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Nurturing Friendships: The Art of Friendship Dates

Like any other relationship in your life, friendships can go through a rough patch. You may find yourself struggling to find things to talk about or new activities to try. People tend to place more value on romantic relationships than platonic ones. There are countless articles targeted toward couples about “how to fall in love with your partner again” or “how to spice up your relationship.”  However, this same time and effort needs to be put toward nurturing healthy and fulfilling friendships. No matter how effortless a friendship may feel, there will be times when you take that friend for granted and fall into a lull of gossip, boredom or toxicity.  

Here are some ways to get back to the honeymoon phase:

1. Make them a Spotify playlist

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It’s no secret that music brings people together. You can deepen your friendship by making a playlist of songs that remind you of them. Alternatively, you can make a collaborative playlist to which they can add their own songs. You may realize that you and your friends love to sing your hearts out to the same songs or you may find yourself introduced to a whole new genre of music.

2. Make a joint bucket list 

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If you find yourself doing the same activities over and over again, hop on Pinterest and create a bucket list together. It could be a list of hiking trails, coffee shops, seasonal activities or whatever else you’d like to try. Having this list will motivate you to venture out of your everyday routine. Not to mention that the actual activity of creating the bucket list is fun in itself.

3. Watch the sunrise together 

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There is something so special about feeling like the only two people awake. Although you may initially want to hit snooze, resisting the urge to fall back asleep will show your friend how much you value that extra time with them. Grab a coffee and enjoy the view. 

4. Talk about your daily experiences 

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Sometimes we can get so comfortable in our friendships that we forget to talk about the little things. Remember to ask your friends what they’re learning about in their classes, what TV shows they’ve been watching and even what they ate for breakfast. These small details can reveal a whole new side of your friend that you never knew existed.

5. Create your own book club

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There is no worse feeling than finishing the most breathtaking, life changing book and having absolutely no one to share it with. You and your friend can read the same book and share your opinions on the characters, plotline and movie adaptation. If you two are unable to get access to a book at the same time, you can read the book one after the other. Bonus points if you leave sticky notes inside with your thoughts of the text.

6. Go to a workout class together

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Yoga. Zumba. Cycling. Take your pick of your go-to workouts, or venture out of your comfort zone with some exercises that you and your friend have never done before. You can even work out from the privacy of your own home using the multitude of free workout videos that are available online. Friends who sweat together stay together.

7. Make or buy a piñata

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Yes, I am referring to the party game at almost every child’s birthday party. Yes, it is still fun. Round up some friends and let out some pent-up anger on a candy-filled sloth or whatever other shape you want. 

8. Share your goals with one another

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At the beginning of each month, or even week, share what goals you hope to accomplish. This will help you better understand and support what your friend is working towards at the moment.  It will also create accountability for the both of you. 

 Friendships grow through shared experiences. With these friendship dates, you’ll have fun memories to look back on together for years to come. Remember to take pictures as you go so your friends will always be with you, even if they’re in digital form.

Nancy McQuade

Maryland '23

Nancy McQuade is a sophomore at the University of Maryland. She is an English major on the language, writing, and rhetoric track.
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