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Top 11 Most Popular Friendship Articles of 2014

I typically round-up my top 10 articles, but this year there was a tie between two of them so it's my top 11! Thanks for being a part of this community as a woman who is committed to being a healthy friend in this world! It's been an honor. For all of you who joined us half-way through the year, missed a post here-or-there, or just want to re-read some of the goodies to see if they speak to you where you are now,  here are the 11 most read, popular blog posts from the last year:

1.   The 5 Biggest Mistakes Women Make In Their Friendships

I want meaningful friendships for you.  So very much, I do!  But we have to come to the table with healthy expectations and thoughtful beliefs, rather than with hopes, myths, and limiting beliefs that sabotage us from creating substantial relationships. Here are the five most common beliefs that are damaging you and your friendships.

2.  The Power of Women in Circle: Ideas for Women’s Groups

In this post I share with you several of the Circles that I have participated in-- each one feeding different parts of my life-- so that you can see how those groups got started, what happens at each of them, and which ones you might crave inviting into your life!

3. The Problem: My Friend Doesn’t Ask Me About My Life!

If you have relationships where you feel like you’re always the one doing most of the listening and question-asking, I challenge you today to consider how you’ve contributed to that imbalance and what you can do to show up in a way that builds the relationship and better supports you.

4.  How to Not Feel Judged

While it was my high school reunion that prompted me to worry about being judged, the way I showed up differently this time may be of service to you in any setting where you are prone to feel insecure, unaccepted or judged.

5. Men Really Need Intimate Friendships, Too

Are men's and women's friendships all that different?  And if they are, is it because they're hard-wired to be different or is that cultural influences shape them differently?  This article showcases some fabulous research that you'll want to share with the boys and men in your lives!

6.  Do You Feel Like People Pull Away From You?

Some of us might have intense personalities-- lots of energy, words, and enthusiasm that can sometimes overwhelm others.  We are who we are so it's not about changing us or saying that there is anything wrong with us... but we do have to learn how to use our energy in meaningful, helpful, and mature ways!

7.  5 Tips for Planning a Girls Weekend There are few things more bonding than time away with friends that extend beyond a dinner or an afternoon together.  Throw in an overnight experience and the bond factor goes waaay up!  Here are practical tips for planning and inviting women in your life to an adult slumber party.

8. We’re giving the wrong advice for “toxic” friendships!

Friendship experts commonly encourage you to get rid of any friendships that are toxic, stressful, or negative.  I have a caveat that I want to add to that!  This article shows why we can't simply get rid of people we have called friends without trying to improve the relationship first.

9. Quiz:  Am I a Good Friend?

We put a lot of focus on what we'd like to fix or improve in how our friends treat us, and here's a good quiz for helping us hold up the mirror in our own lives to see where we might be able to practice being a better friend!

10.  5 Types of Vulnerability: It’s Way More than Skeletons in Your Closet!

What is vulnerability?  We all hear this buzz word all the time but often mistakenly think it means we have to get better at sharing our shameful secrets with people... This blog post covers 5 different types of vulnerability that will help deepen any relationship as you practice them more regularly!

11.  The Myth that Keeps You Lonely

When we’re feeling that little nagging angst of loneliness– it’s for her that we want.  It’s for the fantasy best friend that we know would be the Thelma to our Louise, the fork to our spoon, the laughter to our jokes.  She would be the finisher of our sentences, the reader of our minds, and the affirmer of our hearts.  Our time together would be effortless, easy, safe, and comfortable.  But then we meet a whole bunch of candidates who aren’t quite good enough to fit our BFF opening so we quietly reject them and keep looking, albeit somewhat disillusioned. This post will help you see the pattern that might be preventing you from feeling more connected!

With gratitude for a year where we all grew in our maturity and loved more deeply,

Shasta

p.s.  As always, I welcome your comments!  Share with me which one is your favorite!

p.s.s  Want more popular articles?

Top Ten Most Popular Friendship Article of 2013

Top Ten Most Popular Friendship Articles of 2012

Top Ten Most Popular Friendship Articles of 2011

Top Ten Friendship Articles of 2011

In the spirit of celebrating another year lived and shared, I'm doing my first-ever Top Ten list. Here are the most read, popular blog posts from the last year: 1.   The Mistake that Cost me a New Friendship

This post re-proves that we all learn to love from the mistakes of others, mine included. It's a lesson I still hold in my memory bank--how easy it is to not initiate from a place of personal insecurity.

2.  To the Oprah-Haters and Other Women Who Devalue

This posting inspired lots of comments as we all wrestled with our temptation to devalue others, hoping it makes us feel better about ourselves.  I come back to this theme often-- trying to encourage us all to cheer for other women, that we might feel it for ourselves, too!

3.  Today is National Best Friend Day: How to Make a BFF

I share my Frientimacy Triangle with hopes of reminding everyone that Frientimacy (friendship intimacy) has to be developed, not discovered.

4.  5 Stages of a Friendship

We have a lot of language and understanding when it comes to the various stages of dating someone (i.e. the difference between "going on a date" vs. "we're dating"), but we forget that a friendship has stages too!  Here I describe the five--from curiosity to frientimacy-- I think are most helpful.

5.  Admitting We Need Friends

It's easy to be in denial about our need for friends-- too much pain and stigma in whispering the truth sometimes.  But hard to really do anything about it if you don't start with the first step: admitting the need!

6.  Nothing Kills a Potential Friendship Faster

A romantic relationship would never get off the ground if the two of you went out for a date, then ended the evening saying “That was fun… we should do it again next month.” And yet we do that with potential friends all the time!  Give the gift of momentum to your friendships!

7.  Used-to-be-Friends or Still Friends?

This one struck a raw nerve with many of you.  Just because we have had good friends over the years that we could call if we needed to, doesn't mean we have the good friends around us that we really need and want.

8.  Friendship Challenges that Come With Age

This post validates that indeed every decade brings its own challenges to our friend-making career. When I started GirlFriendCircles.com (my women's friendship matching site) three years ago I assumed it would be most popular with those in their 20's and 30's.  Who knew that the women who would love it the most would be our mothers and grandmothers? No matter our age-- we need to keep replenishing our circle of friends!

9.  The Flywheel of Friendship

The toughest part of friendship is that we all crave the BFF who just knows us and makes it easy to connect, but we hate that there is a long road to that comfortableness!  This post will inspire and motivate you to keep putting in the work now.  It does pay-off and get easier!

10.  It's Hard to Maintain Friendships Through Stress & Change

It's so easy to withdraw from people when we're tired and stressed.  These are some of the reasons it's hard for me to engage, and some of the ways I do it because I know it's good for me.

* And a bonus one!  This one was my personal favorite: My Prayer: Who I Want To Be

A huge thanks to all my GirlFriendCircles.com members, readers of my blog, and comment-ers who have shared the journey!

May we continue in 2012 to honor all that is right with friendship, committing ourselves regularly to the practices of healthy personal development and relationship joy.

________________________

I'd be honored to have you share this list on Twitter or Facebook:

Top 10 posts of 2011 from Shasta's Friendship Blog re: personal growth & relationship health by @girlfrndcircles.  http://wp.me/p1n4Bw-7l