WHAT MAKES A GREAT FRIEND?

How do you create lasting friendships? Do all friendships last forever? If they don't then we need to find ways to invest in old and new friends.

WHAT MAKES A GREAT FRIEND?

I'm sure we've all had "that friend" who turned out to be not quite as great as we'd hoped they would be, and we ask ourselves what went wrong? To have a good friend let you down, or betray your trust, or just not be there when you expected them to be, is one of life's biggest disappointments. When we invest time and emotion into creating a friendship, only to have it go pear shaped, it kills us a little bit inside.

So how do we know if a friendship is going to work out or not? I think we all expect our friends to behave as we would (or perhaps behave even better than we would) in any given situation and it is so disappointing when they don't. We can let that colour our thinking about friendships in general, or we can choose to put it aside and move on with the the optimistic idea that there are still really good people out there who we can share our time and lives with.

BE A GREAT FRIEND TO FIND A GREAT FRIEND

I don't think we can expect to maintain strong friendships if we don't bring our best efforts to the table. Nobody wants to be the friend who is always chasing the other person up. We don't want to be the one who waits to be contacted or who feels let down when they haven't been made a priority. Friendship is a two way street - the more we seek like minded people and then invest our time in getting to know them better, the more likely we are to create a friendship that stands the test of time.

I think it's important to know what you value in life and to look for other people who have the same underlying traits. If you're a quieter person, then a party friend may seem exciting, but the novelty will wear off fairly quickly (nobody wants to be the dull, boring friend who won't join in all the fun activities). If you're active, look for others who enjoy being active too, if you like coffee and conversation, seek out others who are happy to sit and chat for hours. The worst thing you can do is put your expectations on somebody else and then be disappointed when they don't measure up to what you'd hoped for - that's just setting the friendship up to fail.

Surround yourself with the dreamers and the doers, the believers and thinkers, but most of all, surround yourself with those who see the greatness within you, even when you don’t see it yourself. Edmund Lee

FOCUS ON TRUE FRIENDSHIPS

There's a saying that goes 
Make new friends but keep the old
One is silver, the other - gold.
Friends who have been with us for years, who have weathered storms and grown stronger are beyond value.  One of the blessings of growing older is having friendships that go back 20, 30 or even 40 years - what an investment that is! But they don't come without cost - we have to put into the friendship more than we expect to receive back. We need to be there when we're needed, to be available and engaged - not to let too much time go past between conversations - they may not be face-to-face, but they still matter if we want to keep the connection alive and strong. How are you going with keeping in touch with your friends?

LOOK FOR NEW CONNECTIONS

No matter how hard we try, friends sometimes slowly drift away - it might be through physical distance, changes in life, growing in new directions, hurt or upset.... but for whatever reason they didn't stand the test of time. We can't guarantee that all our friendships will be long term - some are for a season, and some may even be to teach us a lesson. We may lose friends, but we also find new ones if we're open, interested, and willing to engage with others.

three types of friends in life. Friends for a reason, friends for a season and friends for life.

Never stop looking for new friends. Who knows what lovely person may be just around the corner waiting to begin a friendship with you that will enrich your life over the years to come. Also, don't assume that friendships only happen locally - because they happen virtually too. Blogging has brought many friendships into my life - some even deeper and more meaningful that those I've known face to face for years. Opening your heart in a blog is a different connection - it makes it feel more immediate and we certainly allow ourselves to be more vulnerable. I have friends all over the world who have connected with me online - it's a wonderful gift that has brought me boundless joy over the last few years.

HOW ARE YOUR FRIENDSHIPS GOING?

Are you finding that friends come and go? Have you invested enough of yourself into your friendships to keep them alive and thriving? Are there new ways you're meeting people that you would never have thought of in days gone by? I truly hope you'll find friendship here and that our connection will grow as time goes on. 


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Cresting the Hill - a blog for Midlife (Middle Aged / 50+) women who want to thrive

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