Friendship and relationship advice,  Oakland Press columns,  Personal growth

Friendly advice from Pooh Corner

“You can’t stay in your corner of the forest waiting for others to come to you. You have to go to them sometimes.” ~A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh

Lately there’s been a lot of press about the “epidemic of loneliness” in America. Apparently, despite our social media connections, we’re not fully engaging with others in healthy, three-dimensional ways.

Here’s the deal: Good relationships require initiation and effort. Too often, I’ve seen others hang back in silence and blame their loneliness on others — because others don’t reach out to them. Maybe they fear rejection. Maybe they’re too shy. Or maybe they’re just too busy to initiate an actual social plan. (“Let’s get together sometime” isn’t a social plan.) Either way, it doesn’t help to wait for someone else to call or extend an invitation. Likewise, inertia never deepens current relationships.

As today’s quote suggests, we have to take responsibility for our own social lives. Posting comments and photos on social media doesn’t count. Is it time to venture out from your corner of the forest? ~CL

Click here to read an article I wrote on how to reboot friendships after the pandemic.

Photo by Cindy La Ferle

Throughout my career, I've worked as a book production editor, travel magazine editor, features writer, and weekly newspaper columnist. My award-winning lifestyles features and essays have appeared in many national magazines and anthologies, including Newsweek, Reader's Digest, The Christian Science Monitor, Writer's Digest, Victoria, Better Homes & Gardens, Bella Grace, and more. My weekly Sunday "Life Lines" column ran for 14 years in The Daily Tribune (Royal Oak, MI) and won a First Place (Local Columns) award from the Michigan Press Association. My essay collection, Writing Home, includes 93 previously published columns and essays focusing on parenthood and family life.

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