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4 Ways To Spend Quality Time With Your Friends

4 Ways To Spend Quality Time With Your Friends

As we grow up, our world changes. We become too busy to allocate time for our friends as our responsibilities begin to pile up. Our best friends become our distant friends and our distant friends become a faint memory. Life moves on while our memories of our friends begin to fade away.

Reminiscing becomes painful. However, there’s a way to avoid the pain in this scenario. Quality time with your mates will keep your friendships as solid as the Sex and The City foursome. A once-in-a blue-moon gathering could put a wide smile on everyone’s faces.

Make time for a day where responsibilities are less relevant than friendship. Have some group fun and maintain your friendships throughout the years. Here are a few ways to spend some quality time with your friends group.

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1. Catch up on your favourite TV series together

This is one of the activities my friends and I use to stick together through our busy lives. Initially, this practice started with Sex and the City episodes. We used to gather with hot chocolate (these days we prefer wine), and watch the latest episode together. We would indulge in our weekly gossip and chat together about everything that happened since we were last together.

These days, as we’ve all started travelling and moving to different countries, we keep our dates on Skype. Game of Thrones is our new Sex and the City. We pick a time and avoid spoilers so that we can watch that one-hour episode together. It brings us back to our childhood and has kept our friendships going strong until this very day.

2. Plan vacations together

No matter if your best friends were people you met in college, at work, or during your school days, keeping each other updated keeps the friendship growing. This is what keeps your bonds strong over time. However, it can be tough to maintain these updates when you get caught up in daily life.

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The next time you’re looking forward to a break, planning a trip with your old friends will give you the chance to bond and give you a well-deserved break. The best way is to plan a trip in nature or to a country that you’ve never visited. You will have an adventure together and an amazing story to remember.

3. Remember birthdays  

Have you been in the situation where you forget the most important days, most of them usually being birthdays? Some of us would be lost without our Facebook reminders. For many, birthdays are full of expectations. Simple wishes and calls can brings tears to one’s eyes.

Therefore, take up the habit of writing or programming birthdays in your calendar. Note the dates of the birthdays as well as keep track of them through your mobile phone or Google calendars. This will help you make surprise calls or even small surprise gestures during friends’ birthdays. This will prove to them that they are very important in your life.

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4. Play sports together

A healthy body equals a healthy mind. Therefore, as we age, we must focus on our health. Workouts become an important part of our lives and keeping fit becomes a routine instead of an obligation. Why not include your friends? Playing sports with your friends could prove to be a great way to communicate and bond with them. In many ways, it can also boost your competitive spirit, motivating you to work harder and better.

Friendly competition is always the best way to keep your friends together. These activities could be either a game of golf or a 2-hour workout session in the gym. For some, it could be a nice relaxing day of yoga or dancing. It eventually becomes a weekly moment you look forward to and a chance to catch up and unwind while doing something productive.

If this list triggers you to pick up your phone or write an email to a long-lost friend, then don’t hesitate. You never know — yours might be the voice they need to hear today. It could be the start of something new and amazing.

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Featured photo credit: Ian Schneider via unsplash.com

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Last Updated on December 10, 2019

5 Smart Reasons to Start Journal Writing Today

5 Smart Reasons to Start Journal Writing Today

Here’s the truth: your effectiveness at life is not what it could be. You’re missing out.

Each day passes by and you have nothing to prove that it even happened. Did you achieve something? Go on a date? Have an emotional breakthrough? Who knows?

But what you do know is that you don’t want to make the same mistakes that you’ve made in the past.

Our lives are full of hidden gems of knowledge and insight, and the most recent events in our lives contain the most useful gems of all. Do you know why? It’s simple, those hidden lessons are the most up to date, meaning they have the largest impact on what we’re doing right now.

But the question is, how do you get those lessons? There’s a simple way to do it, and it doesn’t involve time machines:

Journal writing.

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Improved mental clarity, the ability to see our lives in the big picture, as well as serving as a piece of evidence cataloguing every success we’ve ever had; we are provided all of the above and more by doing some journal writing.

Journal writing is a useful and flexible tool to help shed light on achieving your goals.

Here’s 5 smart reasons why you should do journal writing:

1. Journals Help You Have a Better Connection with Your Values, Emotions, and Goals

By journaling about what you believe in, why you believe it, how you feel, and what your goals are, you understand your relationships with these things better. This is because you must sort through the mental clutter and provide details on why you do what you do and feel what you feel.

Consider this:

Perhaps you’ve spent the last year or so working at a job you don’t like. It would be easy to just suck it up and keep working with your head down, going on as if it’s supposed to be normal to not like your job. Nobody else is complaining, so why should you, right?

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But a little journal writing will set things straight for you. You don’t like your job. You feel like it’s robbing you of happiness and satisfaction, and you don’t see yourself better there in the future.

The other workers? Maybe they don’t know, maybe they don’t care. But you do, you know and care enough to do something about it. And you’re capable of fixing this problem because your journal writing allows you to finally be honest with yourself about it.

2. Journals Improve Mental Clarity and Help Improve Your Focus

If there’s one thing journal writing is good for, it’s clearing the mental clutter.

How does it work? Simply, whenever you have a problem and write about it in a journal, you transfer the problem from your head to the paper. This empties the mind, allowing allocation of precious resources to problem-solving rather than problem-storing.

Let’s say you’ve been juggling several tasks at work. You’ve got data entry, testing, e-mails, problems with the boss, and so on—enough to overwhelm you—but as you start journal writing, things become clearer and easier to understand: Data entry can actually wait till Thursday; Bill kindly offered earlier to do my testing; For e-mails, I can check them now; the boss is just upset because Becky called in sick, etc.

You become better able to focus and reason your tasks out, and this is an indispensable and useful skill to have.

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3. Journals Improve Insight and Understanding

As a positive consequence of improving your mental clarity, you become more open to insights you may have missed before. As you write your notes out, you’re essentially having a dialogue with yourself. This draws out insights that you would have missed otherwise; it’s almost as if two people are working together to better understand each other. This kind of insight is only available to the person who has taken the time to connect with and understand themselves in the form of writing.

Once you’ve gotten a few entries written down, new insights can be gleaned from reading over them. What themes do you see in your life? Do you keep switching goals halfway through? Are you constantly dating the same type of people who aren’t good for you? Have you slowly but surely pushed people out of your life for fear of being hurt?

All of these questions can be answered by simply self-reflecting, but you can only discover the answers if you’ve captured them in writing. These questions are going to be tough to answer without a journal of your actions and experiences.

4. Journals Track Your Overall Development

Life happens, and it can happen fast. Sometimes we don’t take the time to stop and look around at what’s happening to us at each moment. We don’t get to see the step-by-step progress that we’re making in our own lives. So what happens? One day it’s the future, and you have no idea how you’ve gotten there.

Journal writing allows you to see how you’ve changed over time, so you can see where you did things right, and you can see where you took a misstep and fell.

The great thing about journals is that you’ll know what that misstep was, and you can make sure it doesn’t happen again—all because you made sure to log it, allowing yourself to learn from your mistakes.

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5. Journals Facilitate Personal Growth

The best thing about journal writing is that no matter what you end up writing about, it’s hard to not grow from it. You can’t just look at a past entry in which you acted shamefully and say “that was dumb, anyway!” No, we say “I will never make a dumb choice like that again!”

It’s impossible not to grow when it comes to journal writing. That’s what makes journal writing such a powerful tool, whether it’s about achieving goals, becoming a better person, or just general personal-development. No matter what you use it for, you’ll eventually see yourself growing as a person.

Kickstart Journaling

How can journaling best be of use to you? To vent your emotions? To help achieve your goals? To help clear your mind? What do you think makes journaling such a useful life skill?

Know the answer? Then it’s about time you reap the benefits of journal writing and start putting pen to paper.

Here’s what you can do to start journaling:

Featured photo credit: Jealous Weekends via unsplash.com

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