‘Boys come and go but good friends always remain till the end’.
That trendy relationship advice women often tell each other, you know the whole ‘hoes before bros’ thing, unfortunately for most women, we don’t even follow this advice. But it won’t change the truth in the saying, that no matter how the relationship turns, your friends will always be there to help you get back up,… at least that’s what Hollywood/Nollywood shows us about true friendships.
When you see movies like Girls Trip, Blood Sisters, and Smart Money Woman, you can’t help but feel jealous, wishing you had a ride-and-die tribe of powerful, strong, supportive sisters/ besties who stick closer than family.
Most women wish or even pray for that kind of friendship but unfortunately, reality hits and you realize that in the real world it’s the opposite that happens.
In reality, we have seen how friends hurt, stab, pull down, and sometimes kill each other for the most mundane things ever. With all the scary friendship stories you see on social media, one has to ask – are there any real friends in this world? Not all friendships are harmful, toxic, or mentally draining, there are actually great long-lasting friendships like the ones you see in movies. It’s not that only a select people can have it nor does it mean you can’t have it as well but in order for us to have such a beautiful reality, one truly and deeply needs to first search within, one needs to ask this question of one’s self – am I a real friend?
Humans are naturally selfish; we always want things to go our way all the time. While not entirely evil; when it comes to friendship dynamics, we need to remove the feeling of wanting friendships to actually being a good friend.
So what does being a good friend look like?
- The first step in being a real friend is true self-evaluation of your relationships.
This is especially in friendship circles that focus on the other person’s lapses. Instead, find out your weakness, your flaws, and possibly things you might have done wrong that has hurt other people. Life isn’t about pointing fingers at others but in realising the other four point right back at you. Once we are able to realize our own mistakes and toxicity then, would we be able to attract the right friends in our lives.
- The next thing is cultivating habits that help you be a real friend.
Who are you when no one is watching? How do you treat people if you don’t get your way? What do people say about you? All these questions and more help us reflect on the habits, routines, and daily practices that affect who we are and those around us. When we take steps to be better people with the mindset of prioritizing our peace, well-being, and self-respect, it goes a long way in treating other people and ourselves better. As new habits are formed, what you should do is identify and classify who friends, colleagues, and acquaintances are. As you go deeper, it will become clearer who needs to be in which slot.
When you accept and create these boundaries, you are able to know who is who in your life and act accordingly. It is worth noting that sometimes it is from the same circles that we actually get to make some of our friends for life, classifying them makes this process a whole lot easier.
- The next step is pruning, what this means, is cutting off toxic people from your life.
At this point, you would already know who are the good ones and those who are not. Doing this makes you choose your peace and happiness first. You want healthy, supportive, and lasting relationships, so cutting off anyone and everyone who exudes negative energy or doesn’t meet your desired standard in friendships is a must.
- The final and hardest step is maintaining good old friendships by making amends.
Intentionality comes into play here – check up on those friends you have not seen or spoken to in a while, organize lunch or picnics, apologize if you are at fault, be supportive, be happy when your friends are winning and leave no room for envy, hate, and jealousy.
Making Friends never gets old, leave your comfort zone and go to places where you are likely to meet new people, strike up conversations or even compliment someone, you may never know who would turn out to be your BFF.
Having great supportive friends is like joy to the soul, what would make this joy last longer is if you are also a great friend, friendship is a two-way street, most times it’s not always about them not being there for you, but also if we have played our role in being that good friend we wish to have.
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