Remember the good old days (college, high school and even grammar school) when making friends was as easy as walking down your dorm hall or striking up a game of hopscotch with someone on the playground? When we were younger, we had lots of time to invest in friendships, and we were constantly surrounded by people our own age. I’m not saying that there were never any challenges with friendships during these times, but you’ve got to admit, it was a heck of a lot easier to make and even nurture friendships than it is as an adult.
I’ve also come to realize that our friendship needs back in those “glory” days were also simpler. And maybe that’s part of the reason why we become so frustrated when our search for friends as adults doesn’t go as smoothly…we forget that we aren’t really looking for friendships born out of sheer convenience, anymore. That’s just one of MANY things I learned while reading a great book, MWF Seeking BFF.
This read by Rachel Bertsche chronicles a year-long experiment the author did to really put herself out there and find some friends after moving to a new city to marry her boyfriend, leaving her best gal pals behind SEVERAL states away. She set out to go on 52 different “girl dates”, and she tried just about everything under the sun to meet new people and see what it takes to form meaningful connections with others as an adult.
It was certainly an ambitious project, and it started to become its own full-time job. While what Rachel did is not necessarily what everyone needs to do in order to find great friendships, it does point to the fact that hard work and interntionality does have to go into the search. And you have to thicken your skin a bit, too. Rachel does actually get dumped/rejected a few times by would-be friends, which of course, is a blow to the ego, and I think what most of us fear to the point that we doing put ourselves out there at all. But you know what? For the most part, Rachel found that other women are really and truly excited to be invited to lunch/dinner/whatever with someone new. Don’t you feel that way every time someone reaches out to you?! It takes some courage to be the one doing the reaching out, but the payoff is tremendous. Even if the friendship spark isn’t there after all, you’ll still walk away with an acquaitance and one more way to feel connected in your city, however loosely.
It won’t always work out, but if you are willing to be the one to make the first move, the odds are SO much better that you are going to form some good friendships than if you sit at home, feeling sad that nobody will call/text/email you with an invitation. As it turns out, those women you are wishing would call you might very well be sitting at home doing the same thing! Rachel says, “Most women I’ve met with are similar. We all think we’re living in a world of grouches, so we’re too self-conscious to be the overly friendly one” (177).Overall, I felt very encouraged by Rachel’s project to put myself out there more. There’s really very little to lose, especially if you can withstand the occasional bruise to the ego (some people are just not going to be that into you, I’m sorry to say). I have been motivated after reading the book to follow up on several, “We should get together” email exchanges I have had with other women in town as well as just reaching out to some ladies I have met briefly and thought, “She seems cool! I wish I could hang out with her sometime!”
MWF Seeking BFF is a really fun and encouraging read. I’ve definitely taken some steps in the right direction since reading it, and I find myself thinking about what worked and didn’t for her frequently, and putting those strategies to work in my own life. I’d say the time I spent reading the book was a very good investment, indeed!
Buy it!: Right now MWF Seeking BFF is priced at a steal for just $10.20 on Amazon! That’s less than a lunch date would set you back!
Win it!: One lucky Stuff Parents Need reader is going to win a copy of MWF Seeking BFF!
Be sure to enter my other current giveaways, found on the sidebar of my page.
Disclosure: I received a complimentary book for review purposes. All thoughts and opinions expressed here are strictly my own.