Part 2 of this article continues to unpack the importance of friendships. This relationship is often unintentionally undervalued until it’s too late. Yet it’s so important to everyone’s wellbeing. There are 3 things I think we can do to value them more: Deep Talks, Fixing Over Fading, and Quality Time.
In Part 1, we began to highlight some of the unique dynamics of friendship compared to other relationships. Namely, that they are there to be enjoyed. We pick friends based on our mutual enjoyment, shared interests, and the like.
But this can mean we walk away when it gets tough.
The unspoken view that we pick people we like to become our friends, whose company we enjoy, is valid and necessary. But unless we learn to add to this perspective, our friendships will be easily broken.
I realise we all have different personalities, different amounts of time to spare and socialise in different ways. However, I would say there are three things that can help us raise the importance of friendship in our lives.
None of these suggestions are necessarily new, but they are easily forgotten and they can help us to change the perspective that tells us friendships are just easy, and when it gets hard we just need to break it off.
We need to remember:
- Deep Talks
- Fixing Over Fading
- Quality Time
Sometimes we want to meet up with friends and just talk about surface level stuff that doesn’t matter because we have no headspace for anything else. But doing this all the time can stop us from creating those stronger bonds.
Now obviously, some people are more guarded than others, while some people find it easy to share their deeper thoughts and fears. But this is important to do because without trust and vulnerability, friendship or any relationship, won’t grow strong.
This stuff is hard. It isn’t easy. Thankfully it’s not something we need to do with everyone we meet or all the time. However, forcing ourselves to talk about this stuff will bring us closer to people, and make us better at supporting each other when things in our lives get tough.
Fixing Over Fading
Due to the hidden assumptions that friendships are meant to be fun and enjoyable if something happens and we end up arguing, then we are tempted to just walk away rather then work it out.
All relationships have their ups and downs because people are messy
I think we need to at least try to fix it. We need to try and reconcile instead of just letting the friendships fade. This isn’t easy, and we may need some help in order to do this (Read I Want To Trust Them, But I’ve Been Hurt Before).
The truth is, good and long-lasting friendships aren’t easy to come by. All relationships have their ups and downs because people are messy. We need to try and fix it when it’s broken, otherwise, we may miss out on many more enjoyable years of friendship.
Everyone nowadays is busy. We all have lots of things to do and not enough time to do it all. Often meeting with friends, making time to travel to see old friends, or prioritising hanging out gets harder and harder.
That is why it’s important to make the time we spend with friends count. We need to not just try and make some more time to see each other, but do different things and new fun things together. Research shows this can make the relationship stronger (Read Revealed: The Best Way To Build Better Friendships, In Half The Time?!)
Imagine if we agreed that friendships are meant to be fun. However, we also realise, like with all relationships, that they do require hard work sometimes as well.
By forcing ourselves to have those deep conversations, fixing the hard issues and fallouts, and spending quality time together, we can make sure our friendships are strong and not easily broken.
What else would you do to make friendships stronger? Comments welcomed below.