Happy New Year and welcome to 2018! Prepare for a paradigm shift, as you probably haven’t heard this before when we talk about resolutions. I’m going to talk about the concept of #NoNewFriends.
As we start a new year, there will be many new year’s resolutions. You know the typical ones: work out more, get places early, try new things, blah, blah, blah. We are always in search of something more to acquire, do, or be. But what if what you had was enough? Instead of looking for new friends, what if you dedicated your time to the existing friends who love and cherish you?
We are living in a digital age, where everything you could possibly want is at the tip of your finger; and with a left or right swipe, it could be yours. We are constantly being bombarded with news and opinions and comparisons on social media of what everyone else is doing and perhaps implications of what you should have done at a certain point in life. On top of that if you are looking for a job, you have to network; if you are looking for a relationship, you have to mingle; if you are looking for a cell phone provider, you must read the reviews. There are so many choices and options of introducing new things into our lives. It’s exhausting. And so with 2018, we bring in the concept of simplicity.
#NoNewFriends is not about becoming a hermit in isolation, but rather, it’s about appreciating what’s already in your life. The concept is simple: what if, for one year (or period of time), you didn’t worry about meeting anyone new? You went to work and home and planned activities for the friends and family you want to hang out with. You dress up because you want to look nice, but you don’t have to make small talk with strangers and go to things just to meet people. You call home more frequently and visit with your parents. Maybe you let your mother or grandmother teach you how to knit or crochet. Maybe you teach your grandparents how to text. You finally finish the last season of Lost so you can talk to your cubicle neighbor about it at work, and you send out handwritten birthday cards to your close friends. Perhaps you stop taking selfies and posting on Snapchat because your immediate friends would be right there with you.
What if we spent less time scrolling through other people’s feeds and just went for a stroll outside? Or spent less time trying to think of creative ways to say no to events we just don’t want to go to, for fear of being impolite to these new friends? The simplicity of not adding new faces into your world is hard to picture, but first it starts with exchanging phone numbers or a Facebook friend request. Now it’s another photo on Facebook to “like” or an article to read or a “Happy Birthday!” to post. Maybe you don’t get to texting on major holidays, but if you make one new friend a month, that’s 12 additional people that you weren’t spending any energy on a year ago. If you’ve done that for the last 5 years, that’s 60 new “friends.”
Now, don’t get me wrong, it is great to get out and meet new people, but I think there’s a tipping point. At some point the focus should shift from continuing to meet new people to just enjoying the awesome members of your tribe. Life is short, and we don’t want to look back on missed time with a long-time friend, because you wanted to go to the mall with a person you met a week ago. And yes, I’m using the term friend loosely, as you might not call someone you met a week ago friend, but you are still at the mall with them (side eye).
2018 is about simplicity and focus for me. Utilize the energy you would put in these new relationships into completing your goals, starting your business, reading more books, working out, etc. You may meet someone that is awesome and fits nicely into your world; so as long as they don’t distract you from your goals, that is great. But for those in a slump or wondering how to make a change, perhaps #NoNewFriends is for you.