Maintaining adult friendships can be difficult. It’s not like school, where you see each other every day. You actually have to put in some effort to keep them alive. I guess you could say adult friendships are like plants. You need to care for them. A little bit of this and a little bit of that to keep things just right.
So here are my top secrets to maintaining adult friendships.
Put in the effort
Friendships are a two-way street. So that means you also have to put in some effort. Don’t sit around and wait for your friends to make plans with you. Be that person that puts in the effort to organise something. If it’s just you and one other friend it can be easy to set something up. I know with my friends, the more of us there are the harder it can be to organise something that works for everyone.
But here are some ideas to start putting in the effort:
- Send a text asking what they’ve been up to
- Invite them out for coffee or brunch
- Share a throwback photo with them; remember when?
I started to focus on my relationships in 2018 and by starting a regular girls night we are so much closer than we have ever been.
You show up for your friends when things are great. So why not show up when things aren’t so great? We all know that it’s the good friends stick around when the going gets tough for someone. It’s not even hard to show up during that time.
The easiest way to show up for a friend is to think about how you’d like your friends to show up for you in any given situation. It could be financial support, running errands and doing chores, delivering some preprepared meals or even just offering your company.
Times you need your friends the most:
- After the loss of a loved one
- During a season of chaos
- After a miscarriage
- During fertility treatment
- After the birth of your child
- During a pandemic
We all need support at different stages throughout our lives and it’s great when that support is mutual. Sometimes the difference between success and failure comes down the to amount of support a person had. And I don’t know about you, but I want to do everything I can to help my friends succeed.
A few ways you can support your friends:
- Support and encourage their decisions
- Offer advice if they ask for it
- Celebrate their accomplishments
It also doesn’t take much to support the work they do or their business. It costs you nothing to recommend to your friend or like or share their social media posts.
Follow up with them
It’s sometimes easy to get lost in our own little world, but it can be easy to reconnect. It can often make a huge difference to have a friend care enough to check-in.
Here are a few ways you can follow up:
- Ask them how their date went
- Ask them if they got the promotion
- Ask them how their child is going after something happened
- Ask them how their parents are doing
- Ask them how their doctor’s appointment went
Following up with your friends often deepens the relationship as it extends your mutual interest in each other.
We all love to be made to feel special on occasion. So why not show some appreciation for that friend that’s always there for you. And the best surprises are the ones they don’t see coming.
Ways you can surprise your friends:
- Send them a gift you know they’ll love
- Send them an encouraging text message
- Show up at their work at lunchtime to have lunch with them
These are all different ways that you can show your friends that you care, all while building and maintaining adult friendships.