You’ve probably realized that friends come and go. In some cases, your interests change as you get older. In other cases, something happens that forces you to part ways with those you once considered friends. At the end of the day, however, you can identify the friendships that have a real foundation.
Identify these truths in your relationships to determine which ones represent true friendship:
1. Friendship withstands disagreements. Anybody you consider a true friend can attest to the fact that disagreements undoubtedly happen, but that person can also confirm that your bond withstands those disagreements.
• True friends know that regardless of the differences or disagreements, the foundation of the relationship still exists.
• A sign of true friendship is when two people continue to live well with each other after a disagreement.
2. Friends keep it real. The beauty about friendship is that there is rarely any pretense. Friends share their vulnerabilities with each other. They trust that their quirks are accepted by each other.
• Your real friends hardly worry about what you think of their actions or behaviors. They know that if there’s one person in the world who understands them, it’s you!
• It’s also safe to say that your real friends avoid sugar-coating anything they’re saying to you. Expect to get their opinion as real as it comes!
3. Confidentiality is respected. When the matter of confidentiality comes up, you can tell a friend by whether your request for confidentiality is respected. True friends acknowledge the importance of maintaining your trust.
• With real friends in your life, you can feel comfortable sharing your deepest secrets. Your secrets will be just as safe with friends as they are when you keep them to yourself.
• Your private space is important to you, and a genuine friend understands that. They know when to step aside and give you the time you need. And they do this without feeling offended.
4. Support is unconditional. It’s true that friends sometimes have different interests and beliefs, but even when viewpoints are different, true friends still offer support to each other.
• Friends usually offer advice to each other, and even when the advice you get is different from what you want to hear, you know it’s coming from a genuine sentiment.
• If you need someone to lean on when you’re going through a rough spot, your real friends instinctively know. They’ll show up when you least expect it and bring loads of hugs with them!
5. Achievements are celebrated. It’s unlikely that you’ll find a true friend who doesn’t celebrate your achievements. The questionable friends may feel envious of your success, but true friends get just as excited as you do about your victories.
• You’ll likely even find a true friend helping you prepare for an upcoming job interview. Even if it’s a success they want for themselves, they’re happy just knowing you stand a good chance of being the victor.
• Sincere friends take the time to congratulate each other. They give gifts, treat each other to dinner, and make other special gestures. They like to show that they care.
I know I have been blessed with a few amazing girlfriends who have been by my side during good times and bad; marriage and divorce; death of parents; and many other life experiences! Together we have laughed, cried, shopped, traveled, and talked until we were just down right exhausted. I don’t know what I would have done without my wonderful friends; you know who you are!
Have you identified anybody who embodies a true friend after looking at these indicators? If you have, latch on to that person as long as you can! A genuine friend can be difficult to find. You’ll find great joy when you nurture your friendships.
Commit to being the kind of friend to others as you want them to be to you. Friendship works both ways!
Until next time,