At the end of the day, we have nothing if we don’t have each other. The foundation of being humans, at least in my eyes, is the connections and bonds formed between us. Any kind of relationship takes work; I think the following thirteen statements are some of the most simple yet powerful ways to strengthen and maintain those relationships. They’re words that I believe all of us could agree would completely make our day if we heard just one of them from just one person. You have to put in effort, but your inner circle should be worth it. It’s up to us to make society a happier place to be. We’re in this life together, so please don’t let the people most important to you fade away.
1. I care about you.
Simple one to start out with, right? Obviously we know how important the people in our life are to us, but we don’t always make it a point to make sure they know that. A lot of people may feel like they have to hold back sometimes because they think they’re being a nuisance; if you care about someone and prioritize time spent with them, why not calm their fears and remind them how much they matter to you?
2. You are beautiful.
I’m one of those annoying people that sees beauty in everything and everyone. Lift each other up! I’m talking to all of you, not just the ladies- guys, go tell your bros they’re beautiful (and definitely let me know how that goes 😉 ). You are all beautiful people, both inside and out, and I know sometimes it’s easy to forget that. Mirrors can often be unforgiving and true self-reflection may lead to some unwelcome thoughts. It’s hard to see yourself the way everyone else does, especially positively, so just putting in a little extra thought to send a confirmation someone else’s way will have a huge impact.
3. I believe in you.
Sometimes all it takes is hearing that someone else has confidence in you to give you the courage you need to go out and do something. All too often, we expect failure from ourselves. It can be hard for us to see past that mental wall, so we need to help each other find the door instead. Encourage those around you. Who knows, you may end up encouraging yourself in the process.
4. I’m proud of you.
Celebrate the little successes. Isn’t life built up of more little moments than huge events anyway? Aren’t those little things the ones that truly matter at the end of the day? They’re special, intimate, and often spontaneous. Don’t let those close to you try to play down their accomplishments! Remind them how awesome they are because it can be so easy for us to forget.
5. I appreciate you.
This can be so much more powerful than a simple thank you. We want to know that we genuinely made a difference for someone, that we made their life easier. It could be as simple as printing out a last minute essay when a friend runs out of ink to dropping everything and picking someone up a city over because their ride bailed. Don’t take people for granted and don’t let them believe that you don’t recognize all that they do for you.
6. You matter.
It can be hard to find our place in this world. It can be hard to see how we matter in the grand scheme of things. We can feel small, insignificant, and worthless. Obviously, all of that is untrue- remind each other of that. Tell people how important they are. When they realize all that they bring to the world, there’s no telling what greatness they can achieve.
7. I miss you.
Why do we always overthink reaching out to each other? So you haven’t spoken to a certain person in a while. Stop debating whether it would be weird to check in with them. If both parties are too afraid to send that first text or make that first call, the conversation is never going to happen and the friendship fades away. The people in your life need to know that you think about them even when they’re not around or it’s been a while since you’ve seen each other. If we don’t take the initiative to maintain the relationship, one day we’ll find we don’t really have any real relationships to go back to.
8. You can.
In a world of can’ts, be the can. Lead someone else to realize their own potential and you could totally change their self-view in the process. When I was prepping my speech for my high school graduation ceremony, I was told multiple times (by teachers no less) that I wouldn’t be able to do it. Like, why would you tell this shy girl scared of everything that she won’t be able to do something? That’s the opposite of what she needs to hear. Luckily I was spiteful and wanted to prove them wrong, so I was fine ( 😉 ), but keep in mind that you never know how you could build someone up or tear them down.
9. You make me happy.
I’m sure the majority of people want to bring joy and good times to the people they’re with. It will likely be pretty evident they’re enjoying themselves, but, for the more introverted of the introverts, it can sometimes be harder for people to pick up on. Make it easy on them. They’ll be happy you’re happy and even happier that you’re happy because of them (how many times can you say “happy” in a sentence and have it still be valid?).
10. I’m grateful that you’re in my life.
I’ve been maintaining a gratitude journal for 2017 and it’s been really eye-opening to reflect back on each day and see how fortunate I truly am. In every day, there’s something to be thankful for. You can find it in the most *seemingly* unlikely of places and you can find it within someone else. One of the most heartwarming feelings has to be knowing you’ve made such a difference for someone that they actively think of you with gratitude. Share that with the people who have changed your life for the better!
11. I’m here for you.
Even if you don’t have the “right” words to say, just knowing that someone will stand by you and listen to you can be enough. It’s the unspoken show of support that can sometimes mean the most. Someone may be hesitant to fully open up to you because, like I mentioned earlier, they don’t want to be annoying. But, really, what are close relationships for if you can’t be there for both the good and the bad, the fun and the not so fun?
12. I will fight for you.
It’s always such a relief to know that someone will have your back no matter what. They will always be there for you and will face your demons alongside you. No one should have to feel like they are going through life alone. Be the reminder that they don’t have to be strong all the time; it’s okay for them to let their guard down when they need to because you will always protect them. Honestly, I think one of the best compliments to give someone is “you make me feel safe.” The level of trust involved with this is so definitive of a strong connection and who doesn’t want that?
You guys, we need to meet more of each other more often! No one ever believes me when I mention this, but for the first few weeks of freshman year I almost never ate by myself. I would find someone eating alone, invite myself to sit with them, and make them talk to me (whether they liked it or not 😉 ). I’ve never seen any of those kids again, but really that’s what made it great. I met a ton of people and had some interesting conversations without any pressure or obligation. One of the things I appreciate most about college is that it gives you so many opportunities to branch out. Put your phone away and take advantage of all of the fleeting interactions available around you. You never know who you’ll meet!
Basically all of these go hand in hand and I know that. If you get the recurring theme from this post, take away the fact that positivity and affirmation are contagious. I’m not perfect and I know I should say some of these more frequently than I do, but I try my best to make a conscious effort to make everyone feel special. You never truly know what someone else is going through, so the least we can do is make sure they know how much we love them. Reach out to someone close to you today. Make sure they know how you really feel. Stop trying to play some game and just be open. These things need to be understood and I think everyone will feel so much lighter without the burden of having to wonder. Actions may speak louder than words, but that doesn’t mean words aren’t powerful. 😉
“Surround yourself with people who add value to your life. Who challenge you to be greater than you were yesterday. Who sprinkle magic into your existence, just like you do to theirs. Life isn’t meant to be done alone. Find your tribe- and journey freely and loyally together.” -Alex Elle
~ What is something you think we need tell each other more often?