Close Intimate Circles
In friendships, there are many levels of closeness. Some people become friends as a result of their shared experiences. Perhaps you worked with someone and shared lunch on a regular basis, but your friendship ended when one of you left the company. Alternatively, you may have had a pleasant relationship with a neighbor who has now moved away, and your contact has stopped.
You've probably experienced what it's like to reconnect with a close buddy you haven't seen in a long time. It's as though you've never been separated. Your bond is founded on a variety of shared experiences, ideals, and emotions, and it is still strong. Circumstantial friendships may not provide the same level of intimacy, but it doesn't make them any less valuable.
When you enter a new setting, it's likely that you'll encounter people you like but with whom you don't have a strong bond. These friendships are like pleasant conveniences in which both sides gain from the encounter but neither party is interested in continuing the friendship. It's possible that the relationship feels uneasy or inappropriate, as if it's "fake."
You might love having lunch with coworkers, speaking about work difficulties and gossip, and perhaps meeting up with some of them before class to workout. When you change employment, though, most of those friendships are replaced by connections with new coworkers.
There's no need to feel bad if one or more of your friendships appears to be purely coincidental. It's quite beneficial for both of you to have each other right now; you may appreciate whatever you're sharing and then move on when it's through. Most likely, your friend feels the same way about you, and the parting is just somewhat upsetting for both of you. Don't deny yourself this pleasurable interaction because it doesn't match some arbitrary standard, and don't strive to make it more than it is. There's no need to avoid a friendly, fleeting connection.
Circles of Friends
Every friendship is unique, and you are entitled to a diverse group of friends in your life. Your friendships can be visualized as a sequence of concentric circles, one inside the other. People you like but haven't gotten to know well are in the outermost circle: people you've met at work, church, or other groups; friends of friends and other pleasant acquaintances. Some of these individuals will never be as close to you as they are right now. However, some of them advance closer to you and into the next circle. These are people you see frequently and like spending time with. They could be temporary buddies who are important to you at the time but don't stick around. They could also be members of a group with whom you spend time but are not close pals. It's worthwhile to make an attempt to grow closer to a casual buddy if you care about them. Invite an acquaintance to coffee after a meeting or to a party at your home to let them know you'd like to have more personal contact.
Perhaps your relationship will progress to the third circle, which is the formation of friendships. You'll both take advantage of the opportunity to get to know one another better and see if you have much in common.
With a little effort and luck, the friendship could progress to the fourth circle: close friends. It takes a long time for a relationship to progress this far, but once it happens, you and your partner will have a long-term relationship.
Friendships are the most enriching aspect of life. You've probably heard the old proverb, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it "Make new friends, but keep the ones you already have. The first is silver, and the second is gold." You realize how accurate this is as your life progresses. With a large group of friends by your side, you can ensure that you get your fill of joy, support, and company.
In our lives, we all have different types of people. Family members, friends, coworkers, colleagues, and acquaintances are all present. There are several levels of closeness within each of these categories. For example, you may feel closer and more at ease with one sister or relative than with another in your family. Alternatively, some of your pals may be far more dependable and warm than others in your circle. Even in the workplace, some coworkers may be true friends while others remain distant. These relationships' differences affect how much distance or intimacy will function in them. It'll make a great difference if you can tell the difference between different levels of friendship.
Series of Concentric Circles- Circles of Closeness
Imagine your relationships as a series of concentric rings, with you at the center of each one, to get a mental picture of how the many types of intimacy occur in your life.
The circle in the center: Intimacy: The center circle, the smallest, is filled with the individuals you consider most essential to you, your closest friends and relatives. The circle is narrow because only a small number of people meet the criteria for admission to the "inner circle." It's only for the special people in your life: your closest friends, your spouse or partner, and your family.
The second circle is made up of warm friendships: The second circle, just outside the first, is for warm friends and family members you like but don't know well enough to trust entirely, or who have some characteristics that prevent you from getting closer. This is especially true for people you care about but who live far away or who you can't trust to keep their promises or reply when you need them.
Friendly connections is the third circle, which is for people you know and like but don't know well enough to consider warm friends. These people could be friends or family members of your pals, or other people you like and like spending time with but with whom you have not yet formed a personal bond. After some time and experience, some of these acquaintances may go on to your second circle, while others may fade away.
Circumstantial friends make up the fourth circle: These people could be your neighbors, coworkers, other parents at your child's pre-school, or folks you meet at the gym who are interesting to chat to but aren't close in your personal life. These people are cordial and handy for doing specific things together (for example, having lunch with a coworker), but friendships do not persist when circumstances change (you change jobs or move away). A situational buddy becomes a personal friend every now and again, and moves into the third circle, or even closer.
The fifth circle is made up of acquaintances: This final circle is for folks you've just met and haven't had a chance to screen for more intimate circles, as well as friends of friends and other people you don't know but think are friendly. With time, you may get to know some of these folks better.
Levels of Privacy-Being Selective
Each of these circles necessitates a different amount of confidentiality. The innermost circle, for example, will contain the people with whom you are most comfortable being intimate if you have carefully evaluated who to allow into it. These are the people with whom you share your innermost feelings, secrets, sexuality, and living quarters (just how close you get depends on your personal preferences, and on how considerate and caring they are).
The level of intimacy and sharing of your secret self decreases with each succeeding circle. For example, a new work colleague in the outermost circle will likely just know generic information about you and very little about your personal life.
How big is your small circle?
Has it passed 10 people?
Do you think there are some people in your small circle, that aren't living up to your expectations for such a close bond?