Like any normal relationship, friendships requires attention and effort in order to blossom. In these relationships one shares and learns more information about the other person to build up a better understanding. However, our approach in doing so may very well be different. Some like to ask questions; others may choose to sit back and wait for information to be pro-offered. Some prefer more sharp and meaningful contact; others require more consistent interaction. However adaptive I might be at work in managing different people, I have never really learnt to be adaptive with friends in the sense of identifying the unique interactions each friend may require or demand from my and hence be more specifc in my approach.
Sure, friendships should ideally not be hard work and one tends to flock towards those with similar approaches. But we are all different right?
Conversely, I have never really diagnosed my own approach to friend interactions and hence I may have potentially become more distant to some due to my type of attitude. Unfortunately for many of my friends, I have once been told that I am not the type of friend to keep in touch very often since I was not one to make the effort to call others. I can honestly raise my hand meekly with regards to that!
Someone was quite surprised that I didn't know much about my friends' past - e.g. were their parents around, how they grew up etc. Not knowing this was quite normal for me, but to the other person seemed quite strange.
"How do you build up a picture of them without knowing their past? Their past and history shapes their thinking and actions."
"But why is their past performance an indicator of future performance?"
This struck me as somewhat difficult in the sense that I never really enquire about my friends' background or family history. Is this a necessarily a pre-requisite to being a good friend i.e. to know about their past? I am more interested in what they are thinking and feeling now, than in the past and therefore I think it is more important in shaping their current actions and thoughts than their past actions or events.
I am not necessarily a big believer in asking a lot of questions - rather if my friends are comfortable sharing that information, then I will listen. I guess I feel it is more important to know where friends are going than where they have been in the past.