We can sometimes feel powerless when we see a friend going through a tough time. Below are some great ideas to help support them, cheer them up, and lift their spirits.
Before we begin, one of the first things to remember is that cheering up a friend is about them, not you. So although extreme sports might make you happy, it’s not necessarily something which will appeal to your friend.
Always think about what the other person wants or would enjoy and you will be on the right track.
The number one thing we can do as a friend is to listen. Active listening is actually a very important skill. Listening doesn’t mean we have to provide a solution or agree with our friend’s dilemma, that is not what listening is about.
We don’t have to try placing ourselves in our friend’s situation or start thinking about how we would react, because people view events through their own personal filters.
Listening is about letting others get their problems off their chest, and you being there. Letting people talk through all their issues can be a great help.
Although the last thing your friend might feel like doing at the moment is laughing; it really is the best therapy.
A night out at the local comedy club might seem like the worse place to take a friend who is down in the dumps, but trust me; it really can work a treat.
Laughing is infectious, and taking your friend out to a show where they can forget all their troubles or just cheering them up with a few funny stories can be a welcome tonic.
There is nothing like a bit of rest and relaxation and down time to sooth away your troubles, so what better way to cheer up a friend than have a day out at a spa. It will make them more relaxed and help take their mind off things.
For an extra special treat you can always throw in a hot stone massage or something similar. If your purse strings don’t stretch that far then why not arrange a girls pampering day at home or a pajama party.
You will be surprised at how much fun it can be swapping beauty tips and nail polish colors, watching a ‘chick flick’ and having a good old fashioned girl’s night in.
We can all sometimes take ourselves too seriously, but as Oscar Wilde said: “Life is far too important to be taken seriously”. So why not let it all hang out with a friend and play like you did as a child.
Do something you loved to do as kids, go to a park, play a game of hide and seek, go on a bike ride or play a board game, giggle and enjoy yourselves.
Let out your inner child, you will be amazed what you will discover and what a great time you will both have.
There are lots of fabulous short workshops you can go on nowadays, from glass painting to pottery to learning how to sky dive.
What fun it would be to try out something new with a friend, you will be surprised at how much fun you will both have plus learning new things is a great way to expand your vista and meet new people.
It might be just what your friend needs at this moment in time. A break away from routine and the opportunity to learn something new.
#6: Eat together
They say the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. I would say the way to most people’s heart is the same route.
We all have our favorite dishes, find out what your friend’s favorite dish is and cook them a special meal. It doesn’t have to be anything grand. It’s the thought and love that goes into a meal that counts, not the price or the ingredients.
Picnics can be fun too. There is nothing quite like eating al fresco in the countryside and you can choose your friend’s favorite outside location.
Eating outdoors gives one a sense of freedom and carefreeness that you just don’t get inside a restaurant.
#7: Appeal to the senses
Smell is a very powerful sense and can literally take people back to happy (or sad) times. If you know a person’s favorite scent or know of a smell which makes them feel happy (the smell of freshly baked bread for instance), then capture this for them in some way.
It might be by buying a shop bought scent, or making something up yourself with essential oils. Alternatively it could be a lot simpler, a flower from a garden or the smell of a donut.
Whatever it is, find a way of bringing that scent to life.
#8: Go for a walk
Just taking time out to go for a walk with a friend and having a good old chat, or not, can be extremely therapeutic. Getting out and about in nature or just changing the scenery can help people view their troubles from a different perspective.
I cannot count the times I have been out for a walk and come back happy and refreshed. There is something about walking in nature which makes you appreciate life and feel alive.
#9: Quote them happy!
And I don’t mean a cheap motor insurance quote. Perhaps buy them a book of inspirational quotes or show them some of the inspirational links on YouQueen. You will be amazed at just how powerful inspirational mantras can be.
Once we realize that everyone goes through difficult times, it can give us a new impetus to carry on or to change our life for the better.
A book of inspirational and memorable quotes will be something your friend can treasure.
#10: Reach out
It’s not always possible to be physically in someone’s presence, but we can send them a message to let them know we are there for them, and that we are thinking of them.
You could always send them a card through the post or even a package of their favorite things. It doesn’t need to be anything expensive; it’s the little things that count.
I am sure there are many more ways you can think of to be supportive to your friends in their times of need. The main thing is that you take the effort to really think about what your friend would like right now; it doesn’t have to be any grand gesture it might be just be a shoulder to cry on.
Whatever the situation, show your friends you care.
Reaching out and connecting and trying to make the world a better place is what life is all about.