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Friends Forever

Five Ideas to Strengthen the Bond In this life, it is important to count your blessings. One blessing we often take for granted is friendship. Our friends provide us with a sense of belonging and accept us for who we are, flaws and all. Friends offer a helping hand when we need it the most, and they are our go-to for advice and encouragement. Yet friendship is not always easy. Both parties must commit to cultivating and maintaining the friendship for it to last over time. It is important to take inventory of our relationships and recognize from which ones we have let other aspects of our lives distract us. To strengthen these friendships, consider these five ideas: 1. Make Time for One Another It is sometimes challenging to make time in our schedules to spend with friends. Sometimes we are even tempted to skip dinner with a friend or cancel that yoga class together because we have too much else to do. But remember, spending time with friends is a rewarding experience – and may be just what you need! 2. Try Something New Together It is easy to get caught in a routine. Therefore, trying something new can breathe new life into a friendship. We are also more apt to try something new with our partner-in-crime than alone. Whether it is eating at a different restaurant or going white water rafting together, challenge each other to make new memories by trying new things. 3. Tell and Keep Secrets Trust is essential to any friendship. When you tell a friend something that lets your guard down, you are expressing this trust. Be understanding, non-judgmental and know when to keep a story or fact confidential. Exchanging emotions and secrets strengthens your bond. 4. Appreciate the Little Things It may not seem like much but that text on your first day at the new job or the bowl of soup brought to you when you have a cold are a sign of caring. They mean that your friend is thinking about you even when you are not together. Appreciate these little gestures that make your day and reciprocate them when you can. 5. Take a Trip Down Memory Lane Whether it is pulling out your high school year book or scrolling back to 2007 on Facebook, think about the good times. Tell stories, laugh, and smile with your friend thinking about your favorite memories. Taking a trip down memory lane is a great opportunity to bond over the history you’ve shared together.

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