By Andrea Lawful Sanders
We all seek people in our lives who will like us beyond what we do for a living and love us through our challenges and faults.
I call those people our “tribe.” They are the “inner council” of friends who will guide, guard and support us no matter what swirls within our orbit.
Since these are the people who will have access to the holy grail of trust and intimacy, they must not be granted access lightly; it is a fatal mistake too many make.
Patience and a keen sense of yourself and others is the perfect blend needed that will attract your tribe to you.
To quote one of my tribe members: “Becoming successful with no friends you can turn to speaks volumes about who you are, as no one is an island unto themselves — but when you see that person, it usually means they have been hurt so badly in the past, they gave up trying.”
I tell people like that to find at least one person who shares their core values; “court” them to see if it (the friendship) could become more, learn from each other by being vulnerable, and if they hold your confidentiality and share bits of themselves that you hold dear, then begin “dating” them, before you “marry” your souls, because once you are there, you are that person’s well of comfort, joys and the inner sanctum of peace when challenges come.
Your tribe, in order to fully learn and benefit from them, must be able to trust you implicitly, and you them.
I have been incredibly fortunate in my life to be surrounded by a tribe of people, who freely offer love and acceptance, are honest in their assessments of the bold choices I would choose to make, and are fine if I decide to listen to, but not fully take, their advice at times.
No one in your tribe should expect to be hero-worshipped, for that is the makings of a situation brewing that can lead to nowhere good.
Your tribe will leverage their skill set to share tips, services, and open doors they have access to, with no egos attached and they will have no interest in sharing with the world what they have done for you.
A good tribe is also one where you do not have to speak with or see each other daily, but can pick right up where you left off. It should never feel like one is being clung to, as that smacks of leveraging for the sake of feeling important to others.
A powerful tribe built on all the aforementioned parameters leads to serious accomplishments being celebrated, which creates room for others to grow beyond yourselves.
One more thing – your tribe should not all look like you. Embracing different cultures, widens your viewpoint in ways that matter.
Being myopic in thought and deed leads to a narrow path. An open mind and the willingness to learn from another’s point of view creates a well-learned individual who can access more of what the world has to offer.
You may have friends who never fully make it to the inner sanctum of your life. Do not let anyone force you into feeling guilty that they are not gaining access to you on a more intimate level — in fact, if they force the issue, they do not belong.
Be warned: your tribe speaks volumes about who you are, so if you are consistently surrounded by selfish, petty and self-serving individuals, the chances are pretty high that you are one, too, — as we attract to us who we are.
Do not allow yourself to be suckered by the sociopaths among us, who will only see you as a means to their end, and please observe and believe the actions they exhibit beyond the words they spew.
People like these will suddenly have no use for you once they accomplish their goals. Life is challenging enough, without adding salvos that may ultimately destroy you.
Think about it and move accordingly.