I have always been very blessed in my friendships, I have people that I have known my whole life as well as new friends and dozens of wonderful people I have “met” on the internet. My friends are emotional support, a source of laughter, fellow travelers on the journey, an anchor and mainstay in a world that can turn upside down.
As an adult it can be difficult to maintain friendships. Work, moving, job changes, children, activities, and spouses can limit the time we have available for friendships. The role of friend is vastly under appreciated. Friendship has more of a psychological impact than family. I have discovered that friendship is another thing to be mindful of. Be mindful of what your friends are going through, and what they need. Pay attention to birthdays, important events for their children, anniversaries, work troubles, etc.
Qualities of friendship include sympathy, empathy, honesty, trust, reciprocity, a desire for the best for each other, mutual understanding, and enjoyment of each other. Having friends has been shown to help you live longer and with less stress, increase self-worth, add a sense of belonging and purpose, enrich your life, improve coping skills during times of trauma, and, of course, make you happier. On the other hand, social isolation can be as bad for you as smoking 15 cigarettes a day, being an alcoholic, never exercising, and twice as unhealthy as obesity. I don’t know for sure where internet friendships fall but I sure hope they count quite a bit! I have bad periods health wise when I do not leave my house for days at a time, I am so glad I have all of you!
Nurture your friends, value their place in your life, pray for them. Let the people you value in your life know how much they mean to you. Hug your friends, hug your family. Because someone is family does not mean they are not friends, my mom is my friend, as are my children and daughter-in-law, and my sister is my best friend. I have no idea when troubles hit how I would survive without my friends, but I am so very grateful I have never had to find out! To all of you, I love you, thank you for being in my life.
About the author:
MamaSteph has 2 kids by birth and several by love, she is a nurse and enjoys finding healthier ways to make comfort foods, gardening, enjoying nature, and living life to the fullest…For a list of her blogs please click here.