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Friendship

What new friendships have you made this year?
Reflecting this morning, on the year gone by, I got to thinking about all my friendships anew.
There have been many, all across the world.
A friend cares.
A friend is honest.
A friend reaches out.
A friend listens.
A friend loves.
To all my friends old and new, I discovered a poem that encapsulates how I feel about each of you. I have no idea who wrote it. Enjoy.

“๐€ ๐…๐ซ๐ข๐ž๐ง๐ ๐‹๐ข๐ค๐ž ๐˜๐จ๐ฎ”

Thereโ€™s a tenderness comes stealing
Oโ€™er this heart of mine today
And a warm and happy feeling
That can never fade away;
Just a feeling that is growing
Every day each long year through โ€“
Itโ€™s the joy that comes through knowing
That I have a friend like you.
Round my heart are memories clinging
Of the golden days of old.
And they set my soul a-singing
With a happiness untold.
Yes, our pulsing heart throbs, treasured
Through the years of friendship true
Make me prize the love unmeasured
Of a good old friend like you.
Every passing day I wish you
All the joy your heart will hold;
May success be always with you
As the coming years unfold.
That the fast-approaching morrows
May see all your dreams come true
And contain but minor sorrows,
In my wish, dear friend, for you.
May our friendship grow and strengthen
In the misty years to come,
So that when lifeโ€™s shadows lengthen
And our mortal race is run,
We may still be friends united โ€“
Still be comrades staunch and true;
That our ways may eโ€™er be lighted,
Yours by me and mine by you.
To all my friends old and new, I hope that 2022, brings you all your hopes and dreams you could ever wish for.
From one good friend to another – Much Love. ๐Ÿ’•

Friendship

And that’s the end of our first full month (already!), back home in the Netherlands.

One thing that has struck me is the importance of ๐Ÿ๐ซ๐ข๐ž๐ง๐๐ฌ๐ก๐ข๐ฉ.

We have spent a large chunk of our first month making lots of new friends and reacquainting ourselves with many old ones too.

As we have visited together, we have laughed, cried, talked, sung, enjoyed meals, walked, played games, hugged, encouraged, helped and above all really listened to one another’s stories and experiences.

It has been a real joy to be with such wonderful friends.

My experience is that all of our interactions together are made more enjoyable and productive when they are accompanied by genuine feelings of friendship.

I remember years ago the counsel from Ralph Waldo Emerson who said โ€œ๐“๐ก๐ž ๐จ๐ง๐ฅ๐ฒ ๐ฐ๐š๐ฒ ๐ญ๐จ ๐ก๐š๐ฏ๐ž ๐š ๐Ÿ๐ซ๐ข๐ž๐ง๐ ๐ข๐ฌ ๐ญ๐จ ๐›๐ž ๐จ๐ง๐ž.โ€

To be a good friend, show genuine interest in others, smile, care about them, be kind, be grateful and show respect. Above all…

– ๐๐ž Real
– ๐๐ž You
– ๐๐ž your authentic self!

Being who you are is key!

What kind of friend are you?

Friendships

I love this picture!ย  Look at our huge smiles. I can still remember, as if it were today, something subtle happening, that we were scarcely aware of โ€“ we all became friends, each of whom who have subsequently touched my life for good.

That day, the six of us made some powerful professional breakthroughs and connections in our own community of practice.ย  But above all, the part I cherish most of all, was the power of true friendship.

Friendship

Listening, laughing, understanding, being a little silly together and empathy were in all in evidence as we embarked upon a new journey in our work on extra-dependent teams.

โ€œA friend is a priceless possession because a true friend is one who is willing to take us the way we are but is able to leave us better than he found us. We are poor when we lose friends because generally they are willing to reprove, admonish, love, encourage, and guide for our best good. A friend lifts the heavy heart, says the encouraging word, and assists in supplying our daily needs. As friends we will make ourselves available without delay to those who need us.โ€ โ€“ Marvin J. Ashton

The photo was taken in Zurich, in December 2019, just a few weeks before the pandemic and lockdown.ย  Subsequently, the six of us have met by Zoom on several occasions.ย  Our conversations have been moments I hold dear, through what has been a challenging year.

Somehow these special moments of friendship seem to have a long shelf life, which I am so grateful for. They can sustain you even long after the moment has passed.

Good friends are a little like stars, you may not always see them, but you know they are there!

My conclusion – the only way to really have friends, is to be one yourself.

Go on, reconnect today.