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On Friendship: Ten Lessons Learned from Winnie-the-Pooh & Crew…

18/02/2011
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“Promise me you’ll always remember; you’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” Christopher Robin to Winnie-The-Pooh

Friendship: The Original Winnie-the-Pooh Toys; via Wikipedia

Clockwise from left to right: Tigger, Kanga, Edward Bear (aka Winnie-the-Pooh), Eeyore, and Piglet.

If you watched or read any books on Winnie-the-Pooh, you’d probably remember that a major theme of the series was about friendship; the power of love and the lessons learned between friends. Winnie the Pooh, fondly known as Pooh Bear, had lots of friends in the Hundred Acre Woods but some of his most memorable friends were Tigger, Kanga, Eeyore, Piglet, Owl, Rabbit, and Gopher. They spent many fun days in the woods and its surroundings; living out one adventurous and sometimes hilarious event after another.

In all its lightheartedness, there were many lessons learned about friendship and recently, chatting with a dear friend, it struck me that these lessons are still relevant in the world of human friendships. Below are ten lessons I learned from reading the stories and watching the series with my kids…. feel free to add yours to mine.

Friendship is about variety. The more diverse our friends, the more diverse our experiences… No one could accuse Pooh of hanging only with teddy bears; he had Tigger (tiger), Kanga & Roo (kangaroo), Eeyore (donkey), Piglet (piggy), and of course all the others whose names are pretty obvious. Diversify your friendship portfolio… reach out and say hello to someone new, outside of your niche.
Friendship is about acceptance… wherever we are. Pooh and friends had their foibles yet their friendships remained strong. Pooh saw life through an easy-going uncomplicated lens, while Owl and Rabbit often brought more complex views to the mix. Other friends had their quirks; yet Pooh cherished these friendships; accepting each in his own special way.
Friendship is about compassion and encouragement. Be compassionate when your friends are feeling down and do encourage them to cheer up. Each member of Pooh’s group of friends had their challenges and yet found ways to help each other; to overcome fears (Piglet), frustration in the garden (Rabbit) or even excessive exuberance (Tigger ). Eeyore’s sad pronouncements were often countered by positive feedback and support from his friends. They cheered him up … often.
Friendship is about honest & timely advice. When out in the woods or on a worldly adventure, do watch each others back, and offer timely,  sincere advice and warnings so friends stay out of danger’s way… Pooh and friends were constantly goofing off, yet they helped each other dodge danger quite a bit; be it from the Heffalumps or other pests in the woods.
Friendship is about staying close through ups and downs. We all go through fun times and not so fun times and we know who our true friends are when the going gets tough. The Hundred Acre Woods offered many opportunities for the friends to succeed and fail; yet they rallied to support each other… Value your friendships all the time.

Friendship is about appreciating each others point of view; even when we disagree. Pooh and friends had disagreements; Tigger was impulsive and ready to leap, Owl and rabbit could be ornery, Piglet had a great heart even though he was timid, and Eeyore was whiny, yet through it all and even during their moments of contention, they found ways to appreciate each others different visions of the world they inhabited.
Friendship is about trust. Pooh knew that whenever he found himself in the woods, eating honey, bumbling around, seeking new thrills and adventures, he could trust that his pals were either involved in some of it or around the corner to lend advice, warnings or simply to join in. Their trust was often implicit.
Friendship is about creating fond memories and a shared history together… If we don’t spend time with our friends, we limit the opportunity to create fond and new memories, to get to know each other better, and develop a shared or common history that makes the friendship grow stronger.
Friendship is about adventure and enjoying the good and sometimes crazy parts of life. Whether sharing good food and fun games; honey pots from the honey tree, braving a blustery day, getting lost in the wood when their  Tigger plans backfire, winter adventures and the various escapades they shared from learning new things including learning how to bounce like Tigger… the friends enjoyed each others company.  Pooh was surrounded by adventure and friends who joined the fun… that too is the joy of friendship.
Friendship is about loving not only our friends but also those who take care of us; our parents, our extended family and caregivers, teachers and others who wish us well. Christopher Robin introduced Pooh to the Woods and in that imaginary world, offered Pooh lots of good advice and love. In return, Pooh cherished the connection and we can do same.

What memories do you have of Winnie the Pooh and his friends? What lesson(s) about friendship did you learn from him and/or them? Do share! Thank you! 🙂

Positive Motivation Tip: True Friendship is worth more than worldly treasures. Cherish your friends and let them know you do. 😉
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PHOTO CREDITS/ATTRIBUTIONS: Photo of Original Winnie-the-Pooh & friends via Wikipedia

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet

29 Comments leave one →
  1. 19/02/2011 1:13 am

    Ohh… I love your post! My closed friends in high school named ourselves from the Winnie the Pooh characters. So this post definitely resonates something special in my life. I’ve always valued my friends and how important they are to me. And even we’re apart, our friendship is what keeps us together. So whenever we see Winnie the Pooh toys, we always remember who’s who in the group and they serve as reminders of the friends who are for keeps.

    Thanks for posting Eliz!

    • 19/02/2011 4:16 am

      Thank you… I grew up with that bear and always loved his innocence… some will say naivete. Pooh Rocks! 🙂
      E

  2. 19/02/2011 1:59 am

    we liked to read the Winnie the Pooh books in Germany too. of course there is a translation. we called it Puh, der Bär 🙂

    • 19/02/2011 4:18 am

      Oh, I like that name and the sound is quite cute Pooh de bear 🙂
      Love it!
      Eliz

  3. 19/02/2011 11:23 am

    Love Winnie-The-Pooh . . . and Tigger too!

    Thanks, Eliz.

    • 27/02/2011 5:06 am

      I love them all… So adorably smart! 🙂
      Thank you!
      Eliz

  4. 19/02/2011 8:39 am

    Eliz, thanks for stopping by my blog and saying I am funny. “I would open a church” oh ck out other one of mine I think that is it….
    I always give 110% in all I say, and do, and in friendship. I have 0 friends in person but around 10 online that I can honestly say are my real friends. I love this and the analogy. 🙂 Jackie

    • 27/02/2011 5:06 am

      Thank you Jackie. I grew up with Pooh and so did my kids. So when the conversation came up with a friend, it was the perfect idea for a post…. True friendship is a rare gift. 🙂
      Thank you!
      Eliz

  5. Bree permalink
    19/02/2011 2:25 pm

    This is very sweet and true too! I love the line – no one could accuse Pooh of only hanging with teddy bears!
    I had a good laugh on that one – visually funny too.
    Thanks for the ten lessons; Pooh taught me resilience in the face of objections.
    Girl, you started this in Nov 2008 and seen/learned a lot about people, yet you’ve focused on blogging and connecting.
    Keep it up and know the blessings abound.
    B

    • 27/02/2011 5:11 am

      I have learned a lot since I started blogging and perhaps the best lesson is to keep your eyes looking forward; appreciate the good and ignore the bad. I am grateful for my friends and they make the world a happier place to be. 🙂
      Thank you!
      Eliz

  6. 19/02/2011 3:51 pm

    I love this post, and using Winnie The Pooh and Friends as an analogy is perfect to bring the state of friendship home to us humans! We can learn a lot from Winnie & Friends.
    It’s a wonderful post

    • 27/02/2011 5:13 am

      I appreciate your feedback Barb. Pooh has been a great teacher for many years, and his friendships always warmed my heart. We need more Poohs. 🙂
      Thank you!
      Eliz

  7. 19/02/2011 4:18 pm

    AAMilne gave such a wonderful gift to children and adults… How wonderful I there could arise a counterpart in the digital media world…

    • 27/02/2011 5:13 am

      Well said… Pooh and Friends rock!
      Thank you!
      Eliz

  8. 19/02/2011 2:09 pm

    Pooh is one of my all time favorites. The 1st book I bought for my grandson was the complete works of Milne and he’s practically worn it out. I also turned his bedroom into a Winnie the Pooh paradise. My son drew the characters and I painted them and the woods on the walls. It is so adorable and they still love it 9 years later. You can see some of it on my art website, http://www.hammondart.biz on the mural page. I shouldn’t send anyone there until I clean up the site a bit (I’ve sort of ignored since the blog eats up so much time), but go ahead if you dare.
    Thanks for sharing Pooh!

    • 27/02/2011 5:08 am

      Oh I will visit again as I have before. I’s fine and once you ad things and redo some it will be perfect. Cool to read that Pooh was precious in your household too. I’d love to see more. 🙂
      Thank you!
      Eliz

  9. 19/02/2011 11:14 pm

    This is such a meaningful post – I’m glad I stumbled across your blog. The Winne The Pooh descriptions fit perfectly and teach us such great lessons! Thank you so much for sharing. Very inspirational.

    – Michelle

    • 27/02/2011 5:15 am

      I’m glad you liked the Pooh post as I had a lot of fun writing it. It’s a pleasure to connect with you too Michele. Do keep writing as I enjoy reading your posts too… 🙂
      Thank you!
      Eliz

    • 27/02/2011 5:16 am

      Hi Michele,
      Thank you much! I’m glad you liked the Pooh post as I had a lot of fun writing it. It’s a pleasure to connect with you too Michele. Do keep writing as I enjoy reading your posts too… 🙂
      Thank you!
      Eliz

  10. 20/02/2011 11:59 am

    I so enjoy looking at children’s books as an adult because there are so many crucial lessons that can be learned from them. My question is this…do people forget these lessons as they grow up, did they not hear these stories at all, were they not listening when their parents and teachers were reading them…or what? Maybe we need to reread and reread them until the messages become stamped forever in our minds and hearts…friendship, acceptance, tolerance, love, sharing, mutual respect. 🙂

    Thanks, Eliz…loved the post! The week of March 21st, I’ll be doing a series on Friendship…I have a friend of over 6 DECADES! who will be having a birthday that week. I’d love to include a link back to this post, if I may.

    • 27/02/2011 5:19 am

      Hi Viv,
      I look forward to your series on friendship… It would be fun to connect it with this Pooh and Friends post. Those childhood fantasy animals had a lot of wisdom in that 100 acre woods… 🙂
      Early Happy Birthday greetings to your friend! 🙂
      Thank you!
      Eliz

  11. 21/02/2011 2:54 am

    Hi,
    What a beautiful post. We often take friends for granted; this is a great reminder not to 🙂
    PiP
    from the “mega blog hop”

    • 27/02/2011 5:20 am

      Hi PiP… so true and sometimes we only realize it when they are gone or have move on… Thanks for joining the Hop.
      Thank you!
      Eliz

  12. richard permalink
    21/02/2011 1:41 pm

    what are friends for ? a good reminder… Thanks!

    • 27/02/2011 5:21 am

      Definitely a good reminder. That’s what friend are for… 🙂
      Thank you!
      Eliz

  13. tbaoo permalink
    22/02/2011 4:11 pm

    the new film may spread the message to a whole new audience, including the kids .. 😉

    • 27/02/2011 5:23 am

      A new film? Do tell as I don’t think I know about a brand new Winnie-the-Pooh in the works. 🙂
      Thank you!
      Eliz

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