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Would You Rather Connect With a Friend or a Stranger?

Feb23

Written by:
2011/02/23 08:55 AM RssIcon

best_friends

So I take a look at people on Facebook, Twitter and various blogs around the internet and notice that so many people have huge amounts of friends, followers, readers and subscribers.

I on the other hand have very few in comparison. I mean some of these guys and gals have friends in the thousands.

My real question then is, are these people actually friends or are they just strangers?

What is friendship

The term “Friendship” is something more than just acquaintances or someone that is friendly.

On Facebook the term friend is technically not correct, it should actually be called contacts.

Friendship is considered to be closer than association, although there is a range of degrees of intimacy in both friendships and associations.

A friend is someone you can hang out with, have fun with and depend on. A friend is someone you develop a love for.

Most importantly a friend is someone with whom you have a relationship with.

A friend will often demonstrate the following on a consistent basis.

  • The tendency to desire what is best for the other
  • Sympathy and empathy
  • Honesty, perhaps in situations where it may be difficult for others to speak the truth, especially in terms of pointing out the perceived faults of one's counterpart
  • Mutual understanding and compassion
  • Trust in one another (able to express feelings - including in relation to the other's actions - without the fear of being judged); able to go to each other for emotional support
  • Positive reciprocity - a relationship is based on equal give and take between the two parties. (Wikipedia)

The art of genuine connection

One thing that we have to be continually reminded of is that behind every post, every comment, every tweet and every page view is an actual set of eyeballs inside a brain that makes up a unique human being.

Ask yourself this question, would you rather connect or link to a site where you have no clue about the author, or would you rather connect or link to a site or blog where the author is a friend. The answer is obvious.

Here are some ways that you and I can offer some genuine friendships and connections.

  1. Be genuinely interested – This is probably of the most importance. Don’t be a fraud. Don’t connect with a hidden agenda. Like getting followers and friends just to sell something, or use them just for stats.
  2. Pay attention – Take notice. Notice things that they do. What they like or dislike. Take notice of what they write about. Notice their successes as well as their failures. Take notice of the important things.
  3. It is better to give than to receive – All over the internet all I find is take take, and more take. People never give anything for the sake of giving. There is always a hidden agenda. What can you do for me? But try to give without expecting anything in return. True friends do this. Strangers will milk you for all you’re worth and then move on to the next sucker. If you give nothing else but your appreciation, you have given a bit. Saying thank you will go a long way.
  4. Create an experience – Ask yourself this, why would anyone connect with you? Why would you connect with anyone else? Tell stories, create memories. Create experiences. Be different. It’s stories and memories that make it all real. Life is all about the memory and the experience. What memories and experiences do you have with strangers as opposed to those who are your friends.
  5. Be open – Show the true you. People want to see the real person behind the blog, or Facebook update or Tweet. Sharing something uncomfortable or non public with someone about yourself has an amazing way of creating a deeper connection. Show people that you are human and that you have vulnerabilities.

So the question then remains. Do you have friends or strangers following you? In most countries a stranger following you is stalking and a criminal offense.

Do you connect with people to be genuine friends or do you have some hidden agenda?

Be true to your friends, be true to yourself and be yourself.

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