I work very hard and am attending college to obtain my degree in the Human Service field. Writing makes me feel alive and gives me the opportunity to touch those whom I would not be able to otherwise. Last but not least, I have been blessed with two amazing daughters who love me completely and support my dreams. Feel free to contact me with questions, concerns or feedback.
Within my circle of friends, many are at the age of retirement. I have been to a few parties as a way of saying, “Thanks for being there for me, hope I was there for you”.
Upon entering an office recently, I found a “Congrats” balloon in the corner. It had been in the party room of a recent retiree and had been overlooked. Someone asked if I wanted it, and I said, “Sure, I’ll put it up by my desk”. Little did I know the impact one balloon would make.
Balloons are funny things. Some last for a bit, others quite some time. The balloon in question hung around for at least a month. I reside in one of the busiest areas within the building. Many a friend and acquaintance stop by to shoot the stuff and find a bit of respite.
Let me fill you in on something. I decided to test the waters. This balloon had no idea it was in on an undercover investigation. Without charging an outrageous hourly rate, the balloon proved itself a trustworthy friend. It gave insight into the personality and true nature of each person who walked through.
This is a simple test, costs very little and allows you a rich amount of insight into who your true friends are.
True friends are those who have your back. They are cheerleaders, lifting us up when we are at our lowest. They listen, embrace and love us no matter what. When good things happen, they want to join in and celebrate. They do not become envious or jealous if we receive good news or advancement. Most importantly, they are secure enough to allow us to shine when deserved.
Back to the balloon. It resided close to me, attached to a string, approximately 4 feet in the air. It was as bright as a light in the darkness. Unless your vision is close to blindness, there is no way in the world you would miss my new best friend. I started noticing certain folks exclaiming, “Wow, what’s the balloon for? Are congrats in order?” They were positive, excited and truly interested in the reason of it all. They asked what wonderful thing had occurred in my life to grant me such a gift. Others simply walked past, pretending not to notice. Even those I believed were true friends simply refused to acknowledge its existence.
If you truly want to know who “has your back”, this is the time to find out. Those who have your back want to see you advance, they want good things to happen for you, and most important, they want to be a part of it all.
The ugly side of this whole experience was finding out who really has not been genuine regarding their friendship. You will notice some whom you have confided in to become jealous and reserved regarding your balloon. They will not only refuse to acknowledge it, they will also try to find out from everyone else but yourself why you received that balloon. Avoidance becomes all together clear as your balloon continues its residence within your workspace. It not only becomes a thorn in their side, but a sore spot on their very fragile ego.
As a learning experience, I found it most helpful for future work situations. Instead of jumping in with both eyes shut, I am going to take my time to find out who is a true friend by not only hanging balloons, but also possibly sending myself flowers as well. I am going to wade in the baby pool for awhile to avoid swimming with the sharks.
Use this tool as a way to also see who has your back in current relationships. Invite your guy, girl or spouse to your work. Make sure you have a balloon at your desk and notice how they react. They will either do so with jealousy or excitement. Make sure whomever you are sharing yourself with is excited for you and worthy of your personal information and intimacy. Ensure it is someone who has your back and will be excited for you regardless of their own personal gain.
PS: Thank you balloon, you have proved yourself a worthy friend!!