Four Simple Ways to Show Someone You Care
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It is a sad fact of life that people drift apart. People move across countries and all over the world. People get time-consuming careers and hobbies. People commit themselves to responsibilities – a pet, a family, a community initiative – that cut into the time they used to have to socialize.
The pressures of life take over and you find that, for sometimes long stretches of time, you have to focus on you.
This is understandable. It’s a normal part of life. Of course, all your real friends will know this. They’re probably doing it all too. They know that you’re not avoiding them, that you haven’t lost interest in them, that you’re just busy right now.
You’ve got important things going on and they take up a lot of your time and energy.
Sometimes, though, it is nice to do something to remind those people you used to see all the time that you’re still thinking of them. That you still care.
People don’t need to be treated to anything extravagant or expensive to feel loved.
MAKE TIME JUST TO SPEAK TO THEM
Technology has made it really easy to get in touch with basically anyone, no matter where they are in the world, as long as you’re awake at the same time. But this simplicity is making people complacent. They can keep their chat boxes open in the background of whatever else they’re doing. Multitasking is an admirable skill, but it doesn’t lend itself to a deep conversation. It’s worth taking the time to actually engage with someone you care about, to call them or Skype them or contact them however you can, without anything else going on to divert your attention.
In the topics you talk about, in the things you share with them, in the gifts you get them. Make an effort to remember what they were up to last time you spoke. Bring up of things that you know would interest them in conversation. Find a way of showing that you really have engaged with the things they’ve shared with you, that you’ve listened, that you’ve understood. Make every gesture you make personal to them, make it special. Prove to them that they are more to you than a check box of people who are going to get a ‘Happy birthday. X’ on Facebook or a cheap box of chocolates at Christmas.
SHOW AN INTEREST IN THEIR OPINION
It means a lot to people to feel like their input is valued. Even if what they have to say won’t make a difference, ask what they think. About everything. About news you’ve read, about something going on in your life, about something you’ve created. It shows that you value what they have to say, even if it has no bearing on any future outcomes. Sometimes, even when someone’s opinion means the world to you, you can overlook simply asking for it.
OPEN UP TO THEM
Show them that you trust them with the things that affect you the most. You don’t have to get intensely emotional or upset in the small amounts of time you do get to talk. But be honest with them about what’s going on in your life – what’s making you happy, what you’re worrying about. Talk to them about the things that are preying on you and the things that excite you. Show them that you want to include them in the things that matter to you, even when you don’t get to see them enough to play a very active role.
Author Bio – Kirstie Summers is journalist whose day job takes her to all the most interesting places and events in South London. She also freelances for a number of sites and publications, from gaming and literature reviews to creative fiction. She lives in London and spends as much of her free time as possible making the most of being in such a diverse city. She keeps one day a week to herself to swim, relax and keep the stress of the world at bay.