerable to being misunderstood and can often feel lonely and isolated. And you may be vulnerable to those things too. However, we have to stop and realize three important things: 1) Don't be easily offended. Develop thick skin. First of all, we are not on other's minds as much as we would like to think that we are and it's simply self-centered and egotistical to think something someone says indirectly on a social media platform is directed to us. And even if it is, choose to not give it energy. Lesson - Don't pick up the extra unnecessary baggage. We have enough to carry already. Pick up the lessons and leave the rest sitting; 2) Relationships take work and effort like one-on-one phone calls or face-to-face visits and conversations. Lesson - Like my daddy always told me "To have a friend, you must be a friend." So, treat others the way you'd like to be treated and you'll have more contacts, associates, and acquaintances than you'll need. 3) Good and true friends are hard to come by. Value them but don't be dependent on them. We all have plenty to do. Lesson - No one likes needy. Choose to be productive, independent, and fun (even when you are your own best friend). And, totally know that it is ok to be able to count your friends with the fingers from one hand. That's usually all we are willing or able to invest in properly anyway.