Friday, August 6, 2010

Fridays musings

In my life, was on the radio, and I thought what a wonderful song for the first Friday in August. BC day has come and gone and it is a good time to think of people who have come and gone in my life. When I was involved in networking marketing I learned that we all have a sphere of influence of about 200 people. Those 200 people that are in our lives at any one moment are not the same as we travel through time. Most of the 200 plus souls who were at my wedding 41 years ago are no longer in my life in the same way they were then, some have died, some have moved on to new areas and new friendships as have I. New friends have replaced those who have moved on and that is the way with life. The people we influence also influence us and shape who we see ourselves as and how we relate to the world.

Earlier in a post I talked about Choice Theory, and I would like to expand on this idea as it relates to our choice of the people who populate our lives:

The following is taken from The School for Quality Learning: Managing the School and Classroom the Deming Way by Donna K.Crawford,Richard Bodine,& Robert Hoglund, pp. 45 - 50:

Choice Theory is based on the assumption that all behavior represents the individuals constant attempt to satisfy one or more of five basic inborn needs. In other words, no behavior is caused by any situation or person outside of the individual. Accepting this idea requires a paradigm shift on the part of those who view life according to stimulus-response theory. According to the stimulus-response paradigm, we answer the telephone because it rings and stop the car because the traffic light is red. From the stimulus-response perspective, behavior is caused by someone or some thing(the stimulus) outside the individual; the action following is a response to that stimulus. According to the Choice Theory paradigm, people or events outside us never stimulate us to do anything. Rather, our behavior always represents the choice to do what we believe most satisfies our need at the time. From this perspective, we follow the rules of a game to achieve a meaningful outcome. We answer the phone because we choose to do so in order to communicate, not because we react to the ring. We stop at a red light because we choose to avoid risking a traffic ticket or an accident, not because the light turned red. When we repeat a choice that is consistently satisfying, we exercise less and less deliberation in making that choice. Even a quick action is chosen and not automatic.

The message of Choice Theory is that, because people always have control over the doing component of behavior, if they change that component, they cannot avoid changing the thinking, feeling, and physiological components as well. A choice of action that results in greater control will be accompanied by better feelings, more pleasant thoughts, and greater physical comfort. To get their needs met effectively, people must realize that they always have control over the doing component and can choose to do something more effective than being miserable.

This means that we consciously choose our friends because they help us meet one of our basic needs of  the need to survive, belong, gain power, be free and to have fun. Interesting to think about but I sometimes think that becoming friends is just a serendipity, not a choice. Perhaps staying friends is the real choice.
What does friendship mean to you? What kind of friend are you to the people you care about? What kind of friends do you surround yourself with?

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