Why It's Ok That Your Friendship Group Is Shrinking
As I sit here in the corner of a coffee shop at a table for one, I looked up from my keyboard to find a table of 7 college girls chatting away at 100 MPH. I took note of their outfits and mannerisms and I would put money on who I thought the ring leader of the group was. Once I realized that I had probably been staring for a second too long, I put my head back down and giggled under my breath as I thought to myself oh, how things have changed! It was something about the sight of that friend group that distracted me from my to do list and redirected my thoughts to friendships. I began to think about friendships and the tender, loving care that they require. I thought about how each friendship serves a different purpose. How some are extremely fragile while others can survive a bullet. I then began thinking of my own personal friendships that I had in my life. You know, the ones that you swore would never dwindle away and now, I can’t tell you the last time we talked.
I thought about all my sorority sisters and how there was a time in our life where we couldn’t make a plan without first consulting our “intimate” group of 25. A lot has happened since my days at University of Alabama. Right after college I blindly moved to Los Angeles and some friendships couldn’t handle the miles apart while others were strengthened by the distance. From there, life went on and we all took different paths. Some jumped into marriage while others continued making out with strangers at the bar. Some married their careers while others felt more lost than ever. Some gained the title of mom while others were being relocated due to their new executive title.
Fast forward a few more years and ….
Here we are.
Are we still friends?
Or more of a memory?
It happens. Friendships dwindle away, even those that you swore never would. Life tends to shift and as chapters are written and closed. It isn’t abnormal to lose friendships along the way. Sometimes you’ll find them again and sometimes you won’t but whatever road your friendships take, learning to have peace with it will lift a weight off your shoulders. There was a point in life where I questioned if changing friendships was a direct reflection of myself or if it was the outcome of our surrounding.
If you’ve ever found yourself wondering the same thing, you aren’t alone.
If you’ve noticed your friendship group shrinking with each passing year, you aren’t alone.
So, why? Why do friendships change and shrink as we grow older?
Different Stages In Life
As we twist and turn our way through adulthood, it’s easy to find ourselves in a different stage of life than our friends. As we grow, individually, dynamics will shift and it’s inevitable that friendships will shift. The things that were once very important to you, may not hold the same weight in your current life which can cause a change in friendships. We are not put on this earth to go through the exact same life experience at the exact same time. Your twenties are dedicated to growing as in induvial and tapping into the person who you want to become. As you begin to discover who you are, you will also discover who is meant to be in your life.
Quality Over Quantity
I can clearly hear my mom’s voice in my head saying: “Chels, one day, you’ll recognize the importance of quality over quantity, especially in friendships.“ Not to my surprise, she was right … again. There is immense value in taking a step back to look at your friendships and recognize who serves and you who doesn’t. Who is always there for you and those who is only there for their benefit. You’re a big girl now so I don’t’ have to explain to you a quality person! Point being, quality over quantity is a very real thing as true colors always shine.
I don’t believe in using time as an excusebut I do believe in prioritizing it. As life goes on and priorities shift, so will your time. With focus on career, family and personal relationships, certain friendships get the short end of the stick. If we are being frank, you get to a point where you selectively choose who you willing spend your scare moments of free time with. It may sound harsh but it’s the reality of the matter. For the sake of not spreading yourself too thin, making time for those that truly matter will help you keep your sanity and give your all to those who deserve it the most.
Have you noticed fading friendships as life goes on?
If so, how do you handle the change?