I must say that even though I don’t like attempting to put a “category” on the types of friends that I have, there is definitely a set of unique characteristics that distinguish the people who I refer to as “friends” from other people. For instance, one feature that characterizes my friends is that we have similar interests. This can be noticed in the types of work we do in order to make a living. It can likewise be found in our motivations to accomplish those types of work. In this respect, how I “define” a friend differs from how I used to characterize friends when I was growing up, because back then much of it depended on my proximity and basic interaction with others. Now, distance matters less than our set of interests. Another feature that characterizes my friends is that we refrain from being disrespectful toward others. This includes being tolerant of others even though they may look or act a different way. Thankfully, I was this way even when I was growing up, and I would like to remain this same way. Another feature that identifies my friends is that we strive to learn more about the people and world around us. This process makes our situations even more fascinating and worldviews more discerning. In retrospect, I’ve learned much just interacting with my friends as a whole.
Giving is very much receiving in many cases. To be clear, it does depend on the certain situation. It also depends on the reasons for why someone has the inclination to give of something. But it seems like in many instances in our society, giving to other people tends to be a gift for the supplier as well. This is because once we provide our services, we have the knowledge that we may have made other people’s lives better. And that can be a true comfort. Admittedly, there are many times in which the act of giving can be a painful experience, but that only tends to be temporary in nature and doesn’t fully affect us in a bad way. In fact, pain can promote the release of splendid endorphins for our wellbeing under the right factors. It can be frightening at first to do something for the benefit of others, such as volunteering in the community, but when we continue to develop our tolerance for such action, it can be an ultimately rewarding experience. Of course, much of this depends on our definitions of “giving” and “receiving”. In most cases, though, these terms can shed new light on varying points of view.
I often consider some of the ramifications that come with giving or receiving criticism. I believe that when either giving or receiving criticism, some constructive criticism can truly be helpful at times. For instance, when someone is critiquing (in a constructive way) the work of someone else, such as how that person cooperates with others or performs under pressure, the person being critiqued can utilize advice to her/his benefit. In that case, she/he can attempt to improve skills and strive for even further success. In some cases, though, people can be too harsh in giving criticism. That can definitely lead to some damage and volatile behavior on the part of the receiver, depending on the situation. However, it can go both ways; people receiving criticism can end up twisting it into something negative when in fact it was meant to be truly encouraging. In my opinion, this is where good judgment is useful. It always helps to see all sides of the story (even if one’s point of view isn’t quite as well-meaning as we would like). In that respect, we end up wiser and cognizant of the many different perspectives in a situation.
In this post I’ll be discussing the various ways in which I’ve dealt with certain challenges throughout my life. I personally believe each of us deals with challenges in unique ways and depending on the type of challenge. For instance, we likely adapt in a different fashion toward a challenging illness than we do for a challenging competition/contest. Sometimes we can utilize marks or aspirations we have set for ourselves in the same way, though, even for different types of challenges. When I was a toddler I would find certain challenging illnesses to be nearly unbearable. At that age I wasn’t going through any competitions yet. It wasn’t until I was a “middle-aged” child that I started entering competitions and contests. At that age I found finishing in fifth place or something like that to be particularly challenging. After all, I was so close to achieving victory, but ONLY so close. It took some further growing up for me to learn that these competitions were beneficial in that they allowed me to push myself farther and with more diligence. Throughout high school and college I always attempted to push myself as far as I could go in competitive occasions or contests, and that led to even more enlightenment regarding how one can handle her/himself when pressure seems to be mounting. Sometimes it’s good to “let go” of a difficult situation, and others it may be better to reconsider ways of how to continue handling the specific event.