5 Tips to Maintain Your Friendships
Modern-day technology and communication devices make it easy to connect online. However, busy lifestyles, careers and family life take up more time priority and many friends grow out of touch and lose contact over time.
Loneliness can contribute to ill health and depression. Having a few close friends can do more than help you pass the time. Friendships can boost your health and reduce depression. It doesn’t matter if your group of friends is small or large. Quality over quantity is a major factor when creating deep bonds and relationships. Here are 5 tips that can help you maintain your friendships no matter how busy life gets.
- Make time to check in and connect with friends. The beauty of technology is that you can drop an email, make a random phone call, video call or instant message with your friend to check in. Ask them about their day, what’s new in life and chat about anything and everything. It doesn’t have to be hours of conversation. You can also make plans for face to face meetings at a convenient time for coffee or happy hour. Invite them to your home for dinner or birthday parties.
- Friendship is a two-way street. You must hold each other accountable and have high standards. If you have similar goals and ideals it’s easy to keep each other on track if either one of you is straying from goals, or not living up to promises and plans. Being non-judgmental and supportive goes a long way.
- Take time to listen. Your friend may have problems at work, at home or be struggling in some way. Listen to their problems and allow them to vent or confide in you. You should also feel comfortable to do the same if you were in their position. This builds trust and loyalty. You can also offer advice, solutions or simply lend support as a shoulder to lean on.
- Handle disagreements maturely. From time to time friends can disagree. How it’s resolved is a different story. Many friendships have ended over disagreements and not being able to communicate fully to resolve the issue. Instead of harboring resentment, talk it out. No matter how hard the topic at hand may be. It’s better to be clear, precise and honest. Talk in a logical, clear manner instead of being hostile or argumentative.
- Give each other space. Being too pushy or clingy can actually drive friends away. Asking for too much attention or being upset when it’s not given can cause friends to avoid you even more. You need to respect that everyone has their own life to live, goals to accomplish, family responsibilities and jobs to maintain.
As people get older, it’s not uncommon for friends to drift apart as they get caught up in their own lives. It’s possible to maintain a deep friendship without constant communication and meeting in person. A strong foundation of friendship built on trust, open communication, loyalty and comradery is built to last.