Discover five simple and inexpensive ways to let your friends know just how much you value their friendship
Over the last couple of years, I think we’ve all realised how important our friends are. These are the people who share the good times with us and help us to get through the difficult times. But as life gets back to normal, it’s easy to fall back into our old routines that can make it hard to maintain these important friendships.
Taking time to show your friends that you care is an important step to ensure that your bonds of friendship stay strong in the long run. And doing something nice for someone else will make you feel good as well!
So here are five simple and inexpensive ways to show your friends how much you value your friendship:
Make time to listen
Most of the time, the conversations you have with your friends will be light hearted chit chat. But sometimes your friends might need a more meaningful conversation about something that is troubling them.
When this happens, it’s important to really listen to what they’re saying, rather than letting your mind drift or jumping in too quickly with your own stories or opinions. Make a conscious effort to pay attention to their body language as well as what they say, and try not to jump to conclusions or judge them for what they’re telling you.
Providing a friendly ear for their problems or even a shoulder to cry on can really show your friends how much you value them. As the saying goes, a problem shared is a problem halved.
Send a handwritten note or card
Sending a text, Whatsapp or other electronic message is a great way to check in quickly with your friend. But they don’t really have the same emotional impact as a handwritten note.
Whether you choose to send a letter or a card, a handwritten note has a much more personal feeling than a quickly typed email. It doesn’t need to be a long and involved letter, just a few lines will show your friend that you’re thinking of them.
You can find lovely note cards and beautiful stationery online or if you’re feeling crafty, why not have a go at making your own birthday cards for a truly personal touch. Or you could even send them a postcard next time you go away on holiday!
Buy them a small present
Money is on everyone’s mind at the moment, so I’m not about to suggest that you shower your friends with lavish gifts just to show that you care.
But a small gift that is bought with real care and attention is a lovely way to treat a friend, and you don’t need to wait for their birthday or Christmas to treat someone special.
Give some thought to their tastes and hobbies so that you can be sure to get a present that brings a smile to their face. For instance, a friend who enjoys writing might love a beautiful new notebook or you could order a selection of gooey chocolate brownies for your sweet-toothed friend.
The size and value of the gift doesn’t matter, it’s all about showing your friend that you’re thinking of them and that you selected this gift just for them.
Remember important dates
Even if you are buying your friends presents at other times, it’s still important to remember the significant dates in their lives as well. Don’t rely on reminders on Facebook because those can be wrong and not everyone puts their important dates on Facebook anyway!
So make a note in your diary, calendar or mobile phone so that you don’t forget your friends’ birthdays and anniversaries. If they have children, note down their birthdays as well – they’re sure to appreciate it if you remember.
And try to remember other important dates as well. Maybe your friend has finals coming up or has an important medical appointment that they’re worried about. A quiet word or note to let them know that you’ve remembered is sure to make them feel cared for.
Plan time to get together
It’s very easy for friends to drift apart over time. Not because you don’t care any more but just because life just gets so busy. So if you value your friendship, try to make the time to get together and have some fun.
This could be a quick coffee and cake, an evening of dinner and drinks or maybe even a day out together somewhere. It doesn’t have to cost a fortune, but making room in your busy schedule for your friends is an important way to show them that you care.