by Catherine Pratt
What are the signs of a good friend and why is it important to know?
Good friends are amazing. They'll be there for you no matter what, they believe in you and bring out the best in you. So, it should be easy to tell if someone is being a good friend or not, shouldn't it?
As with any relationship, when issues start to emerge, sometimes it can be confusing as to whether the problem is with you or with the other person. Are you being a good friend to them? Are they being a good friend to you?
Walter Anderson in his book, The Confidence Course: Seven Steps to Self-Fulfillment provides the following signs of a good friend list.
When you read this list, not only think about your current friends, ask yourself if you're being a good friend to them:
"Are You My Friend?
1. You give me time
2. You listen to me - and you listen without making me feel judged
3. You're quick to remind me that I have strengths
4. You help me heal when I'm hurting
5. You tell me the truth when it will help me; you don't tell me the truth when it won't help me
6. You show me by your demeanor, tone, and smile that it's important to you that I feel secure, comfortable, at ease
7. You show me that you're sorry when you hurt my feelings; you allow me to show you that I'm sorry when I hurt your feelings
8. You don't abuse me. EVER. You make sure that I know you seek to protect me.
9. You make small surprises for me
10. You find words that support the best that is in me
11. You let me cry when I need to
12. You encourage me to tell the truth to you and to admit when I'm afraid
Yes, you are my friend. And, I need you."
How many of your friends would pass if you applied the above list to them? Did you pass? The people who can pass this list are truly special.
By using the above list, it'll make it easier to know if you're dealing with someone who truly does meet the criteria of a good friend or whether they're more of an "acquaintance". It'll also help you to know how much to trust them.
With the truly good friends in your life, it's easy to sometimes take them for granted. You know they'll be there for you and you don't have to worry about working so hard at maintaining the friendship. The danger can be in that you spend more time on those friends that do require work and you end up forgetting about those special friends until it's too late and they're gone.
If you have a friend that meets this criteria, take the time today to let them know how much you appreciate them and all that they do for you. They are what make life truly magical. Don't wait another day to tell them how grateful you are for having them in your life.
If you'd like to read the rest of Walter Anderson's book, here are the details.
This book contains a lot of good information. It's not just about friendships. It's all about how to develop confidence. Having good friends is just one small part of developing self esteem.
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