Hanging out with people makes you better is important. We all know this basic fact, but the question for all of us is, “What are we doing to nourish the current people in our lives that improve us, and how do we meet new friends that make us better?”
The answer can vary but the bottom line is basic: you better be strategic about keeping and earning new friends.
The concept of “Strategic Friendships” was made clear to me by my dad on his 80th Birthday. It turns out my dad is a hipster with a ton of cool friends. A ton. And he’s 80!
At his birthday party — which featured a ton of booze, friends, and food — but not a single motivational speaker — my big brother and big sister and I were standing around looking at his huge collection of friends and we all admitted that were totally impressed not only at the number of his pals, but the quality of his friends. These weren’t just people accepting free food; they were pals.
Dad’s secret is that he’s been really strategic. For the past 15 years, he’s had standing lunch groups. On the first Monday of the month he meets with friends from his college, the 2nd Monday it’s pals he used to climb mountains with, then the 3rd Monday it’s a bunch of friends who just like each other. They call it Discussion Club.
The details aren’t important; what is important is the lesson. He meets regularly with people. He’s invests his time because it’s a strategy. It’s on purpose. It’s a thing!
What does that mean for us? It means we should do something today to nourish old friends, and cultivate new friends. We should know it’s going to take a while. That means that it takes time; it takes years. We saw the results at my dad’s birthday party one and a half decades after he started. It takes patience.
So pick up the phone right now. Send a text right now. Go to lunch. It’s worth it, and the long term pay off in your own happiness will amaze you — and your grown children.
Looking for a way to be happier? In general? Have more happiness at work? Of course you would! Make sure you have friends who make you better. Start investing in those friendships now. Brad Montgomery is a motivational speaker and keynote speaker who works across the country and around the world. If you want to make YOUR meeting or convention epic, give us a call. 303.691.0726