Simple Solutions for Stronger Relationships

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The hardest part about a relationship, of any kind, is change always starts with us. I thought about all of the areas of improvement in my own life and came up with practical ways to grow stronger in relationships.

To the friend who always like to stay in…  

aka… me. I swear I would be a recluse if it weren’t for my social husband. If you’re a homebody, introvert, or just downright antisocial make sure the time you spend at home is rejuvenating. Do what it takes to recharge so when you do force yourself to get out you’re well rested. Then hurry home to your p.j.’s.

 

To the friend who always flakes… 

Quit people pleasing. Most of the time I flake is because I never wanted to say yes to begin with but I felt too bad to say no. Soon you’ll stop getting invited and your word won’t mean much to anyone—avoid this at all costs! Our relationships are typically as strong as our trustworthiness. Even if it hurts in the moment being honest and saying no will help you earn your friend’s trust.

 

To the friend who’s always busy…

 Prioritize your obligations. There is busy busy and then there is I-don’t-actually-want-to-see-you busy… I’m talking about legit busy. Here are my two bits: share your life and make connection a priority. It’s frustrating to feel like you have no idea what is going on in your best friend’s life… don’t do that to someone else! Instead of “no, I’m busy” tell them what’s on the itinerary.  As for making connection a priority—don’t get so caught up in your business that you become a robot. Sometimes a little social interaction is exactly what you need to kick-start your productivity.

 

To the single friend…

Take note of what you can implement into your own relationship. I know it can feel lonely when you’re surrounded by couples but try being mindful. What do you see that you want for yourself? 6 months before I met Brian a wise friend told me, “if you’re looking for love you’ll never find it.” Cheesy? Absolutely, but she has a point. Use your single-ness as a chance to invest in your some-day relationship.

 

To the long-distance friend…

 Plan quality time and celebrate your friend. Your friend will have to find other friends. Learn their names, take note of their new schedules, and champion them from a distance. Visit them on their new turf, plan Facetime dates, and instead of wishing they were back in your house be ridiculously happy for them and their new life!

 

To the planner friend…

You don’t always have to be in charge. Sometimes you can feel like the travel agent / assistant / Mom / CEO of your friend group. And then there are the stragglers who don’t pay you back, flake on the reservation, or back-out at the last second. It’s a thankless job to be the planner of the group. You probably made the power points for group projects too. Delegate!! Use your resourcefulness to see the strengths in your friends and ask them to step up and help.