I wanted to share with you something which has been on my mind recently about our generation. Generation Y and Millennials are lucky in so many ways. We have grown up in a world of technology and easy access to whatever we want. We are increasingly impatient and are being fed new information quicker than ever before. We are fantastic at adapting and we push the boundaries of what would have been expected of us in our parents generation.
The choices we are exposed to are endless and we are able to create our dream life much more easily with the opportunities of working abroad and flexi working becoming increasingly available. All of this is truly amazing, but I wonder if being able to make selfish choices has made us insular looking, with ourselves being the sole focus. Don’t get me wrong, I am a true believer of not letting things get in the way of achieving what you want out of life, and you have to be selfish a lot of the time to get there.
Having this flexibility in life and through school, university and various jobs, you collect an extensive network of friends. Social media has made it very easy to see what is going on in their lives, but is that good enough to replace conversation? I love seeing what all my friends are up to and if I have to miss an event I can look at the photos and feel more like I was there, and of course we all love a good stalk of old friends we are out of touch with. A lot of us are guilty of only showing the good bits of our lives on social media (myself very much included!) so that our wider network can see how ‘successful’ we are, what holidays we are going on and the cool new clothes/watches/shoes we have bought. What we don’t often see is that it can push people away, it can cause issues between existing friendships and it can make others feel inadequate.
I want to be very clear, I am not wanting you to feel bad and sell all your belongings. I love Instagram etc, and it is only natural to want to show off your nice things – after all it is striving for more which keeps up our motivation in life! All I am trying to say is that we are trend setters so let’s start a new trend! Let’s make an effort to be intentional with our friendships and meet friends face to face or actually call them on the telephone to catch up with them. Ask how they really are doing and dare to be vulnerable with each other. I think it is easy to underestimate the power of friendships. A good friend can enjoy your happiness, but they can also be there to support you when perhaps you aren’t wanting to be one of those people uploading rather heart felt Facebook statuses for the world to see.
We all have busy lives these days and time is really precious, so it can be tempting to take the easy option and cancel plans with a friend so that you can snuggle down in your PJs with a good film, or if a better offer comes up then making an excuse to bail and go to the other party etc. We are total commitment-phobes and FOMO is a real thing! I personally am going to try to commit to the plans I have, and even if I’d rather stay in, I want to change my attitude to be a better friend to people and give them my oh-so-precious time, because I know there will be a time where I would really appreciate it if someone would do the same for me.
My challenge to you all is to commit to and invest in some of your friendships. Build each other up. Make the effort even if it puts you out because you never know how much it might mean to your friend. Plus, you’ll probably have a great time and be pretty happy you spent some time together!