How to Create Close Friendships in Your Life, Part 2
More tips for working towards close friendships with others
By Vic LeBouthillier
“You need to be generous and prioritize your time in order to maintain close friendships.”
In our previous blog, we began discussing ways to create close friendships, based upon the list of behaviors associated with close friendships. Here is a continuation of that list!
- You can accept each other’s shortcomings without judgement.
- TIPS TO SUCCEED: Start by sharing some small mistakes and see how they respond. If they respond with mercy and kindness, move to more serious ones. Also notice how you respond to their screw-ups.
- You read each other’s emotional states and offer empathy, compassion, and support.
- TIPS TO SUCCEED: 93% of communication is comprised of tone and nonverbal cues. The information provided by this body language is essential to communicating with others. Learn to pay attention and ask questions like, “When you sighed just now, is that because you’re tired or frustrated or is something else wrong?”
- When you identify a blind spot that is hurting your friend, you have the courage to gently help them gain awareness and change their behavior.
- TIPS TO SUCCEED: Developing courage is like developing a muscle. You need to start slow and work your way up.
- You embrace humility and ask for forgiveness when your actions are hurtful.
- TIPS TO SUCCEED: When you’re in the wrong, instead of trying to justify your actions and seeking to be understood, just apologize. Use phrases like, “I’m sorry”, “Please forgive me”, “I don’t want to hurt you”, or “This relationship is important to me” to help mend the situation.
- You forgive when an apology is offered.
- TIPS TO SUCCEED: You get to choose which is more important to you: being right or your relationship. If being right is more important, then be prepared for loneliness.
- You never lose sight of one another’s potential and you express it through validating statements that build each other up.
- TIPS TO SUCCEED: Tell your friend what you appreciate about them and what they are good at. Be honest, but encouraging. After a while, you can ask them to tell you what you are good at as well (if they don’t already do it automatically).
- You accept the fact that you will get hurt by the other person and are ready to repair any fractures that may occur.
- TIPS TO SUCCEED: Nobody is perfect, so be ready to be offended. This is normal in any relationship. Have an agreement with your friend about what you will do when either of you is offended.
- You make your friendship a priority and schedule time for it accordingly.
- TIPS TO SUCCEED: Start with setting aside some time for each other every week. You need to be generous and prioritize your time in order to maintain close friendships.
In our next blog, we’ll show you how two people learned to build and benefit from building close relationships in their lives. Stay tuned!