Relationships are your guiding force in life.  This includes relationships with yourself, your family, your significant other, your dog, your coworkers, and your friends.  Having a solid group of friends is incredible.  You want a crew that supports you, drives you, and understands you.  I celebrated my Bachelor Party in Colorado this past weekend with my best friends.  It was a mix of my brothers, high school, college, and post-college friends.  I am blessed to say the least.  We trekked through rapids while rafting, tasted the Rockies, hopped from rooftop bar to rooftop bar, ate some great food, and enjoyed everything about beautiful Denver.  If I have learned anything over the last 27+ years, it's that having a good group of friends involves dedication, and in the end, it is one of the greatest parts of life.

There are a lot of changes in life – interests, life goals, where we live, who we date -  therefore, the people we spend our time with changes.  With that being said, there are some relationships that will never fizzle out no matter what change you go through, and those are the friendships you likely cherish the most.  When you no longer live down the street or in the same house as your friends like you do growing up or in college, the time spent with each other may decrease in quantity, but that likely means it’s increasing in quality because you understand that your time together is more valuable.  I believe that despite less frequent time spent together, by making your time more meaningful, a friendship can continue to strengthen.  It is not easy to make this work. Ask questions, challenge each other, and go deep into conversations to see how friends have grown. 

While we were all in Denver, hanging out on the roof of the Airbnb, I could not have been happier.  We laughed over hilarious stories (all my dumb college moments) and it reminded me how lucky I am to have such a strong community around me.  They all traveled to Denver just to be together and celebrate.  That's epic.  I was able to have great conversations with everyone individually.  It was amazing to have this time with so many great people to really converse about everything going on in our lives.

I have done a lot of reflecting on friendship over the past few months and have concluded that with work and caring about someone, friendships truly strengthen over time.  You do not need to be around someone everyday to be best friends.  I remember, literally, and yes, there are pictures, crying in the bar the last few days of college because I was so concerned about not seeing my friends every day.  But I now know that due to the care we all have for each other, my friends are friends for life.  I have challenged myself to ask the hard questions, really see how people are doing, invite friends over for events, initiate time together, and always be open to talk. As a guy, it's sometimes hard to open up, but when you know you are not being judged and everyone around you has your best interest at heart, you're an open book.   It is extremely important to share with others things that are going on in your life, so they are open to doing the same.  Opening up and learning how to ask questions to others has been a very important way for me to grow.

As I reflect on this weekend and the perfect mix of activities and recklessness, I realize that I am blessed with an amazing squad.  I challenge myself from today forward to continue to work hard in my friendships and cherish the time we spend together.  Friendships are relationships and relationships take work.  Do work and you'll be rewarded.

Special shout out to my crew! Matt Hirt thanks for planning the best weekend ever.  

Love you all team!

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