Maintaining True Friendships

                                                         The way is long - let us go together.  The way is difficult - let us help each other. 
                                                                The way is joyful - let us share it.  The way is ours alone - let us go in love.  
                                                                                               The way grows before us - let us begin.

Maintaining True Friendships is Crucial  

True friendships require one-on-one contact to survive.  Telephone calls and getting together are a must for true friendships to continue.   In fact, the quickest way to end a friendship is to neglect it and sever contact. 

Yet it is hard to make time in a busy day and a busy life to maintain our friendships.  But you do not have to have hours to spare to maintain a friendship.  

Try the following to keep from neglecting friends:  

·         Send frequent emails.   Email is fast and easy for a quick note.
·         Call at least once a week.  Telephone calls do not take long.
·         Keep in touch through brief messages left on voice mail or answering machines.
·         Send an occasional card.  Funny or event appropriate cards take minutes to choose and address.
·         Exercise together.  We all have to exercise.  It is more fun with a friend, plus there is no better place for talking than a walk in the park.
·         Clean together.   Whether it is cleaning the house, the cars, or the yard... this is another must do and two makes the cleaning quick and fun 
            instead of long and boring.
·         Send pictures.   A picture is still worth a thousand words.
·         Go to lunch, dinner, a movie, bowling or some other activity at least once per month.  More often would be better.  
·         Flexibility is always important for maintaining friendships.  Be understanding when your friend has a last minute change in plans.  Learn to 
        accept the, "I am sorry to cancel, but we will have schedule another time together next Sunday."
·         When there is conflict, it must be resolved as soon as possible for friendship to continue.  Confrontation is one way to resolve conflict.  
        Talking it out is another.   A cooling-off period is sometimes necessary when conflict has occurred.  Once you reinitiate contact, it will be 
          necessary to discuss the issues surrounding the conflict.