It’s not a new concept; having a strong support network is a vital tool in maintaining your mental health and wellbeing. We’re social creatures and our relationships and connections are as fundamental as ensuring we look after our physical health, yet, for many, we don’t afford ourselves the same amount of time and effort to build these support networks.
For many, friends are the family you’re able to choose; invaluable sources of soulful understanding and connection, and vital for keeping us feeling grounded and supported. Yet, in a digital age where connections are seemingly all too easy to make, why is it that so many women feel like they are trying to juggle everything on their own?
RESCUE®, the UK’s number one emotional wellbeing brand*, has partnered with Psychotherapist and best-selling author, Anna Mathur, to share her top tips on how to find and cultivate a close female network, and how these connections have been crucial to her own success in life as a mother and author.
- Share the burden: Sharing your feelings with the right people, doesn’t turn you into a burden, it can actually feel like a privilege! Think of a time someone you care about opened up to you, how did it feel? I’ll bet their choice to confide in you made you feel closer to them, as vulnerability and openness are far more likely to grow and nurture good friendships than challenge them.
- Get a date in: Whilst the digital world allows us to stay in touch with our friends easily, there’s nothing quite like getting together in real life. Text messages and voice notes are always better than nothing, however they cannot substitute the richness and quality of the connection we get when being in the physical presence of another person. So, get a date in the diary to meet up, and notice how you feel when you leave that time, compared to how you feel at the end of a brief exchange of WhatsApp messages.
- Choose your 2-3: We have more ‘contacts’ than ever before, and have never been so connected to so many people! Yet how many people do you feel truly connected to? Who would you call if you needed help, who’s shoulder would you lean on if everything felt too much? I encourage my clients to have 2-3 people in their lives who they can turn to. Choose those who have historically been kind and supportive to you, and make a conscious effort to nurture those relationships and keep in touch.
- Take small steps of openness: It can feel like you’re stepping into unchartered territory sometimes when you say anything more than ‘I’m okay thanks’ to certain friends. You don’t need to rip off the vulnerability band aid, but I would recommend nudging the parameters of your comfort by giving a little more information each time a friend asks how you are. You might say ‘I’m okay, just having a tough day’. See how your friend responds. If they respond kindly, you might share a little more next time.
- Find your fun: When we share experiences with a friend, we form new memories. What do you both enjoy doing together and how might you schedule it in? Sitting down for a good old chat is good, but enjoying an activity removes any pressure or intensity from conversation, and you might find yourself sharing new insights!
Building and maintaining these close bonds is important to protect our physical and emotional well-being. And for those rescue moments, there is always RESCUE® Remedy! It is a combination of five specially blended Bach™ Original Flower Essences and can be used anytime, anywhere and is suitable for all the family.