In our post yesterday, we mentioned the importance of surrounding ourselves with like minded people.
People who are committed to making the most out of life and supporting other people along the way.
People who are open to learning and change.
But most of all, people who acknowledge that its OK to have different beliefs but still support varied points of view.
So today, we thought that we would share 5 simple ways to improve or revive friendships.
1) Really get to know them
Sometimes, we can think we know someone but do we really know them at all ? This doesn’t mean to start asking imposing questions, it just means to really listen to what’s being said when you are together because sometimes, you learn more about people by some of the simple comment they make than from the big revelations.
How do they respond when certain music plays ? What do they notice when you are sitting in a busy, crowded place ? What’s that one thing they always seem to order from the menu when you eat out ?
There are so many little things that can be discovered simply by spending time with people you enjoy spending time with but not even asking a question at all.
2) If something bugs you, bring it up straight away.
Too often, we are afraid of conflict because (maybe) it means we’re afraid to express how we feel for fear of losing the friendship. So instead, we say nothing at all.
Left unaddressed over time, this can lead to distance.
Saying “hey, that doesn’t sit right with me, can you explain it please?” shows you want to understand a different point of view. It shows that whilst you might feel personally misunderstood, you also want to find common ground. A disagreement doesn’t have to mean the end of a friendship – if anything, it can create a stronger bond.
3) Be open minded
Everyone will always have something going on in their lives that they may not feel comfortable talking about and that doesn’t mean they won’t ever talk about it – it just means it’s not for now.
There is so much more to a person that what we see and know and sometimes, we only get to meet them at a certain part in their journey. Being open minded about where they have come from helps create a stronger, judgmentless friendship.
4) Be aware of your own personal expectations
Think about times in the past you have been upset with someone. What was it that created the disagreement ? Often, it can be linked to the expectations we have of how things should be and when these expectations are not met, upset happens.
Being aware of your own personal expectations around friendship helps you to understand why you may get upset at certain times. And when you are aware of these expectations, it’s a lot easier to either communicate them or change them if need be.
5) Define what friendship means to you
AND BE THAT PERSON.
You do friendship the way you do friendship and don’t ever (like we said in No. 4) expect other people to do it the same way that you do.
That’s the joy of it all. We are all different and we are all unique and just because people are like minded, it doesn’t mean they have to be the same. When we consistently show up as the same person, day in and day out, we help others to do the same.
When we apply the other tips, it doesn’t matter how people show up because we will constantly learn and, in doing so, can make choices about who we are surrounded by.