There is no way around the fact that a true and genuine friendship is a two-way street that does require a bit of effort and awareness if you want to keep a good relationship alive.
Making new friends is good, but once you’ve made a new friend will you have to treat the relationship properly, or you won’t have that friend for long. Like all significant relationships in out lives, new friendships require a combination of time, effort, and attention. Although many people seem to know the basics of being a good friend, not everyone is aware of the things you should not do in a friendship that can cause lasting damage. Friendships are similar to many good things in life in that what you will get out of it is usually equal to the quality of the effort and energy you put into it.
In order to help you to better maintain your friendships and create lasting bonds, here is a look at a few of the things good friends should never do:
Don’t Be Jealous -
You should be genuinely glad for your friend’s good qualities and achievements. A little bit of humorous or friendly envy is acceptable, but outright jealousy, and mean-spirited jealous behaviors and comments will not earn you many points. The same goes for going overboard with your own self-congratulatory moments or bragging over your own accomplishments. You don’t want to send the message that your friend’s life and accomplishments are not nearly as important as yours are.
Don’t Be Unreliable –
Dependability is a very important part of friendship, and you won’t have that new friend for long if you aren’t a reliable person who stands by their word and can be counted on when needed. Don’t show up late, and by all means don’t fail to do those things for your friend that you said you would do. Your friend will feel they aren’t worth your time if you cannot be reliable.
Don’t Be a Complainer -
Good friends listen carefully to each other’s concerns, and share sympathies when things go wrong in life. But if you monopolize every conversation with your own concerns and complaints in life, and get so caught up in your own issues that you forget your friend has a life too, your friend may suddenly start avoiding you and making themselves unavailable. Put your own issues aside every now and then and don’t forget to ask about how your friend is getting along in life.
Don’t Be a Hypocrite -
One of the fastest ways to terminate a friendship is to betray the trust your friend has in you and share their innermost feelings and concerns with the rest of the world as a convenient gossip topic. When your friend confides in you, they expect you to honor your friendship and keep their confidences to yourself unless instructed to do otherwise. Very little good ever comes out of talking about your friend when they are not present.
Don’t Keep Score –
Finances and personal favors are a two-way street in a true friendship. Both friends should be able to count on each other for small personal favors and even small personal loans if needed. But big favors and big loans can lead to trouble when things are not reciprocal and can cause a friend to start keeping a “tab” of the score of who owes who more. Keeping a running tab for every single thing you’ve done for your friend, or every time you picked up the bill for lunch can go beyond annoying, and can terminate a friendship permanently.