Friends are precious resources. These gifts bring you grander courage, confidence, and purpose. Knowing that you have touched the lives of others is one of the greatest satisfactions on Earth. Loyalty and support is what defines and sustains friendship. Make a point to be a better friend today.
Show Support To Best Friends, Even When You Disagree.
Disagreements are bound to arise among friends, whether as simple as how or when to spend time together, or totally life-altering like which career or partner to choose. Even when you don’t agree with your friend’s decisions, you can still offer support without losing your mind in the process. First, consider if you can reserve judgement by accepting that you don’t know all the facts. If you feel burdened with your difference of opinion, it’s okay to voice your concerns – in the right way. Bring it up when you are both relaxed, while taking a walk, gardening together, painting, or doing another activity.
Express your concern and ask that your friend hear you out, but also make it clear that you respect differences of opinion and are there for your friend, no matter what. Once you have calmly, articulately explained your feelings, ask for clarification on your friend’s motivations if necessary so you can better understand the situation. From there, the ball is in your friend’s court. Do not bring it up continually. Sometimes you may need to stand up for a loved one when others are unfairly critical. You may not agree with the decision, but no one deserves to be called names, attacked, gossiped about, or ostracized.
Lend a compassionate ear when your friend needs you. Sometimes you don’t have to offer any advice at all. Your friends will unravel the issue as they talk through it with you. A University of Michigan study found that women produce more progesterone, a mood-boosting and stress-busting hormone, when they feel emotionally close to other women. Simply being there with open arms goes a long way. It should give you a sense of pride to know you are relied upon for unconditional love and encouragement.
Display Your loyalty by treasuring shared secrets. When my friends share their innermost secrets with me, I treasure them.
Never betray a friend’s confidence by discussing with others what was shared with you in private. The first rule of loyalty is that you keep all information in confidence. When pressed by gossipers, resist the urge to get involved by saying you are “not at liberty to discuss” the details of your time spent with someone, advise the gossiper to ask your friend, or simply proclaim your ignorance. It is no one’s business what you talk about in private with others.
Loyal friends are mum when necessary, but they are also honest as the situation warrants. A good friend might ask for or need your opinion from time to time. Take care to understand your friend’s needs and boundaries to know when it’s appropriate to interject your thoughts, feelings, and guidance. People vary greatly in the level of support they’re willing to accept.
“True friendship multiplies the good in life and divides its evils. Strive to have friends, for life without friends is like life on a desert island… to find one real friend in a lifetime is good fortune; to keep him is a blessing.” – Balthasar Gracian
Each friendship is unique, requiring its own special rhythm and finesse to maintain. Though your approach to various friends may vary, you can never go wrong if you base your relationships around loyalty. Aim to be trustworthy and supportive each day. Let others know how meaningful their friendships are to your life. Joyfully do whatever it takes to keep your friends encouraged and uplifted.
- In what ways can I prove to my friends that I am trustworthy?
- What are some of the other key elements of friendship besides loyalty and support?
- How does sharing tough advice impact the strength of my relationship with friends?
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