No Time for Friends
Honestly, before I had kids, I was so focused on my schooling, career and securing my future husband, friendships were an afterthought. I suppose I had a group I partied with, but I didn't think much about them or their needs. It was probably more about what they could do for me.
Now, my time is super limited by my responsibilities as a homemaker and mom, but I am also realizing how important friendship is to my happiness. Loads of people my age are aching for friendship, but don't have the time to invest in the ways we used to (or think we should), so we either go without or tolerate low quality friends.
If this is you, here are 4 game-changers that have positively impacted my ability to best friend:
1. High Quality = High Priority
It may be time to look at who you consider your friends and best friends. Are they safe? Do you feel heard and seen? Have you been able to really be yourself with them? Do you know what is going on in their lives, good, bad and ugly? Do they invest in your life with no strings attached? Are you intrigued by each other? Have you learned to have healthy conflict, both parties feeling validated? Do they consistently make choices that demonstrate they love and value you and have your best interest in their heart?
2. One or Two = Blessed
2,000 Facebook friends or Instagram followers, likes, shares and even number of comments have not been directly correlated with happiness, vulnerability or being truly known. When you have identified your highest quality person or two (outside of a love interest or your immediate family), it may be time to begin to focus whatever time you have for "developing friendship and deep, emotional connection" on them. Yes, other people who used to receive your attention may notice and even be upset by your absence in their lives. It is not easy to STOP serving friends in the way they are used to being served if you were a people pleaser or STOP coming to the rescue if you were the fixer in the relationship.
3. Marco... POLO
Get the app (literally called "Marco Polo") on your phone and use it AT YOUR CONVENIENCE to connect with your one or two safe people. Seriously. My Arizona niece introduced me to this way of keeping in touch and it literally DEEPENS the relationship if both parties are motivated to stay in each other's lives. It is a video recording that you take (while driving, doing the dishes, folding laundry... to name a few favorites) and your friend is able to watch it and respond AT THEIR CONVENIENCE. Yeah, it's a little weird the first few times, but give it a month and you'll be pouring your heart out!
4. Get a Monthly Coffee or Lunch Date on the Calendar
Totally self-explanatory, but easier said than done. However, when you only have one or two besties to juggle schedules with, it gets exponentially easier.