A real sense of concern for others breeds trust, which in turn leads to friendship and a sense of security. – Dalai Lama
What does that mean?
This is another interesting sequence of emotional states. The quote says that when you show others a sense of concern, you will instill them with feelings of trust towards you.
The quote finishes by saying that the trust will lead to the formation of a friendship and a sense of security. This is a fairly natural flow, although not always occurring as quickly as one might presume from the quote. At least that has been my experience.
This process may take some time, but if you continue to show your concern for others, they will begin to trust you. Over time, that trust will blossom into friendship, and from that friendship will come a sense of security in the relationship.
Why is having a sense of security important?
Have you ever been somewhere where you don’t feel even remotely secure? How did that feel, how glad were you to get to somewhere else? How much better would you have felt if you had someone there that showed you a real sense of concern, who you trusted?
Would having a friend have helped you feel a little more secure, to be a little less afraid? I know it would have helped me feel a bit better. Having a sense of security really does matter in your life, doesn’t it? How much fun would life be without at least a little security?
That’s why, in my opinion, at least some security is important in our lives. We have the security that the sun will rise, even if it’s behind clouds or hidden behind buildings. But that is of little comfort if our physical existence is threatened, and we have no personal security, right?
Where can I apply this in my life?
Can you imagine hanging around with someone you called a friend, but not having a sense of security around them? Well, with the possible exception of a friend who just had a minor psychotic episode, but that’s a rare case. Unless you have very different definitions of friendship or security, I would imagine not.
To me, that little thought exercise pretty much proves that having a sense of security goes with friendship, right? I don’t think it will take another exercise to establish that friendship goes hand in hand with trust, and that it is far easier to trust someone who demonstrates a true sense of concern for you.
So the question for this section, how to use the quote in our lives, is pretty much answered by the quote. Start with showing or demonstrating your real or true sense of concern for others. As you build up trust with them, friendship will begin. With that friendship will come at least some level of security, whether it be physical, emotional, or in some other form.
The only question is how to pick the people to whom we will show our concern. Personally, I would start by looking within your existing social groups. Even someone as close as a member of your family could use a little of this, I would imagine.
My brother and I were not particularly close for quite some time, and neither of us were close to our dad. But we worked on that, and now all three of us are very close. It came from starting with concern for each-other, and progressed to an improved level of trust, which supported a better friendship and a sense of security.
It might also apply to that second cousin who you only see once a year. It also could well apply to other social groups to which you belong. Co-workers, members of your various social or professional groups, and within your present groups of friends, all are people for whom you could show concern.
But many of them are already friends, right? Yes, but most people have different levels of friends, from people who are more accurately labeled acquaintances all the way up to what might be called blood brothers, with a few different levels spaced in-between them.
Some of these people may be in need of a friend, may be in need of some help. Your concern for them could be the start of a great friendship, or the growth of an ordinary friendship into one of legend.