What It Takes to Make a Friendship Work



Over the years, I’ve seen that good friends are truly hard to come by. Plain and simple—the good ones, well, they just stick. They stick around, and for a very long time. And they or you might get super busy and consumed with other aspects of your life, such as goals, relationships, work, and whatnot, but when you have a good friend, they won’t disappear for long. Balance in life is crucial if you want to be happy and feel good about yourself. So there’s nothing wrong with spreading out your love, time, and doing many of the things in life that are important for you so you feel fulfilled. But when you have a good friend, they will make time for you and make sure to do whatever they can to be there for you in good times and bad times.

Which brings me to why I decided to write this article. Some friends are not real friends and they’re only your friends when they want or need something from you. Some friends only have their best interest at heart, only want you around or in their life when it benefits them in some way or perhaps when it’s most convenient for them. Some friends will also come into your life and then leave your life without even knowing why, what happened, or what went wrong. This is just part of life and something we all have to accept at times. Having said that, I wanted to go into some detail about what makes a good friendship worthwhile.

I’ve had friends from all over the world. And I’m pretty sure that it’s mostly because I’ve lived in so many different places growing up. One thing that I’ve learned in the process in regards to friendships, is that they take effort and the desire to make them work. Now, that desire must be mutual between both people, same goes for the effort. One-sided relationships of any sort will never work. Having said that, when it comes to starting out new friendships, it’s imperative that you care for them just like you would when you date someone new. There’s a honeymoon phase for romantic relationships that if things are done right, those relationships will allow the honeymoon phase to last for a lifetime. Well, the same happens for solid gold friendships. In a nutshell, a good friendship involves some foundation pillars like trust, being trustworthy, honest, kind, being selfless, and having great communication.

When it comes to starting new friendships, it’s important to make sure that you’re investing in a friendship where there are good intentions, where there’s mutual respect, understanding, and an awesome comfort level where conversation flows, and you both have enough in common, but your differences are genuine, and mutually accepted. You don’t even have to be in the same place in life. One person might be single, or one person could be in a relationship or married with kids.

Certain differences as such shouldn’t make or break a friendship. What’s important, however, is that both people appreciate and understand their differences and that despite being in different places in life or wanting different things, they both want to be in each other’s lives. It’s always easier to be friends with someone who you have a lot in common with. But whether you have different lifestyles including what you both do for a living, having or wanting kids or not, or even having different religions, cultures, and beliefs, friendship can easily work and be fabulous if two people respect or even admire and are interested in the other person’s.

What matters most in a friendship, is something that you feel, kind of like the more recent overly-used word, vibe. It’s all about the vibe you get when you’re with someone. The feeling you get when you talk and spend time together. Do they make you feel happy and good about yourself? Do they inspire you to be the best you can be and do they have your best interest at heart? It’s important to be friends with people who lift you up, who give you good advice or at least listen with a loving heart and an open mind. It’s good to be friends with good, decent people who are at the very least, somewhat enlightened. As well, it’s important to have each other’s back whenever possible and to put enough effort into your friendship that you are doing your share of things to make it work.

Last but not least, good friends are hard to come by. That’s why you don’t need a lot of them. Being social and knowing a lot of people is great, and if you can handle having many incredible friendships, well, that’s completely awesome. However, many people are very active and have busy lives, needing to put their focus and attention on many different things. Therefore, to invest in many friendships isn’t always something that’s in their best interest.

I personally think it’s great to have as many good friends as you can handle. That means if you can be a great friend to one, two, or even three people, that’s great! You don’t need a lot of great friends. One or two great friends is plenty if you ask me. Many acquaintances perhaps, and it’s definitely good to know a lot of people and to be friendly to all. Although, when it comes to having good friends that last, it’s most important to have quality friendships with good people. Which is why you should invest in the types of friends who you know in your heart will not only stick around, but who will lift you up in life, bring out your best side, and be a good friend right back.

Anne Cohen
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