“The language of friendship is not words but meanings.” ~ Henry David Thoreau
In today’s busy world, supporting and feeding a healthy friendship is not always as easy as it sounds, but it is important that you take the time to make friends, to keep friends, and to be a good friend. As the Beatles song goes, we all get by with a little help from our friends, and that could not be truer! We all need help sometimes and other times, we are needed to help others. Knowing how to be a good friend is the best way to keep a good friend!
Here are some ways you can give and receive the gift of true friendship and nurture your higher self:
Make the time.
We are all busy and have a gazillion things on our ‘to do’ plate. It’s not quantity of friends, but quality that defines true friendship, so instead of having two seconds for thirty “casual” friends, why not invest real time with a select group of close friends who are willing to carve out the time for you too? Plan activities in advance and when you really don’t have the time, consider sending a quick email or text to let your friend know you are thinking of them. You will find when you are on the receiving end of this gesture, it can go a long way in brightening your stressful day!
Don’t keep score.
True friendship is a two-way street. Don’t be a taker and only call your friend for favors – that kind of behavior will lead to an abusive relationship. Be a giver and do favors for your friends before they even think to ask. Giving truly does feel so much better than receiving. Your soul and higher self will thank you for it.
Be present, honest and real.
When you are with your friend, be in the moment. Don’t check your iPhone or blackberry every five minutes over dinner, don’t fall into the habit of not listening (you know that reply of “uh huh” that comes out automatically when you aren’t paying attention….), and don’t hide your feelings from your friend. One of the benefits of true friendship is being able to share feelings and validate each other’s feelings. Open your heart chakra and your higher self and let those feelings in!
Don’t let your ego control you.
The ego is very powerful. Make sure you are grounded (daily meditation and journaling can help you) and try to keep your chakras balanced. Take care of yourself emotionally, physically and spiritually, and you will be better able to help others take care of themselves as well. Don’t let all your own issues get in the way of true friendship.
Support your friend, even if you don’t support their situation.
This is one of the most valuable and useful tips I can offer you. There are several instances when you may disagree with choices your friend has made, relationships in their life, or situations they are in. Supporting your friend does not mean you need to back up their choice or be in agreement with every situation they are in – but it does mean you can still give and receive true friendship. You can still love and appreciate your friend and offer support in the form of “I don’t love the situation you are in, but I still love you and am here for you.” Forcing your friend to choose when they may already be in a compromised or difficult situation will not help your friend or your friendship with this friend. And try to avoid saying “I told you so” after the fact…
Don’t ditch out when the going gets rough.
Everyone has rough patches and tough times in their lives. Maybe you haven’t had a really bad year yet, but you cannot plan when things will go south. Having a true friend by your side can make all the difference in the world as to how you emerge on the other end of your ordeal. So why not be that friend as well? Help your friend conquer their demons and trials and let them know they are not alone.
Accept the whole person.
No one is perfect – not even you! Listen to your higher self and get rid of those unrealistic expectations you have of perfection. Realize that your friend is going to have some flaws. Accept your friend for who they are –the good and the bad – and allow them to see your whole you – the good and the bad. Only then can you have the real truth of who you each are, and be able to experience, appreciate and love true friendship openly and honestly.