Tuesday, February 21, 2012

friends, part ii.

I am the planner.

Sometimes, of course, I wish I wasn't. I wish someone else would take over, wish I could just sit back and relax and be told where to be when.

But the planning gene runs in my family, and as a result, I am, more often than not, the friend you can count on for things like book clubs and supper gatherings, for Galentine's Day parties and breakfasts on my back patio.

I could resent this, I guess, but -- with the occasional exception -- I find joy in the planning. I like sending out invitations and having people into my home. I like taking the initiative and making sure things happen. I'm good at it.

There are friends, Rachel Bertsche says, who are keepers or connectors. Friends who are planners or gift-givers. Friends who are good with conversation or better texting at a moment's notice. Friends who are lifers or friends you know through work.

I'm the planner, to be sure. According to Real Simple magazine, I'm the "glue of the group." 

All of that hits pretty close to home, despite the fact that I've never considered myself super outgoing or social. (I'm a textbook introvert, an INTJ all the way.) And Martinet is right; I do have to be careful that I don't get too resentful or exhausted making plans left and right. (I also have to make sure I don't bombard my friends with e-vites until we've all reached the point of over-exposure.)

The good news is, I've got some pretty wonderful friends who are not only reliable and helpful, but are extremely gracious and kind when I've planned an activity or thrown a shindig. Their appreciation makes me feel loved and lets me know I'm doing something right.

So my question is: What kind of a friend are you? Is it possible to be a different kind of friend to different kinds of people? If you have a second, take the Real Simple quiz. (It's fun!) Are you a planner or a confidante? A connector or a keeper?


jenna said...

I am enjoying these friendship posts, Annie! (It really makes me wish that we lived in the same place! I want to go to a breakfast party on your patio!) :)

I took the quiz, and I am the confidante. The "beloved, mothering type is ' the person others turn to when something is going wrong... You're going to listen to them and they value your advice.'"

As I continued reading, it said, "You have a nurturing personality... You may be the oldest sibling in your family and are used to taking care of others. You exude confidence and have good judgement... You are basically giving out love, and who doesn't love that kind of friend?"

It made me feel good to read that! :) I could see myself in it, and I could see the need to follow through with some of the caution expressed about setting boundaries.

(I love random tests like this!)

Kara Gehret said...

I am SOOOOOO the planner. I hear ya girl. It can get exhausting, but also is so much fun!!!

Kristin said...

I've really enjoyed your friendship posts too! Thanks for sharing your heart.- I too, struggle with what friendship as an adult looks like - and your thoughts have been an encouragement to be sure. Off to take the quiz now! :-)

brie. said...

loving these friendship posts and interested in these quiz results, i would have said i was also a planner. but i turned out to be a confidante, which isn't surprising either. in strengths finder i am a 'wooer' i guess people just like talking to me. :)

Sabrina said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts and the quiz link. I will use you as inspiration to post my results later. You are gifted in planning and as long as you keep on loving it, keep on using that gift. Always know that your friends enjoy it and appreciate it. I get to live vicariously through Julie;)

Annie said...

I just took the quiz and I'm the responsible one. I can't even tell you how true that is. And sometimes, that exhausts me too. My friends from high school used to say I was always the best at keeping in touch, which can be irritating to know because I realize, too, then, that if I stop making the effort to keep touch with them we often lose touch altogether, which is actually what ended up happening. And I wonder, too, is there a point where it stops? Where my tendency to responsibility isn't enough anymore and it falls on the other? I may be "the responsible one," but I don't necessarily think that absolves my friends of being responsible either. And I know these quiz results aren't firm lines; I'm not the responsible one and nothing else; friends aren't something else and not responsible at all. But this is making me start to think about friendship and responsibility and where the line starts and ends...