My best friend of 7 years pops up in my mind as I write this. I can think of her at the mere mention of a ‘good friend.’ It is not by force of habit that I can do so. She possesses several qualities of a good friend & has been consistent forever.
Over the years, she has become a very important part of my life. The quality of her friendship stems from the fact that she is a good person, in the first place.
Especially considering the lifespan of our friendship so far, she has been a true friend.
But is it so easy? A long-term friendship takes work, which is not everybody’s cup of tea at all times. You might have a stressful job or a history of traumatic friendships in the past. You might not be such an approachable person for many reasons.
Or you might have recently shifted to a new place away from all your friends. Under such conditions, devoting time to developing great friendships can seem impossible, even!
Maintaining a healthy friendship for years together is difficult for many. And ensuring that the friendship is worthy of cherishing for a lifetime is not easy either. Those are the people you share your experiences & stories with.
They are the ones who stick by your side through thick & thin. They are the ones whom you trust & confide in. Good friends make long-term bonds easy to maintain.
Not only that, but good friends also make life easier. Good friendships improve your mental health & add to your happiness. Strong friendships can have a great impact on your physical health as well.
Spotting a good friend is easy when you can see some of the following important qualities in them:
Qualities of a friend to Lookout for
1. A good friend is trustworthy
Trust is one of the core requirements of a healthy friendship. It is an unwritten rule between two friends. It helps you feel safe to share your life with your friend. Sharing similar ideas of trust enables more ways to build trust within friendships.
If a friend is reciprocating when it comes to trust, sharing a good bond with them becomes easier. You can share your intimate, private, & vulnerable information with a trusted friend.
Commitment, integrity, & inter-dependency helps build trust within friendships. You may want to spot the above-mentioned through your interactions with your friend.
2. A good friend has empathy
Feeling understood is one of the most important aspects of being close to someone. You cannot be close to somebody if you feel misunderstood by them. An empathetic friend asks questions instead of making assumptions about you.
They understand your perspective instead of judging you. They take into account various angles of looking at your situation. Confrontation or confession is easy with an empathetic friend.
You can show your vulnerability around them without the fear of judgment. A lack of empathy in a friend can shut you down in conversations. Empathy not only makes one a good friend but also a great person in general.
3. A good friend must be playful
The ability to keep things light in an otherwise stressful life is a boon! A good friend takes this fun responsibility & adds value to your life by adding laughter to the mix. Being able to laugh at oneself is a great quality to have.
Amongst friends, making fun of each other comes easy. Good friends create a comfortable space to laugh at each other. Creativity, flexibility, & spontaneity get introduced in a friendship through playfulness.
A playful friend can ease your tensions, if any, from other aspects of your life. Even if it is something as trivial as singing a song with a friend, it can add value to your life. A playful friend makes your life beautiful in a unique way!
4. A good friend is low maintenance
Staying together has its importance in a friendship. But, staying apart is also important. Knowing how to maintain a friendship from a distance helps you manage life better. A low-maintenance friendship is stress-free.
You & your friend might be passionate about opposite things. You may like to spend your time in very different ways. But there is a sense of bliss between the two. You are happy for each other for having a passion. Even after months of little to no contact, such a friendship remains unaffected.
You & your friend can pick up where you left off the last time you interacted. Such a friend lessens your worry & adds security to the picture. They do not seem to need much effort.
They make you feel secure even from a distance. A blessing in disguise with such a friend is that a catch-up session becomes all the more interesting!
5. A good friend is a clairvoyant
Not in general, but when it comes to you, a good friend knows when they should be present. This is nonverbal communication to a whole new level. Clairvoyance makes a friendship very special & helpful.
A good friend pays attention to what you say & notices what you don’t. They are standing by your side at the right time, even if you never asked them to! That is a characteristic of an exceptional friendship.
6. A good friend is a good listener
A good friend shows regard for you by making you feel heard. They even get you to talk when you do not wish to because you know they will listen to you. A broader sense of trust gets built through this trait.
By listening to you, a good friend reduces misunderstandings. A good listener is always a green flag because listening also requires patience. A good friend will not waste your time by allowing a conflict to get worse.
Solving a conflict is their priority & they use their listening skills to achieve this. You feel a deeper sense of connection when you feel heard. A good friend ensures to deepen the friendship, with or without the intention.
Either way, they showcase empathy, which is another characteristic of a good friend. Good listeners are likely to give constructive advice.
7. A good friend boasts an individual personality
An individualistic person is often a good influence as a friend. They allow you to exercise your true instincts & walk on unexplored paths. The conventions might not support your ideals, but a good friend will.
You identify with an unconventional sexual orientation, for instance. A good friend will show support & acceptance toward you. You will never feel alone for being different. Your friend will stick by your side, regardless of your personal choices.
They, too, will have a ‘why’ to their choices. The reason won’t root in the conventions of society. It won’t stem from a herd mentality. An individualistic mindset will back up their life decisions.
Such a friend will help you learn more about yourself as well as love yourself. And they are nonjudgmental. Such a friend often acts as a catalyst for self-love, which is a delight!
8. A good friend has immense patience
Impatience is an easy way to add to your trouble. Most people boost problems in their relationships by being impatient. When I say relationships, I also speak about friendships.
Two friends lacking the patience to treat each other in a good way are a recipe for bad friendship. Patience is an important trait to have not only as a friend but also as a human being.
The word ‘patience’ might remind you of the times your best friend was all ears for weeks as you vented. You may have cried about the same issue several times & your friend listened to you without giving up. Well, that’s one good friend for you!
9. A good friend is an extremely honest person
Based on a person’s ability to be honest, we can tell a lot about them. An honest friend makes life very easy by cutting down the unnecessary drama. With such a person, communication doesn’t seem difficult.
More often than not, communication with an honest friend is a blessing. They let you know where you lack or where you excel. They put across their concerns with you without holding back. They lessen the possibility of having hidden grudges against each other.
They are straightforward & active communicators. Even though they are fearless, they care for your feelings. It shows through what they focus on when they communicate their issues with you. If the friendship seems to be going off-track, they let you know.
They do not ghost you when they want to end things with you. Rather, they make you aware of the situation & their response to it. They do not leave you guessing things about them in difficult situations. They focus on bringing clarity to crucial matters related to you or your friendship.
10. A good friend respects your boundaries
Healthy friendships are never void of good boundaries. One person may have different ideas of respect than the other. Communication & respect for each other’s boundaries between friends is vital.
Respecting your friend’s boundaries is a matter of their comfort. A good friend must accept when you communicate your boundaries. Putting you down for having strong boundaries makes them a not-so-good friend.
Even if your boundary may not make sense to your friend, they must respect it. On crossing a boundary, a good friend must apologize and not banter. Them overstepping your boundary because they know what’s better for you is a problem.
Yet, working on oneself after is a characteristic of a good friend. Respecting your boundaries also demonstrates trust!
11. A good friend is kind
They can treat you with patience & respect even when the rest of the world won’t! They are gentle with you. They do not make hurtful comments. They are mindful of how they treat you.
Kind people give without expecting anything in return. Showing love comes easy to them. Even if it doesn’t, they make the effort to show you they love you. They may go out of their way to help you.
If your friend tries to make the world a better place even in this small way, they are a good friend. Kind people are a great influence, in general. Having a close friendship with a kind person is a blessing in disguise.
12. A good friend inspires you
Being associated with a good person is inspiring at the least. Having a focused & wholesome person as a best friend can look so much as dreamy!
A good friend can act as an inspiration by the way they behave, work, talk, or live! Such a friend helps you bring out the best in yourself.
In times when you’re struggling, they reassure you that times will pass & times will change! They want you to win & they lead by example!
13. A good friend is forgiving
With a good friend, grudges are out of the dictionary. They let go of vengeance against you & practice empathy, instead!
They allow you to make your share of mistakes. You do not have to live in fear of abandonment or humiliation. A good friend understands, accepts, & reassures you even when it is difficult to do so.
14. A good friend is adventurous
New things don’t scare this friend away. A good friend will be up for your spontaneity. They will add fun to the mundane with you. The dull parts of everyone else’s lives will look rather interesting in yours. Credits go to your good friend!
15. A good friend is a huggable person
Well, hugs heal. And, in the case of friendships, hugs seal the deal!
A good person can make a good friend. Not only should you look for a good friend through life but also be one!