Hello! My name is Phillip and I am a new Contributor for IMT. I am excited about the opportunity to potentially influence and impact someone’s life in a positive way.
While I have pondered many subjects to write about, the words “intimacy,” “friendships” and “relationships” keep coming to mind. Of course we all yearn for love and affection, and desire to establish meaningful friendships and relationships. If that wasn’t the case, social medial wouldn’t be a multi-billion dollar industry and you wouldn’t be reading this blog.
Just imagine a world with everything you ever wanted, but no one with whom you could share it with. Life would otherwise be a very lonely and dull place. Since we all can probably agree establishing meaningful friendships and relationships fulfill each of us, let’s discuss ways in which we can establish friendships and relationships.
Acceptance of Self:
I have found it virtually impossible to accept and welcome others into loving friendships and relationships when in essence I didn’t accept and love myself. How could I give to others something I didn’t possess for myself? I couldn’t. In order for me to accept and welcome others into a loving environment, it was first and foremost important for me to accept myself.
Have you ever considered things about yourself you dislike? Go head; be honest. I know I have. It could be something as superficial as your outer appearance; or maybe you have experienced some form of abuse, or have caused someone else hurt and pain and as a result, you feel worthless about who you are. This was my experience for years, since my incarceration…but later I came to the understanding that I “am” special.
But how could I be special when there’s so many things about myself I dislike?
Unfortunately we all have things about ourselves we dislike. But being able to recognize those areas upon which you can improve and taking the necessary steps to improve those areas is all that you can reasonably expect of yourself, or anyone else.
The goal is not perfection. The goal is being a better person today than you were yesterday…and that’s reason enough to accept and to love the person you area. And that epiphany has made the ultimate difference in me loving the man I am today.
Once I was able to accept and love myself and recognize my own value, other people recognized my confidence and my positive attributes as well, and engaged me in friendships…and it feels GOOD!!! And that’s simply saying that no matter where you are in life everybody desires to be a part of something that’s special.
What I’ve found is that when initially establishing friendships and relationships, the heart is racing a hundred miles per hour and you are burning with excitement and desire from all the potential opportunities of the future. Feels good, huh? But, what happens when the heart slows down? Is something wrong?
Not necessarily. It could mean both individuals in the friendship or relationship have gotten used to one another and know what to expect from the other. Besides, it would be impossible for the heart to maintain the rhythm experienced when initially encountering each other. The reasoning being that rhythm would be too hard on the heart!
However, that excitement and desire doesn’t have to die. That same selfless attitude experienced when initially encountering the other…where you were clinging to do almost anything to prove you care, is the same attitude it will take to maintain and even surpass that level of excitement first experienced.
Our goal shouldn’t be only to meet and surpass the other person’s expectations, when possible; it should be to surprise and delight them as well. Implementing these simple strategies will take your friendships and relationships to higher heights and deeper depths…at least that’s been my experiencing.
As with any prolonged friendship or relationship, the inevitable happens—misunderstandings; different points of view and opinions; problems. That’s okay. Problems are a part of any good and healthy friendship or relationship…and they do not indicate that the people involved do not still complement one another. The reason I say that is that although I am involved in many friendships with people that I sincerely love and care about, I am still an individual with my own character, personality and thought process…and I am certainly prone to error. Diversity makes the world go around.
However, the most important things I’ve learned about dealing with problems with my friends are to:
- use tact in my communication and gestures;
- attempt to understand the other person’s point of view;
- resolve it as quickly as possible.
Problems in a living and caring friendship or relationship are like weights to a weakened body; the tension enables it to grow that much stronger.
Love yourself first; engage and love others and allow others to love you!
Phillip is not proud of the troubled past for which he was incarcerated in 2000, but has used his time in prison very productively. He is consciously intent on eliminating the attributes that led him into prison. As finances have been available he has enrolled in college courses maintaining an “A” average and accumulating almost sufficient credits for his associates degree.
Having directly witnessed the blatant injustices and even inhumane practices of the criminal justice and prison systems, Phillip is dedicated to advocating on behalf of prisoners and their families. He actively serves as the Advocacy Director at Prison’s Family & Friends United .
His ultimate goal is to obtain his master’s degree in business administration and he has already achieved headway in establishing a production company for prisoners and their family members who are gifted in the arts.
To read more about Phillip, CLICK HERE
PLEASE LEAVE FEEDBACK/COMMENTS: A kind word can go a long way and especially for someone in prison. THANKS SO MUCH!!!