The Value of Friends in Self-Care

What? Friends and self-care?

Yes.

Self-care is vital to our long-term well-being. Although we are each responsible for making sure we take care of ourselves, it’s also important that we find effective methods for doing so.

For me, having and relying on a strong support network is what gets me through the rough times. I have been very blessed when it comes to the friends I have; they gave me unrivaled support during one of the darkest periods of my life, {most of them being 4,000 miles away at the time} and their support has proven consistent and unfaltering during the difficulties I’ve experienced since returning to the U.S.

I used to have a habit of withdrawing completely from everyone when things got too bad. In retrospect, I believe I was trying to spare them the stress of my situation and felt that what was going on in my life {one thing after another!} was far too draining for them. I eventually learned that withdrawing was not beneficial to me. It’s far better to reach out to someone for reassurance, insight, and comfort; it’s necessary to tell my friends when I’m seriously struggling and they always know just how to help me through whatever I’m going through.

The beauty of a strong support network is each of us being what the others need. Of the many people in my network, I know who to turn to if I want a much-needed {core workout} laugh, or a long, meaningful “put the world to rights” talk. I know who will tell me what I need to hear or just listen without saying anything at all and hug me at just the right moment. I know who can relate to me on many levels and help me brainstorm the right solution for me.

Additionally, helping my friends through their problems serves as a welcome distraction. Many times, I’ve heard, ‘I don’t want to add to your problems, you have enough on your plate.’ My response to that is, ‘Are you kidding? I’m tired of my problems. I want to focus on different ones for a while.’ {grin}

With a strong support network, self-care potentially becomes a group effort and, therefore, even more beneficial. Group activities like coffee meetings, movie outings, spa days, workout sessions, book club meetings or any other activity based on shared interests enhance self-care because it adds to the fun of the activity and just knowing our friends are getting their self-care is a bonus. It especially helps when we surround ourselves with positive people who make us feel more uplifted.

Sometimes, the best “self-care” comes from other people. ❤

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10 thoughts on “The Value of Friends in Self-Care

  1. I think you’re so right in want you’re saying here. I’ve also had the unhealthy habit of isolating myself when I’m going through hard times. But as I’ve been working to slowly change that, I see the great benefit in opening up to friends, being vulnerable, and accepting their help. Thanks for the reminder of how helpful and important it can be.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Liza!

      Thank you so much for dropping by and taking the time to comment.

      I find it especially challenging to reach out to people because I’m an introvert and my first instinct is to “not bother anyone”. Having said that, I know my friends don’t feel like I’m bothering them and I have had a few days where I absolutely knew I needed to tell people I was struggling because feeling isolated was not making things any better. I suffer from PTSD, so when something triggers an episode, reaching out is necessary.

      I do hope you’ll continue to visit. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Very true. I think that’s one of the biggest things I struggle with; I don’t reach out to someone when I probably should have, and it’s normally only later that I realize had I talked to someone it would have made that dark time a lot easier. Great post. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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