I’m considering this a sister post to my Four Signs it Might Be Time to End Your Friendship post from last month. There are some really clear signs that you should end a friendship, but there are also a few things that we need to do to be a better friends to those we want to keep. I think we all have a way of saying ‘I’m a good friend’ and brushing it off. I know I do it, but there are a ton of ways I can be a better friend, and they aren’t big ones, some of them are little and easy. (Maybe I’ll make another post about the big things, the ones that mean you take people into your house for weeks at a time, but lets start small)
- Sending texts: Do you know how easy it is to drop a “hey how are you? I’ve been thinking about you” text? I think a lot of people have a tendency to text people when we have something exciting to tell them, when we hear something about them, or when we want to do something with them. We have best friends that we text all the time, but those other friends, who are sooo important, sometimes don’t hear from you just because they crossed your mind. It doesn’t have to lead to a huge conversation if you don’t have time. In fact I have a friend who sends these to me, and it might take her an hour to four hours to reply to my response, but that doesn’t matter, what matters is that she felt the need to check on me. She thought I should know that she thinks of me at random times. It makes you feel good and more importantly it makes you feel loved.
- I saw this and thought of you: The first thing that comes to your mind when you hear this is a gift, which is great. Gifts are a love language of their own. But gifts can be hard, especially when your budget isn’t the most giving. It’s just not always an option, but you know what is? Sharing links on social media. Sharing jokes. Texting pictures of something you saw. Again, knowing that you crossed someones mind makes you feel loved. It’s also a great way to share a laugh. I’m also very intrigued to see what reminds people of me. I think it’s interesting to see what vibes I let off.
- Dropping texts: Okay, so sending texts is a great and simple way to let someone know they crossed your mind, but you know what is even better? Setting time aside to call someone. You might want to text them first since no one calls on the phone anymore, but talking on the phone is the next best thing to meeting up, and you can do it while running errands. You can do it while on the bus or walking the dog. You can do it when you wouldn’t be able to sit down and talk normally. It’s making time for those who are important to you, even when you don’t really have the time. Plus, you know, it’s what phones were originally made for.
- Giving favors: Sometimes we are asked to do favors, and it’s easy to give favors when we are asked to do them directly. They approached us, we say yes. I hope you give some favors to all your friends that ask, but lets talk about giving favors that aren’t asked. Sometimes people will drop things like “my car is in the shop tomorrow so I’m going to have to take an cab home from work.” They aren’t asking you to do anything, but how nice would it be if you jumped in with “I could take you home, you get off at six right? I can swing by on my way home from my job.” Uninvited favors have a special place in peoples hearts.
As I write these I’m thinking about how I need to work on these myself. I have friends who already do these and I do too… sometimes. I’m thinking about how so often we do the bare minimum and how we really need to make more of an effort to those who mean the most to us.