After work -drinks, a walk in the park, picnic by the beach... These are the typical moments I connect friends, warm environment and good memories with. To me, friendship is a part of my life that gives me energy and a possibility to share, not only good but bad times, too. Especially now, while we live in a world going through a lot of changes and social distancing, the importance of friends is even higher than before. This may reflect as missing hang outs with your friends or when someone remembers to ask how are you doing. "How are you?" may be one of the most important questions you can ask your friend and when you ask it, remember to listen what they have to say.
I suffered from burn out few years ago. At first, I didn’t even realize it myself. I kept going on as usual and took more and more responsibilities and extra work for myself. Partly, so I wouldn’t have to stop to think why I couldn’t sleep properly and why even the tiniest hardships made my eyes tear up and got me feeling powerless.
And before I did, my friends noticed that everything wasn’t okay with me. When they asked whether I was okay, my response was a laugh and the phrase: "Sure, why wouldn’t I be?". It took quite a lot to get me to realize everything wasn’t okay and once I finally did, I burst into tears admitting I was tired and have pushed myself to the limits of my own wellbeing. At the time, my friends were there to help me.
My recorvery started step by step; letting go of too much work and taking time to do things I enjoyed doing. One of the main forces that got me trough the burnout were my friends. They were listening and willing to offer me advice when I asked for one. They didn’t force to advice me if I didn’t ask for it.
It’s easy being a friend during the good times but it really takes a genuine caring person and yes, sometimes nerves being a friend even during the hard times (especially when you’re handing a third package of tissues to your friend and it’s not even mid day yet).
On the other hand, isn't this what friendship is all about? Caring and being there for each other through thick and thin. I don’t take friendships for granted, I value and care for the people around me. When I ask how you are, I really want to know. It’s way too easy to forget the importance of friendships when you’re busy with everything that’s going on with your life, that is natural and happens to everyone. But from time to time, take a break and have a second for your friends, even if it’s just to send a text asking how are they doing.
Let’s value and take care of each other during this social distancing, and even when it’s over! Good friends are such a great wealth in our lives that can support our mental state; let’s not take it for granted. Therefore, a sincere thank you to all of my friends - let’s laugh and cry together again soon!
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