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What Makes a Good Friend?

by Frederick Akinola
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We may have a lot of friends, but how many of them are actual friends? The beauty of such comradeship is that you get to choose your them, unlike with family. You don’t just accept anyone. That being said, what do you look for when trying to decide? How can you, yourself, be someone other people want to hang with? What does it take to forge a lasting friendship?

Show That You Really Care

True friendship involves commitment. In other words, a good friend feels a responsibility toward you, and such a person genuinely cares about you. Of course, such commitment is two-way, and it requires hard work and sacrifice on both sides. You need to take initiative and make the extra effort to show love to each other. Do not be too busy for them. And whenever the opportunity presents itself, make sacrifices. As much as possible, maintaining a great friendship is the willingness to stick your neck out on behalf of each other.

Be a Good Communicator

A true friendship cannot flourish without regular communication. So talk together about the interests you share. Listen to what your friend has to say, and respect his opinions. Whenever possible, commend and encourage him.

Have Realistic Expectations

The closer we get to a friend, the more likely we are to see his flaws. Our friends are not perfect, but neither are we. Therefore, we should never expect or demand perfection from the people we befriend. Rather, it is good to cherish their virtues and to make allowances for their mistakes.

Be Loyal

If your friend tells you something in confidence, keep it and don’t talk about it with anyone else, just as you’d expect your friend to do for you. Don’t discuss your friend behind their back, and don’t spread rumours about the confidences they’ve imparted to you.

Widen Your Circle of Friends

True, we need to be selective about the people we befriend. But that does not mean narrowing our choice of friends to those of a certain age or upbringing. Taking an interest in people of all ages, cultural backgrounds, and nationalities can truly enrich our lives.

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