10 February 2014

Friendship & Social Circles

How many friends do you have? What about the number of new friends you have made since the beginning of this year? Different folks get acquainted with you for different reasons fueled by different motivations. Let us take a look at the different types of friendship and social circles in our modern society.

Photo: Figma Nyaruko and Figma Hatsune Miku hugging in celebration of their friendship.

Understanding Friendship

Image: The Different Types of Friendship

The Definition of Friendship
1. the state of being a friend; association as friends: to value a person's friendship.
2. a friendly relation or intimacy.
3. friendly feeling or disposition.

Source: Dictionary.com

The Friendship of Self
Before thinking about associating, helping, loving, or hating someone, you have to love and help yourself first. You are the best friend ever in your entire friends list. You communicate with yourself everyday from decision making to introspection and retrospection. You are the one who knows yourself best. Keep yourself healthy and happy at all times!

Family / Relatives
Regardless of rain, shine, or just some situation of barren stagnation, these are the folks who are closest to you and will usually be the ones whom you approach or approach you for help first. They are one of the closest friends you ever have!

Best Friends / Buddies
When your family or relatives are out of your communications range and frequency for certain activities and situations, this is where best friends or buddies come onto the stage! These are the folks whom you approach or approach you for almost anything from outings and parties to gatherings and requests for help.

Casual Friends
You know who they are and they know who you are. You talk to them and they talk to you whenever you meet them but are usually not in the top list of friends to invite when it comes to activities such as outings and gatherings.

You know what their names and occupations are but rarely interact or even contact them at all. When you meet them in person, you will greet them, they will greet you, conversations hardly happen, and they will usually turn their attention to something else such as their mobiles phones or simply walk away.

Managing Friendship
Friends and acquaintances do not come with magical labels informing you about who they are or which category of friends they belong to. It is important to categorize your friends and acquaintances based on their personalities and behaviors.

Inviting the wrong person to the wrong activity will not just spell trouble, but will also hurt the friendship with other folks which you have spent quite a considerable amount of time and effort forging and maintaining.

When it is time to let go of a problematic "friend", you have to allow your friendship with this folk slide further away from you by having less interactions and contact. This folk will somehow learn about the growing distance and will also move on to find other like-minded folks who share and can relate to the same behavioral principles.

Understanding Social Circles

Image: The Different Types of Social Circles

The Definition of Social Circle
A social circle is a group of socially interconnected people. A social circle may be viewed from the perspective of an individual who is the locus of a particular group of socially interconnected people and from the perspective of the group as a cohesive unit.

Source: Wikipedia

The Personal Social Circle
One of the safest and precious social circles of all time where folks will continue to support you regardless of where you have been, what you have done, how you have changed, and places you inside of their own personal social circle as well. Your best friends are usually placed inside this social circle.

The Family Social Circle
While your family and relatives are the closest and dearest of kin to you, they will still have certain expectations formed and etched onto you. Should you not do well in certain aspects of your life, support will not always be available as they will usually remind you of being an independent, responsible, and resourceful person who can contribute back to the family.

The School Social Circle
You go to school, attend lessons, do your assignments, work on projects, sit for examinations, join club activities, so on and so forth. Throughout this journey of academia, you meet other folks who are in the same situation as you yet different in their own distinctive ways. They may form a study group with you but not necessarily become friends whom you can easily hang out with outside of the academic territories.

The Work Social Circle
You graduate from school, enter the workforce, and began contributing to the world economy. Being in the workforce, you get to meet an even greater diversity of folks from all walks of life. These folks may be your superior, colleague, subordinate, customer, supplier, and competitor (even within the same organization).

The Community Social Circle
While being outside of your personal, family, school, and work territories, you get to meet other folks such as merchants, service crew, security guards, government officials, club activity members, and that boy or girl next door. While you do not have any direct relationship with them, you will still meet and interact with them in person on occasions.

Managing Social Circles
Friends and acquaintances come from a diversity of social circles with differing interests, hobbies, perspectives, cultures, traditions, belief systems, and the like. While your friends may share similar interests, hobbies, and perspectives with you, they are still distinctly different and unique folks who may operate in more than one social circle.

A colleague of yours whom you met and interact with at the workplace during work days might also be part of your community social circle who plays a different role during rest days. Friends do not necessarily come from only one social circle and might belong to two or even more interconnected social circles.

Round-up: Friendship & Social Circles

Video: 18 Types of Friends by Wah! Banana

There are much more about friendship and social circles that cannot simply be explained in theories. As the world continues to change at a rapid pace, folks will also change the way they behave and will somehow fall outside of frequency bands which they used to be in. Continue to observe for behavioral changes of your friends and re-categorize them accordingly.

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