If you follow me on Instagram, you'll know me to be a pretty social creature. You'll recognize a rotating cast of characters–not always the same faces, no, but some staple figures–that are occasionally willing cameo in my Stories. You'll surely recognize my Berlin besties, for example, in today's #WCW boomerang.
And you'll probably be familiar with the way I speak about intentional friendship.
Similar to any other brand of relationship, friendship doesn’t happen by accident. I've always been a naturally good friend, but I haven't always been as strong at letting other people care for me.
Over the past few years, with help from Berlin besties and new friends and old friends and others, I have learned how to grow and strengthen platonic bonds with intention.
We check in. They yell at me when I don’t lean on them. We speak openly about how we love our bond and how we want to see it blossom and how we want to be around for each other and support each other’s dreams. Even the ones that might take us around the globe and apart from each other for a while.
Intentional friendship. As we get older, it’s so easy to isolate, isn't it? As far as I can tell, none of us actually want this to happen—that's the part that's so exhausting about it. And yet, we all get the sense that this isolation is happening to us. That we can't stop it. So, we give in. We give up on making friends or growing friendships.
We feel like we have to deal with loneliness as a grownup reality. A fact of life.
But I know there's another way. I've seen it, and I'm creating it. I am constantly surrounding myself with people who declare the old way to be bullshit, and who want to fight against isolationist adulthood. And it has been the greatest joy of my late 20s. Far and away, truly, one of the greatest joys.
Put another way: I am creating an intentional friendship coven, yo.
(Sorry if that’s a bit much but Tesh and I watched nine episodes of the new Sabrina on Sunday in Berlin while slightly hungover and I won’t apologize for it.)
Hey now, isn't this a career advice newsletter? Sure, yes, yep, of course it is. And your peers are your teachers. Your community is where you go to seek out inspiration. In a world moving as fast as ours is, as exhausting as ours, we only really have each other to look to for guidance and strength.
And those bonds need fortifying.
So, my dear, my ask is this: Go leave a voice message for a friend today. Tell them what you love about them. Tell them what you ate for breakfast. Ask about their energy level.
Be an intentional friend—tell them Alexa says it’s all the rage.
PS: How do you feel about the state of your friendships? Are you satisfied? Who are you inspired to reach out to today when you read this? Hit reply and tell me all about it.