Friendship - Dealing with Issues
I want to talk about friendship, but first I want to talk about sadness.
When People are sad, I often want to make them not sad which usually means making them happy.
This is a natural thing to want to do. However, before making someone not sad we need to find out why they are sad before deciding if we should try to make them happy or just talk with them.
For example, if someone is sad because they are mourning, we can't expect to make them happy. In this case, it would be better to listen to them and see if they need closure, time, or just a friend.
However, if someone is sad because of melancholy or depression or anxiety, perhaps making them happy is the answer!
I like making people happy, I like being around happy people. I don't like being around sad people. Well, if they are my friends or family I make an exception. I can handle being around friends and family when they aren't in the best of moods. I feel I owe them to support or at least an ear to listen. Also, I have a natural tendency to try to lighten the mood, especially if it is appropriate.
The other day, one of my friends was feeling anxious. He had just moved to a new workplace. He didn't change jobs, however, his office moved. It moved nearly 35km further from his house. That's a long-distance during rush hour. His commute went from a somewhat tolerable 70 minutes to a much less tolerable 100 minutes. Fortunately, he really likes his job. However, this is also unfortunate, because finding another job he likes won't be easy. In this case, moving his house may be easier. However, he likes his neighborhood. His family and friends all live there. He grew up in that neighborhood. He would probably sooner change jobs than move.
I was wondering, what advice can I give a friend in such a situation when changing your job or moving are the only possible solutions? I decided to play it say and tell him to try it out for a few months. He can slowly look for another job he likes. He certainly has enough time for that on the commute home when he isn't sleeping or relaxing.
Actually, I've had short and long commutes before. With short commutes, you often need to focus. You cannot doze off for 20 minutes because it only takes 10 minutes to get where you are going. Either you are driving, walking or transferring most of the time. In anycase, you are occupied. However, with long commutes, you end up figuring how to make the best of that hour or so on the bus with nothing to think about. Maybe in the morning it is dozing off or zoning out. Maybe in the evening, it is the same. If you need to send an email or phone a client to catch up on extra work, now is the time.
I told my friend how I've dealt with long commutes. I told him to get a good set of headphones. I also told him that I will happily hang out on Saturdays or holidays since after work is no longer the best time to meet. Occasionally we used to meet after work on Fridays to stress out together. However, now I would have to wait around at least an hour for him to arrive and I can only imagine he would be stressed. But he actually wants to meet tonight which happens to be Friday.
I hope we can have a wonderful and happy time. To be frank, my friend wasn't sad, I think he was just a bit let down. I guess a Friday night beer and chat will fix things right up. Cheers!