The 101 On Friendships

How many times have we heard from others not to trust everyone we meet, regardless of how much we want to? How about the countless times our parents have told us to be careful when we meet new people? A lot, I know. But what about real friends, like the BFF you’ve had since Kindergarten or the person you started within freshman year and are now incredibly inseparable? What about that person you met a few days ago? 

By far, I’ve confirmed that quality over quantity is a must, but that doesn’t mean that having many friends is a bad thing. Although we inevitably realize and review, at some point, that good relationships are the ones where respect and consideration are mutual.

Here, I share with you lovely people three quick values (or virtues) I practice—since Day 1, without even knowing it—with my closest friends, not because I don’t want to do it with the ones who are least close to me, but because it is an everyday process that takes time. Eventually, the least close ones could become great friends and essential people to you.

  1. 1. Respect

    Everyone’s different, and our friends are no exception. There are different beliefs, perceptions, and objectives over countless arguments. While sharing with friends, one can disagree on some points; that’s why it’s important to accept those differences as part of the diversity which surrounds us. As long as no one gets hurt, you can take advantage of those differences and learn from each other. It takes time, but it’s worth it.

  2. 2. Empathy

    Oh, how hard it is to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes! To our surprise, empathy is more than just that; it’s about associating with your friend’s situation, even when you maybe have never lived something similar or you don’t understand at all the decisions involved. No matter if it’s good or bad, that person chose to tell you their story because they trust you. The best way to manage it is by listening to, encourage, support and give advice to them depending on the situation.

     Also, empathy involves having patience with others. We all have better days or not-so-good ones, and that’s a sign of empathy. It’s satisfying to feel understood, and even more so if it comes from a friend because they will wait for you patiently, until whenever they want to talk. I am lucky that I have best friends like that. No matter how many weeks pass by without seeing each other, when we reunite, it’s like if I saw them just yesterday. Why? Because our empathy works like that. We understand that before being friends, we’re humans.

  3. 3. Honesty

    As the old saying goes, “Better one ugly truth than 100 pretty lies.” Being honest within your friendship means that you can trust each other, something we desperately look for when we don't know what to do, and even more during these hard times we’re living through. We need someone to listen to us and give us advice based on the facts, and not on what we want to hear. Keeping the truth in friendships is priceless!

Whichever values or virtues do you consider indispensable in friendships, or which one have you developed over time and don’t want to lose? Think about this and try to apply what you’ve learned to your friendship circles. Good luck, and stay safe!