WHAT TRUE FRIENDSHIP TRULY ENTAILS
Hey, you there! I guess you are friends with someone right? Then how would you say your friendship relationship has been with the person—or with every other person you call a friend?
Has it been that of a true and selfless one, basing its growth and development on love, trust, honesty and open-mindedness?
Or has it been a series of false and pretentious attitudes in which both of you are only interested in nothing else but yourselves?
Or has it been what the ecologist call, “Neutralism”; where neither of you benefits nor suffer from the relationship, you both are just indifferent and seem to be unaffected by it?
Or probably it has been the type where one of you “feeds” continually on the other person without necessarily considering how lanky and scrawny the other person will turn out to be later on, all you really care about is how full and robust you’ll become.
There are probably a thousand more ways your friendship relationship can be—be it good or bad, which I didn’t mention or even know about. But in all, we’re all striving for a true and lasting friendship, and most of the time we don’t really know the route to take in order to get hold of what we truly want.
Right now, the way most of us are going about friendship related issues is not really how we should be doing it. You can’t just sit around tarrying and expect your friendship relationship to blossom out of the blue; it doesn’t and can never work that way. To be frank, here, you really have to put in effort on purpose to actually get what you truly want out of your friendship relationship.
Building up true friendship is not what can be done in a moment; it actually takes series and series of painfully sacrificed time and energy to attain such height, and obviously, a lazy-bone will not be willing to do such a tasking thing—it’s too much work for them, really. Only the ardent and fervent one will want to strive to get there.
So as it is, it is one thing to make friends and another thing to keep them. Most of us are only really caught up in the thrills of making new friends, forgetting that friendships don’t build themselves up; the persons involved do.
So before a true friendship can be attained, you first have to really understand what it is all about. Knowing about it will enable you to be acquainted with what it is and what it isn’t.
If you’re sincerely up for a true friendship in your life, then you should know that; true friendship tends to always be definite and definitive and not necessarily defecting and defaulting. In other words, it can constantly solve problems effectively, worthy of emulation and imitation, free from binding itself around complexities and complications and never dwelling on or pinpointing out each other’s flaws, faults and imperfections as a human.
“The real friendship is like fluorescence, it shines better when everything has darkened”, said Rabindranath Tagore. So, to make your friendship true and real—where its light shines the most in the darkest moment—you first of all really need to get a grip of what true and lasting friendship entails, and fortunately, that’s exactly what we’ll be exploring and delving into afterwards.
Below are some of the features of a true friendship, understanding these features will broaden your horizon towards friendship and overall perception of the world at large, and if you truly want, it can help you begin to build true friendship in your life.
True friendship always bases its foundation and growth on selfless love, a heart full of honesty, undivided trust and sheer compassion. You really cannot build a true and long-lasting friendship without these things. One thing you should know also is that a panel need not be set up to decide who will be the pioneer of displaying these attributes. These things really need to come from your heart because if it’s coming from anywhere else, then it actually means you’re faking it—it’s not genuine.
There is nothing that builds true friendship other than selfless love; looking out for each other and always putting the other person’s interest before yours.
If honesty, trust and compassion are in a friendship, that relationship will so blossom because it has the required things that it needs to be blissful.
Working on each other’s strength
True friendship is about working with each other’s strengths and not necessarily deliberating on any innate weaknesses. Encouraging your friends in what they know how to do best, rather than pulling them down with a weakness you know of, will really help to boost and build confidence in them and this will make them be drawn to you at all times.
Friends are not secretive
“Friendship improves happiness and abates misery by the doubling of our joy and the dividing of our grief”—Cicero.
You have to understand that whatever you may go through—happiness or sadness—is always shared between you and your true friends because true friendship is about having each other’s backs at all times.
Friends don’t spy
“Friends don’t spy; true friendship is about privacy too”—Stephen King
Now, I know you may be thinking that since you’ve built a close relationship with a friend, then you have the right to go sneaking up in his/her personal life. Well, just so you know, everyone is entitled to his/her private life, and this includes friendship too. You cannot just go about interfering with your friend’s personal life when your attention was not needed.
The thing is; you don’t really need to bother yourself about what goes on in your friend’s life that he/she didn’t tell you about. If he/she really needed your help, then he sure will come for it. But on your part, all you have to do is respect his/her privacy, and this will help to build a stronger bond between both of you because you respect each other’s privacy.
Getting to know each other
True friendship is about getting to know each other on a more, deeper level. How well do you know your friend(s)? Now I don’t mean to say knowing in terms of likes and dislikes, favourite dishes and colour, or even mode of dressing. These things are good to know too, but what I’m referring to is getting to know your friend on a more, deeper level of connection.
Do you know what their goals and aspirations are? Do you know about their fears and insecurities? Do you know what they really want out of life? Connecting on a deeper level can be really uncomfortable and quite painful as well because it will be coming from the heart where feelings and emotions reside, and not the brain. However, it is worth the risk, because this act will help to strengthen the relationship between you and your friends.
Enduring hardship together
True friendship is about enduring hardship and problems together in strength and in faith. Helen Keller said, “Walking with a friend in the dark is better than walking alone in the light”. Bad times are not really easy to get by, but when you go through it with a true friend, your confidence rises because you know that you have someone by your side going through the problem with you.
Don’t be a friend who runs away whenever issues arise, but rather be there at all times for your friends in all they may be going through.
“True friendship can afford knowledge, it does not depend on darkness and ignorance”—Henry David Thoreau.
Build your friendship up by continually sorting out information and getting knowledge on things that can help you grow personally and with your friends too. A true friend understands that though knowledge is expensive, nothing can be more expensive than ignorance. So, to build true friendship, you really cannot afford to be ignorant, but you can afford true knowledge because it’s worth it.
Helping each other
“Friends can help each other. A true friend is someone who let you have total freedom to be yourself—and especially to feel. Or, not feel. Whatever you happen to be feeling at the moment is fine with them. That’s what real love amounts to—letting a person be what he really is”—Jim Morrison.
A true friend is always willing to give up and give in his time and attention just for the friendship to grow gracefully. Now, I know giving time can be quite difficult because it seems to be our most precious possession. Charlie Chaplin related with this when he said, “To help a friend in need is easy but to give him your time is not always opportune”. But then if you truly value and cherish your friends, then giving up time for them wouldn’t be such a difficult thing to do.
Wish each other well
A true friend wishes his friends well not for his own sake but for their sakes. Aristotle once said, “The best friend is the man who in wishing me well, wishes it for my sake”.
So in essence, strive and thrive to be a true friend and allow friendship to be your weakest point because, “if friendship is your weakest point, then you’re the strongest person in the world”—Aristotle.
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