As with any relationship, friendship has its ups and downs. Some will be friends for life to death while others will cross your life, some will be a bit wild with you, others will stab you in the back (ok, those ones are not real mates), but in the end the true friendships defy time, space, crises and all the trials of life. If you want to preserve the friendships that are dear to your heart, here are 34 tips to be a good friend!
1. Be open-minded! Differences open us to the world. And if you are interested in others, they will be interested in you! Having varied topics of conversation is the promise not to get bored… Plus, it’s always rewarding to be confronted with different kinds of personalities, it teaches you to adapt!
2. Find common interests! Of course, it’s easier to establish affinities with common tastes: music, cinema, books or other, it will allow you to program outings without the fuss!
3. Show people that they are important to you! Being a couple should not prevent you from seeing your friends. Organize yourself to spend time with them regularly. Friends help you to release the family pressure and not choke in your relationship. Plus, you don’t have to justify to your mates, enjoy!
4. Suggest spontaneous outings! You don’t need to plan anything in advance. Putting a little more spontaneity and unexpected in your social life has its charm. What about an impromptu cocktail dinner, a DVD evening with friends or the inauguration of a nightclub?
5. Make confidences and be receptive to confidences of others! It’s important to have people to whom you can confide and vice versa. This will make you even closer!
6. Stay yourself! Friendship is much less formatted than in a family relationship or in a couple. Take advantage of it to let your little craziness speak, without playing a role of course! You don’t live with your friends so it’s easier to disinhibit yourself with them, no?
7. Be honest! Honesty is crucial in any kind of relationship. Don’t lie to your friends and don’t play with their feelings, they would never forgive you! If you are too tired to go out or if you’re broke, just say it instead of inventing a false excuse, I’m sure your mates will understand…
8. Help each other! Friendship is also a matter of solidarity. Don’t hesitate to give a hand to your friends, they will remember it when you will need help, trust me!
9. Be available to others! Accept the outings that people offer you, be present in their lives, answer when they call you even if you only have 5 minutes free, they will be thankful for the time you accorded them and they will be there for you in return.
10. Keep in touch regularly! The friends who live in another town or abroad should not be forgotten. Find out what they are up to by phone, email, Skype or other, don’t let distance keep you away!
11. Be generous without a second thought! Friendship is also an opportunity to please friends who matter to us. Don’t forget their birthday, share your recipe of cupcakes, make them listen to the latest album you bought, host them if they are feeling blue one day… You will do a good action and you will feel happier, isn’t that wonderful?
12. Enjoy spending time together! Friends are a bit like our second family. You spend most of your time with them when you are single or when you live alone so every moment with them is precious!
13. Don’t judge others! Nobody is perfect and everyone has his own flaws. Remember that you should never judge someone on his appearance (appearance can be deceiving sometimes) and free critics have no value!
14. Stop making the first move systematically! You risk getting tired if you’re always the first to call or the first to suggest outings. Stay quiet for a while, if your friends really want to see you, they will contact you for sure!
16. Try to be punctual! There is nothing more annoying than having to wait for someone late. It’s ok if it happens once (the polite quarter hour exists) but it should not turn into a habit! You wouldn’t appreciate if your friends were always late…
18. Be attentive to others! It’s a matter of respect. Never pretend to listen to someone, they would be mad at you or you would risk to accept something without meaning! If you’re not ready for a long talk, tell it frankly and postpone the conversation to later.
19. Create a positive social interaction! Being optimistic and in a good mood will make your friendship more enjoyable. Never underestimate the power of a smile: it costs nothing, it’s contagious and it makes life more beautiful!
20. Don’t turn into an emotional crutch! Beware of so-called friends who just call you to fill their loneliness or boredom and forget you as soon as they feel better. You are not a disposable plaster or tissue. Detach yourself of those people and go see your true mates!
21. Be trustworthy! Show others that they can count on you. Being reliable is one of the best qualities a friend can have! Work on it, you won’t regret it…
22. Admit your faults! It’s a sign of maturity and good faith. Apologize if you are wrong and think about a solution to solve the problem. Apologizing is a good start, correcting the situation is even better!
23. Don’t use people! They are human, not toys. Manipulation is the enemy of friendship, never forget it!
24. Remain loyal! Deception does not exist only for love. Betrayal of friends can also provoke damages. If you don’t like someone, don’t pretend to be his friend because it’s even more cruel. Nobody forces you to be friend with everyone, you have to stay true to your heart! Remember to remain faithful to your friends, it’s the best proof of friendship…
25. Respect people! If you want to be respected, you must first respect others. Insults and gossip are forbidden in friendship. Being polite and well-behaved with your friends is the basis!
26. Be altruistic! Selfishness is to be proscribed. Think of your friends first but don’t let anyone abuse your kindness, it is out of question to turn yourself into a sucker!
27. Be present in times of crisis! Help your friends to fight the grey areas of their lives: bereavement, illness, rupture…lend them a sympathetic ear and a comforting shoulder. Do your best to cheer them up and try to clear their mind. If you don’t find the right words, just give them a hug, they will know that you are there for them and will feel better! It’s in misfortune that we know who are our real friends.
28. Support your friends! For example, if you know a mate who is looking for an accommodation, spread information to those around you, on Facebook, at work… Just show him that you care. And if you are in a difficult situation, tell your friends, don’t be ashamed to ask for help.
29. Give good advice! Share your personal experience with your mates, it can be helpful. If you are not qualified to answer their questions, direct them to someone else instead of giving them junk advice. It’s better to say nothing when you don’t know!
30. Don’t be too intrusive! Avoid unhealthy curiosity, overly tactile contacts, and respect the personal space of your friends. If they need to be alone to reflect, don’t run after them! They will come to you later.
31. Learn to forgive! If you really care about a person, forget your resentment and make peace with her. You will live better and won’t lose a friend.
32. Accept others for who they are! Don’t try to change your friends and don’t idealize them. Everyone has the right to think differently, that doesn’t prevent them to be friends with you. See what this difference can bring in your life, your worldview is not the panacea, ok?
33. Learn to read between the lines! Sometimes people say they’re ok whereas they’re not because of pride, for fear of disturbing, denial or other reason. Don’t say anything at the moment but don’t hesitate to call your friends some time later, they may be more inclined to talk to you…
34. Accept that people can change! A baby doesn’t think like a child, a child doesn’t think like a teen, and a teen doesn’t think like an adult. It’s normal, everyone evolves. So if you find that a friend has changed, try to adapt to his new way of thinking. Maybe you will end up changing some day as well so don’t be closed-minded!
Hope these 34 tips will help you to have better relationships with your friends. Feel free to give your opinion in the comment field, see you soon 🙂