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Six qualities of a successful friendship

Relationships - By Esther Muchene
You need to have realistic expectations when trying to build your friendships (Shutterstock)

Friendship is a term most often used to refer to people we know regardless of how much we know about them or how long we have known them. With the new generation, we can no longer have definite friendships. Or rather, what is expected from a friend is quite outrageous, if you think about it.

We often hear of people clinging on to their childhood friends only to grow apart and end up in very nasty breakups yet those they meet in college or at work end up being their friends for eternity.

Why has such a simple thing become so complex? Or are we just failing to play our part? Or is it that the people we end up meeting are too broken to form proper bonds or too entitled to play their own part in the friendship? Let’s see some of the qualities a successful friendship needs to have:

  • Trust

This is one of the major foundations of good friendships. How well can you keep private information about your friends?

We’ve all been in a situation where we find ourselves blubbing our friend's problems to strangers because we feel the stories are relatable and there is no way the story might find its way back to our friends. You might get away with them never finding out about you talking about their issues but what does that say about you? A successful friendship needs to have a solidified trust, whether you are together or not.

  • Honesty

Every day I hear people say ‘I would rather you tell me truth as bad as it is rather than lie to me.’ And this makes me wonder where the line between honesty and white little lies begins and ends. A good example is, ‘I am ten minutes away,’ knowing very well you are not even dressed.

Or the big lies like, ‘I lost your number that’s why I haven’t called you.’ At the end of the day you might get away with these lies but your friends form an image of who you are subconsciously, deep down they know you are not an honest person. Strive to achieve honesty in your friendships.

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Always keep your friends secrets to build on your trust (Shutterstock)
  • ?Loyalty

How far are you willing to go for your friend? This means sticking up for your friends in the direst of situations. This is one of the greatest tests a friendship can ever withstand. From memes being posted every day to songs being sang about being loyal, it keeps me thinking; are we really this bad at being loyal?

We need to show up and stick around through the tough times. I am not talking about staying in toxic friendships. I mean actually being there when our friends need us the most; when they no longer fit in the social groups they used to because life happened to them.

  • Non-judgmental

Sometimes our friends do things that make us question their character but as a friend, we should not judge them but rather help them be better people. When you care about your friends’ feelings this will help them feel comfortable speaking to you about anything.

Correct them with love, let them know you care and that you are not judging or berating them for their poor life choices, if any.

  • Respect boundaries

Don’t be too needy or clingy. Respect your friend's schedule and give them some space. Let everyone have their own life outside the friendship. It is understandable the excitement we get from spending time with our friends but we should remember they have other things to do and so don’t get mad at them because they are not spending every minute of their day with us or texting us.

This also includes talking about their issues and letting them make their own decisions. Do not be the know-it-all friend who wants to be in the way of your friends living their lives.

  • Be positive

No one wants to be around negative energy all day, every day. Create a positive environment which is warm and accepting. No one wants to spend time with someone who is always complaining and getting into silly fights.

Yes, there are those days that we need to vent out but let that not be the norm whenever you meet. Do not use your friends as a channel to vent all your problems every day. Remember they also have their own problems that they choose to put aside to spend time with you.

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