Image for post

What happens to a man, and especially to his friendships, if he becomes passive?

Have you every met a dude who once used to be full of life and adventure, but who after a while, maybe after getting a girlfriend, after getting a new and demanding job, or just later on in life, started becoming…kind of boring?
He used to care about the people around him, but now he rarely cares about what happens around him at all. He used to have dreams and aspirations, but now it seems like he lacks purpose. He once took responsibility over his life, his job and his relationships, but now, these areas of his life slowly wither as a result of his neglect. Reading this, you might think of someone who fits this description. But hey, let’s be real. This might have been you at some point in life as well. It definitely has been me.

Here’s the thing: I don’t want to be a passive man. I want to be a man who lives with a purpose. A man who takes responsibility over his life. One of Brothers’ friendship values is this: “A man needs brothers that can challenge him to become a better man. A man that takes responsibility in every sphere of life.”

I have met men who take a lot of responsibility when it comes to certain things, but they take little or no responsibility over other things. Here’s an example: A guy works out every day to make sure that his body stays in shape, but he is completetly passive in his relationship with his wife and kids. Another example is: A guy is all-in and responsible and intentional in his dating relationship, but he is completely passive in his friendships.

According to Google (gotta love Google!), passive simply means ‘accepting or allowing what happens or what others do, without active response or resistance.’ So with that in mind, I definitely don’t want to have a passive attitude towards things in my life that are important — especially my friendships.

Okay, so what can passiveness look like in friendships?
Let me do some brainstorming. You might agree, you might not.

  • You rarely meet up with your friends.
  • You do make new friends, but you lose them quickly (friendships simply tend to fade away).
  • You never have time to be with your friends.
  • You’re rarely or never reaching out to your friends, taking the initiative ot spend time together. It goes the the other way around.
  • You don’t really care about the depth in your friendships.

Passiveness can look like lots of things, but there you got a few examples.

I think it’s important to reflect on our friendships and ask ourselves: Am I passive or intentional? By the way, being intentional doesn’t mean that you’re not letting the friendship be organic. I think there are times when we should just ‘take it as it comes’ and times when we should be more intentional. We need both. Let’s be intentional with being authentic and honest and loving. But don’t try to control a friendship – forcing it to look a specific way.

I remember one of my best bros — and how we first met. I would have never guessed that he’d become one of my best bros back then (many years ago), but he did. We weren’t trying to ‘make a friendship’ — it just happened. We were just being ourselves — letting the other person know who we were. It resulted in a really good friendship.
Now, a few years later, we’ve noticed that we sometimes need to be a bit more intentional than when we first met — for multiple reasons, but also because we’ve got a stronger bond now than back then. A friendship goes through different seasons, and sometimes we need to be a bit more intentional than other times.

The point of this whole blog post (I find it hard to stay on topic sometimes!!) is to be intentional with our brothers whom we love, and let’s make a bold declaration together: I refuse to be passive in my friendships.

(This post was originally published on Medium, by Kim Evensen)