Maintaining Lasting Friendships

There’s a saying, “Surround yourself with women who would mention your name in a room full of opportunities.” That is a true testament of friendship – finding that person who, rather than throwing shade behind your back, makes it a point to lift you up and praise you when you’re not there. 

I don’t know about you, but I’ve had plenty of the former, and not too many of the latter types of women in my life. Building those true, lasting friendships can be lot of work, but having them is beyond worth it. Maintaining lasting friendships is the most challenging of all, especially as we navigate life changes like careers, marriages, and babies. 

maintaining friendshipsPrioritize

Making friendships a priority can be hard, but it doesn’t have to be. Even a gesture as small as sending her a text when you hear a song that brings her to mind can go a long way. Canceling dinner plans because you’re overstimulated or emotionally exhausted, while understandable, over time can erode a friendship. Instead, keep the dinner date, leave your phone on silent, and soak up every second of the laughter and reminiscing. 

Give Grace

While prioritization is key, equally important is giving grace. Sometimes people fall off of our friendship radars. Maybe they had a major life change or something is impacting their mental health, or they just got quiet. Don’t cut someone off if you haven’t heard from them in a minute. Long-lasting friendships are the kind that can withstand periods of silence and then pick back up like nothing ever happened. Give your friends grace when they need it, ask tough questions, and hold them accountable to also prioritize you. Friendship is a two-way street. 

Make It a Family Affair

One of the best feelings is watching someone I love, love on someone I love. Introducing my family to some of my lifelong friends has been one of the most rewarding sights I’ve ever seen. Whether it’s watching my husband and friend remodel our house together, or my sleepy son cradled in a friend’s arms, seeing my favorite people interact makes my heart happy. Co-mingling your long-term friends and your family strengthens that bond. Sure, you run the risk of your partner hearing some embarrassing tales from your youth, but it’s worth it.

Be Really Real

Nothing good can come from being anything but 100 percent honest in your friendships. Even the smallest of lies can destroy trust among the best of friends. Who even has time for that? Being an authentic friend creates next level respect and trust in lasting friendships. But remember: honesty is kind, criticism is bullying. Learn the difference. 

Straighten Their Crown

Society has taught us, particularly women, that we must compete. There must be a winner and a loser. That’s simply not true. We all have crowns and we should do what we can to straighten them for others. Build your friendships up and place them on thrones. Women deserve that – we all deserve that. When women support each other, incredible things happen. 

Lasting friendships

As cliché as it sounds, maintaining lasting friendships takes work. It takes dedication and admiration and authenticity. And if you’re giving that kind of energy in your friendships, it better be reciprocated. Friendships, like all relationships, are 50/50. You get what you give. If you are giving more than your fair share, it’s time to evaluate that friendship and have a hard conversation. You deserve it.

Trying to juggle your friendships while being a mom? Read more about navigating friendships and mom life!

Noelle Nachreiner
Noelle is the mom of a three-year-old boy from the Charlotte area. She also serves as the marketing director for a nonprofit that works on behalf of dairy farmers. A graduate of MSU, Noelle spent 15 years in Indianapolis before returning to Michigan in 2019 with her husband. Outside of work and motherhood, Noelle enjoys supporting local businesses and entrepreneurs, volunteering in the community and personal development opportunities.


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