The older I get, the more selective I have become when choosing the type of people I want to spend my time with. When I was younger it always felt like the more friends, the better! I’d run around with my many “acquaintances” and sure, we’d have tons of fun, but the relationships were very light and fleeting. I’ll be the first to say that there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. There are times in life where those types of friendships are completely appropriate. But as I’ve taken on more responsibilities in my career, in my community and in my family, my free time has changed considerably and I’ve found that if I want to truly take care of myself, I have to carefully choose who I spend my precious free time with.
I believe this is an excellent opportunity to expand on the meaning of Healthy Her and what wellness looks like outside of what is portrayed in the media and the world around us (i.e. diet and exercise.) To me, wellness means taking care of the whole self: body, mind and spirit. The people we choose to be surrounded by are oftentimes the ones who will lift us up, inspire us, encourage us and make us better. A strong group of friends who bring different qualities, ideas and perspectives to the table is key when it comes to empowering ourselves, as well as those around us. Friendships and relationships that uplift us up are undeniably important in order for us to care for our minds and spirits.
I used to choose my friends by who was the most fun to spend time with on the weekends, or who was always up for happy hour. While I’ve had countless fun nights and memories made with those friends, as I get older I’m really looking for more meaningful relationships. There is something satisfying about being able to examine a relationship and understand how it makes you better. Those relationships are reciprocal and when a friendship strengthens you, it also allows you to offer strength and support to someone else.
This is especially true when it comes to female friendships. It’s important to build friendships with other women who want to lift you up and will celebrate your successes with you, as well as being there for you when you fail. Too often I hear my girlfriends talking about how other women put them down, or make them feel inadequate or insecure. It’s important to remember that we get to CHOOSE our circle of friends. There are women out there who will cheer you on and encourage you. Seek them out and you will be so greatly rewarded!
By selectively building our community we are able to choose people who help empower us to become who we want to be. I’ve found that surrounding myself with women who are in different professions, life stages, and who come from different backgrounds drives me to step up and step outside of my comfort zone. It’s exhilarating to be around people with different goals and dreams. It’s inspiring and motivating! Carefully choosing the people you spend your extra time with will reward you on so many levels; a fresh perspective, a helping hand, someone to celebrate your successes and a shoulder to cry on when you fail. Seek out these women and surround yourself with their friendships… It’s good for the soul.