It never ceases to amaze me how selfless, giving, and considerate my girlfriends are. These women are incredible; they balance careers, relationships, active social lives, and somehow still find the time to send birthday cards (before the actual day).
Add that to the list of things to work on: send more thoughtful cards.
We each show up for our friends in our own way, and each friendship is beautiful and unique. I have some friends that I talk to every single day, and some that I can go months without seeing or speaking to but when we are reunited it is like no time has passed at all.
Each of my friendships enriches my existence, and I am a better person for having these women in my life.
Here’s a few tips on how to be a good friend, which I have been lucky enough to learn from friendships that have forever changed me for the better.
1. Be There, Even If You Can’t Be There.
My closest girlfriends are spread out all across the country, yet I speak to them constantly. We are always there for each other, lending support, advice, and encouragement during times of happiness or desperation. One of the greatest strengths of these friendships is that, without fail, they are always there for me when I need it. A phone call, a sweet text, a gentle push in the right direction- they are good for it, no matter how far away they are. They don’t let physical distance keep them from showing up for me, and I do my absolute best to return the favor.
2. Respect Each Others’ Time.
You know what qualities my best friends have? Dependability and follow-through. A friendship cannot survive if plans are constantly being broken. I understand that things come up, but my schedule is too busy and my time too precious to let flaky people into my inner circle. I respect my best friends’ time, they respect mine, and that is why our friendships are still flourishing after so long.
3. Be Positive, Yet Honest.
Best girlfriends are your greatest supporters, but they aren’t afraid to get real with you. They will give it to you straight, challenge your opinions, and offer constructive criticism with grace (and without stomping all over your feelings). If you think you have a bright idea, you check with them first. You respect their opinion, and you know, after years of experience, that you should always listen to them.
4. Make the Effort to Persevere.
Your inner circle tends to have one thing in common: they have been there through everything. Your friendships with them have survived disagreements, fights, and possibly even periods without talking. At the end of the day, they persevere, because you know that a difference of opinion could never destroy all that you have built.
and last, but not least….
5. Show Appreciation
Your best friends really are amazing people, so be sure to tell them so. These are the people who believe in you and love you unconditionally, which is no small feat. They have strengths that you lack (ahem, like sending said birthday cards on time), and they never judge you for your faults. These ladies (or gentlemen) deserve a gold star and endless amounts of admiration for all they have contributed to your life, so be sure to tell them regularly how much they mean to you.
What is your idea of being a good friend? I would love to hear your ideas!
* This post is dedicated to all of my best girlfriends. You know who you are :). I am so grateful for all that you are, for all that you do, and appreciate you more than words can express. I love you!