How To Just Be… Friends

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Can men and women be only plutonic friends? That is a common question asked amongst the opposite sex. I am a firm believer that they can and it’s totally possible.  From my experience, I have been told by several male friends that I am their first woman friend. One may ask how does this transpire?  In all honesty, the challenges of taking a relationship beyond mere friendship only arise if two people are attracted to each other. It’s easy to be a friend to someone whom you don’t find attractive, but when the attraction is there then “can we be more than” thoughts occur. To quote rapper Meek Mills “It’s levels to this….”

First things first, before you can place a “position” or “zone” on anyone in your life you must know and understand what you want and where you are as an individual. When that happens you realize everyone can’t be BAE!

Second, you must know your non-negotiables. What traits and actions are compatible or pleasing to you and what are your deal breakers? Not like I need my partner to wear these type of clothes, drive this car, etc. but examples like I want someone who is a great listener, someone who is patience, a person of integrity, someone who is willing to be supportive as I accomplish my dreams.
These are things that concern the soul of you, things that affect your spirit. For example, you can negotiate how a person eats but if that person doesn’t show an interest in being healthy, that issue may be non-negotiable. You can help someone dress better and become physically more attractive, but if that person is a liar, then that is a character issues that may be a non-negotiable for you.

I think I made my point. 

The next concern is compatibility versus compromise. Yes relationships require a level of compromise on both ends. No matter what type of relationship it may be, girlfriend to boyfriend, brother to sister, or even friend to friend. If I use myself for example, I am a dancer and I love to dance. I dance all the time. I dance 24/8, 365 days of the year. I live it, breathe it, it flows through my blood. I dance all the time. Now on a friend level you don’t have to dance with me or tolerate me in that regard because I probably won’t be dancing around you as much compared to if I was in a relationship with you. But if you were my MAAAANN, I’m going to want you to dance with me. I’m not saying you have to know how to dance as good as I do (because ya girls gets down!), I just want you to enjoy dancing with me. Knowing this, you will see me dancing at all times. We could be walking down the street and I’m grooving. You walk in the house and I’m cooking with Christian Scott Atunde Adjuah “New Orleans” playing in the background while I’m twerking and stirring the greens. I may express myself with a full-fledged contemporary modern dance to The Migos and Cardi B. in the middle of the living room just because I wanted to. Now if that gets on your nerves or if you tell me “girl stop dancing like that all the time”, we just MAY not be compatible. That may be small to some people, but as a professional dancer/choreographer, it’s huge to me. I know I do not want to compromise in that area. I want someone who is compatible. I want you to be dancing as I walk into your presence heart eyes. If you see me stirring the greens and twerking then just push up on me why don’t cha. I use a very simple but true example.

These are all important part steps in formulating relationships:

  1. Knowing yourself which takes time. Don’t rush it. Most people take more time getting to know other people before they even begin to know themselves.
  2. What are your non-negotiable’s? What are some things that you know that just absolutely will not work for you.
  3. Where are the areas that you will be open to compromising versus areas you desire to be compatible. There is a difference. When you are compatible, the probability of compromise becomes less, but not-nonexistent.

All of the steps require time, patience, honesty and communication. 
Yes, some will try to buck the process but it goes back to knowing yourself first. These steps help you identify long term outcomes when each process is considered.

Now, I went through that process because once that happens you’re able to decipher who you should give your time to in more of an intimate way or keep it strictly on a plutonic level. If you’re being totally honest with yourself, you soon realize that most people should not be BAE and remain a friend. That allows you to not only protect yourself but also protect the person who you may be intrigued with at the time. When you let time do its job all things are revealed. Again time allows honesty and strong relationships within your friendships.

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