Who is your best friend? If the name that just popped into your head was anything other than "me," you're missing out! Ok, I know that it's popular to say that you should "be your own best friend," but, what does this really mean? More importantly, how can we go about building stronger, more loving relationships with ourselves?
Let's take a look at what best friends really are and how we can apply this to building our self-esteem and sense of purpose in the world.
Best Friends Know Each Other Well
Most people think that they know themselves well by the time they reach their 50th birthday. But, do they really? How many people have really taken the time to write down and analyze their thoughts on a regular basis? How many people have embraced meditation as a way to learn more about themselves? Have you?
Best friends are able to predict each other's moods because they know each other so well. As your own best friend, you can do the same. The more you invest in getting to know yourself, the better you will be able to deal with anything that life throws your way.
Best Friends Love Each Other Unconditionally
Many baby boomers I know find it much easier to forgive others than to forgive themselves. By the time we turn 50, we have our share of emotional scars. In order to be our own best friend, we need to learn to love ourselves unconditionally. We need to accept the fact that we are complex -- we are neither entirely good nor completely bad.
Ironically, only forgiveness can give us the strength to right our wrongs and move on with our lives. So, be your own best friend. Love yourself unconditionally.
Best Friends Respect Each Other Enough to Be Honest
Best friends may love each other unconditionally, but, this doesn't mean that they shy away from the truth. Best friends are honest with us when no-one else can be. They are the first ones to tell us when we've gained a little weight, even if they do so with a smile on their face. They are the ones that pull us aside at a party and tell us that we've had a little bit too much to drink. They are willing to call us our when we are being stubborn.
The older you get, the easier it is to get set in your ways. Being your own best friend means staying honest with yourself. Don't be the kind of friend who sugarcoats the truth. Question yourself. Be honest with yourself. Force yourself to be the best person that you can be.
Best Friends Have Fun Together
Best friends are honest, but, they aren't always serious. If you see a pair of women giggling uncontrollably at the movie theatre, chances are they're best friends. Don't let yourself get old in mind and spirit. Be your own best friend and learn to have fun by yourself.
Are there passions that you have always wanted to explore? Are there places that you want to travel to? Don't wait for someone else to follow your dreams. Get out there and start experiencing everything that the world has to offer.
Best Friends Bring Out the Best in Each Other
Best friends are not just "good together" -- they are good "for each other." They know just how far they can push each other. They have an intuitive sense of each other's potential. If you want to be your own best friend, learn to recognize the potential in yourself. Once you see what you can become, don't let yourself off the hook. Be your own cheerleader and coach. Be your own biggest fan. In doing so, you will become your own best friend.
What does it mean to you to "be your own best friend?" Do you think that you understand yourself well? Why or why not? Please join the conversation.
Here are a few more Boomerly articles to inspire you to get more from life after 50: