As you get older it gets harder to meet new adult friends and create deep, lasting friendships. Below are 7 tips to help you enjoy happier, more fulfilling times with your adult friends.
Consistently happiness researchers report that being surrounded by loving friends is a top determinant for happiness!
Plus fulfilling adult friendships are not only good for your mind and spirit – but your body, too!
According to a 2010 report in the Journal of Health and Social Behavior, strong adult friendships have been linked to a boosted immune system and increased longevity!
Unfortunately, sometimes life can become so extra chunky busy – that it’s tough to find time to nurture and maintain our adult friendships.
With this in mind, I created a bestselling gift book called Friends Forever (Whatever, Whenever) which is a helpful way to show friends that you appreciate them!
This gift book is a gorgeously illustrated celebration of friendship – to give to a good friend to cheer them up – and cheer them onward.
I chose to write this article today, because I recognize the many benefits of lifelong friendships.
So I decided to share some beneficial “friend insights” and “effective friendship bonding ammo” to help you to deepen and lengthen your adult friendships!
If you’re going through an extra crunchy busy period – be sure to clearly let friends know – so they don’t personalize you’re going M.I.A. (Missing. In. Action.)
Also let your friends know when you might get back to I.A. again.
For example – send a quickie text:
“I’m overwhelmed with a work deadline! Miss you! Done and back for a coffee catchup in about 2 weeks!”
You can also tag them in a social media post that might explain why you’re extra busy – so they fully understand.
Or simply tag them in a fun social media post – you think they’d enjoy – just to let them know you’re thinking about them.
Examine your schedule and get honest with yourself. Explore if you can make more time for people.
Truth is: Many friendships go downhill because of lack of effort and extra chunky busy-ness.
So be sure to schedule friendship check-ins into your calendar. You can even make it a ritual to enjoy early morning Monday Coffee Catch Ups by phone.
Or pick a morning or an evening – and make it your shared catch up ritual time.
If you’re truly overly-busy, explore how to multi-task meeting up with a friend while doing other things on your “to do list” – like going to the gym, spin class, pedicures, hair appointments, eating lunch – even grocery shopping!
You’re a busy person. So you need to understand if your friends are busy a lot and empathize with their overwhelm.
Don’t guilt-trip people.
Conversely, if they always reach out first – acknowledge their loving efforts and thank them.
Then try to upgrade your friendship game and explore if you can equalize how often you reach out…. even it’s simply to send them a funny meme.
Write friendship reminders in your calendar – and set alerts.
Put in everything from birthdays to new job responsibilities to scary doctor’s appointments to important work deadlines to romantic things like break ups/blind dates.
Check in to celebrate and/or to see how things went.
For example you can send a quickie text: “Thinking of you today!”
Friendships deepen when there’s lots of shared empathy and shared self-disclosure.
So make sure when you do meet up with friends, you share from your heart in a vulnerable way.
And listen to them with a full heart in an open way.
Also… Be careful not to reply with strong statements that make them feel judged… or feel like pushy advice.
Remember: Often people simply want to be heard and understood… more than they actually want advice for solutions to their challenges.
Let your friends know you appreciate them by doing various acts of kindness for them.
Buy them coffee or lunch.
Bring them flowers.
Send them funny cards in the regular ol’ mail!
Check out my bestselling gift book for friends – Friends Forever (Whatever, Whenever) – and read the consistent 5 star reviews!