A good friendship can have incredible physical and lifelong health benefits. It can affect everything from your weight to your self-esteem and even your ability to cope with trauma. But as a busy adult, nurturing strong friendships or even being a good friend can sometimes be challenging.
Having good friends who love, cherish, and support you for who you are is very important to your happiness. Be a good friend to your friends when they need you most, and you will receive the same in return.
Why are good friends so important?
Research has revealed that the better the quality of your relationships, the happier you are. So being a great friend to someone and having supportive friends is good for your well-being. But what exactly does a good friend do?
Be honest with your friends. Keep your promises, and do what you say you will. Be trustworthy. No one wants to be friends with a liar. And lies always find a way out. Plus, friends should always tell each other the truth, even in difficult situations.
Be interested in the details of your friend’s life by being a good listener. Don’t watch TV or engage in texting while your friend is sharing something important with you. Most of the time, people need more than good advice; they need someone to listen to them when they talk about their feelings. Ask your friends what is going on in their life and how they feel. Please pay attention, and help them pull through.
Be loyal to your friends. Loyalty to your friends is unconditional acceptance, even if they make a mistake. Be there for their ups and downs. Laugh with them, cry with them if you need to, don’t just talk about always being there.
Be prepared to overcome conflict. Every relationship will have ups and downs at one point or another. Show your friends that you are ready to go through difficult times of misunderstanding and pain. Sometimes friendships are strengthened in difficult times. Never give up on a friend.
Be Real. People get discouraged by those who are continually trying to be someone who they are not. We feel more comfortable with other people who are comfortable with themselves. So be yourself. While you may not be perfect, the way you approach strengths and weaknesses with humility and confidence will permit others to be realistic and relaxed with you. True friends are always real with each other.
Encourage your friends. Everyone needs encouragement. Show them what you think is unique about them, and be ready to help them when they are down.
Keep their secrets. Prove to your friends that you are a trusted person who will keep their secrets with your life. An excellent way to show that you are trustworthy is to share some of your own secrets with your friends.
Spend time with your friends as time is one of the greatest gifts we have. When we spend more time with a friend, we return this gift. No friendship can develop overnight. Always look out for your friends.
If you treat the people around you as described above, you are already a good friend.