Friends

Tips on Making Deeper Connections with Friends

Trying to develop meaningful relationships with friends can be tough these days. Superficial, disconnected communication has become the norm in today’s society. However, that doesn’t mean it isn’t possible to develop those deeper connections.

You’ll typically find most people crave meaningful friendships. The trouble is, it can be difficult knowing how to make them.

If you’re determined to make deeper connections with friends, below you’ll discover some great tips you can follow that can help.

Be Prepared to Open Up

One of the key elements of a deeper friendship is being open with one another. You can’t just expect the other person to be open with you and not give the same openness in return.

It’s impossible to maintain a deep connection with someone when you’re guarded. So, be willing to open up and talk about the things that are important to you. You don’t need to share all of your innermost secrets, but it is important to trust your friends enough to be open with them.

The more open you are, the deeper the connection you’ll make with friends.

Commit to Regular Communication

As you grow older, maintaining friendships becomes much more difficult. You have work and family life to juggle too, so it’s easy to let communication between friends slide.

If you want to benefit from deeper connections, you need to make the effort to stay in communication. If you’re connecting with the right friends, it won’t really feel like an effort either. It could be giving them a quick ring regularly. Ensuring you meet up once a week (if distance makes this possible) and just maintaining communication will really help to keep your relationship strong.

Spend Quality Time Together

You’re going to want to spend quality time with the friends you’re hoping to develop a deeper connection to. One-on-one time allows you to create memories, get to know each other better and enjoy each other’s company.

While it may be difficult, you’ll also want to focus on avoiding using your phone when you’re spending time together. It’s easy for technology to become a distraction and prevent you from developing deeper connections.

Be Honest and Don’t Avoid Difficult Topics

Similar to the earlier point of being open, it’s also important to be honest and not avoid difficult topics. Friends aren’t just there through the good times. They are also there to support you through any difficulties you might face. So, if things aren’t going well, don’t hide it. Be honest about how things are going and how you feel.

The more honest you are, the more your friends will trust you. This will also encourage them to be more honest with you. No deep connection can occur without you being honest and talking about the things that really matter in life.

There’s no doubt that it can be tough to maintain deep friendships today. However, if you follow the tips above, you’ll be able to start developing much deeper connections. Remember, it’s all about being honest and spending quality time together.

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The Impact of Bad Habits on Your Friends

The Impact of Bad Habits on Your Friends

There are some bad habits that even your good friends will not stick around for. For this reason, you may want to notice if you do any of these bad habits. If you do, you’ll want to apologize for it and stop doing it. You may even be able to get some of your friends to help you manage some of your bad habits.

* Gossiping – The truth is, if you gossip to one friend, the friend you’re gossiping with is going to assume you gossip about them to your other friends. What’s more, most people will not keep secrets so they’re going to tell the friend you gossiped about. This is not a good look. If you find yourself talking about others in a negative way, train yourself to start saying nice things instead until you stop talking about people when they’re not around at all.

* Not Making Time for Friends – We all get busy in our lives but if you don’t set aside time to spend with your friends, you will lose them. People move on relatively fast. Say no to more than three get-togethers and they’ll likely stop asking. Put time with friends as a priority in your calendar. You don’t have to do it every day or even every week, but enough that you still know the person.

* Not Cutting Ties When Needed – Sometimes we maintain bad friendships out of habit too. If you have anyone in your life who makes you feel bad about yourself and does not lift you up or others up, let them go.

* Not Initiating the Contact That You Crave – If you’re an introvert or simply shy, it can be hard to initiate the contacts that you need in your life. If you find yourself not spending time with friends that are important to you, and you haven’t for a long time, try initiating the contact you crave to restart those friendships.

* Not Showing Your Love for Your Friends – If you really care for your friends, make the time to show them. Send them neat articles you think they’ll like, Groupon deals you know they will want to take, and cards for their special days.

* Being Negative – The truth is, some of us are more negative by nature than others. The problem is, negativity is a huge turnoff to most of the population, and it’s not fun to be around. Even negative people don’t like being around other negative people. Try to turn thoughts into positives in your mind, or focus on the positives when you can. Stop voicing negativity unless it’s very important.

* Not Being Open and Vulnerable – Feeling love from your friends and giving love back to your friends requires that you are open and vulnerable to them. The only way to really do this is to focus on spending time with your friends more often so you can truly know each other.

* Not Being Consistent – If you decide to embark on improving your friendships, don’t start and then stop. This is especially true if you’ve been a bad friend lately. Get out your calendar and set up times that you can focus on your friends.

If you can turn this around, you’ll get better at maintaining long-term friendships. Nothing really is better than making new friends and keeping them around long term. If you have ever wondered why you can’t make good friends, check yourself to find out if you have any of these bad habits that impact friendships.

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The Link between Friends and Happiness

The Link between Friends and Happiness

Happiness is a lifelong pursuit. A crucial ingredient in lifelong happiness is connection to others and deep, lasting friendships. Friends are a gift to be treasured, and their role in our lives include the ability to bring us happiness and joy. Here is how your friends and your happiness are related.

More Sociable People Are Rated as Happier

It has been studied and shown that individuals who are more sociable are also happier people. As we age, it gets more difficult to find friends and meet people on a regular basis than when we were children. Those who seek out friendships and rate this as important, also rate themselves as being happier.

Individuals who isolate themselves fall more easily into depression and stress. Introverts need friends just as much as extroverts do, and friends can help take the edge off of loneliness and sadness. Even if you are not a natural extrovert, make a point of building friendships in order to contribute towards your mental health and happiness.

Strong Friendships Are Known to Lessen Depression and Stress

People who rely on others to lift themselves up tend to be less stressed and depressed. Having a close friend you can talk to about your problems can serve as an important aid in releasing negative feelings. Confiding in a friend tends to reverse feelings of loneliness, and most friends offer words of comfort which affects you in a positive way, knowing that someone cares.

Being the one your friend asks for encouragement has positive benefits too, as it enforces the belief that you are needed and important. Having a happy friend heightens a person’s happiness, yet having a sad friend doesn’t affect you in equal proportions. This means that the benefits of friendship always outweigh the drawbacks.

Everyone collectively gains benefits through friendship, no matter whether you or your friend start out happy or not.

Positive Friends Affect Those around Them

Happiness is contagious. When you are around someone who is positive, life feels better. It doesn’t matter how stressed you might feel when you are alone; getting together with a good friend is therapeutic.

Make a choice to spend the majority of your time with people who are committed to a positive outlook on life. Encourage friends who need encouragement, but spend most of your time with those who are uplifting to your emotions. You will find yourself feeling more and more that way as time goes on.

Be the positive friend who encourages others as well. As the positive energy rubs off on you, so it should then rub off on those around you. Make a choice to encourage your friends, and to leave them feeling better than before they saw you.

Your Friends Adjust to Your Needs

Close friends have been shown to be flexible in their support of us. This means that if you are trying to lose five pounds for fun and you are being tempted by a craving, a good friend will likely indulge with you.

On the other hand, if your health depends on losing the weight, a good friend is more likely to hold you accountable and help you stick to your decision. Good friends help you say no when it matters, and help you say yes when you simply need to de-stress.

Friendships are important in regards to happiness. When you are a good friend who also chooses good friends, the benefits multiply. Choose friendship, and enrich your happiness in a great way.

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