Friendship Month Is Hard

I feel a bit guilty.  Organization month was so much fun for me.  All April, I had a great time getting my ducks in a row, making lists and plans, generally creating order.  I enjoyed reading books on the topic, and even while each chore or task was not necessarily a joy, it gave me a sense of accomplishment.  It was check-able.

Friendship month, on the other had, is drudgery.  I feel just awful saying that.  I should be excited to make new friends, and make better connections with those that I already have.  I am just spent, though.  It’s exhausting keeping up with other people – everyone’s schedules are different, and sometimes I wonder if I’m even benefiting from the project.  I mean, if it’s a complete chore to maintain contact with someone, is the effort worth it?  On the other hand, if I don’t start to be a little more active in this area, I’m going to end up friendless.

Is it possibly just that this point in my life isn’t necessarily conducive to friend making?  I have a few co-workers and neighbors that I could become closer with, but I’m not sure that’s a line I want to cross.  It seems like it’s easy enough to make friends when you have kids – I used to make temporary mom-friends without trying when I’d take my babysitting charges to the playground.  Not that I’d pursue those friendships – I felt like a fraud in that situation – but I can see how those types of friendships could easily and naturally evolve.  In my current situation, I feel like I’m forcing friendships.

So which is better – forced friendships, or none at all?

I wish I just felt a little more comfortable socializing.  That would make this month quite a bit easier!  But… again… “easy” is not why I’m doing the Happiness Project!  It seems strange that being happy should be work, or that happiness can be unpleasant.  I suppose this month I just need to remind myself that I’m working toward long-term happiness and not just temporary pleasure.  Forcing myself to communicate and get out into the social scene WILL eventually make things better — and hopefully it will get easier with practice!

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One response to “Friendship Month Is Hard

  1. I have these moments all the time. Friendship doesn’t come easy. Oh how I wish it did! But. man, it’s exhausting. Planning get togethers around everyone’s busy schedules? Spending so much of your time “catching up”? Putting yourself out there and actually meeting new people? It is tough. I do it becuase I know that if it works I’ll be better off in the long run, but as you (and Gretchen Rubin) say, what will make us happy later doesn’t always make us happy now.

    And I think its possible that you can feel like your life isnt conducive to friendships, but I really think its just hard to find time to make the friendships. I am a believer, after seeing the research, that at the time when you think your life isnt conducive to new friends is probably when you need them the most. At least that was the case fr me!

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