Thanks to the groundbreaking research performed by Dr. Brené Brown and her team I have a new way of defining my friendships. Beyond the difference between acquaintances and friends, I know how friends and marble jar friends.
What Is A Marble Jar Friend?
Inspired by a reward system her daughter’s teacher created for her class, you ‘put’ marbles in a friend’s jar one by one as your trust for them grows. Small and sometimes inconsequential things can lead to trust. The mindset is that you must not rush to fill someone’s marble jar as trust is earned. You also remove marbles when someone betrays your trust. Marble jars in terms of friends and trust aren’t something you discuss, just what comes naturally.
You Only Need A Few Marble Jar Friends
When we were elementary school-aged many of us were open books who shared everything with our friends. While you may still have a close-knit group of friends it is unlikely that you share everything with everyone, and that’s the way it should be. This isn’t about keeping secrets or being inauthentic, as Dr. Brown is a strong advocate of authenticity—but instead about being selective about who you are vulnerable with.
Being vulnerable is brave but in the shame culture that we live in, you need to know who can be trusted as you embrace authenticity and continue to grow.