Disclaimer: I take no responsibility for the actions that you take after reading this post. In fact, even landing on this page without reading this disclaimer absolves Alex Weber of any and all responsibility for your actions, past and future. Furthermore, this page is mainly a #rant and not meant to be seen as advice.
Here are my qualifications for when to…
- Remove someone from my Facebook news feed
- Un-friend them on Facebook completely
- Hang out less in person with someone
The first part is easy.
If you write predominantly negative updates on Facebook or Twitter, I don’t want to see it.
Everyone has ups and downs, and I understand that. However, the fact that we had two classes together in High School does not mean that I want to hear that your “boo” is cheating on you, or that you got fired, or that the weather is bad.
Here’s my point: If you predominantly post negativity, I will filter it so it doesn’t infect my brain.
It’s been shown that Happiness is Contagious and I’m pretty sure negativity works that way too.
You may think “Alex, you’re a ig ol’ stick in the mud! We just wanna vent sometimes!”
I understand venting as a short-term thing. I’m talking about repeated negativity, weighted with how well I know someone (how much we actually interact, message, talk, see each other IRL etc.)
My criteria for IRL friends:
This is not a hard list, but more of a set of criteria that I feel is important with my IRL friendships.
- You must have a similar threshold for caring about money as I do. My threshold is around $20. This means, if you ask to borrow $20, I’ll expect you to pay me back $20. However, if we’re at Burger King and I ask if you want anything and you order a sandwich combo coming up to $6.28, I’d prefer that you pay it forward by buying me a meal or a beer or ANYTHING rather than keeping “six dollars and twenty-eight cents” in a ledger of how much we owe one another.While we’re talking about money, I don’t believe that it makes the world go round. That’s some gravity and inertia and other space-forces. I do see the importance of money–it makes living in our society a lot easier. You can broker deals and favors and whatever else with it.However, I don’t believe that small amounts should be the thing to drive friendships apart. I recently received a series of text messages from a dude who had paid for our whole group’s Chinese food delivery order. Total debt for me and two others: $32. We ordered the food three days ago. I asked when he would be around so I could drop off some cash, but instead, I got back today “whenever u feel like payn me back for chinese food. Kinda weak in [sic] dude”.Seriously? $32? And I’m trying to pay you back? And that’s weak? That’s grounds for IRL friend-de-prioritization. Okay, enough about this. On to the next one.
- You must be generally positive and “down“ (link is to UrbanDictionary definition). I like doing exciting things. I like doing things I haven’t tried before. And most of all, I like friends who will encourage me to do these things, and will want to try them with me. It could be something as simple as going skydiving. Tomorrow. Are you down? That’s the test.What if it’s going out to a national forest, and we’re going to DJ there. You down?Or even, we’ve both had a long week, and it’s Thursday night. We’ve both got to work tomorrow. But there’s a great party tonight. Are you still down?I’m sure you can see how “down-ness” and negativity can counteract one another. If I’m down, I’m saying “Yes” to opportunities. And I’m probably going to have fun, because if I’m already down for new things, I’ve probably had fun trying new things in the past.
With Good Reason?
There’s a lot of common ideas about how your friends influence you. Want to see the best predictor of where you’ll be in 20 years? Look at your friends. How you walk, talk, eat, drink, and think, is all influenced by your peer group. Shouldn’t you maybe take a critical eye to the people who are essentially shaping you for the rest of your life? #justsayin.
What are the rules to be friends with YOU?
I’m curious to know if other people have similar criteria that they grade their friends on. I’d be much obliged if you’d post your thoughts in the comments below.