Friendships are important building blocks in our foundation, and we rely on these relationships to help fulfill many aspects of our lives.
If you ask yourself the question, “What are the qualities of a good friend?” you’d probably list several virtues that you consider important. But, have you taken a good look in the mirror to see if you are conveying these characteristics in your friendships? It is unfair for us to ask more from a friend than we are willing to give.
As you would like people to do to you, do exactly so to them. —Luke 6:31
Here are seven attributes you should strive to incorporate into your friendships.
One of the most important aspects in a good friendship is trust; can your friends confide in you? A true friend is someone that you can share you most intimate feelings with, and your friends should know that they are in a safe environment to do so when confiding in you. Friends shouldn’t have to worry about you gossiping to others, because they know they can trust you in confidence.
A key trait in friendship is mutual respect. We should never feel that we are better than someone else or in a position of judging another person. We should respect each other and rejoice in our differences. Honor the characteristics of a friend, even if they differ from your own.
Most of us have heard the saying, “honesty is the best policy,” but are we following this advice? Being truthful is the basis of all relationships. When we need an opinion, we want to be able to ask a friend, and depend upon their honest answer. They ask us a variety of opinion questions, and are relying on our truthful response. Telling a person what you think they want to hear instead of being upfront and honest, is not being a true friend at all.
A healthy friendship includes being a good listener. Communication is a two-way street and we must share the roadway. If you are always talking about yourself and what’s going on in your life, you are on a one way street.
Open up the road into a highway where both friends can equally share with one another. Sometimes a conversation amongst friends will be more one-sided when discussing a situation. We must remember to be mindful and take time to listen intently when a friend needs us to.
During our lives, we encounter numerous situations that find us in need of compassion and encouragement. How can we offer support in these times of need? Become a rock when your friends need help staying grounded, a lighthouse when they are lost and need direction and a cheerleader when they need a boost in their self-confidence.
Friendship means sticking together through thick and thin, and doing so brings strength in times of need. Accept people for who they are and support them in their goals and dreams.
Patience and Caring
Being patient and showing that we care are two qualities conveyed in good friendships. Be extra patient when your friends need it, and do little things to let them know you are thinking about them. Showing that we care makes friends feel special, and reminds them that they are loved.
And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving each other, just as God also in Christ forgave you. —Ephesians 4:32
When we are around others, we should try our best to be uplifting, have fun, laugh and do things that make our friends smile. Reminisce about the past and share new experiences to create lasting memories.
Embracing these virtues will help make each moment of your friendships extra special.