Friendship is one of the most rewarding experiences. Take the time to regularly tell your friends how much you appreciate them. Image courtesy of AKARAKINGDOMS at freedigitalphotos.net
Whether we are quiet people who cherish a few close friends in our lives, or more outgoing with a much larger social circle, we are reminded again and again throughout our lives how special these relationships are.
Our family are precious to us, being blood relations. However, friends are people we choose to be a significant part of our lives. We choose to spend time with them, talk, listen, be both a confidante and one who confides.
We may have numerous acquaintances, but it has often been stated that if we can count our friends on one hand we are extremely lucky. I have three or four friends I would consider extremely close, and would feel comfortable sharing most parts of my life with.
I believe it is important every so often to communicate to our special friends how important they are to us. Here are some ways you can tell a special friend in your life how much they mean to you.
1. Tell them. Choose a quiet time, perhaps over a cup of tea. Your friend may not have made a particular gesture that day but you would be surprised how much pleasure they will have in just telling them something to the effect of “I really appreciate having you in my life, and I am glad you are my friend.” Okay, so it sounds a bit corny, but you can rephrase it so you are comfortable with it.
2. Listen. I believe a good friend is a better listener than a talker. When you focus and take in what a friend says, it is telling them “I care about you and what happens in your life. You are worthwhile enough for me to take time to want to listen.” Even if you don’t have answers if your friend is experiencing difficulty, just listening can facilitate them finding a solution.
3. Remember important things they tell you. For example, when they had their driving test, an exam, if they are currently having difficulty with their boyfriend. The fact that you remember what they feel is significant to tell you is a way of telling your friend they are important. In particular, I have noticed friends are particularly pleased when you remember their birthday. You could have a ‘birthday book’ where you write down important friends’ birthdays, or write them on a calender.
4. Spend regular quality time with them. Not just texting or on the phone either. Both of these communications are positive also, but really putting aside time in our chaotic worlds to have a cup of coffee tells a person they are worth your time.
5. Take time to do enjoyable things together. Think of the reasons which drew you and your friend together. Did you meet at a book club? At an exercise class? So as well as the quiet time mentioned in point 4, arrange to do other special activities with your friends.
6. When you are stressed or busy, if you are holidays, or your friend moves overseas, this does not necessarily mean the friendship has to be over! On the contrary, this is a test to prove how strong the fabric of your friendship is.
7. Tell your friends regularly what you appreciate about them and not just on special occasions. Every now and then you could perhaps buy a token gift or card for few dollars. Perhaps you appreciate their honesty, sense of humour and loyalty. Telling your friends what you cherish in them can help them feel special because it means you have taken the time to think about their personal qualities.
Another great article! It is a great feeling when a friend tells you they appreciate you. Friends get a boost when you tell them how much they mean to you. A bunch of flowers from your garden or some home cooked goodies are other possible gifts.
You hit the nail right on the head: flowers, or something you cooked gives people the feeling they are worthwhile: not only is it a present, it is one that you put effort and thought and time into creating! Thank you for your compliment, too: I love all your articles, as well