I was in line ordering at a fast-food restaurant and was asked if I wanted to supersize my order.
“No, thank you,” I replied. My favourite is my favourite for a reason. But that exchange got me thinking.
I was reading about what I can expect as an older adult and how I could better prepare for my 70s, 80s and beyond. Many of the suggestions were about planning and prioritizing what is important to me.
The importance of healthy relationships was one of the critical areas to consider.
Relationships can be divided into four categories:
- Acquaintances – I don’t know them well, but I know their first name
- Casual friends – occasionally meet for coffee or go for a walk or to an event
- Close friends – want to spend time with regularly
- Intimate friends – folks who know your inner thoughts and feelings, hopes and fears
In my last employment before ‘Movin On,’ there was one guy whom I got along with. It was at the acquaintance level but with the potential for more. Unfortunately, I was a Program Manager, and he reported to me. I never mix my role-hats at work, so we stayed as co-workers.
I went to this fellow’s office on the day my resignation was public knowledge. I asked if he was interested in a friendship-type relationship after I officially left my employment. He immediately said yes.
That was almost two decades, and my wife and I still get along well with him and his wife. Our mutual friendship even included a live music trip to Austin, Texas. Still very memorable.
I had supersized my relationship.
As I move through the various stages of life, relationships start and end. Some suddenly, others tend to fade away. Yet it is essential to have a variety of relationships. One of the quickest ways to do this is to look at all the four kinds of connections to understand which ones could be supersized to the next level.
This takes courage as I need to make the first move. As an older adult, I know I don’t have as many years ahead of me as I had in my youth. I don’t want to spend time wandering ‘what if.’ I’m listening to my ‘Say Yes More Often’ bumper sticker. The rewards of relationships that are close in nature are priceless.
Please give this a bit of a think. Do you know somebody in one of the categories of friends that could be supersized – bumped up to a higher category, to a deeper relationship? Now for the courage. Is it worth the risk to find out if the other person is also interested?
I’m curious about your thoughts. Please share your bit of a think below.
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And my thanks to St. Albert Seniors Association: for making this Blog possible.