Dr. Ernest Wayne Ingle, Adviser

Be Whatever You Want

It seems that society teeters between a healthy self-image and a full-blown id obsession.  Selfies are fun, but being self-obsessed might be problematic.  A positive body image is a good thing, but unhealthy lifestyles could be deleterious.  Nothing feels quite as good as being loved, but are our emotions traveling a two-way street?

Often when an acquaintance tells me how much a friend or fellow student/coworker means to him, his anecdotal evidence includes stories about how said friend has listened to him, has given of his time or resources, or has otherwise come to my friend’s aid when needed.  When I press for more information about those friends, the teller is frequently at a loss to offer explanation that doesn’t include the teller himself.

Sometimes I ask students to write about “the perfect friend,” and over the years the essays have come to reveal prose laundry lists of things a person can do for the student in order to occupy the position of friend.  Personal qualities of the perfect friend that the writer wishes to emulate are fewer and farther between anymore.  Coupled with the frequent claim by many that good friends are hard to come by, it begs investigation.  Could it be that too many people are seeking and fewer people are offering?

I wonder what would happen if we took those qualities we desire in a friend and actually started exhibiting those qualities to others.  Want a friend you can count on?  BE a friend a person could count on.  Want someone to listen to your problems?  BE an ear for someone who needs an ear … or a shoulder.  Want a friend who will help you when you need a hand?  BE that person who offers a hand to others in need.

I don’t claim to know precisely how the universe works, but this seems like a good place to start.

You know what you want from others.

Now go and BE whatever you want!