People change; it is part of the growing process. Good friends embrace, respect and celebrate each other’s personal growth throughout the seasonal changes of life.
You might feel a sense of comfort and familiarity with people that you grew up with because these friends are often what results into life-long connections. You become accustomed to seeing your childhood friends develop during different phases of their lives and this experience is mutual.
When you make new friends, especially during adulthood, it is human nature to form what are called first impressions. However, those initial encounters don’t necessarily give you a clear indication of another person’s complexities. You can only truly become friends when you get to know each other personally by spending quality time together and finding common ground.
Life will present you with turning points that will directly or indirectly affect your friendships. These are times when major changes happen such as pursuing a new career, getting married, having a baby or moving to a new location.
Some changes can be devastating, such as becoming unemployed, losing a spouse or enduring health related issues.
When moments of transformation occur, your friendships need to have strong foundations of love, respect, trust and loyalty to withstand modifications. Communication is the key to understanding each other during various phases of achievements and disappointments, and it’s important to know how to compromise and sympathise.
Sometimes, people feel left out when their friends pursue new ventures that change their outlook on life and ultimately, the dynamic of the friendship. You need to let go off the old-versions of your friends and embrace them as they grow and change into new versions of themselves.
We often hear people say “He/she has changed after that happened”, which is indeed correct because everything we experience will bring about a change within us.
It’s not rational to expect your friends to remain exactly the same way they were when you met them three, five or ten years ago. Likewise, you are constantly developing in your own unique way.
When you truly care about your friends, you will be happy to see them achieve their goals, cheer them on when they win and encourage them to stand up when they fall. Negativity and envy are toxic; do not allow these pessimistic emotions to destroy your friendships.
You have the choice to either grow together with a friend or to grow apart. It’s all up to how much you value that friendship. Sometimes you may genuinely love your friend but the direction they want to go in life doesn’t align with yours, so if you can’t compromise, then it might be best to let them go and wish them well.
It’s possible for friends to grow collectively throughout life, even when they have different ideas and goals, but only when mutual respect and steadfastness is present in the friendship.
Beauty Ndapanda is a lifestyle blogger/writer. Her articles include wellness and beauty tips to help readers look and feel their best, while her topics on introspection examine thoughts and emotional processes for navigating through life’s ups and downs. www.beautyndapanda.com