Celebrating Friendsgiving (Pt 2)

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Booking under: Nicole

Friendsgiving has been distinguished as the latest American festival trend and the best Fall holiday. As the name implies, it refers to a second Thanksgiving meal with friends after celebrating with family. For me, Friendsgiving does not necessarily have to occur in November, but whenever we feel like acknowledging our friendship.

And that’s what happened in June. Let’s find out below.

1. Remember Birthdays

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Can you spot my jersey? Go Bruins! #bruinspride

If remembering and celebrating one friend’s birthday is rewarded by a hundred points, I figured I have already scored three hundred this month! My old housemate from the States was extremely swamped with work during her birthday in April so we decided to postpone the celebration until June to fit everyone’s schedule. Despite the fact that it was two months overdue, we treated the birthday girl to a nice lunch and had a lot of laughs and fun in each other’s presence.

And that’s just one birthday celebration you heard about. Here comes the second and third one.

Since the birthdays of two college friends and our graduation anniversary are very close together in June, I planned and organized a college-themed party to celebrate these two great occasions together as part of the tradition (that was just started last year and will be lovely to continue as we age). We had a blast simply chatting, telling jokes, and playing board-games together and didn’t realize that good times went by so quickly! Although everyone felt exhausted after work, it was certainly a fun-filled night where all of us could chillax together and we were so much more energized afterwards. 

2. Be Generous

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Generosity works well in business.

As you would agree, celebrating anyone’s birthday involves spending – whether you are treating them to dinner, buying them a gift, or both. Of course, the numbers vary. Regardless of the amount, I am very happy to have done that and made them feel special on this momentous occasion.

Giving time and sharing knowledge is also a sign of generosity, and I am glad to have multiple chances to exhibit that at work in June. Last week, I co-hosted an informal brown-bag meeting to share some key takeaways from the training that my peers and I have participated in. We exchanged information and also collected some positive feedback. In addition, a junior colleague recently approached me for career advice so I invested my time to share my experience and coach her with hot tips in the industry. I believe the session has helped her better understand the scope of work and think bigger in her professional endeavors. 

3. Show Up

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Show up and make sure you do jumping jacks.

Woody Allen once said “eighty percent of success is showing up”, and he’s actually quite right. I think I did well on this one as I have attended several gatherings with family and friends this month which I enjoyed a lot. We had a great time and reciprocated well with good conversations. What’s even better is when one activity can fulfill both the purposes of meeting up and doing meaningful things together (extra points if exercising is involved!). Yet, there were one or two gatherings that I couldn’t attend due to conflicting schedule and more important happenings. I wish to catch up with those folks later when time permits.

Familiarity breeds affection, and seeing friends and family made me feel closer to them. Although I often joke that I wish someone could assume my organizer role (so that I can free up my time), honestly there is absolutely no need to keep an open tally of who does more and who does less (as in every kind of relationship). All in all, friendships require mutual efforts and showing up is the most direct way to engage each other. Going forward, I will continue to live up to this commitment and strive to keep friendships fresh.

From last month

On finding more fun, I managed to make my own lunch box one morning before going to work. It wasn’t anything extravagant but rather simple and healthy with a good portion of veggies and meat. Keith and I also had tremendous fun playing board-games and an intense badminton game (tired but love it) with friends and I know it will happen again very soon! As for going off the beaten path, I recently took an active role in selling a new deal at work which added an extra load to my normal work scope. Since this piece of work was completely new to me, the first half of June was quite a busy period. But I am happy to be given more responsibility at work and deliver value. Now that it has ended, we’ll see how it goes. Lastly, on starting a collection, Chelsea jerseys actually came to Hong Kong earlier than my expectation. Very surprised and more surprises to follow. Why? Ask Keith 🙂 Hopefully Adidas Procurement can get my size into the store on time for the new season!

Summing Up

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Thank you for reading. Inspired by Gretchen’s sharing, we successfully learnt to strengthen old friendships, deepen existing friendships, and make new friends in ways that are beneficial to our interpersonal relationships. If you are inclined to share your thoughts regarding friendships, feel free to either say a few words below or write to us at aloha.abf2@gmail.com. Moving into July, we will be reading the chapter on Buy Some Happiness. In another words, it is about using our money wisely as well as spending money to boost happiness. Come back next week for Keith’s learning on the relationship between money and a smiling face.

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