We’re so blessed that our girlfriends really KNOW us. Often even more than a families, our friends take note of what brings us joy or stress, they pick up on our likes and dislike, and they notice the hints we may drop intentionally or not. Our friends ‘get’ us and sometimes can even see our goals and dreams for us when we lose sight of them
Being a better friend means going the extra distance. It is making an ‘above and beyond’ type effort – not settling for an ‘if it happens, it happens’ friendship but deliberately committing ourselves to each other as BFFs, as long-term, ‘we’ll make it through everything – together’ kind of friends.
One way of going the extra distance is to anticipate her needs. If we can look ahead to what she may need or want, if we can support her without her having to ask and if we can work together effortlessly toward her (and hopefully your) goals, we can be the better friend – the kind of friend we’d love to have.
Remember, we all stumble, every one of us. That’s why it’s a comfort to go hand in hand. ~Emily Kimbrough
Here are a couple examples of anticipating your friend’s needs:
Caregiving for the Caregiver – Perhaps she taking care of a special needs child or caring for an aging parent. She probably doesn’t take time for herself. Arrange for a spa day and someone to fill in for her – be that you for a sitting service. Deliver her groceries, arrange for a maid service or come over and weed her garden.
- Organized the Unorganized – It’s frustrating and challenging when you’ve lost control of your house or, honestly, any segment of your life. If she’s overwhelmed with life or her home, set a date to help her gain a little bit of control. Help her clean, sort, recycle, remove and whatever is needed to reclaim her home – even if it just by organizing a closet. (Every little bit helps!) Obviously, make sure she is comfortable with your offer, but if so, she’ll actually enjoy the previously dreaded project – because she’s with her friend!
- Research Dept. – One of the tasks my friend Becky assigned to a friend, when her husband was diagnosed with terminal cancer, was doing research on the disease and options available. I love that Becky asked for help – sometimes that’s very hard for us to do. But this simple task was helpful in providing information and helping Becky avoid looking through dreary, depressing, scary information.
- Skill Set – What skills do you have that your friend may not? Again with my friend Becky, my task was to find information on getting a passport for her husband to take their ‘Bucket List‘ trip to Italy. I used social media to tweet a few requests for her regarding their passports and Italian translators. Within an hour, connections responded with contacts she needed. Anticipate what she may need and apply your special skills (aka: super powers!) and connections to helping her.
- Simple as Pie – It doesn’t have to be ‘rocket science.’ Sometimes anticipating her needs is just anticipating her desires. Sometimes it’s just taking a pie or cookies over to her house when she might have company coming to visit. Or it’s delivering dinner when you know she’s had a stressful day. Just make an effort. She’ll love it – and you!
- What’s good for you is probably good for her – Do your gutters need cleaning? Your leaves raked? Your snow shoved? Your garden weeded? If it’s the time of the year for you to check things off the home projects list, it’s probably the same time for a friend. And, if she’s dealing with a stressful life, I’m sure she’d appreciate you arranging for her lawn to be mowed or her car to be washed. What you need is very likely what she may need. And what makes you happy (anticipating her needs) with definitely make her happy!
What can you do to anticipate her needs and be a better friend? How has a girlfriend been there for you when you needed help?
I’m sad this Month of Female Friendship is ending! Tomorrow … you get to ask her a favor???
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