“Thank you, friend. You’re precious to me. I value you and our friendship.”

Even though reaching out to your friends may feel like a herculean task at this time… here are 5 simple ways to say “thank you!”, even in a pandemic. And there are benefits…

What is a friend?

Maybe we all have our own definition of what a friend is or what friendship means. Maybe our definition has changed over time. Or not. However, regardless of the definition we put to the word, thanking our friends means we demonstrate their value.

To whom would you want to say “thank you” for being my friend? Can you think of a few?

5 Ways to say “Thank you!” to your friend.

I’m going to simplify a complicated topic and try to make it easy to do. To that end, I’m borrowing from Gary Chapman’s work. So, here they are:

1. Invest time with your friend.

Even with this pandemic, technology makes it possible to see each other face to face. Have a coffee/tea date and chat. Here are 36 questions to make the conversation even more interesting. You will honor your friend and demonstrate how grateful you are for your friendship if you make a deliberate time to connect with the purpose of thanking her or him.

2. Tell her or him you’re thankful for the friendship and why.

Firstly, use words. Write them down. Or speak those words. Or do both!

Make a list of all the ways you’re thankful for your friend. Write a card. Make a call and tell him or her.

3. Send a gift.

Specifically, it doesn’t need to be expensive. But make it personal. The gift becomes a tangible indication of how much you value your friendship. You could buy it, or make it. Does your friend have an Amazon gift list? Ask!

Additionally, you could give something fun like these and buy one for yourself too, and wear them when you’re together! Can you imagine a Zoom meeting where you’re both wearing these? A talented friend makes these and they’re so fun…

4. Use your time to do something specific and helpful for your friend.

Gary Chapman, author of the concept of The Five Love Languages calls it an “act of service“. Could you bring supper to your friend? Or clean their car, weed their garden, or go to the post office or some other action ? Maybe shop and deliver their groceries? Even in this time period – or if you’re far away from each other – there are ways to order a GrubHub supper, or groceries through Instacart or have a service come and wash the car, do yard work etc… you’re limited only by your imagination!

5. And lastly, give a hug or pat on the back or some kind of (appropriate) physical expression of your heart.

During these times it’s tough to do this “physical touch Love Language” if your friend is far away or either of you is in quarantine. We’re not supposed to be doing the close physical contact stuff.

However. But. You could “outsource” your hugs. —LOL —

What do I mean? Make a plan with someone who can hug your friend, and have them hug your friend on your behalf! Make the experience into an event. Use technology to set up a meeting – arrange ahead of time with the person who is in their “bubble” – and do a virtual, surrogate “hug” with your friend!

And here are the benefits: demonstrating how much you appreciate your friends will lift everyone’s spirits!

Let’s lift each other up.

Why? Because friendship is even more important in this time! You are in control of nurturing your friendships. So, say thank you to someone you value!

Come on… which friend will it be?

(Specifically, leave their first name in the comments and pick one of the five suggestions from above. To that end, I’ll leave the first comment myself with who and what I’m going to do!)

Here are 5 ways to say "thank you" to your friend --- even during a pandemic you can do these!

PS – I’m working on a new resource just for you to help with #2 — a way for you to easily develop a way to tell your friend exactly which character qualities you value about him or her. It’ll have the exercise, a list of 265 character qualities to choose from, and even a few templates to print out, (my own designs), write your note, and send to your friends! Stay tuned…