Making Friends

Jun 4, 2022

Dear Gale,
I'm writing to you from Common Sense. I've had some thoughts lately which have brought me courage, and I think they may bring it to you as well.

You know when you see someone who seems so special from across the room, and (if you're like me) you assume that they are way too divine to consider your simpleness? — So you admire them from afar and visualize all the ways in which you could at the very least exchange names with them... and before you know it, you've built a tall pedestal with a deep foundation for them to stand upon in your mind.

This happens to me a lot when I go to skateparks, cafes, concerts — actually, it could be anywhere. However, I've come to a realization, one that I had floating around in my mind for a while but never fully digested until recently.

However unapproachable a person seems to you, it is usually your own fault, not theirs.

I came to realize how ironically rude it was for me to assume that a person who I perceive as more special than me would naturally be rude to me. Strangers are as friendly as you give them the chance to be. It's unfortunate to assume anything about a person you know nothing of.

I suppose social anxiety is to blame for these judgemental thoughts. They mean no harm, and are just a form of self-defense. Yet, it's so ironic that my mind decides to imagine the possibility of shame and embarrassment before any threat is even truly presented, which puts me in a state of shame and embarrassment just by the expectation I have of it approaching. It can be so hard to tell yourself that you are a good enough human to talk to folks you admire, but the simple thought that snaps me out of this anxious thinking has been "Don't be rude!" They are just a person, maybe even one that you don't know!! Give them and yourself a break and just be glad to see them. When you are drawn to someone in person or online, just give them a kind hello, and be open to whatever happens next. Talking with a new person can be so magical. And in the end, it's better to be rejected than to dwell in fictitious thoughts.

The other day at the skatepark, I decided not to be rude. I approached 3 people who intimidated me!! We exchanged instagrams to stay in touch. As soon as we exchanged greetings, my fear melted. This anxiety can be such a detrimental barrier to the simple pleasure of human connection. Don't let it deter you from the prospect of friendship.

Maybe I'm writing to Captain Obvious here.. but it can be good to take a deep breath when we feel less than and reflect on this.



brick building, wood bench
life is what i think of it
let it be special


From my sky to yours,