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Monday, April 30, 2018

What April Taught Me.

Good friendships are the best medicine. Around a year ago, I was at the beginning of a very difficult season of life. About the same time, I suddenly found myself with a circle of amazing friends. Some old, some new, but all there. One of the biggest ways I have seen God this year is through those friends. I could ramble on and on about all the things they've done for me lately (and I'm a blogger, so let's be honest, I probably will eventually), but for now, two things: 1) New friendships as an adult? TOTALLY POSSIBLE AND TOTALLY WORTH IT. Your life did not end in college, why would making friendships? And 2) Remember how powerful friendships are. Don't settle for crappy friends, and don't be a crappy friend. 

Downtime is essential, even if you have to schedule it. I am a big list person. I always have a list of things that need to get done, which means when I have a break, I'm always doing something. Sometimes, that's necessary. Lately, though, I've been really freaking tired. So when I have a break, I've been taking it as just that - a break. Reading a book or sitting outside or watching TV instead of doing laundry or running errands or catching up. It has been so good for me, and I think you should try it. 

Doing something kind for someone else isn't just good for them, it's good for you. A few weeks ago, a friend called and asked me for help. This is embarrassing, especially after my spiel on friendship above, but I'm just going to level with you: I did not want to help. I was tired, I was grumpy, I had other plans. But I helped, and when I got a text saying thank you later, I almost burst into tears because I felt so good about being able to change their situation just a little bit. That's a selfish reason to help people, for sure, but it's something to keep in mind: Being a good person is good for you. Being kind is healthy for you. Being a good friend does wonders for your mood. 

Don't be afraid to ask your people for help. On that note, don't be afraid to ask for help yourself. I don't know when this shift happened that I started feeling embarrassed to ask for help, or started feeling bad calling in backup from my people, but this month I snapped out of that. I mentioned my friends planning a surprise trip for me, and the amount of driving and planning it took to spend one night away is almost comical. It took help from everybody, and you know what? No one cared! They were all happy to help.

Life is made up of seasons. Sometimes the season you're in will call you to be more of a helper, and sometimes the season you're in will require lots of help. Don't be afraid to ask for it. Your people understand. They want to help you. And they know, when the tables turn (as they always do, eventually), they can call on you for help, and you'll be there. 

What did this month teach you?
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