What makes someone a friend

What makes a good friend

Last update: 05 June, 2017

Have you ever taken the time to think about how many friends you have? And are these friendships also of good quality? In other words, do we have real friends or just acquaintances or “people we like”?

The truth is, we trample the word “friend” a lot. Most of us like to hang out with people who are easy to have fun with. But that doesn't necessarily mean that these people are our true friends.

Friendship means more than just having a good time together. Because in truth there are only a few people who really care how you are doing. And even fewer people will be by your side when you go through tough times.

To better understand what the word friendship really means, we're going to list the 5 virtues of being a true friend. With this knowledge, we can better recognize who actually belongs to our true friends. And then we can concentrate more on investing in these friendships on a daily basis.

What are the 5 virtues of being a good friend?

These skills can help you identify true friends:

  1. They listen to you without judging you

We have a tendency within ourselves to turn to those people who share our opinions. Sometimes we do that very vehemently. We've all probably fallen into this trap at some point and turned to someone in this way out of sheer selfishness.

Uncontrolled selfishness leads us to cover our surroundings with negative judgments. These judgments do not lead us to seek the real well-being of our friend, relative, or partner. This type of negative judgment is mostly aimed at the exact opposite of what you actually hope to find in a true and complete friendship.

When we need someone to listen, we usually turn to a family member, our partner, and our friends. The ability to listen is a very special gift. When you talk to a friend, you don't use expressions like "You must".

The behavior of authentic friends always shimmers with help and support that does not expect anything in return. Listening means understanding the meaning of the message that was being conveyed and its context.

Empathy can be described as the ability to feel what another person feels, even though you have not been through the same situation yourself. In this case, that's our best friend. When we talk about our personal relationships then empathy enables someone to feel connected to the pain or suffering of another person and to take care of them. You meet a true friend with empathy in every moment. He puts his own self behind and listens to you attentively and with affection.

  1. You don't focus that much on disagreement

It is not always easy to receive constructive criticism yourself or just to have an opinion that is different from ours. Sometimes we even feel attacked by it. It is also true that every now and then you have to have serious discussions with your friends.

A discussion is an exchange of arguments put forward by both parties until a solution is found in a positive way. So when you look at the true meaning of such situations, you will understand that a joint discussion does not immediately mean that you argue. In fact, such discussions are healthy and sometimes necessary for our relationships with others. When we experience such a situation with a true friend, the moment comes when we decide whether we can measure this friendship for the importance it deserves or not. True friends will always keep in mind what it means to discuss. They won't bother with trivialities and will continue to count on you - and so will it be on your part.

  1. They care about you

You have probably considered the following question at some point: Do my friends only contact me if they hope to get something from me? If this question plays a role in any of your relationships, then a kind of hypocrisy will quickly creep into your relationship with that person.

We know that this hypocrisy means more or less often feigning opinions, beliefs, virtues, feelings, personal characteristics or standards that one does not actually have. Such a "bogus friend" invents other qualities or feelings that go against his actual experiences and feelings. Having such relationships in our life can bring suffering and emotional stress at the end of the day.

Fortunately for us, there are still friends who really remember those moments that are dear to us. Such friends do this out of pure, unconditional love. They remember your problems and worry about them as the day progresses. Such people let you know that they are there for you and that they don't expect anything in return.

  1. They make virtues out of your imperfections

Surely you would sign the statement that no one is perfect. There are certainly many people around you who do not like some of your personal traits. And these people are apparently on a personal mission that consists of just rubbing these traits under your nose. But those personal shortcomings and mistakes are what make you unique.

But then there are these people by your side who don't care about any of this. They encourage you and remind you of your good points. These are your real friends.

  1. They are always with you

As we mentioned earlier the difference between the two of you and all the heated discussions you may have had in the past is not what matters. Neither do the time or the distance count in a friendship. Regardless of such factors, an atmosphere of affection can still be cultivated. True friends will always be by your side.

And you can be sure that you can always count on them even in difficult times. They offer you their unconditional support. And most importantly: You have the desire to take part in your precious life as an authentic companion.