One of the most important things that we should have in life is definitely a friend, I would say.
No matter how independent you are, how of a loner you are, or whatever you are, having a friend is never a bad thing.
Friends fulfill our life, make our life colorful, help us when we’re in trouble, support our dreams, accept us for who we are, encourage us to be a better person, and… have fun with us!
Of course, that’s what good (and real) friends do.
The thing is, some people desire to have good friends, but… they forgot to be a good friend themselves.
It’s simple: “You get what you paid for”.
If you wanna have real good friends, you gotta be one too in the first place.
In this post, I’m going to share my point of view of what I think we all should do to be a good friend. Everything I write here is inspired by my own experiences, so if you want to add something according to yours, feel free to express it by leaving a comment at the bottom of the post.
Remember also that I am not claiming to be the best type of friend that one can have, or that I am friends with everyone… which I am not. I choose my friends, and I as well have been chosen carefully by my friends to be their friend. Of course I will always have some character which some people might dislike, and the same thing goes to other people. I cannot like and be friends with everyone, and it is completely normal for all of us to determine who we want to be good friends with.
So, here are the basic things you need to know, in my personal opinion, to be a real good friend:
- BE SINCERE.
Sincerity is highly needed when you want to be a good friend for others. Unfortunately, you can’t really force yourself to be sincere if you are not naturally a sincere person… haha. However, you can work on it by, at least, not taking anyone for granted.
Friendship is not, for example, a professional relationship. You do not approach friends to get a promotion, salary increment, or deals with important clients… even though many times it still does take sincerity to have a good professional relationship, though.
So, don’t expect yourself to be a good friend if you are still finding yourself trying to approach people just because they are rich, or famous, or ‘cool’, etc. If your intention to have friends is to make them treat you dinners, buy you stuff, take you to popular events, or show that you belong to a cool clique only, then forget dreaming to have real good friends.
I’m not saying that it’s bad to have rich and famous friends, don’t get me wrong. I’m just saying that you gotta learn to be friends with people because of their personality… because you like their characters, not because you like the material things they own. In other words, simply cause you are happy spending time with them.
Any kind of relationship is about ‘give and take’. So make sure you also give something to them sincerely, and not keep only taking and taking from them. Giving something does not only mean giving visible objects, but also stuff like loyalty, a shoulder to cry on, support, and… last but not least: love.
- RESPECT YOUR FRIEND’S CHOICES, BACKGROUND, AND PRIVACY.
Open your mind and realize that people in this world have different preferences.
So what if your friend has different religion? Or if your friend has same religion but he just does not practice it as much as you do? So what if your friend has a sexual orientation that does not align with your belief? Your friend likes to smoke while you don’t, so what? Your friend wants to sleep around while you want to keep your virginity til you get married… so???
Not being judgmental is cool.
Same thing goes when you are dealing with other people’s background. Not everyone has silver spoon stuck up in their ass since the day they were born, just as not everyone had to struggle in the streets since they were young. Not everyone has straight A’s in school, just as not everyone hates to be in school. Not everyone has parents that stay together til the end of time, just as not everyone has to deal with parents’ divorce or death…
Everyone has their own story, that makes them who they are today. If nothing harms you, why do you have to make it a big deal instead of just embracing the differences?
Remember to give space to your friends as well. Do not go through your friend’s personal stuff without permission. Nobody likes a person who is way too nosy and clingy anyway!
- REMEMBER SOME DETAILS ABOUT YOUR FRIEND.
Wouldn’t you love it if someone remembers your birthday? Even better when they come up with a surprise by giving you a birthday present which turns out to be something you’ve been wanting to get since the last 3 months or so…
Okay well, it doesn’t always have to be a present. Sometimes you can just do very small things that make your friend feel special or acknowledged.
Let’s say, you know your friend is a dedicated vegetarian. You can always give him an information whenever you know a new vegetarian restaurant is open in town.
For me, I have a very good friend that still remembers the songs I wrote back in my university years… even I (the writer) don’t even remember them anymore, haha! Sometimes, when we meet, he randomly sings one of my old songs in front of me, and I would be like… “What are you singing, dude…? Oh no… wait… that’s… that’s my song, OH MY GOD!”
That is SWEET, trust me.
- DO NOT BE A BACKSTABBER.
The truth is, I have been a backstabber. I have been a bad friend for a few people.
This is why I could say that you should never back stab your friend if you really want to be a good friend and keep the friendship.
Backstabbing includes secretly dating your friend’s ex, or worse, having affair with your friend’s current lover.
Oh, it also includes many other things such as telling other people your friend’s deepest secrets, stealing from your friend, offering help to your friend when actually you have a bad intention in doing so, etc.
Hey, it includes talking shit behind their back and playing innocent and talking sweet in front as well!
Say what you mean. Mean what you say.
Enough said for backstabbing thing, I guess. You know what NOT to do.
- BE HAPPY FOR YOUR FRIEND.
One of the most dangerous poisons in a friendship is a constant jealousy to your friend.
Would you be happy if your friend gets the promotion he has been looking forward to, while you are still you with your current shitty job?
Would you be happy if your friend gets married to the love of her life, while you even still have no boyfriend?
Would you be happy if your friend gets a chance to travel around the world, while you’re here stuck in your country paying endless bills and tax and debts and rents?
Would you be happy if your friend… has many other good friends as well?
Ask these questions to yourself. Think about how you had reacted all this time towards your friend’s happy moments. Were you there celebrating with them with SINCERE joy, or were you actually feeling envious and planning to do evil things to bring them down?
I’m telling you, I’ve been there when my friends got the things that I wanted the most in life, and even until now I still haven’t got these things for myself.
Did I spend time feeling jealous and thinking about how I deserve those things more than my friends do?
I made it my own motivation to get the same things someday. I made my friends my real life inspiration that would keep positively reminding me that I could be like them someday. That I also have my turn for my happy moments. When the time comes, they’ll be happy for me, too.
- YOU CAN’T BUY FRIENDS.
Some people with money, sadly, think that their money can buy friends.
Some of them, want to think that it can, just because they are so desperately in need to have a friend.
Yeah, of course money can buy you a group of people to hang out in a club together, as long as you’re willing to pay for the drinks. It definitely can buy you “escorts” as well if you’re interested.
But never ever in your life, your money can buy you a real good friend.
Friendship is never about the amount of money you have. It is about who you are as a person, and how you treat your friend as a person, too.
Considering the points I have given above, do you think it is actually difficult to be a good friend?
That could be a retorical question if no one responds to it, hehe. But again, feel free to leave any comment here. I am very very open for further discussion.
I guess that’s about what I can share for now. I hope somehow it inspires you in some way, or you can also share this post to inspire some other people that you think need to be inspired 🙂
Thank you for reading this post and may you are blessed to have true friends in your life! xoxo