#TheEverydaySpruce 5 ways to be a better friend

– a collaborative project between lapinblu & growing spaces
#TheEverydaySpruce - Nurture friendships - DIY greetings card organiser | Growing Spaces

Last week I caught up with an old friend, and it got me thinking about how dreadful I’ve become about keeping in touch with people. I think when the twins were born I went into survival mode,  all my focus went on home life, and I’m not sure that I’ve managed to really break out of that mindset. Of course it’s important to prioritise my family, but time with good friends makes me feel so much happier, so I think it’s about time I pulled my socks up and stopped taking my friendships for granted.

Three years ago, I made a pledge to stop forgetting friends’ birthdays, and I made a card organiser to help keep on top of the dates. I do use it, but it’s become largely forgotten and most of the time it sits at the back of a cupboard. So I’ve given it an update and now it’s out on a shelf in my office. There’s an A5 envelope for each month of the year, with a list of that month’s birthdays pegged to the front. Cards I’ve made (another resolution which I’ve actually stuck to is to make all my own greetings cards) are popped into the envelope so that they’re ready for sending. The plan is to tackle each month in one go – making sure there are cards for everyone ready in stamped addressed envelopes so that all I have to do is post them in time.

DIY greetings card organiser | Growing Spaces

#TheEverydaySpruce - send a card to a friend | Growing Spaces

5 ways to be a better friend #TheEverydaySpruce | Growing SpacesWhen I thought about my friendships, these were the five ways I thought I could do better..

1. Remember birthdays
See above!

2. Send a card/letter/note
I don’t know about you, but I absolutely love receiving proper post (not bills – I definitely don’t like receiving those). Next time I think about sending a text to a friend I haven’t contacted for ages, I’d like to send a nice note or postcard instead.

3. Make the call
I’m terrible for texting when really I should just pick up the phone. It’s way more personal and a good chat with a friend never fails to cheer me up.

4. Plan a trip
Sometimes the only way to make thing happen is to plan in advance. Whether it’s a day trip, or a longer weekend away, there’s nothing better than time spent face-to-face. I need to sit down with the diary and get scheduling.

5. Declutter
I’ve already admitted to my hoarding tendencies and I think this applies to my friendships, too. I find it painful losing touch with anyone, whether they’re a great friend or not. But I can’t focus on the people that are really special to me if I’m investing too much time in those that aren’t. Harsh maybe, but true. Sometimes I really do need to let go.

How do you make sure to nurture your friendships?

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    • Heather Young March 12, 2015 / 9:37 am

      Thanks for the link – I’ve bookmarked for a good read later. x

  1. March 10, 2015 / 3:52 pm

    Agree with all points, the last one in particular – friends come and go, and that’s ok. I would add another point – listen, and if nothing is being said by the special friends, then ask why. Sometimes all may not be well (as it so often appears to the outside world), and sometimes all it takes is a “how you doing?”

    Lovely post!

    Felicity x

    • Heather Young March 12, 2015 / 9:38 am

      That’s a great point – there’s nothing better than a good friend checking in with you to see if you’re ok if you’ve been quiet.

  2. March 10, 2015 / 7:21 pm

    Bloomin’ brilliant! Birthdays is something I got really bad at – I blamed baby brain initially, but as you say, I’m often in survival mode now & remember after the date when it feels too late. #musttryharder Such a great organiser & beautifully shot ;0) x

    • Heather Young March 12, 2015 / 9:39 am

      Thanks missus! I just don’t think that I can use the survival mode excuse anymore – I really want to get on top of stuff like this as I know it will make me feel better in general. x

  3. March 11, 2015 / 1:32 pm

    I had developed a reputation with my family that my cards always arrive a day late so I am making a real effort this year. Sadly the cards that I sent my dad (including hand made ones from the kids) were ‘damaged’ by Royal Mail (the big envelope arrived but all the cards were missing) I was heartbroken.

    Let’s plan something soon to meet up one weekend x

    • Heather Young March 12, 2015 / 9:41 am

      A day late definitely doesn’t count as late in my book! I’d say you were nailing it! That’s such a shame about the cards getting damaged – hopefully it’s a rare occurrence and won’t happen again any time soon x

  4. March 11, 2015 / 9:08 pm

    Such good ideas. I always remember birthdays too late and could really do with getting more organised. Lovely post x

    • Heather Young March 12, 2015 / 9:42 am

      I’m actually going to send a card to everyone whose birthdays I’ve already missed this year – even birthdays from back in January. I want to wipe the slate clean and start again!

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