I've had a really interesting change of perspectives lately. I've been experiencing a lot of feelings of numbness lately. It something that comes and goes and thankfully has been spending more time going than coming the last week. Two things have been on my mind a lot. One of them is friendship and the other is plans that I have for my life.
As for friendship, I've found myself over the last few weeks (arguably months) worrying over the fact that I didn't have any closer friends. I've been thinking back to all the people I've met at college, at previous work places, at places like Journey Into Manhood and Evergreen, and wondering why I hardly ever hear from any of those people.
I have a tendency when I think about this to first start to feel angry toward the other people. I start to blame them for no sort of friendship forming. Then I start to shift all the blame to myself. I start to think that I didn't try hard enough, or that something is wrong with me. I start to think that I was either too uninteresting or that I scared the person off. Lately, I got a huge piece of insight into this. I realize that one reason I was struggling with having any feelings of a close friendship is because I've been too absorbed in my own problems, faults, and struggles. I've been very emotionally needy and draining, in my judgement. I judge that I've been scaring away, pushing away, or simply ignoring potential friends and possibly alienating myself from existing friends. I sometimes wonder if being too needy and demanding on past people has led to friendships either not forming, or causing other friendships to fall apart when I got disappointed with the other people. Ultimately, I've decided that I need to take a different approach. I need to focus more on being my own friend. I need to get to know myself, do things with myself, and learn to enjoy my own company. I have a feeling that will have a positive effect on my friendships with other people.
The other thing that has been bothering me is the fact that I don't have any 'big plans' for my own life. I see other people who are ambitious in their careers, who have plans to buy houses, get married, go on trips to other places. I sometimes wonder if there's something wrong with me to not have plans like that. My plans typically are short term and it's usually invitations to do things with other people or things that just 'need to be done'. I think that somehow over grown up, I've lost to ability to dream, to imagine, to have hopes about the future. I feel like I've spent a lot of time being adrift, going along with the flow of life, and not working toward any kind of future goal. I honestly feel apathetic about plans for the future. I don't seem to care what will happen to me with my career. I just live from one day to the next, without any expectations or hopes for the future.
I had an impression in church today that was very helpful to me. Someone in Elder's Quorum was sharing how one of the General Authorities had taken some time to embrace and comfort him. I was struck by the love that the General Authority had shown for the man. It reminded me of the fact that God gives everyone callings to grow. He's given to some people to lead the entire church and to others to do other things in His church. The fact is that the calling I have is one that will help me grow. It encourages me to interact with the other men in the ward. It calls me to step up and be bold. I got the impression that my purpose and goal in life should be to get back to live with Heavenly Father, and to be like Him. My primary goal in life is not to have a great career, to visit a certain place, or to have so many friends. My primary goal is to live like Jesus Christ, to grow in love toward to my fellow man, and to love myself as Heavenly Father loves me. That is a purpose and goal that I feel passionately about.
So, maybe I don't have big plans for the future, maybe I don't feel like I have friends that I could call 'BFFs'. I definitely do feel I need to have a more serious and loving relationship with myself and with my Heavenly Father. I can see how that would extend to my relationships with everyone around me. I feel happy to have a sense of hope and joy about the future and an increased feeling of peace in the present. I feel more ready to face the world with all of its joys and trials. I feel grateful to have a new perspective on life.