The restrictions and lockdowns have been hard on our relationships with friends and family, at times leading us to shift our entire world to either going online or chatting on the phone. Such interferences have served to disrupt our social behaviours so severely, it’s fair to say that for some, there may now be an element of detachment from our pre-Covid lives, leading us to cut our associations with those we’ve finally realised didn’t really mean that much to us in the first place!
Therefore, if you’re someone who’s reconnecting, but are unsure how to either rebuild those old friendships or even prune nuisance ones from your life; here’s what we suggest:
Figure out what friends you want to keep
Everyone has different needs. These could range from having a fun person in your life to having a shoulder to cry on and a pal to confide in. Then again, maybe having someone you can depend on for doing you a favour is what’s important to you. Either way, the thing to remember is, as the lockdown has lifted and life is getting back to normal, ask yourself which of these people do you engage with and which, if any, do you want back?
How do you make new friends?
No problem, just put yourself out there and build yourself a new support mechanism. Join a local group such as a weekly exercise class or a walking group etc., In short, take up an activity where you see people continuously over time, therefore, as you become familiar with them, you can make an informed decision as to whether or not they’re worthy of the friend or the pruning status!
Thoughts on friendships forged…
As you were confined to quarters, (or your 5km), did you forge new friendships with neighbours, people who regularly walked by your home, or with those you met on your daily jog to that takeaway coffee dock in the park? Now that we’re back to normal, which of these people will you miss and do you feel it’s important to maintain that connection with them?
While these newly-forged ‘friendships’ may have inhabited the foreground of your life during lockdown, it’s up to you (and them if they miss you too) whether they maintain that status or whether they’ll now be relegated to the middle-ground, or to the background. In short, how much energy do you want to invest in these fleeting lockdown, fellow coffee drinkers?
And finally, remember, nobody can be the perfect friend all the time, and, while a good, solid friendship/relationship is certainly a bonus, it should never, ever be one-sided. In short…if you’re not a good friend yourself, how can you expect someone to be a good friend to you?