International Friendship Day 2009

Best Friends Forever, by Irene LevineDid you celebrate International Friendship Day 2009?

Go on a trip with your BFFs? Give all your girlfriends gifts? Send a card to every woman who has made a difference in your life?

It’s unfortunate, but with all the “greeting card produced” holidays (like ‘Second Cousins’ or ‘Forklift Drivers Day’*), a day like “International Friendship Day” gets very little attention. In fact, there were varying facts online – one site said it was the first Sunday in August, Wikipedia (on that Sunday) said it was the second Sunday in August. (Now Wikipedia has changed back to the first Sunday – August 2, 2009.) Per Wikipedia:

International Friendship Day celebrations take place on the first Sunday of August every year. The tradition of dedicating a day in honor of friends began in US in 1935. Gradually the festival gained popularity and today Friendship Day is celebrated in a large number of countries. On this day people spend time with their friends and express love for them. Exchange of Friendship Day Gifts like flowers, cards and wrist bands is a popular tradition of this occasion.

Many friends wish each other with exchange of gifts and cards on this day. “Friendship bands” are very popular in India and Nepal. With the advent of social networking sites, friendship day is also being celebrated online. The commercialization of the Friendship Day celebrations has led to some dismissing it as a “marketing gimmick”.

Interesting last line in that Wikipedia quote, isn’t it? Some dismiss it as a “marketing gimmick.”

Why shouldn’t we have a day dedicated to celebrating the one relationship in our lives that makes us healthier, happier, less stressed, live longer and feel more beautiful? Maybe one day just isn’t enough. (Which explains the upcoming ‘National Women’s Friendship Day’ on Sept. 20 – join us in Cincinnati for a week of women’s celebrations that this day warrants!)

Our friend,author IRENE LEVINE gets what International Friendship Day is all about. She writes about it in Huffington Post including this insightful summary:

With the hectic pace of our lives, it’s too easy to take friendships, even very good ones, for granted. Use Friendship Day as an excuse to rethink and realign your friendship priorities. It’s easy to get sucked into spending your time with a needy friend who constantly seeks out your companionship but consistently drains your energy, or with a toxic friend who is filled with ambivalence but conveniently lives next door. Consciously choose the friends you want to spend time with and nurture the relationships that matter most.

Read Irene’s complete article here – it’s a touching and triumphant journey of friendship that ended for her this past week, on International Friendship Day.

So, you may have missed ‘International Friendship Day’ but that doesn’t mean that you can’t find a way for a belated celebration or just to renew your commitment to your friends. What are you doing NOW to celebrate Friendship Day? Share and inspire other women to appreciate their female friendships.

* Just kidding on those holidays – and I’m not saying that second cousins and forklift drivers shouldn’t have a day!

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