Friendships have a major impact on your health and well-being, however it’s not always easy to build or maintain friendships.
What are the benefits of friendships?
Friends can help you celebrate good times and provide support during bad times. Friends also help you feel less lonely.
Friends can also:
- Increase your sense of belonging and purpose
- Boost your happiness and reduce your stress
- Improve your self-confidence and self-worth
- Help you cope with traumas, such as divorce, serious illness, job loss or the death of a loved one.
Why is it sometimes hard to make friends or maintain friendships?
Sometimes as adults it’s hard to develop new friendships or keep existing friendships because of increased responsibilities, moving away or just having a busy life. Developing and maintaining good friendships does take some effort. Remember even though it may take effort the comfort of having good friends is worth it.
What are some ways to meet new people?
- At social gatherings
- At work
- At classes
- On social media
In order to meet new people, you have to go to places where others are gathered. The more activities you participate in, the more likely you are to meet people. Remember you may not become friends with everyone you meet, but don’t give up.
How can I nurture my friendships?
- Be kind. Think of friendship as an emotional bank account. Every act of kindness is a deposit into this account, while criticism and negativity take away from the account.
- Listen. Ask what’s going on in your friends’ lives. Let the other person know you are paying close attention to them. When friends discuss difficult experiences, be empathetic, and offer some comfort.
- Be Open. Build friendships by opening up about yourself. Being willing to disclose personal experiences and concerns deepens your connection.
- Show that you can be trusted. Being reliable and dependable is important in strong friendships. Follow through on plans you’ve made with your friends.
- Make yourself available.Make an effort to see and talk to your friends regularly, and to check in with them.
Remember, it’s never too late to build new friendships or reconnect with old friends. Taking time to make new friends and strengthening your old friendships pays off in having a brighter outlook for years to come.