I’ve struggled to make friends for pretty much my entire life. When I was really young I was suffering from undiagnosed anxiety so books were pretty much the only thing I was really interested in.
But as I’ve grown older, I’ve learned how to make friends (wouldn’t it be great if life came with a guidebook?) and how important it is to set boundaries within those friendships. When I finally did learn how to do the whole friendship thing I was really co-dependent. I expected one person to meet all of my friendship needs. I’ve since learned how important it is to diversify. (Ohhh do I wish there was a guidebook!)
We can’t expect one or two people to meet our needs so it’s okay to build up our friendship network!
Are your friends part of your self-care routine?
I’m still a huge introvert and a lot of the time my self-care requires time away from people but we isolating (not COVID isolating but isolating-isolating) isn’t always what’s best for us. The right friends can actively become a part of your self-care especially when it comes to meeting your social needs.
Friends can offer you support when you need it the most
During times of personal crisis, you don’t need to be alone. Coming from a former “I can do it all by myself” -er, you don’t need to. And you shouldn’t. If there’s one thing I’ve learned from running my Facebook group it’s how powerful community is. How healing it is just to know you aren’t alone.
Friends can raise your self-esteem
Sometimes you need people to love you when you’re having trouble loving yourself. We all have days when we feel crappy about ourselves and when we let ourselves get flooded by those feelings it can really affect our mental health. It’s so easy to lose perspective and listen to depression or anxiety.
Let your friends hype you up. Listen to them tell you how wonderful you are, even if you’re having trouble believing it. They can remind you of the many wonderful aspects of yourself. They can help you celebrate your personal accomplishments. And they can pick you up when you’re feeling down with those words and actions that let you know how special you actually are.
Friends can keep you active
Friends are wonderful motivators to keep your mind and body active. Pokemon Go used to be my favorite thing to do with my friends. It was such a fun way to get outside and spend time together. In today’s pandemic, I’m more likely to be found playing Words With Friends or some other online game. It helps with a little connection and it helps break up the boredom.
Friends can be a positive influence
Do you have any bad habits? Many of us do and it can be so hard to stay accountable when you’re the only one who knows that you’re working on something. Tell people! Join a support group! Ask other people how they’ve dealt with bad habits to get some new tips!
The right people will lift you up and not put you down. They will support you when you need it the most. And they will positively affect your mental health. If you have friends in your life then, be sure to schedule time with them today, even if it’s just online!