Some people have easier time establishing and maintaining the friendships than others. And some of us long for closer friendships or try to figure out why existing or the promising relationship fizzled out. In these cases, we may jump first to judge friend’s behavior, rather than our own. Perhaps we forget that the relationships rely on the mutual interactions. It is important, them, to examine our contribution to dynamics of a friendship. It is only our own behavior that we can change, and there are certain the personal characteristics it’s essential to cultivate to build the healthy, lasting friendships.
The 13 Essential Friendship Traits
How much you agree with each the statement?
- Am I trustworthy.
- Am I honest with others.
- Am I generally very dependable.
- Am I loyal to the people I care about.
- Am I easily able to trust others.
- I experience and express empathy for others.
- Am I able to be non-judgmental.
- Am I a good listener.
- Am I supportive of others in their good times.
- Am I supportive of others in their bad times.
- Am I self-confident.
- Am I usually able to see the humor in life.
- Am I fun to be around.
These traits fall into three general categories, each representing essential aspect of the relational behavior. If you find that you disagree with many of statements, you may struggle to develop the meaningful, lasting friendships.
Below is description of how each trait influences the relationships, organized by realm of the behavioral expectations in which it falls:
Traits of Integrity
These qualities, represented by first 5 traits on the list above, are related to core values held by most cultures—trustworthiness, honesty, dependability, loyalty, and, as interrelated quality, ability to trust others.
- Trustworthiness. Any breach, regardless of perceived magnitude, can devastate the relationship. Trustworthiness is comprised of various and several components, including the honesty, the dependability, and the loyalty, and while each is important to the successful relationships, the honesty and the dependability have been identified as the most vital in realm of friendships.
- Honesty requires that we speak openly from heart and incorporate objectivity into words.
- Being dependable means that friends can count on you to be there when you say you will, to do what you say you will, and to be willing to stand up for the friends, especially when they can’t stand up for themselves. If you are as likely to let the friends down as come through for them, relationship often becomes superficial, less engaging, and even the resentment-provoking, if it doesn’t end altogether.
- Loyalty is valued early on in all of relationships, from time we make our first friendships. We need the friends who won’t spill our secrets to others, gossip about us, or allow others to criticize us.
- Being able to trust another person involves being comfortable with the vulnerability. If you have difficulty sharing authentic self with friend, it is doubtful your friend will be easily willing to do this for you.
Traits of Caring
These several qualities, represented by traits listed as numbers from 6 to 10 above, includes the empathy, the ability to the withhold judgment, the effective listening skills, and the ability to offer support in both good times and bad. These traits require the personal insight, the self-discipline, and the unconditional positive regard for our friends.
- Empathy is ability to understand what is going on with friend, to recognize how he is feeling, and to interact and respond accordingly.
- The ability to be non-judgmental reflects our ease in accepting friend’s choices, regardless of how they may differ from our own.
- Good listening skills are essential to allow communicating of intimate thoughts, the feelings, and the experiences. This sharing is gradual process of give and take that deepens over time.
- Being very much supportive of others in their bad times is the defining quality of the good friend, but being very much supportive of others in their good times is also essential. The saying goes, “Everybody loves the winner,” but for some of us, this just isn’t so. If you have trouble celebrating another’s good fortune and experience the envy or even bitterness, this may limit depth of your friendships.
Traits of Congeniality
This group, representing by final three traits listed above, includes the self-confidence, the ability to see humor in life, and being fun to be around. This trio of the traits has also been associated with overall well-being and the happiness in life.
- Self-confidence is appealing characteristic in any friend, and may even be contagious. When we are in company of the self-confident individuals, we typically feel our own confidence rise.
- People who are fun to be around are better company than the friends who walk around with dark cloud hanging over their heads. The former enjoy life, handle challenges in the proactive ways, and keep the negative experiences in perspective.
- People who have ability to see the humor in life help us deal with curve-balls life tosses at us. We all benefit from the friends who are able to keep us from taking life too seriously.
7 Friendship Myths That Aren’t True
There are lot of friendship myths that aren’t true. Some of them may come from the fear and others just come from the people’s ignorance and misinformation. You know what they say, true friends are hard to find… or …aren’t they? This quote by the William Shakespeare, who once said that: “A friend is one that knows you as you are, understands where you have been, accepts what you have become, and still, gently allows you to grow.” Following Are few myths regarding the friendships:
1.The More Friends You Have, the Better
This is one of most popular friendship myths that aren’t true. A lot of people think that if they have as many many friends as possible, they will be happier and they will be surrounded only by the people who love them and want what’s best for them. Well, in the friendships, quality is thing that matters and not quantity. If you have lot of friendships, you also need lot of time to nurture them and this can be little tricky sometimes, especially if you are very busy individual.
2.Friendships Are Forever
Despite what many people may think, the friendships are not forever. You have to nurture friendship if you want it to work, you have to put the effort into it and you have to make the sacrifices sometimes. The reality is that the friends can come and go, so try to appreciate friends you have while you have them.
3.Men and Women Can’t Be Friends
A lot of the people think that men and the women can’t be friends. Well, this can be true if they want to be friends with someone they’ve dated or if one of them has secret crush on the other. But fact is that the men and the women can have platonic friendships if they are being honest with each other and if they are emotionally secure and stable.
4.A Good Friend Will Never Let You down
Friends are the human too and people do make the mistakes, so they can let you down sometimes. The fact that they disappointed you on some of the occasions doesn’t make them bad people especially if they are sorry for what they did.
5.If You Don’t Have Any Friends, There is Something Very Wrong with You
There’s nothing wrong with you if you don’t have friends atall. It doesn’t mean that you don’t know how to socialize or how to do communicate. Everyone goes through the periods of time when they have fewer friends and this can happen due to all kinds of reasons – for example, the fact that you just moved to new town or that you’ve graduated and all of your friends have returned home.
6.Friends Will Make You Happy
The only one who can make you happy is you alone. If you accept and love yourself just way you are then you will live healthy and happy life, but if you if you are too hard on yourself and if you blame abilities for every little setback you have, then no matter how many friends you have, they won’t manage to make you feel that happy.
7.You Need a Best Friend
A lot of the people believe this myth to be true but I must tell you that they are sometimes wrong, since you don’t have to have a the best friend to be happy. You can have lot of good friends that can fulfill you emotionally and not just the one best friend.
There are lot of myths about the friendship that aren’t true.
Everyone brings different levels of the 13 traits to their relationships. However, very best friends offer generous helping of this baker’s dozen. Take an honest look at your own behaviors and see if you need to raise your own “friendship quotient” to raise likelihood of maintaining close connections you desire (source) (source)
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