One of the worst things about losing friends over time is how easy it happens. Sometimes you forget to call, or you just get caught up in your own life, and before you know it, you haven’t seen a friend in months. To avoid losing your friends entirely, follow these five steps to keeping your friends close.
1) Understand your friend’s needs
A good way to stay close with friends is by understanding their needs. If they’re struggling, be there for them.
Embrace their new interests and endeavors as if they were your own. Be open to hearing about things you wouldn’t usually be interested in just because your friend is enthusiastic about it.
Lastly, take the time to send texts, call or visit them just because you want to make sure they know that you care! You may not see each other all the time but this gesture will show them how much you care and will deepen your friendship.
2) Always be there for them
No matter what you are doing or where you are, friends are always there for you. When they need someone to talk, they will be on the phone or calling them up. To have great friends that stick by your side through thick and thin, it’s important to be there too.
Letting them know you care and will help when they need it is important in order to maintain your friendship. By being a good friend, not only will you have great friends who love you unconditionally but also people who can lend a helping hand when needed. Make sure to never let anyone tell you no if they ask for your help. As long as you’re around to provide support, they’ll never feel alone again.
3) Respect Boundaries
No one likes to feel left out or neglected, so setting boundaries is a good way to keep your friends feeling like they’re important. Make it clear what the boundaries are, though: don’t ask them for favors constantly and then refuse them, or expect things back from them all the time.
Keeping promises is key, too: tell your friends when you’ll get together and how long you plan on spending with them, that way they won’t feel like they’re just waiting around.
Remember that people want to know that their opinion matters; make sure you listen when they talk about themselves. Don’t think about keeping friends as an obligation: be genuinely interested in them and take the time to make sure that’s true!
4) Work as a Team
A team is more than just a group of players. It takes a whole team in order to win the game and make any idea happen. One player can’t do it all. It takes help from the goalie on defense, the forward on offense, and every one else in between to make an impactful game. The same is true for your friendships – you need them for support, advice, backup plans when needed, etc. Find someone who shares similar interests or values as you, but also has different perspectives too. That way, if something doesn’t work out with one friend, there’s always another friend to fall back on.
5) Show appreciation
If you’ve been lucky enough to find a good friend, then make the most of it. Don’t take your friends for granted and show them that you care by thanking them for their support, inviting them to things with you, and acknowledging how important they are in your life. It’s so easy for friends to drift apart if we don’t make an effort.
A little acknowledgement goes a long way and keeps friendships alive. For instance, one small gesture can be letting your friends know you’re thinking about them through a text or Facebook message when they haven’t heard from you in awhile.
You could also invite them over for dinner or to do something fun! No matter what form of communication is used, small gestures go a long way and keep friendships alive.