Why You Should Spend Time and Money on Your Friendships

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On the occasion of ‘Friendship Day’, Amidst our effort to rekindle friendships, the most depressing thing about the impact of Pandemic has been the growing loss of close associations and friendships. Even with all the communication tools literally in our pockets, we are as lonely as ever if not more.

You can see the value of friendship most among older adults. Over the past year, a study was conducted a to investigate how retirement attitudes and behaviours were shaped by the pandemic.

After a year of living through lockdowns and the threat of illness or death, 77% of retirees say “having family and friends that care about me” is one of the most essential elements to well-being in retirement, ranking higher than “being financially secure” (59%).

The report also shows how attitudes regarding “success” change with age. Older adults place a higher value on relationships and self-acceptance than wealth or job achievements. Of course, priorities shift throughout life. But there is something important to take away from the elderly who generally have wealth and the freedom of time but the fewest years left to live. They have stated that, ‘We should be concerned about accumulating friends as much as financial assets.’

The report states: “Social isolation is linked to an increased risk of heart disease, dementia and death; it can be as deadly to one’s health as smoking 15 cigarettes per day.” Friendship has been shown to improve our mental, physical and emotional states.

A major study at Harvard spanning 80 years found that the single best predictor of health and happiness was not your wealth or your professional success, it was your close relationships and friends.

Data from the Survey Centre on American Life also reveals this basic happiness principle: ‘More friends equals more life satisfaction.’

It aligns with what longevity researcher Dan Buettner  said to the New York Times: “I argue that the most powerful thing you can do to add healthy years is to curate your immediate social network… Your group of friends are better than any drug or anti-aging supplement, and will do more for you than just about anything.”

Wealth is a number, but it’s also a feeling. Friendships can make anyone feel like the wealthiest person in the world. Friends make the whole damn mess of life so much more worth it.

While it is important to identify what expenses you can cut from your budget, it is equally important to identify what you like to joyfully spend money on.

We should never get too hung up on spending time and money on friends. It sounds trite, but it seems necessary to write because more and more people are not doing it.

Every Rupee spent should definitely be spent with some consideration. But when it comes to spending money on friends or experiences with friends, I would suggest to consider giving yourself more freedom than you would with anything else.

A hard lesson no one wants to learn is, ‘All the money you need to become financially independent means nothing, absolutely nothing, if you have no one to spend it with.’

In her bestselling memoir, ‘The Top Five Regrets of the Dying’, hospice nurse Bonnie Ware says one of those top regrets is, “I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.”

This is why an important part of any retirement plan isn’t just what you want to do, but also who you want to do it with.

Money can come and go. Special moments with friends last forever. Don’t miss them.

You can save and invest for a big house, a fast car, kid’s college fund, whatever. It’s all personal and who are we to tell someone one way or another.

Except with this: spend all the money and time on your friends that you can. This is the best investment advice, planning advice, saving advice, money advice, life advice or whatever name you want to call it by advice that I can share. It will do you a lot of good to remember that like wealth requires time to compound, so does friendship. It is not built overnight but requires effort and time.

The cost of friendship is whatever it costs to maintain your friendship — and it’s worth it.

Forgive and forget,

Apologise if required,

Make the call,

Pick up the tab.

Take the trip.

Send a Gift.

Create a memory – Even if you’re just doing it for your own well-being.

Just like to end with a famous couplet by Mirza Ghalib:

दोस्तों के साथ जी लेने का

मौका दे दे ऐ खुदा…

तेरे साथ तो मरने के बाद भी

रह लेंगें ।….

Happy Friendship Day!

Be a friend and Stay Blessed Forever!

#friendshipday # Friends #relationship #money #wealth #lifelessons # Haappiness #meaningfullife #retirement