A true friend gives support without judgment, comes through in a crisis, and knows just the right thing to say when it matters most. Friendships are a special kind of bond.
In life, we meet many different types of people. We form various relationships. But friends — true friends — are different. We are sometimes closer to our friends than our family. We can trust our friends. We know we can count on them to be there for us when we need something.
But the actual value of friendship comes from something more profound, even spiritual. The best kind of friendship is when people don’t just give and take from one another but also support each other by sharing their gifts, talents, and skills.
Of course, the best way to make good friends is to become a good friend yourself. And a good friend makes other friends feel appreciated.
How can you make your friends feel your appreciation for them?
These tips can help:
1. Express your appreciation with your words. Your friends can tell that you care. But there’s something special about hearing words of appreciation from your mouth.
- Send a text message. “I love you” or “You are such a good friend” are simple but meaningful ways to tell your friends that you appreciate them. What your words do is reassure your friend that you care and that you are there for them.
2. Become the type of person your friends can count on. Humans are not perfect, meaning your friends will experience challenges. When they face such challenges, they need your help. They need you to be there for them.
- Your friends can tell the difference between people who say “I’ll help” but don’t follow through and people who come through when it matters most.
3. Freely communicate with your friends. Learn to express your appreciation for them in a simple but meaningful way. You can do this by freely sharing your thoughts and feelings. In all kinds of relationships, good communication is vital.
- Learn how to put your emotions into words, even if it means being vulnerable enough to talk about a problem or an issue that is challenging to talk about with others. Find out how they’re doing, take a personal interest in them, and make yourself available for sharing.
4. Spend time cultivating the friendship. Many friendships don’t last because people take each other for granted. You can avoid this mistake by setting aside time to nurture the friendship, as in a weekly dinner date or phone call.
- Do things you enjoy doing together, such as going to a concert or spending an afternoon at the beach. Solve problems together, ask questions, show your interest, and give the time and attention to cultivate this special relationship.
- The most important gift you can give a friend is your time.
5. Be a good listener. No one likes to talk about the “bad times,” but listening and empathizing when others share their feelings with you is crucial.
- As a good friend, it’s important to try to understand and be there for them emotionally and physically, whatever may be going on in their lives or the problematic issues they face. Listening is not only an essential part of friendship, but it’s also a sign of love from one person to another.
Friends are more than just people with whom you share a common interest or activity. When you cultivate a genuine friendship with someone, you start to share a special relationship with them.
Your friends are not just fellow human beings. They have significant value to you. They are the special ones in this world.
By cultivating your friendships, you can help your friend feel appreciated and welcomed — the value of which far outweighs every other benefit that their company can bring in life.