A support system can be a vital part of your life. It involves you being accountable, the ability to be open and honest with people around you. A healthy support network has a few traits that you can spot and assess if you need to build a better network, improve your current one, or see if your support network is as supportive as you thought.

Accountability – We need to have people in our life that will offer honest feedback and criticism from a happy and healthy place. This helps you stay on track with your goals, and when things get difficult, this person or people will keep you on track.

A Support Network Includes…

Education – A support network should have some resources or space for you to learn and grow. It could be that you are in the middle of addiction recovery, that mental health hasn’t been kind to you lately, or you just needa sense of direction. Education is key.

Purpose – People thrive when they have a sense of purpose. Knowing where they want to go or achieving small goals on the way to a bigger one. Everyone has a purpose, it just takes a while to find out what it is in some cases.

Psychological Support – Mental health is a big deal, and most people don’t have the right network or support. Counselors aren’t just for people who aren’t in a great frame of mind, they are ideal if you are going through anything, or in a really great space.

Understanding – it is one thing to know people who understand what you are going through. Still, it is another to have someone who understands through having the same or similar experiences.

So How do you Build a Support Network?

Think about what you need for a breakdown of a relationship, perhaps counseling, maybe a divorce lawyer, and therapy for yourself. It will depend on the circumstances, what you need, and from who. Sometimes we are so busy, heading from work to home, and the regular groceries we don’t stop to meet people. In fact, many of us don’t make an effort to meet new people.

Here are some suggestions that can help you start building that all-important support system.

Professional organizations are a great place to start. Many like-minded people in the same professional field will usually have something in common. They meet regularly and can be a great way to get out of your shell for a few hours.

Volunteering is another great way to meet people. Usually, people volunteer for several reasons and meeting people can be one of them. Not only will you be surrounded by people who are volunteering, but in some cases, you will be meeting customers too.

Social media can be a great place to meet people. Although it does have a fair share of trolls and rude people, it has a wider range of lovely people. There are many groups and hashtags that can be used for support and somewhere to talk if you need to.

Making friends isn’t always easy, but it isn’t impossible. A mix of friends and professional bodies can help you create a support network for life.

What advice would you add?

Contributed post. Feature image via Neil Thomas, Unsplash.