How do I stop sabotaging my friendships

Maintain friendships: These 10 tips will help you

Maintaining Friendships: Easier or Harder Than Ever?

According to the Federal Association of the Digital Economy, we spend an average of 71 minutes a day in social networks - probably even more recently. However, emojis and a nice message cannot replace the effect of a real hug from another person. But at the moment that is not always possible due to social distancing. Difficult conditions for friendships? Time to take stock between and to ask yourself in general:
How much time do you spend on WhatsApp, Facebook & Co? And how much live with your friends?

Also read:Friendship and Corona - how the pandemic changes contacts

Friends are balm for the soul

For most women, having a best friend is an extremely important part of their lives. It is balm for the soul, shares joys and sorrows, gives a feeling of security, gives feedback. Friendships are good: Your real social support cushions stress, makes us feel good and even strengthens the defenses of body and soul. Thus, good friends contribute to our mental and emotional strength.

In her current book "Frauenpower. Mental strength for women" by Antje Heimsoeth, she deals with the interactions between thinking and acting and female stumbling blocks such as self-sabotage, comparison or the obsession with beauty. Guest authors from business and coaching will also have their say. The book was published by Springer on May 24, 2018.

Gaining and keeping friends, however, requires more than clicks and text messages. With these ten simple tips, it will be very easy for you to make, cultivate and maintain new friendships.

Ten tips for cultivating friendships:

  • Approach others with openness and smile at them as you do so. That opens many a door.
  • Be sincere. Playful trust is often the beginning of the end of a friendship.
  • Don't pretend, stay authentic. After all, you want to be liked for who you are.
  • Listen actively! Let the other person speak and show empathy at the same time. Open questions, acceptance and attention help.
  • Friendship is not a community of convenience. Make sure it's give and take.
  • Accept those around you for who they are. That assumes that you accept yourself.
  • Be reliable.
  • Tolerate criticism and maintain a loving and appreciative manner when criticizing.
  • Take time for meetings, shared experiences and a message in between.
  • Give away little gifts and treats, just like that.

Practical exercise: How are your personal relationships?

Take a piece of paper and show your relationships in a diagram. You are as "I" in the middle of the sheet. Around it you place the names of the people with whom you have relationships. You can symbolize the importance of relationships with the line width.

Evaluate your relationships:
- stands for very bad, stressful relationships
- for bad
0 for neutral relationships
+ for good and
++ for very good, intact relationships

Then take a closer look at the relationships and answer the following questions for each relationship:

  • How are your relationships?
  • What is important to you in these relationships?
  • On closer inspection, where do you discover defects and deficits?
  • What effects do they have - on your partnership, family, work, on the work of others, on yourself, on your mood, etc.?
  • What should you watch out for in the future to improve individual relationships?
  • Which result do you wish for?
  • What will you do differently than before?

So it is with your friendships

Life is not just about where you are going - it is also about who you are with. Have you noticed that there are some stressful relationships around you? Then see what you can do to change the quality of the relationship. Which factors are stressful? For example, can you exert an influence through an open conversation by naming what you find disturbing or obstructive? If you fail to positively change a stressful relationship, you should consider ending it. Sometimes you have to part in order to be able to stay with yourself. This requires mental and emotional strength, but at the same time releases new energies and perspectives. Have you found that your relationships are often neutral? Then ask yourself why this is and what do you wish for these relationships? The first step from a neutral to a good relationship is openness. Be open to yourself and your needs and to deal with others. Every change begins with knowledge.

As an expert in mental strength, motivation, leadership, change, self-management and top performance, Antje Heimsoeth is one of the best-known mental coaches in German-speaking countries. She runs the Heimsoeth Academy, a coaching and training institute.