Friendship Defined and My Standard
Although not the most interesting or insightful subject in the world, nor one that is black or white with right or wrong answers, everyone wants true friends and claims they have little tolerance for fake friends or haters.
As of late 2013, Good Looking Loser and Lifestyle by Good Looking Loser (Get-A-Life) is still primarily focused on making the game/lifestyle changes that accelerate your success with the opposite sex. There's a few miscellaneous, somewhat lesser related topics that we discuss but by and large, with the exception of few guides dedicated to making money- that is and will be our focus for at least another year.
This, however, is a bit of a miscellaneous topic.
It's about how to decide who is truly your friend and deserves your loyalty, emotional support and time.
It's also about understanding what maintaining a useless relationship may be doing to your life.
While this standard comes from me (currently 31 years young), it can apply to anyone - at any age.
Unlike most of other stuff I write about and swear by, this is THE WAY IT IS-
My friendship standard might not be for everyone. I don't know.
(I think it's worth consideration though)
Who Are Your True Friends in Life?
The Opportunity Cost of Preserving Stale Relationships or Fake Friendships
Before we begin, I want to explain something to you.
I'm not saying having friends isn't important, it is.
It's very important to have genuine emotional support from other people that you respect.
What you need to recognize and understand is the opportunity cost♦ of maintaining stale relationships.
♦ - what you lose by maintaining "friendships" and social commitments
Most people totally underestimate how much TIME and ENERGY it takes to invest in someone you consider a real friend.
Most people just count the hours they "chill" with their friend.
In reality, "chill time" probably represents less than 10% of the time and energy you dedicate to your friendship.
(for girls, it's probably closer to 5%)
Most people don't count the time that is spent -
- texting the friend
- talking to the friend on the phone
- using social media to try and enhance and preserve the friendship
- browsing/following social media for updates on the friend
- talking about the friend to another friend
Furthermore, basically nobody counts the time that is spent -
- THINKING ABOUT the friend, whether in a positive, neutral or negative light
and obviously most of us fail to consider the time that is spent -
- THINKING ABOUT/ANALYZING the friendship, the friend and "drama" in between
- Solving direct and indirect interpersonal problems created by the friendship
It might cost you seconds and minutes at a time but it ALL ADDS UP.
HUNDREDS AND THOUSANDS OF HOURS of time, energy and brain power are devoted to friendships, often stale friendships that serve no purpose other than security and politeness.
What if you were to redirect ALL THAT TIME and ENERGY to something more productive?
Like say, [insert any goal].
Suppose you spent an extra 500 hours a year in the gym?
(You'd have a better body)
Suppose you spent an extra 500 hours just saying "Hi." to random girls and asking the happy ones for their numbers?
(You'd have a better sex life)
Suppose you spent an extra 500 hours making YouTube videos about [whatever you are good at]?
(You'd have more money in the bank)
You'd be far ahead of where you are now.
So would I.
It would be impossible not to be.
Just so you know - I have far far far more acquaintances than friends.
Such is the nature of Hollywood (where I only live part-time these days) and simply maturing past the college years.
But part of it is because of my 'Friendship Standard' which we'll discuss after I'm done rambling.
"Acquaintance" has always had a bit of a negative superficial connotation, I certainly used to look at it that way-
I don't look it in a bad light anymore.
In fact, once I dropped the "negative stereotype" of the word, I was actually better able to enjoy my "acquaintances".
People knock Hollywood for being fake and it certainly is.
I'll tell you what though- while some people are just here to do cocaine, a lot of people out here are GO-GETTERS. They don't have time for too many close friendships. They are on a mission and many of them have left their small towns and all their friends to chase their dreams. Win or lose, it's the right decision. Once I started realizing this and not expecting anything from anybody, I really started to enjoy myself (and ironically made some fairly close friends).
I'm sure I'm not the only person that claims to have far more acquaintances than friends, but that wasn't my situation in my early 20's. I wanted to be 'best friends' with a lot of people, I wanted to be well-liked and I legitimately had a lot of friends. Deep talks until 4:55am (no homo).
What I wasn't seeing was that maintaining these stale relationships cost me hundreds and hundreds of hours of time and emotional energy a year. Daily texting, Facebook statuses checks, likes, posts (mainly AIM at the time) and late night Coors Light sausage parties that I never wanted to be at in the first place.
Even when if you live in a different state, social contracts and old friendships can cost you time.
If I traveled to New York (I would be REQUIRED to meet up [and drink and discuss the past] with a good 10 people if I came into the city).
Same for a few other cities. I was like a pretty little girl.
All jokes aside, friendship (generally always seen as a 100% positive thing) is an investment. It can be a good one or a bad one. Quantity is not preferred.
One of the worst things is to invest and CONSTANTLY REINVEST in people that should be in the acquaintance/we not tight category a long time ago.
(The Good News Standard)
There's all sorts of valid criteria to decide who your true friends are.
Trust, loyalty, commonalities, respect, dependability, shared longevity.
It's all good, with the last one being by far the least important.
You have your criteria and I'm not really trying to mess with that.
I just have one thing that you should consider when evaluating who deserves your loyalty, time and emotional energy.
It's a simple YES or NO question that can be usually answered in a matter of seconds-
Is good news for you, also good news for your friend?
What I mean is...
If something good happens in your life -
- Is your friend genuinely happy for you?
- Can the friend celebrate your good news too?
(even if he just expresses it verbally)
* this applies to normal people that expect their friends to be happy for them, not insecure braggers that are always fishing for compliments.
If the answer is ANYTHING OTHER THAN YES -
Without explanation or hesitation, I would UNAPOLOGETICALLY and IMMEDIATELY redirect ANY AND ALL loyalty, emotional energy and time to something else.
(preferably your #1 goal, but even just sleeping would be a better use of time).
Even if you never speak to them again.
This isn't to passively-aggressively punish them.
This is for you and your quality of life.
One of the problems with friends that are or appear "neutral" or even bitter toward your good news is - they aren't on your level and they know it.
While a neutral/under-supportive reaction, in itself, isn't usually toxic (ideally surround yourself with guys that are on your level or above you), those who aren't supportive when you are happy/achieve something - are almost always looking for ways to even the score and drag you down. You might be surprised what they really think of you and might hear it if they talk behind your back.
While this might not seem like a big deal...
Remember - you are investing hundreds and hundreds of hours of YOUR TIME, YOUR EMOTIONAL ENERGY and THOUGHT PROCESSES for these people.
Seconds at a time, maybe just minutes in each hour - but HUNDREDS over the months and years.
Even if you are telling a true friend a story about how a jealous friend was 'talkin shit' is still costing you time.
Time that you WILL NEVER USE, REMEMBER or GET BACK.
Time that could have been put toward making your physical, financial, sex or overall quality of life better.
And at it's worst-
BAD NEWS FOR YOU IS GOOD NEWS FOR THEM.
Jealousy, 100% organic.
I've seen (and had) so many friendships that were just this way.
Being competitive is one thing, being a "hater" is another.
A person cannot be a HATER and a REAL FRIEND at the same time.
It is completely impossible.
Not on my watch anyway.
Every second, minute or hour of your time that you dedicated to preserving, maintaining or fruitlessly trying to enhance a stale relationship that is literally GOING NOWHERE is time wasted and better spent doing something productive.
They say that tough times reveal true friends, that's absolutely true.
But so do GOOD TIMES.
And hopefully you're planning to have more good days than bad, hopefully you'll be dominating life and everyone will know it and cheer you on.
Applying my FRIENDSHIP STANDARD might eliminate a lot of insecure people in your life.
It's meant to.
It might be time to do you own thing.
You're going to be successful right?
And successful people don't have time for stale relationships or disloyal friends right?
You might as well start the spring cleaning early.
I'll talk about making friends at a later time, you only need a few good ones.