Today I want to talk to you about loyalty, friendship and family.
I once watched a video that spoke about the concept of “blood versus loyalty” and this was the message:
“Blood makes you related, loyalty makes you family.”
The ugly truth is that unfortunately your friends and family don’t always have your best interest at heart. Unfortunately, unity is not permanent and, on occasion, the very people you expect to bring you up are the same people that are against you. This isn’t a rant nor is it a post based on spite or anger; this is about awareness and perspective. It’s about realising who is and isn’t in your corner. To paraphrase DJ Khaled, this is so that you don’t “play yourself”.
I once wrote a blog post titled “Trimming the Deadweight” which was about surrounding yourself with the right people. If you haven’t read it, I’d strongly advise that you do so (link is below):
So let’s get to the point…
A relation to someone does not guarantee their support during your good or bad times. The length of your friendship to someone does not certify that they will celebrate your achievements nor does it certify that they will be there for you during your hardships.
I have had to learn this the hard way, repeatedly, and I don’t want you to make the same mistake.
One of my flaws is that I tend to see the best in people too often – I give them the benefit of the doubt when something goes wrong. It’s always been in my nature to overlook their negatives and focus on their positive attributes. You can argue that this isn’t necessarily bad, but from self-evaluation I’ve become aware of my own naivety at times. Hope must be balanced with perspective; optimism must be met with logic.
As you’re reading this I want you to pause and reflect… When you were winning, who didn’t clap? When you were losing, who was absent?
Look, I’m a big supporter of healthy rivalry and competition – the achievements of my close friends motivates me to continue to strive for success. But be wary of those that take this past your relationship. Jealousy breeds an unhealthy rivalry and a sense of spite, which inevitably leads to division.
From personal experience, I’ve realised that Asian culture has also had an influence in this sense of rivalry and competition. I’m sure that some of you can relate to your family members comparing you to others, either directly or indirectly. Sometimes, the competition that is fostered in Asian culture tends to create cracks in the bonds between siblings, relatives and friends.
Some of my friends have become more like family to me than some of my actual family members because of loyalty and disloyalty.
Here’s the way I see it:
If I win, you win. If you win, I do too. We’re a family, we’re friends and so we are a team. In my opinion, this is the way that it should be.
A simple example:
When I secured my internship last year, I was of the mentality that it’s my duty to use my ability where appropriate to guide others with their applications. Whenever I’m fortunate enough to be in a position of success, I feel as though it’s only right that I help others get to the same level.
By sharing experience, you’re bringing them up with you. I’ve witnessed both sides of the spectrum; I’ve seen individuals who have done very well but have kept their methods hidden from others and alternatively, I’ve seen people do just as well and be willing to impart their knowledge to those that might need it.
As mentioned, I support competition but it’s important to also emphasise the significant value of collaboration. Honestly, as much as I want to be successful, I have no interest in succeeding alone. I really want to get to the top of the mountain and bring as many people as I can along with me.
This is about loyalty.
“Until all of us have made it, none of us have made it” – Rosemary Brown