Friendship is an integral part of any individual’s life. Friendship is one of the most significant values in our life. However, it has become a daunting task finding and keeping a true and reliable friend nowadays. The society we live and work in have become very competitive. Many people want to be the best and are found to take advantage of others very often. People have increasingly become selfish and care more only about themselves. Friends are expected to have some important qualities such as being sensitive, honest and trustworthy. A good friend is the type one can rely on and tell our problems to. It is therefore necessary that they should be understanding, compassionate and loyal. These are qualities that are important for friendships to uphold but unfortunate rare to find. The article evaluates the idea of having true and reliable friends that one can count on at all times. The assignment further evaluates the how difficult or easy to find and sustain such relationships.
RELIABLE AND TRUE FRIENDS
William Shakespeare stated “Words are easy, like the wind; Faithful friends are hard to find”. Finding reliable and true friends have become challenging to find and keep. The workplace and our schools can crackle with competition so people have learnt to hide their vulnerabilities and quirks from their colleagues and classmates. Work friendships often take on a transactional feel and hence, have become difficult to say where and where networking ends and real friendship begins.
When we face challenging times and major losses or disappointments, it is only natural that we want someone to be there for us. Such people are expected to just listen to us or hang out with us and remind us that life must continue. Such people must be readily available at all times even when we are experiencing happy moments. These people are termed as true friends.
A similar concept in Japan, termed as ‘Kenzoku’ which literally translates as family refers to a friendship bond between people who have similar commitments and similar destinies. It implies a kindred spirit and deep connection. Good friendship must have several qualities which include good communication. Good communication is the core of any good friendship (Graziano, 2014). In this case, both people are clear, open and genuine as they work to ensure that problems don’t get swept under the rug. Conflicts are dealt with directly.
Another quality is they take on problems along with you. A true friend looks beyond the smile and identify the pain from one’s body language or by the look in one’s eyes. They accept you as you are and will forever be there (Brendt, 2002). They are also there for each other when times are good, which is not all that easy sometimes. A quote from Oscar Wilde sums this up ‘Anybody can sympathize with the sufferings of a friend but it requires a very fine nature to sympathize with a friend’s success’.
Good friendships are based on give and take and consideration of each other (Brendt, 2002). It is expected that good friends give more often than take. They hence aim to make time for each other irrespective of the inconveniences. Real friends always put a high value on the time they spend together although their lives may be busy. They also believe in each other wholeheartedly. True friends feel each other’s passion and understand your vision for the future. They cheer you along the whole way and believe that you will get there. Furthermore, true friends accept each other unconditionally. In view of this, they give each other the freedom to be themselves as well as the freedom to change and grow. There is no need controlling each other, judgment or criticisms. Also, true friends listen carefully with no compulsion to give advice. It is clear that people usually do not need an advice but rather a listening ear, someone they can vent to. Subsequently, a good friend must be able to identify when a good advice is welcoming, so that one can be given (Noller and Feeney, 2006).
Finding and maintaining true friends can be very challenging as we get older. It is common to find out that making a good friend becomes harder and harder. It turns out that there is a reason for this. According to Development psychologists, the typical sequence of a person’s emotional development changes from one stage or age to the other. In early childhood, friendship involves sharing of toys and the joy to be had from doing activities together. The expectations for a best friend become more complex as the child grows up. During a study in 1975, three stages of development in the expectations of friendship were developed. In stage one, children emphasized shared activities and the importance of geographical closeness. In stage two, they emphasized sharing, loyalty and commitment. The last stage showed increasing desired similar attitudes, values and interests. These clearly show that as individuals develop and grow, there more our expectations for a friendship.
As external change, it becomes tougher to meet the three conditions that development psychologists considered important to making close friends. These conditions included in making close friends were proximity, repeated, unplanned interactions and a setting that encourages people to let their guard down and confide in each other. This contributes to why many people meet their lifelong friends in college. As people get older, many people find it important to become closer to a few friends they have. Also, some people actually have an easier time making friends as they get older. They feel more comfortable with themselves as they grow older and hence make connections with others easier.
Making best friends require the need to identify real friends (Noller and Feeney, 2006). Real friends must possess unique qualities that make them available through good and bad times. They should always be honest with you. Also, one must learn the behavior of the wind. A friend who has neither destination nor direction as well as not reliable must be avoided since they do not have the qualities of a good friendship.
At London School of Management Education (LSME), we encourage our cherished students to make and choose friends who will impact positively in their personal and professional development. We believe the choice of friends play an integral part of your growth in the realization of your educational and professional growth. If you have challenges in the selection of friends we urge you to speak to your lecturer / assessors to give you guidance.
We strongly believe that having bad friends will usually not be in your best interest because they show up at good times and disappear at the sign of trouble. It is imperative that as an individual who aims to have a good friendship, you must also exhibit similar characteristics and become reliable for others. This helps develop a feeling of trust and reliability to the friend.
In summing up, one must learn to select the best of friends who will add value to their lives and they in turn must also endeavour to support their friends as well. Friendship must be a win-win affair so that one good turns deserves another. As the adage goes, “Show me your friend and I will tell you who you are”. Be wise in the choice of friends you make.
Have a blessed week and hope you share this article with your friends!
- Graziano, R (2014). A True friend is hard to find. Accessed from https://www.huffingtonpost.com/renee-graziano/a-true-friend-is-hard-to-find_b_5030506.html Date accessed 2nd September, 2018
- Berndt T J (2002). Friendship Quality and Social Development. Curr Dis Psychol Sci 2002; 11: 7-10.
- Noller P, and Feeney, J. A (2006). Close Relationships. Functions, Forms and Processes. New York: Psychology Press 2006.