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Why You Should Learn To Be Your Own Best Friend

Don’t underestimate the power of being your own best friend.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not out here to claim that friends aren’t important. They undeniably enrich our lives, add immeasurable value, and give us experiences and memories we can’t give ourselves. Friends are the cherry on top of the cake of life. You will never hear me saying that friends don’t matter.

I’m here to say that maybe you can be your own best friend. Maybe there are a few things you can give yourself that friends can’t give you. Perhaps there’s something special about the relationship you can cultivate with yourself that’s unlike any other relationship you will ever have in your life.

Just think of it: you’re having a bad day. You want your favorite snack. It’s weird and slightly embarrassing and from that aisle in the grocery store that most people don’t even know about, let alone dare venture down. But YOU know exactly where to find your favorite snack. You are the perfectly qualified person to stop at the store and pick up said snack and enjoy it in peace, without having to explain anything to anyone or have annoying conversations about exactly which part of the shelf to look on.

Or perhaps more seriously, you lose a loved one. You don’t know what to say, what to think, how to feel, what to need. The last thing you want is someone asking you what you need or giving you something you didn’t even want. You are the only person that knows exactly what you need in that moment, and the sooner you can learn how to be comfortable and honest with yourself, the better a friend you’ll be to yourself.

We all know people who chronically speak negatively about themselves. Would you speak to your best friend that way? What would you say to a person like this to help them see the power in being their own best friend?

This might be starting to sound a bit motivational-speechy, and that is far from my intention. Although I must say, I attended a fair few motivational speeches in middle and high school, and they were quite powerful and memorable for me. But maybe that’s just me. Anyway, I digress. I don’t mean to come off from any sort of high horse or sound like I have all the answers. Becoming your own best friend is not going to magically solve all existing problems in your life, and it is definitely not going to fix any underlying problems in any ongoing relationships. I will posit, however, that there is immense power in finding joy in spending time with yourself, and that is a sentiment I will defend for the rest of my days.

No matter how many people come and go from your life, you cannot abandon yourself. No matter how hard you try, you cannot truly give up on yourself. As long as you live, you will be right by your side, so you may as well start to enjoy your own company. What do you have to lose?

This has been an ongoing, challenging, fluid, and sometimes painful journey for me. There have been times when it has been less of a choice to be my own friend (my only friend). There have been times when it was purely from a place of choice that I decided that I was going to put myself first, love myself, and befriend myself. It takes time and commitment, like any worthwhile relationship. One of the most powerful tools I’ve found is writing. Using a journal as a means of communicating with myself has revealed truths that I don’t know how else I would have stumbled upon. There’s also meditation, time in nature, therapy, tarot and oracle cards, and many other practices. But as a good starting point, journaling will likely uncover some feelings/words/ideas that were not previously encountered. No guarantees, of course. Such is life.

I encourage you to embark boldly and unapologetically into a relationship with yourself. Date yourself. Ask yourself tough questions. Take yourself on dates. Put yourself first. Challenge yourself. Pamper yourself. Find out what you love. Find out what you hate. Make a point of knowing yourself so fiercely that nobody can ever challenge you. Fall in love with yourself so deeply that nothing can ever shake your foundation. It may take years; it may take decades. It may never end. This journey is one that I would argue is worth absolutely everything.

What do you have to lose? Who can possibly know you better than you know yourself? I feel that the answer is obvious. You shouldn’t give someone the power of knowing you better than you know yourself. There is endless power and opportunity in being your own best friend, your own ally, because you will always have someone in your corner. You will always know that someone has your back. If nothing else, there will always be ice cream in the freezer for those extra hard days. And on those days, that can mean everything.