#whatslovely FRIENDSHIP

Friendship is lovely.

Spending time with friends is an all around gratifying experience. It is also good for your health, mentally and physically! Hanging with a friend can take your mind off the stress of everyday life and improve your mood. Scientific studies show that social connections can strengthen our immune system and even motivate us to recover from injuries. (<-pretty awesome stuff!)

There isn’t anything better than a good friend who understands you and loves you for who you are. Paige from Healthy Hits The Spot is here to let us know what her friendships mean to her and how she is motivated to be a better person by her relationships with like-minded women.

It’s a great read, I guarantee you will be dialing your best friend’s number by the time you get to the end! Let us celebrate what is lovely today… our friends, the family we choose.

When Jenni asked if I would contribute to #whatslovely with an article on friendships, I was thrilled!

Since moving from my home town, Ventura, to my new town, San Luis Obispo (which I am loving!) I have learned to treasure my friendships. I’ve been shown the immense value of staying connected. I have done this by calling friends from back home to keep up, sending little treasures/surprises (a box of tea, a card) to those I value from far away, and investing in new friendships. I’ve learned to show up when friends ask you to be there, to say “YES!” more often, and the importance of commitment and follow-through. Following through on your commitments builds trust and adds value to your relationship. Trust is the gateway to a long lasting friendship.

Some of my favorite things to do with a friends are: walking early in the morning, having a coffee date, sharing a girls night sleepover (yes, I still do this!), scheduling a Skype date for those who are far, or, like I’ve recently learned, working on a equally-passionate project with a friend.

This year, in 2015, I am working on a project, Finally Free, with another health coach. We started as partners, and quickly became great friends. This relationship has meant the world to me. Working on something that I am so passionate about along side another woman who is just as passionate is extremely empowering. Early in January 2015 I spent a week with this partner/friend across the states (I’m a CA girl) and had SUCH a good time. As we filmed our project, we messed up, laughed (hard), created bloopers, memories, and got to be SO real and raw. These are the BEST memories!

When I arrived back to California, I was quickly reminded AGAIN of the value in friendships. I received a text, one of those super near-to-my-heart texts, from another girlfriend. I’m not sure I can put into words just how much this message meant to me. My girl friend said: “I just wanted to say congratulations on all that you’re doing. You have found your passion and are building something great. I remember when your blog was just a baby. Not so much a baby anymore! I’m so happy for you. I was thinking about this on my way to work and wanted to let you know.

I mean, these are the things that keep us going, right?! Friends who know us at our raw core and can still express that they are PROUD of us. This meant so much to me, and made me want to share something nice with someone else.

Friendships can be easy and fun, and other times they can be really hard, but ultimately, they’re one of the best things that life has to offer. I have learned over time that some of my best friendships have been with women who encourage me to be my best, and are continually working on themselves to be their best. Vulnerability is SO beautiful and I definitely believe that it’s important to feel comfortable and open around your closest friends.

Together, let’s reflect on our friendships. Which friendships do you feel have brought you the most joy? Meaning? Love? Which friendships have challenged you and helped you to grow? Which friends can you be authentically yourself around? Consider doing something sweet for a friend. If you live nearby, offer to take your friend to lunch and tell her how much she means to you. If you live far away, send a gift box with some of her favorite things (favorite tea, coffee, candle, notebook, etc.). Do something unexpected that is completely focused on making your friend feel special and letting her know how much you appreciate her. Whatever you decide to do, let’s join together and share our most valuable friendships/moments with each other. I’ll be using the #whatslovely tag along with the other Fitzala readers.

I absolutely love Paige. She’s so dang sweet and genuinely cares about everyone she meets. Not to mention, she’s doing some amazing things! Paige recently released an ebook that everyone’s raving about AND, as she mentioned, is putting together a video series with another health coach! Pretty awesome stuff. Find Paige at her blog, Healthy Hits the Spot.