I just got back from my most rejuvenating, self-care oriented spring break trip I’ve ever had where I spent the week in Asheville with my two best gal pals. If you’re looking for ways to find new excitement for and joy in your life at Carolina as we re-enter the semester (and especially for seniors, as you prepare to conclude your time here!), this article is a how-to for you.
Leading up to our trip, I asked everyone I knew for ideas of what to do during our stay in Asheville. I wanted to know where I could find the best hikes, what restaurants we should eat at, what bars are fun and what areas of downtown have good shopping. Like most trips I go on, I wanted to plan fun outings from which I fully expected the trip highlights to arise. At least this time, though, the trip highlight didn’t come from any of those physical adventures, but from a super deep and sappy, teary-eyed conversation with my girls.
I recently read a self-help book (I read a LOT of these and honestly don’t remember which one it was) that suggested asking your friends point-blank why they’re friends with you. I’ll be the first to admit, this is weird! No matter how close you are to your people, it can feel awkward to find a time to get that sentimental and ask them to really think about what you mean to them. It feels like this is something that should happen unintentionally, more like something they’d write in a birthday card than something they should be asked to explain on the spot. But I think there is value in putting your friends on the spot and intentionally exchanging answers. Here’s a little guide on how to have that kind of conversation and come out with the most epic besties’ night in ever.
- If you feel comfortable just jumping in: then go ahead, go around in a circle and take turns saying why y’all are friends with one another.
- If you’re not sure what to say:
- Start by remembering that the most influential people in our lives are the most influential because they change the way we think in some way. How have your best friends changed the way you’ve thought about something?
- Consider your best memories with these people and why those memories are so great.
- Remember that (as Oprah says) all people want the same things, they want to know if you hear them, and they want to know if what they’re saying matters to you. So when’s a time you truly “heard” your friend? What have they added to your life that matters to you?
- If you feel like you’re ~too cool~ for a conversation like this: I know it’s weird but like… Everyone deserves to be told why they’re loved and appreciated, including YOU and your best friends. Just try it and blame the lame idea on me and this article.
The best moment of my trip came with the three of us sitting on the floor of our Airbnb, crying our eyes out as we confessed how and why we love one another. I’m so glad we got to have that conversation. Coming back to my semester I feel reinvigorated by those friendships and by a drive to keep connecting with more people. It’s really nice to let the people you love know why you love them, and it’s nice to know why you’re appreciated, too.
I HIGHLY encourage you to try this. Get past the weirdness and ask your bestie, why are you friends with me?! What value do I add to your life? Be mushy and LET.IT.OUT.