I used to be friends with as many people as I could.
Friends were a number to me and the more people I knew, the more popular I felt. Then I began learning mindfulness and began practicing a more authentic lifestyle. Effortlessly, I separated myself from the popular mindset I used to have and stuck close to a small handful who reflected my goals and personality the best.
My life has been better ever since.
I like to think of the people in my life as part of my own, beautiful garden. My garden is not big, but just large enough to bring joy and value to my life. Here are some life tips that I have applied to my own life, which have helped me create meaningful relationships:
1. Add people who are going to add sunshine into your life.
Always welcome people in your life that add sunshine and warmth. In other words, people who are kind, loving and genuinely wish you well.
When we go to a plant store, do we buy just any plants? No, we choose the fullest, healthiest and brightest ones we see. Similarly, we should choose friendships that have the fullest, healthiest and brightest souls. Choose friends that bring the most value to our lives. Remember, we have the right to be picky with whom we want to spend our time with.
2. Keep the weeds out.
These are the people who don’t add value to your life and show little respect to you or others. Every so often, we have to look into our garden of friends and make sure there are no ugly weeds silently spreading among our gardens. Make it a priority to surround yourself with people that you actually enjoy.
3. Plant new friendships.
Life is constantly changing. Some friendships wither through the seasons and don’t make it past the rain or drought. See these times as an opportunity to plant new seeds of friendships that can prosper and bring new warmth to your life.
4. Don’t forget to water.
Similar to plants, our friendships need to be watered and cared for. The more we nurture these friendships, the more the relationships will grow and mature. However, too much watering can kill a plant. Always, and I do mean always, act in a state of balance.
Remember, it is our duty and responsibility to care for our garden. After all, we are the gardener.
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Ed: Catherine Monkman