Ah friendships! No one told me after high school and college that certain relationships with your friends may turn out to be different. “Sorry, I’ve been so busy!”– I’m sure you have heard this before. I’m guilty for sending that as a response. Trying to balance career, school and your social life can be pretty draining! Of course in high school and college, you create friendships with people that you will most likely see on a daily basis, but as an adult my life has changed. Career, dating/marriage, long distance moves, etc. my friendships have definitely changed.
Since my lifestyle has changed so much as an adult, I have learned different ways to maintain friendships as an adult.
1.) Go out of your way: Take the time to send out send a text or have a quick phone call. I know nowadays, it’s easier to send a text. It literally takes a few seconds to reach out and say hello and check up on them to see how they are doing. The little things go a long way and your friend will appreciate the effort.
2.) Be their biggest fan: Did your friend recently announce a huge life accomplishment such as getting engaged, having a baby, starting a business, etc.? Be their biggest fan! Show them how excited you are and how you will support them. I have gave up on toxic friendships because the friendships were one sided. I wanted to be around people who doesn’t have an issue with showing mutual support and will be there for one another during the bad and good times.
3.) Schedule your time: I’m sure we all have heard — “I’m so busy”. I’m guilty of it! If you have to plan out your hangouts in advance, DO IT! Try having lunch or dinner with your friend once a week or once every other week. If you guys work near each other, schedule to take your lunch break with your friend. Also, these scheduled dates will be something you and your girlfriends will look forward to. So plan that weekly wine night! One of my best friends lives out of town and we always make sure we plan a girls trip to a new city! It’s something we try to do every year and we look forward to it.
4.) Prioritize your friendships: I have different friend groups for different activities and interests. I have party friends, travel friends, married friends, friends with kids, etc. Schedule and tailor your friendships based on your needs. It’s impossible to get all of your friend groups together, you will feel less guilty if you’re upset that one of your friends can’t go to dinner at 7pm because your friend has to put her kid to bed around that time.
5.) Have fun: Don’t stress about it. If you’re really busy and can’t take the time to hang out, it’s okay! Trust me, your friends will understand. Try new things like going to a new resturant or a new happy hour spot. Maintaining and seeing your friends shouldn’t feel like a chore, just go with the flow and have fun!