Friends Are the Family We Choose (7-8-22)

Taking Care of YOU means making good choices in every area of your life. And that includes surrounding yourself with positive people who support and encourage you, tell you the truth (even when you might not want to hear it), and know all about you and like you anyway. We call them “friends.” One of my dear friends summed it up well: “Friends are the family we choose.”

Think about that! We don’t get to choose our family, but we do get to choose our friends! Friendship is a choice – and a gift. Given that gift, it’s important to think about the friendships important to you. Make a list of your really good friends. Then write down what you like about them… what makes you friends. Do they energize and refresh you? Do they bring you joy and laughter in good times as well as comfort and care in the tough times? Are they good listeners? How do your personalities fit? You may be alike or totally different. But you still work to keep the relationship going because all good relationships take work!

And speaking of personalities… are you spending time with a whiner and complainer who constantly brings you down? One who thrives on playing the role of the victim, even when she isn’t? A “drama queen” who drains your last ounce of energy every time you’re around her? Or one who spends all your time together talking about herself and never asks about you? If you have someone you call a “friend” who is passive-aggressive, or a gossip who loves to stir up trouble or talk about you behind your back, be aware that this person is not your friend … by any stretch of the imagination.

As you looked at a few names you may have thought, “We don’t have anything in common anymore.” That’s OK. We all experience changes in our friendships that coincide with changes in our lives. Sometimes our friendship remains strong even though we don’t experience similar milestones. Although we may go through times when we don’t feel like we have much in common, what we do have in common is our desire to maintain that friendship based on our history and connection.

Taking Care of YOU means maintaining positive relationships at every level, including your friendships. Remember, friends are the family we choose. So choose wisely!


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