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Friends and Coworkers
Table of Contents
If you have a job, it's pretty important that you stay on good terms with your coworkers, seeing as you have to see them every day. It's not hard to make your coworkers think you're a decent person. When you see them, make eye contact and give them a friendly smile. When you come into work, smile and say "good morning" to them. If you are going to talk to them, try to avoid saying creepy things. Your coworkers probably do not care about lolis or memes. Instead ask them about their family and things like that. People love to talk about their kids, if they have any. Even if you have very little in common with someone, you can almost always carry on a conversation if you ask them about their kids. However, don't ask them about their kids too much or else they'll start looking at you funny. Try to avoid being annoying. It's better to talk too little than to talk too much.
Store information on everyone (just keep mental notes, not a file, you stalker, you) and find some simple yet recurrent topic (such as, as previously pointed out, family friends, issues etc.), this will enable you to, when the need be, make people feel like you're not talking just for talking, but you have a real interest in them or in what happens every day. Said information might also be helpful in case someone starts being a pain, as you will have some material that they won't want to be known, and hence shut up (They just need to know that YOU know). A calm workplace is always best.
Also, try to avoid workplace drama. Mind your own business. Don't talk shit on anyone, even if you really want to. Yet another Anon's perspective: Actually, no. Don't get INVOLVED in workplace drama, but pay attention to what's going on, who is getting shit on during coffee machine chit-chat. You don't want to be(friend) the circle jerk.
Friends are important. Friends, especially good friends, are pillars of support in times of need or whatever. They're your partners in crime and members of your proverbial team. Even lone wolves/Anons cannot go on without a few friends.
Friends are also beneficial when browsing members of the opposite sex. Women tend to congregate in groups, making it harder to single someone out to strike up a conversation with. Therefore, when you approach a group of 3 to 6 women with a marginally equal number of friends, the situation becomes a lot easier.
So it's paramount that you have some. You can have all the arrogance and pizazz in the world, but if you're a loner that can all be canceled out quickly.
Coworkers and fellow students (if you're at high-school or college) are great for making friends with, especially those in the same or similar classes to you, as you're much more likely to get on with each other. There are some things to look for in potential friends. One important feature is Common Interests.
Assuming you've had friends before, you may already know that groups/circles of friends tend to be composed of people with at least one common interest or ideal, or with similar artistic/musical taste. Most of the time, this won't matter as much, since unless you and your friends are obsessive nerds that concentrate solely on one subject at any given time, you'll have a lot more to talk about that isn't necessarily relevant to your interests. Therefore, it might be(/is) a good idea to keep an open mind when approaching new people. Everyone has at least one thing interesting about them, it just takes time to figure out what it actually is. You'll just have to muss up the courage to talk to someone.
Inevitably, you will encounter differences with your friends over time; or they might do something that bugs you. Consequentially, you could do something that bugs them, as well. There are a few rules to maintaining a friendship:
1. Communication. If there's a problem or uncertainty, talk about it. They're your friends... if you can't talk with them about problems, then they aren't good friends and you should drop them like a hot potato. Well, maybe not, but you should push the issue vehemently. Also, it is important to talk to them on a daily basis. Friends like attention, and talking is the best way to give them it. Whether it is simply some side conversations, brushing up on current events in your life or a simple hello as you pass by, a bit of talking now and then makes friendships infinitely more maintainable.
2. Reciprocation. If you borrow a dollar here and there, don't be stingy if they need to borrow one. Nobody likes to be the guy everyone hits up for money and never pays back. Believe me, it sucks. "But I gave YOU a dollar yesterday" should never have to even be mentioned if your friends are worth keeping. Your friends need to know they can trust you and that you're a reliable good person, not the guy who asks for someone to cover a shift for them and then refuses to do the same.
3. Memory. Remember things that your friend deems important. Birthdays, their anniversaries, inside jokes; all of these things are important to remember. Saying 'Happy Birthday!' to your friend is important. It reminds them that not only are they important to you, but that you are considerate enough to remember birthdays and are a good person. Buy a small gift, offer to pay for a friendly dinner or to cover a shift for them so they don't have to work that day. They'll appreciate it.
There is a proverb that goes roughly like this : " Strike back equally, then forgive and make peace " (Sorry I can't remember the exact proverb nor the author), When a friend does something that displeases you highly, you may reciprocate, but then both of you will have to forget about it and start anew, it will show them that you are forgiving, but that you can be firm, they shouldn't start screwing with you afterwards. However, do not gloat and continue after your counter. This can create an enemy, instead of a friend who knows their limitations.
Being the nice guy anon is (proof enough: you don't have a girlfriend), people will not hesitate to abuse of you, whether it's asking for services, being late on appointments with you, not doing what they told you they'd do, etc. Basically you're their "toy", they can use you whenever needed without having to do anything in return, inviting you to a party just because they don't have anyone else to call up to make it look like they have friends, asking you for a hand when they're moving stuff around, but when you need something, their cellphone is off, they're not answering on chat or house phone, have very elaborate excuse not to do a thing.
One solution, is to do just like they do, arrive late and blame it on them for being early, "forget" stuff, ask them a lot etc. The second they complain, you have every right to beat them up because they'd been doing the exact same thing to you for months, if not years.
Of course as a nice guy it'll be hard, because you don't mind helping out, but it's a complete lack of respect toward you, a proof of how little they care and simply shows that they are not real friends. So you shouldn't really care about them, should you?
If you want them to understand what the problem is, you can simply tell them straight off, in which case, there will be a few possible consequences:
- Acknowledges the problem, apologizes and all becomes fine.
- Same but doesn't change. -> try again or cut off the bridges.
- Denies it all with examples of how they helped you and all that kind of crap. -> worthless egoistic person whose only care is about what they get. Suggest you kill it with fire.