Friendships (“The only way to have a friend is to be one”. Ralph Waldo Emerson)
Friendship like anything that is valuable in life requires intentional creation. The more you give, the more you receive the old adage says. I have been blessed to have extremely loving, supportive and giving friends. Spanning friendships of over twenty five years, they are family.
I cannot begin to recount the many ways and times, my sister circle has been there for me; from sending me on dream vacations; to buying me an entire wardrobe plus creating my very own fashion show, with an actual runway; to redecorating by entire home, all while I was not even there, which included taking months to shop-hand selecting personal items that fit my personal style and taste, decorating, installing, from AV equipment to coffee table books–they hooked it up. Because they know me so well, I didn’t even pick anything out. As you can tell, I really don’t enjoy shopping…lol. So why you ask would they do such a thing? Well because they love me, of course, and because we have cultivated this type of sisterhood, dream circle and giving culture. Through the sorrows, failures, successes and achievements in life, my sister circle has consistently surrounded me, uplifted me, sometimes carried me through. Supporting me through the loss of both of my parents, helping me during family crises, boyfriend dramas, etc., this group of women have stood by my side faithfully and lovingly. They see the best and highest for me, support my dreams and goals and challenge me when I go a little astray.
I call them my dream team, my personal board of directors, my anam caras (soul friends). Part of my fortune was self-created—meaning I invested and nurtured my friendships as I do with any other valuable resource. I sow the seeds of what I want to receive in my life and I do so intentionally and thoughtfully. Here are some ways that I have found which helped me grow and nurture my invaluable sister circle.
- Identify one or two people you deem worthy of your pearls and begin or continue to cultivate that relationship. By worthy I mean, look at how they treat others, family, friends, colleagues– they will likely treat you the same way. Do they respect people, themselves? Do they honor their commitments to themselves or others? Are they dependable and reliable? Do they have a lot of drama with other friends? As Maya Angelou said, when people show you who they are believe them.
- If they pass the first test, then begin to cultivate the relationship by studying them…no I don’t mean stalk. But find out what’s important to them. What they value, how do they enjoy spending their time and money. Learn your friend like it’s a job
- Speak their love language. Find ways to communicate with them and to be there for them in ways that matters to them.
- Be vulnerable and share. Open up to them about your life, fears, failures and successes. That generates mutual trust and compassion
- Show up and support in big and small ways-birthday, family events, mini and major crises. Let them know you have their back.
If you meet people worthy to call friends, and show up for them in these ways, you will receive what you have given tenfold. I love to share how the gift of friendship can enhance your life and create opportunities for kinship at my retreats. Join us at our next transformational Women’s Sisterhood Retreat –meet a friend, meet a sister.