This week we have focused primarily on volunteering, as volunteering is one of the major ways to give love. Not only is volunteering good for whoever you help, but it also brings love and connection into your life as a side benefit. Today, though, I want to talk about another way to bring more love into your life: investing time and energy into your friendships.
The importance of friendship in filling your life with love was brought home to me this week by my best friend. The two of us have been friends since we became roommates in college, although the friendship certainly wasn’t inevitable. I can be really reserved, and while I’m generally a friendly enough person, it can be tough to get really close to me. Fortunately for me, we had plenty of time together (being roommates and all), and slowly we bonded, becoming quite close over time. She was in my wedding, and I was in hers.
Then we both moved and started new lives with our new husbands and jobs, and we drifted apart a bit. We still talked, but only occasionally, and at times I worried that our friendship might just fade away.
Fortunately, we both believe that once you become true friends, you stay friends for good, so gradually we started to make more effort to stay connected. She texted, I called, we visited each other. Then we both moved at the same time, and instead of drifting apart, like we had done before, we turned to each other for support through the difficulties of settling into a new place and became closer than ever.
That investment in staying connected paid off in a big way for me this week because I had a massive family issue happen, and my best friend was there for me every step of the way. My husband is generally very supportive, but he was struggling with his own issues, and although he tried his best, he wasn’t fully able to be there for me. Fortunately, because my best friend and I had both invested the time to stay closely connected, she was completely ready, willing, and able to support me when I really needed her.
Supporting Your Relationship
This week’s focus on giving love outside of your relationship in order to bring more love into your life might seem a bit strange for a marriage blog. After all, this is all about what you do outside of your relationship. The reality, though, is that everything in your life affects your relationship. In this case, filling your life with love from other areas creates less pressure for your spouse to provide all of your needs. For me, volunteering helps give my attitude a positive boost and fill some of my social needs, which I then don’t need to get from my husband. My friends help provide support for me so that my husband is able to get a break when he needs to deal with his own problems. Naturally, these benefits are not the only reasons, or even the main reasons that you should volunteer or invest in your friendships, but they certainly are a happy bonus!
Hopefully your husband will feel a little more like this… Source: tatfoundation.org