Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness

Go down

Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness Empty Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness

Post by Olmajor on Tue Mar 03, 2015 4:09 pm

I've been thinking about friendships and then I found Doc's article called How to Make Friends (When You’re Out of College). He writes about being a proactive or reactive friend in it, which means how much initiative you take in a friendship. You could be the one who organizes get-togethers and activities or you don't, but you are pleased to go if you are invited.

I think I'm reactive, and I think it's OK. Taking initiative is challenging for me most of the time, but I meet my friends enough in events and parties. I do ask people for movie dates and board game nights, as they are easier for me.

My feelings about this situation are two-sided. I'm happy with things as they are, as I don't feel I need to be more proactive. But I worry, that I might miss out on things. What if I regret later, that I took too little initiative with my friends in college? After reading the blog I realize that I fear rejection and I play it safe. Movies and board games are activities where you don't have to directly face the other one-on-one, and they are both impersonal things.

Why I took all this up here, is that I believe that maybe most of my friends are just acquaintances. I don't think I need a BFF for instance, but I feel I have very little people to share my feelings with. Again, on one hand I believe I could be happy with things as they are, but on one hand I worry about missing out. Do you think it's OK, if you feel you don't need to have more than acquaintances (in addition to a partner for instance)?

Olmajor

Posts : 11
Reputation : 0
Join date : 2014-11-04

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness Empty Re: Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness

Post by eselle28 on Tue Mar 03, 2015 4:28 pm

I tend to think of proactive versus reactive as a scale. I'm more reactive than proactive, but I've gotten a bit more proactive as I've gotten a bit older, just in response to changing social patterns. I suspect that as with the approacher/approachee dichotomy, a lot of people are well-served by at least a slight mix of the two strategies. I'd also say that suggests some things people who lean more toward being reactive can do to make that strategy work best for them. I think I've always been a relatively easygoing guest who's willing to go along with lots of plans, but I've been trying to pay more attention lately toward thanking people who initiate plans for putting the evening together and reciprocating by asking them to do something one and one now and then.

This is sort of a side point, but I'm sort of curious when you talk about personal versus impersonal activities. I would generally also characterize movies as impersonal, but I've never really thought of board games that way. That's struck me as being as personal as most other social activities.

As for friends versus acquaintances, I think most people benefit from having more than one person to share their feelings with, especially if they do have a partner. The other person doesn't need to be a friend (I suspect a relative or a therapist would do as well), but it does tend to be hard to someone's sole emotional support. Of course, that may not apply to someone who is relatively satisfied with only acquaintances and who might be a bit hands off with a partner as well.
eselle28
eselle28
General Oversight Moderator

Posts : 1994
Reputation : 999
Join date : 2014-09-24

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness Empty Re: Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness

Post by reboot on Tue Mar 03, 2015 4:29 pm

Personally, I think it is good to have some close friends from whom you can gain emotional support outside of a partner, because:

1. Having your partner be your sole source of emotional support is demanding a lot from them
2. Sometimes you need emotional support about problems in you relationship and you cannot ask for support on problems with your partner from your partner
3. Close friends are your "Team You" during breakups or if you end up in an abusive situation
reboot
reboot
Moderator of "Other Relationships" and "Gender, Identity and Society"

Posts : 2514
Reputation : 1005
Join date : 2014-09-24

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness Empty Re: Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness

Post by Wondering on Tue Mar 03, 2015 5:09 pm

You don't necessarily need to have those close friends in person, though. I have different friends that I go to for different issues, and most of that is done online for me these days since I don't live near most of them anymore, though I did at one point or the other in my life. I don't have social interactions with them because of this. In fact, one of my very good friends is someone I've never met in person.

_________________
-Nevertheless, she persisted

Wondering

Posts : 1117
Reputation : 436
Join date : 2014-10-01

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness Empty Re: Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness

Post by Olmajor on Wed Mar 04, 2015 5:24 pm

What I was thinking when I wrote about board games, was that it's just having fun and there's no personal connections between people. Or there could be, if it's the right people. What I originally tried to say was that, if you only see your friends/acquaintances in board game nights, those relationships don't have a chance to deepen. English is not my first language, and I was a little distressed when I wrote the message.

Wondering and eselle28 gave me some new viewpoints. The idea about thanking the inviter and reciprocating with an invitation; I hadn't ever thought of that. It is that easy after all. Smile And about online friends, how do you communicate usually? On social media, instant messages, e-mail?

By the way, mods, I meant this thread to Other Relationships forum, but I was careless. You can move this if it's necessary.

Olmajor

Posts : 11
Reputation : 0
Join date : 2014-11-04

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness Empty Re: Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness

Post by eselle28 on Wed Mar 04, 2015 5:48 pm

Olmajor wrote:And about online friends, how do you communicate usually? On social media, instant messages, e-mail?

I generally initiate contact on social media or by text. Some of my friends do the same, but I have one who's a phone person. He tends to call me because he's a student and his schedule changes every quarter.
eselle28
eselle28
General Oversight Moderator

Posts : 1994
Reputation : 999
Join date : 2014-09-24

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness Empty Re: Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness

Post by Wondering on Wed Mar 04, 2015 6:17 pm

I keep in touch with people generally via social media. But some are email. And some are email/text/phone.

The ones I met online I usually met in a forum back when forums, like this one, were a lot more common on the internet. We'd communicate via forum posts and then private messages. Those friends are all on Facebook now, though. I do a lot of communicating via Facebook messages for personal stuff.

I'm more likely to be texting and emailing people I originally formed friendships with in real life but live far away from.

_________________
-Nevertheless, she persisted

Wondering

Posts : 1117
Reputation : 436
Join date : 2014-10-01

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness Empty Re: Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness

Post by kleenestar on Wed Mar 04, 2015 6:26 pm

I think you can be proactive and reactive in different areas. For example, I hate party planning and almost never throw parties, though I go to parties thrown by others and try to be a good guest. On the other hand, I'm very proactive about planning one-on-one time with friends, in part because I really hate parties. Razz

You could pick one area that's easy for you to be proactive in (setting up Hangouts with friends? going for drinks after board game night?) and make that your proactive specialty. Then you can just be great at being reactive for the rest. Grin
kleenestar
kleenestar

Posts : 289
Reputation : 204
Join date : 2014-10-01

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness Empty Re: Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness

Post by readertorider on Thu Mar 05, 2015 1:20 pm

Olmajor wrote:Why I took all this up here, is that I believe that maybe most of my friends are just acquaintances. I don't think I need a BFF for instance, but I feel I have very little people to share my feelings with. Again, on one hand I believe I could be happy with things as they are, but on one hand I worry about missing out. Do you think it's OK, if you feel you don't need to have more than acquaintances (in addition to a partner for instance)?

I don't know, I'm a little blurry on where the friend/acquaintance line is especially in college. I can't say I've ever talked much about my deepest darkest desires with any of my college friends, but when the bad stuff went down--knife threats, mental illness, hospitalization, drinking weirdness, missed exams, break ups-- people were there and we were supportive. I haven't had much contact with many of my college friends since leaving college, but they definitely were/are my friends even if we didn't spend a lot of time talking about our feelings (and I talked about different feelings with different friends when I did talk about them)--we bonded over shared hobbies, movies, celebrating birthdays, board/video games, ridiculous projects, walking the grounds, or trying to get onto campus roofs. My thought is that friends are good to have, but how you define friendship might be different than how other people define friendship. If you do want people to share feelings with college is probably one of the best places to find them, however Smile
readertorider
readertorider

Posts : 155
Reputation : 58
Join date : 2014-10-23

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness Empty Re: Friends & reactiveness/proactiveness

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

Back to top


 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum