I’ve been thinking a lot about friendship lately.
As my mom tribe grows, I long to serve them and give back to them as they lift me up daily and encourage me to be the best mama I can be to Grey. This in turn got me thinking about the best ways to give back to them – whether that be through gift giving, spending one on one time with them without the littles or just speaking words of encouragement into their hearts.
Now, of course, it’s great to do all of these things, but I started to wonder, if the Love Language concept works so well for marriage relationships, there is probably value into looking into them from a friendship perspective as well.
As I started to read more into the book, and think about my current friendships, I started to see where this idea made sense. There are friends, who when given a physical gift, respond uncomfortably, whereas others feel appreciated by the gesture. Similarly, there are friends who want to speak on the phone and lounge for hours catching up while the babies play, where as others want to spend time being active and do an activity together instead of chatting the day away. As I continued to observe my relationships and how they differ, the list went on and on and I could clearly see, if I took the time to evaluate each persons needs, I could make much better use of my time with them, appreciating them and loving on them the way THEY need me to. As opposed to what I feel I would want someone to do for me.
This is a concept I’m praying on and working into my relationships this season and I invite you to do the same. If you’re unfamiliar with the concept, pick up the book next time you’re at the library or book store to get an idea of what the different languages mean. And if you’re unsure of a fellow moms Love Language, openly ask her about it. Though I didn’t have to say a word, I was patient and observant and saw how friends reacted to acts of kindness and just went from there.
Below I’ve put together some ideas on how to love on your mama tribe utilizing their Love Language.
Words of Affirmation
– Compliment them. On their appearance. On their mothering. On their skills outside of being a mom. Just make sure its authentic.
– Write a nice card just to let her know you’re thinking about her.
– Congratulate her on a recent win, either at work, or high five the fact that she got dressed AND cooked a meal for the kid that day. Because, as I sit here in my yoga pants after having fed my little guy a peach for breakfast, we all know what a big win that is.
Acts of Service
– Offer to watch her kids so she and her husband can slip out for a date night. Maybe even trade off, a few of my mom friends and I do this for one another. It saves money and the hassle of interviewing baby sitters.
– Offer to come over and cook or clean for her when she’s overwhelmed or under the weather.
– Initiate a car pool to give other moms a break.
– I have a mom friend who adores special trinkets, so I make sure to listen when she expresses what she’s looking for and I pick it up for her as a gift.
– Coffee. Coffee is always a good one to swing by her place with when you get a text saying her little one barely slept a wink.
– Non-baby related anything. Giving a mom a gift that’s JUST about her and her passions can go a long way in giving her a sense of herself back.
– Schedule a girl’s day or night when the husbands or sitters can watch the kids. Even slipping out for a quick cup of coffee or pedicure can do wonders for your friendship, and for your soul.
– My friends who value quality time love simple play dates. Trading off just relaxing in each others homes while the babies play, enjoying a hot mug of tea or baking together, allows you to simply do life together in a relaxed setting.
– Sending a quick text, email message or phone call to encourage her, lift her up or just let her know you’re thinking about her is a great way to build up relationships with those who value quality time.
– Some may write this fifth one off as strictly marriage-related, but for the affectionate mamas, you can always greet them with a hug.
– Book a massage for her and offer to watch her kids while she gets pampered by expert hands.
– Or again, offer to watch her kids so she can get some one-on-one time with the husband at home.
Have you tried this with your tribe? How did it go? I’d love to hear your ideas in the comments below!