Thinking About Parenting

10 Ways To Become The Best, Best Friend



10 Ways To Become The Best, Best Friend


Everyone needs a friend. That special someone that gets you. Someone you are equally ready to call whether the news you have to share is really good or really bad. A person that feels your pain when you have no words to express it.

That person who readily comes to mind when you hear a song like, "You've Got A Friend", "That's What Friends Are For", or even, "I've Got Friends In Low Places".

Friends are important. They impact our happiness, self-esteem, sense of belonging, and our overall mental health. It has been shown that good friends, just like good pets, help us live longer. Spending time with quality friends boosts our moods and our egos. They really give a jump start to our outlook on life.

What is a quality friend? Today, when you can add a "friend" with the click of a button, it's important to define that. You can have hundreds of online "friends" and thousands of "likes" but that's not the same as having that close buddy you can spend time with in person.

Cyber friends can't visit you in the hospital, look you in the eye and tell you you're wrong, high-five you when it's a celebration, or give you a hug when your world is being swept away.

"A friend is someone who knows all about you and still loves you." 

-Elbert Hubbard

Good friends are invaluable. To gain one is precious, and to keep one is priceless. Good friendships can defy logic and outside scrutiny. It's about how you make each other feel and not what it looks like on paper.

Before we look at some ways to be a good friend, let's examine what a bad friend looks like. It's particularly important to know the difference so you're able to cultivate the good and weed out the bad.

You know it's a bad friendship when:

  • The conversations are always one-sided. Their side.
  • You feel mentally drained whenever you talk to them.
  • They talk about you behind your back.
  • You rely too much on each other. Codependency.
  • They always choose time with others over you.
  • You get an "I told you so", instead of support.
  • When differences occur, you are always wrong.

"An insincere and evil friend is more to be feared than a wild beast; a wild beast may wound your body, but an evil friend will wound your mind." 


Friendship is to be desired. Good friends provide a boost to your mental and physical well-being. It is important to keep good friends because "You can never make new "old" friends." 

Friendship is like any relationship. It takes work and devotion. It takes two and that means if you want to have a "best" friend, then you are going to have to be a "best" friend. Let's take a look at what that looks like.

10 Ways To Become The Best, Best Friend

1. Be yourself - you can't find the right connection in any relationship if you aren't being your true self no matter how badly you want the friendship to work.

2. Tell the truth - real friends care enough to say the tough things that need to be heard because they put the long-term well-being of the friend before the moment's discomfort. Be willing to set boundaries so you both are on the same page.

"I don't need a friend who changes when I change and who nods when I nod; my shadow does that much better." 


3. Communicate - stay connected. You don't want to smother but you don't want to desert either. Reach out. Don't lose touch. Keep the channels open even with a quick check-in if that's the time your schedule allows.

4. Show up - be there for the important stuff. The tragedies and the celebrations. You can't hang around only when the sun is shining. A real friend makes the time when there's a need even when there's someplace else they'd much rather be. Make them a priority in your life.

5. Let them be them - yes, you need to be honest and let them know when you think they're in the wrong, but you let them be themselves, judgment-free. Be open-minded to their dreams and ideas. LISTEN, sometimes an opinion is the last thing needed. Give love.

"A true friend never gets in your way unless you happen to be going down." 

-Arnold H. Glasow

6. Be loyal - keep their secrets. Stick up for them when they are not around to defend themselves. When someone shares a rumor about your friend with you, let it die with you. Do not pass it on. Have their back. 

7. Be a cheerleader - celebrate the wins, birthdays, anniversaries, and promotions. Encourage them when they are feeling down. Let them know that you believe in them when everyone else seems to be casting doubts.

8. Say it - let them know they are appreciated. Say thanks when you know they've made a special effort. Be sure they know what they mean to you. Apologize if you know you've done or said something wrong.

9. Show it - deliver random acts of kindness. Forward an article that you know would interest them. Run an errand you know they won't have time to get to. Give a fun gift. Be willing to compromise and do an activity that they choose, even if it wasn't on your list at all.

"I value the friend who for me finds time on his calendar, but I cherish the friend who for me does not consult his calendar." 

-Robert Brault

10. Don't keep score - leave the balancing scale out of the equation. A devoted friend doesn't give to receive and won't withhold help when they know the favor can't be returned. Be forgiving when they fall short. Don't set too many rules for the relationship.

A good friend is one of life's great treasures. Being a great friend is not easy but always worth it. You have to be willing to open yourself up and allow them to be vulnerable too. You can have differences of opinion, wear your heart on your sleeve, and continue to feel safe because you know you always have each other's best interests as the focus of your actions.

One last reminder. 

To gain friends, you must be friendly.

Go be the Best, Best Friend you can be.