There are many different types of friendships we all have. Whether it’s romantic, an acquaintance, a best friend, and even a toxic friendship it affects our personal lives more than we think. At a young age, my mother constantly reminded me of the importance of making friends, and like any little girl I wanted as many as I could possibly fit my arms around. However, growing up I realized that it is more important to have positive and encouraging friends than to have friends that prove your “social status”.
Supportive friends are seriously way better for your health, believe me. It saved me a lot of unwanted drama, gossip, and negative influences. I can’t tell you that it’s been only laughs and blue skies for my entire life, because it hasn’t.
Unfortunately, we all have had toxic friendships, and they are seriously not fun to deal with. A toxic friendship is different for everyone, but from my personal experience it meant that I worried about them 24/7, and that their negativity actually influenced my happiness.
A friend who makes you unhappy? Yes, it’s possible. Through these experiences, I’ve practiced the most important parts about being a better friend, and this is how you can be one too.
Show that you actually do care about their life.
It’s easy to talk about on the surface topics, but don’t forget that we all have interpersonal struggles too, and it feels good when a friend asks me how I actually am. It helps me to get some of the anxiety out of my head.
Be positive to be around.
Seriously, being around someone who is constantly negative influences me to look at the negative aspects of life. Part of being a positive friend is magnifying their strengths, saying that bad days don’t last forever, boys come and go, and a B is not the worst grade in the world.
Be supportive, and encouraging.
I think it’s an amazing feeling being that friend who encourages someone to better their life, because they feel supported to do so. Giving and receiving compliments makes us smile, so why not make your friend smile too? Encouragement goes a long way, especially when you have friends that are shy and insecure. Sometimes, they won’t vocalize that they feel encouraged, but they probably gained a new sense of confidence.
Show your true self, and be vulnerable.
Creating an environment where it’s okay to show your deepest emotions, and most life changing stories actually makes us feel like we can open up more. Trusting a friend to take you as you are can be difficult, but once you show them they can be themselves, it really does create an intimate bond.
Stay in touch even if you get busy
I’ve been the friend who lost touch with friends, because of my crazy work schedule, but I’ve also been the friend who lost a friend because of the lack of communication. Even if you’re swamped with work, take a second to send a text, and say hi..it does go a long ways. Putting the effort in to show that you care shows a lot about your character, and by doing this it can rekindle a friendship.
There’s a ton of tips out there for being a better friend, but I think these are my most important tips based on personal experiences. Finding a group of friends who challenge you, inspire and encourage you is so important for a healthy friendships. Having friends like this are worth keeping, so why not try to be the friend you’d want to have around?