Life is a battlefield, depending on how we handle it… We can mismanage our struggles and end up alone in battle or we can take our time and rally for help to take on battles with a balanced party. Ultimately, how we rally an army is up to us. Continue reading The Power of Friendship – A Personal Reflection
So here I am sitting at the office of ZeroXR 13mg just pondering and reflecting on what happened all in the past year. It has been quite a year of battle, blood, and suffering to attain somewhat of a bitter-sweet victory. I am somewhat out of debt with debt collectors but under the charity of my family which they have now turned into my loan officers. I have been fortunate for their blessing and I have been able to curb my spending much better to try expediting payment back to them.
Developmentally, things are getting better. I basically took another semester at The School of Hard Knocks and I have been learning to break more of my nativity away in hopes of understanding life better. I am much more able now than I was years ago, which has saved my sorry tail from being kicked around. I have been trying to break my cynicism into a more manageable state, as cynicism has cost me a number of things. I have also learned to embrace optimism because I know I can break through.
I know that this year is important and I need to embrace it to really merit the benefits of it. I will push forward and hopefully I can break serious ground with regard to my dreams.
Happy birthday to me… I hope this year will bring much more joy than 2007 had.
When we reach our teenage years, we finally open our hearts socially and embrace friendships with people of similar or different walks of life. These bonds become the foundation of our own social and moral fibers. The ones who stand tall and support you usually end up being the ones who are the “real deal”. Often through our vulnerable years, we fall victim to those who betray our trust and show their deceitful colors as traitors to the ideals we have formed. What happens when someone who you have turned to for trust, security and advice ends up slowly poisoning your life? How do we find strength to figuratively put a bullet into the relationship that was productive, but now just making your life a living hell?
LifeHack.org had a great article about pulling the plug on friends featured on Monday. The article brings about some really great points on the “criteria” you as a person should consider about your friends. At the same right, it does bring some factors to the table that you also have to take into account. One could almost break it into the concept of “friendship appraisal”. Like how when you bring a vehicle to the dealership for an appraisal before trading it in or cashing it out, it is a through evaluation that inspects almost every facet of things to make sure that there are not things that could subtract from the starting value. I would say the big “values” of a friendship are time, respect, integrity.
Time is important, because like the adage goes: “Time is Money”. Money can be replaced respectively with productivity, if you think about it. Look back on all the time and history that you have built a friendship over. Has the time invested in the friendship been good? Is it full of memories that have been uplifting and productive on a mutual basis? Obviously, if the friendly relationship has been full of drama, delayed agony, and strife that have only served to benefit the means of your “friend’s” ways… They are probably not worth your time. Conversely, if your friend has made an effort to try to be mutually impacting in positive facets, then you know that the friendship is definitely a good investment of time.
Respect, a value that no person should ever sacrifice. We have to remember that we should be equals to our friends. We should never let our friends trample on our beliefs or values, all just to make a friendship work. We have to stand up for what we believe in, because values form who we are as humans. If we have friends who criticize and pick apart the things we believe in, rather than pointing out things and respecting our choices regardless. If a friend can respect you for who you are, rather than completely ripping your respect to shreds… then they are true to the word. If a friend has been slowly breaking you apart to mold you into their “perfect” vision and forcefully injecting their own values into you… they probably don’t care if you’ve sold your soul just to be their friend.
Integrity, the idea of “doing the right thing even when no one is watching”. Integrity is also being consistent with one’s beliefs. Much like respect, this should never EVER be compromised. A friend with integrity is one that could care less about the drama for helping you, because you’re a friend. The same friend would do their damnedest to render aid to you should things get tough… The same friend would also be there for you at any time or hour, provided that real world obligations are not stopping them. The most important thing, a friend with integrity is not swayed by the “angry mob” because they have their own mind. The integrity is the bit of value that really determines if your friend is an asset to you. If they are one to turn a dagger on you or just change because popular opinion, they simply aren’t worth the effort to salvaging a friendship.
The above points also make it tough, because if your best friend ends up being the one that you have to debate with… More than likely, one of the above will be breached. There are some cases where you can try to compromise and reason, but it’s not a guarantee. I know it was hard to turn a sword to some people that I had confided in, but when the matter of respect was breached… I couldn’t allow myself to be trampled on. Sure, the initial pain of watching my former friends basically stab me to death… but being able to stand up and say “I will survive” while others mocked my assumed rigor mortis was something far more valuable than anything else out there.
From rising up after drowning in a bloody pool of social drama, I relearned how to make quality friends. Sure, I wasn’t as “cool” or “popular” as the social butterfly with 400+ friends on Myspace and/or Facebook, but I could care less! The reward of having friends who have been straight-up truthful as well as strong with me has held lots of merits. I have made friends for life that the bonds will get stronger as time passes by.
It is like the old saying goes… “Friends come and go, but true friends last a life time.” It may be nice to be “popular”, but once the flame dies, is the lack of substance really worth it? Friends who have not a clue about you or even the time to invest back to you. Having to sell your soul just to keep them around. Investments that only lead to ruin, it’s just not worth the time and effort! The world is far from over, you can always recover… I am living proof of that testament.
Tomorrow, I begin hitting back hard on my workout again. Last week was more dietary control and trying to run right on the border of 2,000 calories or making deficits for high intake days. It was more myself trying to celebrate life and it was fun. There were good people I had a great time with, but I don’t regret my fun.
I look forward to tear fresh muscle and tweak the seeds of progress again. Nothing like a positively good sweat to let me know that I have done well. The strength of youth and a meditation of strength are things that I long for. Family has been fighting with me, so gym time is more time to myself so that I may become a “deathbeast” as my friend once called it. My friend referred to the term deathbeast as the state of a working out with a great state of intensity to help facilitate great development. The sort of development that turns a frail intellectual into a strong gentleman. Mind you, it’s nothing even close to “roiding up” and having superficial muscular development. Most of the torn muscle from before the holiday chaos has healed nicely, so I am once again apt to really push harder.
I have one month and one week left until my weigh-in… In the name of health and glory, I shall give it my all.
It’s almost the end of the year and what a rocky road it has been. I confronted my debts, almost paid the toll of my life a few times, embraced open source software, and went a spiritual journey. There were a few times where I almost lost my soul from everything muddling the water, but with a few good friends they had pulled me through. I am thankful for meeting my friends because I know that fate brought me to them for a good reason.
My friends helped me find solace in myself. I had to change who my friends were to ones who could give me a new view of life. A stale view from friends stagnating in their fallacy of foolish living just seemed to constantly put me in the wrong. Once I realized I knew what I had to do, the only thing I lacked were mentors. When I found my mentors, I knew that I could finally begin the path to the way of perfection.
With my job and the positive changes, I found that my new boss and my assistant manager would become somewhat like a brother and sister of mine, albeit older. They wanted to be a little involved with my life, because they knew the pain of struggling and suffering without anyone to offer a listening ear. With their concern, I felt like I had a second home to speak my mind. That second home being a fusion of a hall of learning and a hall of healing. My clients and their happiness also served as another pillar of strength as that was the “fuel” I used to keep on fighting. When things looked absolutely dismal, just to see one of my clients smile and say something as simple as “Thank you Zero, your persistence is very much appreciated!” makes me feel great that I could positively impact their lives.
As far as myself is concerned, I am in a unique predicament due to my sketchy finances. With owing my family on a loan that pulled me out of debt, they are seeking restitution at a faster rate. I have 2 more minor debts that I must polish off and after that… I will be clean from those. I also have a few vital things that must be taken care of on my car Devil which will run me a few hundred there. I am prohibited from accepting any more loans from my family and any banking establishments until I have repaid 85% of their initial loan as part of their agreement. This leaves me in a bind as I am paying for my classes out of my own pocket. From the matter of fact, I may just spend the next 5 months working to death to amass a sum of money and get all of my financial work straightened out. After all sides are square, then the money will go into savings and be nested up. The IRS should be giving back cash, rather than demanding it from me for once. Lastly, I have a wild gamble that may pay off but I must bide my time until summer but that requires some capital. To be honest, I could care less if my family wants to offer to reduce my car note to nothing, because the term is almost over and it’s pointless. If my gamble pays off… then my efforts to reduce my debts to nothing on my own will demonstrate my abilities to control my own financial destiny again.
If I haven’t made mention already… Family is making a ruckus about Christmas gifts and all. For me, I know I deserve no gift from them and that’s perfectly fine. As long as I can hang with my cousin Sol, work out like a maniac, and write for this holiday, I could care less about being told that I need to hurry with repayment or have a Christmas where I am being yelled to death with my family. I do wish for some better things, but I won’t fight it.
I would like to close this post with a challenge to myself: If I can burn off 15 lbs (from 155 lbs) by February 11th of 2008, I will buy myself a media player of some sort with an armband strap to take with me to my gym sessions.