There is nothing more special than that warm fuzzy feeling that you get when you know that someone cares for you. I have always had great friends around me who are great gift givers, and amazing with their words of encouragement. As a newly wed I am keen to keep the friendships alive with those warm fuzzy feelings, even tough my annoying husband craves my affection every minute of everyday (haha).
Here are a few things that keep me focused to make sure I truly do brighten my friends days.
- Be Unique – Yes it is great to do a batch of little notes for your friends, however uniqueness is key. When I was living in Australia I volunteered at the college library. It gave me the opportunity to see a huge collection of great books. One book that I have referenced a lot since is – The 5 Love Languages, Gary Chapman. While reading I discovered that not everyone receives and gives affection in a unique way. The five languages he explores are;
- Words of affirmation
- Quality time
- Acts of service
- Physical touch
For example I could give physical affection to my friend Natalie but it would not make her feel as special as if I spent some quality time with her laughing about life. Also I could buy my Mother a gift but it would not make her feel as special as if I cleaned the house before she came home from work. So when we know our friends, their likes and dislikes we are able to make them feel special in the unique way that they need.
- Remind them – Each friend we have has a special part in our lives and we hold many different memories with them. I like nicknames and funny sayings, and I seem to have collected a lot of funny phrases I say with my friends – “Merge” “Steve Blower” “Here we go again!” When writing to our friends reminding them of the special memories we have of times we have shared together creates those warm ad fuzzy feelings. Telling them how much they mean and exploring the feelings that you felt when you shared experiences together strengthens the friendship bond.
- Don’t give up – I have had times in my life when I have felt unfit to be a friend. When jealousy has crept in, or when life has over taken me, the first thing I do is withdraw from the people I love. My friends have never given up on me and have persevered even when I have not responded to their attempts. For one friend I missed out on the first year of her Motherhood, and for others I missed their engagements – When a friend does not respond it is not the time to think “I give up.” A quiet friend is often a hurting friend and that is when they need you most. I am so grateful to all of my friends who did not give up on me! Sending notes, leaving gifts and contacting my loved ones when they couldn’t reach me kept the friendship alive, and that was what I needed – to know I am cared for.
So thank you to all of my persistent and consistent friends. Life would have been rubbish without you and I am truly appreciative of all your efforts to brighten my day! I will do everything I can to be unique when I remind you that I will give up trying to brighten your day.