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By Thea Theresa English

Ways you can go the extra mile for friends

You send your best friends cards and call them for their birthdays, and you hang out with them as often as you can. But why not go the extra mile and do something meaningful for your friends? Even if they never mention it, they might wonder if you are willing to make sacrifices to show your appreciation in a special way. Here are some ideas to get you started.

Offer to clean their houses

If some of your friends live hectic lives and are not always able to clean their homes frequently, you can treat them to a cleaner place to live. Call the friends and offer to help them clean and organize their houses. Arrive on time with your cleaning supplies and make a party out of it. You can also fix some household items if you have DIY skills. This will help your friends a lot and reduce some of the stress they might have.

Write a letter to your friends

Although we might live in a digital world, there is something genuine about a handwritten letter. Go retro and write a letter of appreciation. If your childhood friend was instrumental in helping you lose weight by being your exercise partner over the past few months, mention how grateful you are. Or if your friend was the one who stood up for your integrity as a parent when your family unfairly criticized you when you were a brand new mom, tell her that her defense gave you encouragement.

Go on a road trip to a place he wants to visit

Perhaps your friend does not drive and is on a tight budget, but he always wanted to visit Los Angeles. You might live in Louisiana and you know this road trip to Los Angeles will be long, but because your friend is important to you, the sacrifice is worth the extra gas in your car. You can also pack his favorite homemade foods for the trip.

Try an activity that your friend suggests

Real friends will want to participate in each others' interests, even if certain activities do not reflect your interests. For example, if your best friend has been asking you to take belly dance lessons for the summer, take her up on the offer. You might prefer hip-hop dancing to belly dancing but you are attending the lessons to show appreciation and support to your friend.

Teach their kids cool things

If you developed a bond with your friend's children, you can go the extra mile by teaching his kids some cool things. For example, if you are skilled in candymaking and baking cakes, spend a weekend giving the kids baking lessons. Or, if you know a lot of the latest dance moves and your friend does not dance a lot, teach the moves to his kids.

These are just a few ways you can go beyond generic gifts to be there for your friends. Your friends will feel appreciated and you will have a closer bond. You will also have a sense of gratification in knowing that you are supporting those dear to you in amazing ways.

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6 Ways to Go The Extra Mile Today

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