Friday, September 08, 2017

Friendship Friday - on having friendship containers

Sometimes we don't know until listening to an episode if it's one we want to discuss for Podcast Club. We both loved this episode so much that we each listened to it twice 👍🏼 and immediately afterwards I bought the book. . . One of my biggest aha moments was that you need a container for friendship. E.g. if you're work friends and you haven't cultivated the friendship outside of the work container, it'll probably fizzle if one of you leaves that employer. . . Have you found that this has been true for you with work, or another "container" like church, a class, etc.? . . PS podcast club is a container for us 😊 . . PPS from @jenhatmaker's podcast - episode 3 with @shastamnelson . . . . . . . #podcastclub #marcialovespodcasts #bujo #bulletjournal #bulletjournallove #bulletjournalcommunity #bulletjournaljunkies #schneiderpen
A post shared by Marcia Francois (@organisingqueen) on

So let's discuss this podcast episode.

It's Jen Hatmaker interviewing Shasta Nelson on friendship. (you can listen at that link, read the transcript, whatever floats your boat)

This lady says there are three things to a good friendship:
  1. consistency
  2. vulnerability
  3. positivity

 All great stuff. Do take a listen.

The one thing I want to talk about today is on the containers piece.

She said that when we have work friends, for example, and one of us leaves that place of employment, if you haven't built that container outside of work, then the friendship fades/ stops in almost all cases.

The container was work.

This also applies to containers like church, clubs, gym, kids' pre-schools, etc.

It's so true for me. The only friendships from my previous company that have survived are those that already had other containers in place.

The rest - gone. And if you know me, not for lack of trying a bit from my side.

So what she says for friendships to flourish, either a container must exist (go to gym together/ run together/ craft together, etc) or one of the parties will have to initiate the get togethers.

It's kind of obvious but like great insights, it takes someone spelling it out for us!

I have 4 containers in my life - work, book club, spanish dance and podcast club (although since our curriculum ended, it's been a bit loose).

The scheduling for the book- and podcast clubs are on my end so take a little bit more admin, but they work.

And it is true - the friendships that I feel are really satisfying for me are set up with recurring meetings (I have two) and I love not having to think about them, and just knowing that they're there to anticipate and enjoy when the time arrives.

Now I have some questions for you:

What are the containers in your life? Do you have friendships inside those containers only, or have you extended them outside of the container too?

PS This is not all I wanted to say but this post is already too long. Meet me back here next Friday? :) 
PPS Here's an excellent post (well, the excellence is mostly in the comments!) on female friendship


  1. Awww Marcia, why the tricky questions :p I have on reflection a fair number of container friendships, and no idea how to make some of them multi container ones.

    1. Ha! Cassey, I don't think they're tricky questions but if they're making you think, awesome :)

      I suppose how I transitioned some container friendships is simply to have contact outside of the container, both informally (SMS/ whatsapp) and in-person.

    2. You know what? It just occurred to me that blogging is also a container. When everyone stopped blogging, many friendships seem to have fallen by the wayside.

  2. Definitely!!! There are many friends that fall into the work container and once one of us moves along it ended. However I found this not to be the case with friends from my very first work back home. I left there over 13 years ago and we are all still friends I guess because we got involved in each other's lives - attended weddings, witnessed births, cried together at deaths and celebrated our successes together. Maybe because we we were all much younger we got too involved in each other's lives but I'm
    Not complaining. I love knowing they will always be my tribe! Hmmmm I wonder why it hasn't been the same here. Food for thought!

    But yes friendships definitely fall into containers. The school friends, the mommy friends, the gym friends, the work friends etc

    1. I have no gym friends. I have been at that gym for 15 years and had ONE smoothie with someone in all that time. There is an ex-coaching client in my one class so we're friends now but for the rest, we kind of nod to one another (some of us!!!) and the rest....nothing.

      I'm curious - which container am I in? :)

  3. I do think its true - however then I think about our friendship and I wonder - I guess it is "in" a container of sorts.

    1. We have a blogging container and a Pta client container!


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