“The righteous choose their friends carefully, but the way of the wicked leads them astray.” Proverbs 12:26 NIV
As some of you know, I gave a presentation about Cultivating Your Purpose at last year’s Wheatful Woman Event in Dallas, Texas. While the workshop primarily focused on how women can intentionally move forward using their God-given gifts, dreams, and unique experiences, I also devoted time to talk about my own struggles and takeaways from finding meaningful friendships. Funny enough, I had more people reach out to me during and after the conference to talk about the topic of friendships than the idea of purpose.
Y’all, finding good friends as an adult woman is hard work. I’ve spent years investing in friendships, some that I’m still blessed with today, and some that fizzled out after a while, and I know how intimidating and confusing it can be to start seeking connections with good, growth-focused women. Because much like intentional dating, finding friends to do life with requires time, discernment, patience, and a lot of practice. So, why do it?
For starters, the Bible has lots to say about the importance of good friendships. Proverbs 27:17 says that as iron sharpens iron, so can one person sharpen another. Proverbs 13:20 says that if we walk with the wise, we inherit their wisdom. And in Ecclesiastes 4:9-10, we read that two are better than one so that if we fall, we can lift each other up.
Good friends sharpen us, give us wisdom, and lift us up when we fall.
But please hear me when I say, sister, if you want relationships that produce fruit for your life you have to be willing to tend the soil and water the plant. Because like any good thing, things that are worth having are worthy of you working your butt off for them.
So, now that we’ve covered why it’s important that you find good friends and work for them, let’s talk about how to find good friends.
Tips for Finding Good Friends
- Search for friends using technology: While technology, specifically social media can get a bad rap for it’s addictive and toxic tendencies when it comes to finding new friends it’s a goldmine of a resource. Reach out to that friend of a friend on Facebook or an interesting stranger on Instagram and see if she wants to meet for coffee. Join a local Facebook community group or Meet-Up who has things in common with your interests and attend one of their events. Join the Wheatful Woman community and make a connection with a woman with a similar story or season. Or, try a friend match-making app like Bumble BFF to find new people in your specific area.
- Set a meeting with your church pastor or outreach director for events and community groups. This tip requires you to be purposeful in your pursuit of good, Christian friendships. Your church can be a great resource for finding new friends, but you have to be the one who makes the first move. Reach out to your pastor or connections pastor and ask them to help you plug in with people in your church. They’ll most likely know of events or community groups happening for people in similar seasons and can help you make a warm connection with the person in charge of the group or event.
- Take six months to invest in your friendships: I got this tip from Instagram influencer Hilary Rushford, and I still swear by it. For six months, make a point to go deep in your relationships. Make a list of up to six people you want to invest in and build deeper friendships with (the list can be less than that, but not more than six). Each week, try to reach out to these people via text, phone calls, cards, or in-person meet-ups. After three months, look back on your list and see who’s reciprocated your effort and intention. Maybe some people have naturally fizzled out. Maybe they’ve been replaced organically by new friends who have put their time into you. Either way, use the next three months to keep investing in your friendships and see where they go! After six months, you should have a clear understanding of who your people are, and whether or not you need to keep searching for fruitful friendships.
We don’t have to walk through life alone! Finding fruitful friendships is hard work, but the pay-off is worth the effort ten-fold.