“If you think nothing is impossible, try slamming a revolving door”…
If you have lived in country other than your own for any period of time, you have probably experienced the transient nature of friendship abroad.
At any time, there is always someone arriving or leaving, it could be ourselves or others. The constant movement of people in our lives can feel very confusing, like endlessly going around in a revolving door.
The continuous experience of saying goodbye to friends and meeting new ones sometimes seems sad and overwhelming. We wish we could close those fast moving doors… but of course, that is not possible!
Let’s look at some helpful thoughts for navigating the revolving doors of friendship:
- Awareness and Openess. It is important to develop awareness about the nature of friendship abroad (constantly changing) and how we feel about it (so we can address our feelings). Also, to start nurturing an attitude of openness, we might befriend people that in a different set of circumstances we might have never interacted with (eg. different cultures, age groups).
- Connections and Values. We might choose to start cultivating connections with people that relate to our different interests. We might also choose to connect with people with whom we share similar sets of life values. In either case, we become part of a community (that regularly changes its members).
- Flow and Trust. Two other key elements are: going with the flow and trusting the process. There might be instances where we would need to change our approach or look for help. We may feel completely alone despite all efforts. At that point, it is essential to continue the path and trust that it will lead us to more self knowledge and fullfilling relationships.
Joseph Campbell said that “we must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.” Paradoxically, the constant change provide us an opportunity to stop, look at our life from a different perspective and let go of our preconceived plans and notions.
By developing awareness and openness, we progress in our path towards a more flowing and trusting behaviour. By focusing on our life values, we develop profound connections that open doors to more adventures.
In summary, learning to navigate the revolving doors of friendship abroad helps us to develop pathways to new life possibilities.
Written by Yana Ricart
SAC Registered Counsellor (Singapore)
MSc(Counselling), MSFP, Diploma(Psychotherapy), Grad Cert(Counselling)
Grad Cert (Expressive Therapies), Diploma (Yoga), BSc(Hons)