“A best friend is like a four leaf clover: hard to find and lucky to have.”
Think about this for a moment: Who is your best friend, your closest companion? Who do you turn to for support, love, encouragement, and shared experiences? Is it a family member, a spouse, a girlfriend or boyfriend, a person you have known for a long time, or maybe someone you recently met? I believe this person could also be a spiritual mentor, family member, idol, or hero who has passed away with whom you connect spiritually on a regular basis for support and love.
As you think about this person for a moment, ask yourself, “How do I express my gratitude for the gift of this friend?”
Try this: the next time you have an opportunity to be with your friend, practice Focused Attention. As I explain in my book The Practice and on my website, Focused Attention is the practice of mindfully staying present to the moment, person, or activity in which you are engaged.
To practice this with your best friend, put the phone away, and spend your time together completely absorbed in the moment, listening and keeping your mind and energy in the present. You may wish to express your gratitude for your friend’s presence in your life and how it fulfills you, complements who you are in this world, and brings you joy. Spend this time together as if there is nothing else going on in the world. You have nowhere to go and no place you have to be—you are just being. In life, we are so often “doing,” so use this as an opportunity to practice just being with your friend.
People close to us play important roles in our lives. Often, the silent time among friends can be a comforting place for easing life’s stresses and hardships. Having a connection with someone we call “best friend” is something to be thankful for.
Also, consider this: When we sit in silence to begin each day, we are regularly connecting with our innermost selves. In this way, we are actually becoming our own best friend. I believe we are here to learn from one another and grow together, but also and most important, we are here to learn from, and grow with, ourselves. Everything begins with the relationship we have with ourselves. So, today, give yourself a big hug and say, “I’m grateful for your companionship on this life’s journey.” Then send out a big thank-you to those special friends in your life.