Want to know the secret to happiness? Having good friends!
A Harvard University study has revealed that our relationships with other people are way more important to our contentment than money, success or material possessions. Strong and meaningful emotional bonds are the biggest influence on our general wellbeing: it’s a fact.
And that’s not all: friends are good for our physical health, too. Experts know that having deep connections with others can help to reduce stress, improve feelings of self-worth, and even reduce the risk of significant health problems including high blood pressure and depression.
We think that’s worth celebrating. So to mark the pure joy of friendship on National Friendship Day (and every other day of the year), we’ve come up with some easy ways you show your mates how much you love them, from simple gestures and little surprises to fabulous gifts they’ll treasure forever.
Check out our top 15 friend appreciation ideas below and let us know what you’re doing to tell your pals you care – visit us on Facebook
A home-made card, telling your buddy how much you appreciate their friendship, will touch their heart – spill your heart out to them if you like, the gushier the better! And the gesture of creating a personalised printed card with a photo and message is guaranteed to raise a smile.
Kind words cost nothing and always go down a treat – they make us feel warm and fuzzy and happy. Compliments don’t have to be about looks (although they’re nice too!). Tell your friend how good you think they are at their job/making you laugh/bringing up their kids – whatever it is you love about them, let them know!
Never mind that it isn’t their birthday or a special occasion. Touch your friend’s heart with a small present – flowers, chocolates, bath treats, or anything you know they’ll appreciate.
Drop every one of your friends, old and new, a message of appreciation on National Friendship Day, just to let them know you care.
Take some photos of you and your friends enjoying yourselves. This is perfect for a day or night out, and is a beautiful way to preserve a special memory. Then choose the best photos and make a framed Shuffle Print – they’re easy and quick to do, cost just £24.99, and make a unique gift that celebrates your friendship.
Yes, a genuine handwritten letter! When was the last time you received one of those? Can you remember how nice it felt? In the letter, spell out why you’re happy that the person is in your life. They’ll treasure it forever.
It could be anything from a spa day to a walk in the park – anything you can enjoy together. Spending time with a mate is the best way of showing them how much you value them.
Does your pal live miles away? Tell them how much you appreciate them in a live recording! They’ll be able to watch it whenever they’re missing you or need a boost.
Putting together the ultimate chill-out package for a stressed-out pal is a sure-fire way to give them a lift. A cupcake, a candle, a book you know they’ll love, a framed photo of you together – these can be really fun to make and will be appreciated more than you’ll ever know.
This is a wonderful way to create a unique memento of your relationship and can really capture the joyful times you’ve spent together. Mini photo books cost from just £9.
Make sure it features all the songs that define your friendship, or just tunes that you both love.
A donation in your friend’s name is perfect for the person who has everything. Let them know how much you admire their kindness, generosity and genuine concern for others, you’ll get all the feels.
Offer to babysit, make them dinner, do their washing up or take their rubbish out – anything that makes their lives that little bit easier will go down a treat with a busy, stressed out buddy.
Plan a surprise bash, for no reason other than to show you love them. Then sit back and bask in their delight.
What’s the best way to tell a friend how much you care about them? Share your tips with us! Here are a few to start you off… #NationalFriendshipDay
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