“As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend”. Proverbs 27:17 NLT
What is friendship?
In a world where individuals are swapping BBF’s daily while using Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram as means to measure friendship “success”; it’s hard to conceive whether a person knows the true meaning of friendship. Webster’s dictionary describes friendship as:
a relationship with whom one knows and has a bond of mutual affection.
I would take Webster’s definition one step further and describe friendship as
the quintessential foundation of any meaningful relationship, for without friendship we will never allow ourselves the privilege of being vulnerable while experiencing true intimacy.
Friendships are significant to our lives because they allow us to experience a sense of belonging and connectedness. Extensive medical research has been conducted on the connection between friendship, health and well-being and results have shown that individuals with good friendships are healthier and live longer than those who do not have a close network of good friends. However, friendships can be stressful, especially if they are not mutually beneficial.
Knowing the heart of others and sharing our heart with others is “risky business” and could backfire if we are not careful of the friends we choose to connect with and allow in our lives. A friendship is not some haphazard relationship to enter into lightly.
Friendship is a privilege, honor, and benefit and just like marriage, friendships can last a lifetime with the right person. Therefore, it is crucial to understand that everybody should not be placed in the friendship category.
According to author and motivational speaker John Rohn,
“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with”.
This statement is profound and if taken seriously would give cause for many to reevaluate their circle of friends. If you are still having doubts about the importance of friendship, General Colin Powell, a decorated War Hero, motivational speaker, author and brilliant military strategist wrote in his book , It Worked for Me: In Life and Leadership:
“Friends that don’t help you climb will want you to crawl. Your friends will stretch your vision or choke your dream. Those that don’t increase you will eventually decrease you. Wise is the person who fortifies his life with the right friendships.”
Clearly, the success that one achieves in life has a positive correlation to the individuals one spends the most time with. The Holy Bible also has much to say about friendships.
- Proverbs 27:17 (NLT) states that “As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend”.
- Proverbs 13:20 (NLT) says, “Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm” and lastly,
- First Corinthians 15:33 (NLT) warns not to be deceived because bad company corrupts good character.”
Our friends are a reflection of who we really are and the condition of our life in the present. It’s evident that friendships are vital to our life, health and success.
I challenge you…
I would like to challenge you to take a hard look at yourself first and then your friendships.
Are your friends:
- helpful and
Are your friendships compatible with your life goals, dreams, and destiny? If not, take the time to enrich your life with good friends, you will be glad you did!
Being Contagious With Change,
Dr. Taaka Cash, DNP, MPH, MSN, RN, FPMHNP-BC is certified through the American Nursing Credentialing Center as an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) in Child, Adolescent, and Adult Psychiatry with prescriptive authority. Visit www.PrivyOasis.com to learn about her practice.