My mom was always full of wisdom when it came to dating advice, and one piece that stuck with me is that I should never lose myself in a relationship.

Directly speaking, you should never abandon your passions, friendships, or even your career for any relationship and that's just facts, sis!

Now, I get it — relationships are fun and exciting, and we sometimes tend to let them consume our lives completely.

And, maybe, you become one of those couples who has a joint Instagram or Facebook account, and you can't make it to your friends birthday party until you can check that your other half can be in attendance. And, let's face it, to your friends from the outside looking in, that might seem a little extreme.

One of my former best friends would hop from relationship to relationship. So I am used to hearing “Kevin and me” [name changed] every time I would see her. I have even become the single friend to then suddenly become “in a relationship” for a short period of time, and I’ve noticed that there is a fine line between being a good girlfriend while also being a good friend.

Friendships are imperative, in my opinion. When I think of what kind of person I want to be, I never want it to be the type that drops her girls to the wayside when a new guy enters my life, then goes running to them for support the moment it ends.

We’re young, millennial women and I understand that having a boyfriend (or girlfriend) feels like the next significant milestone, but it's important never to forget the people that have had your back. Balancing life, work, friendships, family, and all the rest can be hard, and I get it.

Here are some of my top tips to help incorporate the social life you had before your significant other, and how you can keep it going even while they are in it.

Spend time apart

Are you in love, and you have to be in their presence at all times and can't stand to be alone? Well, to be honest sis, you should try it. Spending time apart from your significant other is healthy and normal. Even putting a single day of “alone time” in between you will give you each some breathing room and it’ll give you the time and perspective to appreciate and miss each other. Remember that being content with your own company is just as important as being with someone else.  

Plan more group activities

Being social is a great way to spend time with other friends while also spending time with your boo. One or two other couples are fine, but you don't want too big of a group. Try and rotate out your "couple" friends so you can spend some equal quality time with each of them. It's good to engage with other people and find out how your friends are doing.

Spend quality time with girlfriends

Repeat after me, sis — spending time with my girlfriends is essential. You are more than just your relationships. I’ve been blessed to have some fantastic friends and I never want to lose them due to being in a relationship. Quality time with them matters. So make sure you are reaching out and not isolating yourself in your relationship. 

Make the time to keep building  relationships

Relationships can be beautiful and exciting. Just remember that is only one part of your life, and the amount of time you invest in your friends should be just as imperative as the amount of time you invest in your boyfriend/girlfriend.

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