PREVIOUS: Real Friends
SITE: “How to be best friends forever“
PREVIOUS: Real Friends
SITE: “How to be best friends forever“
QUOTE: “You can make more friends in 2 months by being interested in other people, than in 2 years trying to get others interested in you.” ~ Dale Carnegie
✦ With you in UP and DOWN times
A true friend shows up. They don’t care if it’s inconvenient, uncomfortable, or maybe a little dangerous, but they will show up – the friend that’s given you unwritten permission to call 3am if you need to, & they’re available
THEY – don’t disappear when the going gets rough
– will be right by your side, offering a listening ear & loving support
– are authentically happy when you’re happy & successful
– celebrate with & are proud of you
✦ Have empathy – A best friend can actually feel what you’e going through – because they’ve been there too. Or, they simply relate to you on such a deep level so they can deeply understand
✦ Loyal – A true friendship is be grounded in trust & loyalty. You can have faith they’ll never betray your trust, talk behind your back, or diminish you in front of others.They don’t disappear when someone ‘better’ comes along. Your best friend has your back! No matter the situation, you know they’ll make themselves available
✦ Want you to succeed & be happy – A true friend is going to root for you no matter what, because they know everyone is different, & everyone has a different path with different gifts & talents.
SO – they’re not jealous, because they understand you’re being true to yourself &, they’re also doing what’s right for themselves, so you can celebrate each other without jealousy or animosity. BUT – Even if they do have a twinge of jealousy / envy, they’ll make an effort to keep those feelings from minimizing your abilities or from spoiling your joy!
✦ Encouraging – Your bestie adores you (even thinks you’re awesome) & is there to give you a boost when you’re feeling low. As your personal cheerleader, they’ll remind you of your accomplishments & all the great things you have to offer the world, always focusing on your positive qualities
✦ “Telepathic” – Your best friend has the uncanny ability to read your mind before the words pop out of your mouth. Just by exchanging a glance, you both know exactly what the other is thinking – having hared many experiences.
NOTE: It’s NOT co-dependent, which is assuming they’re the same as you, but rather knowing who you are, with similarities as well as your differences
✦ Listen & show interest – A real friend invests the time to listen carefully to who you are, connecting to your inner life. They can ‘do’ light, but also go beyond superficial conversation & meaningless chit-chat. They pay attention to what you say about yourself with imposing their point of view or immediately talk about themselves
✦ Wants you to be better – A true friends is a safe confidant, but can also be a role model for things you admire in them. Being around them make you grow. They’re happy to share their experience & insights because they want you to be the best you can be & they’re happy to help
✦ Make equal effort to stay connected – A true friend makes your friendship a priority. They happy to invests equal time & energy into maintaining the relationship – initiating plans, reaching out to talk….. so you don’t have to chase after them to stay connected
✦ Respects your opinions, even when disagreeing = A true friend are comfortable with small differences between you – in tastes & preferences, & is willing to rise above a very deeply held feeling or opinion you have that’s not like theirs – in order to preserve the friendship. They can listen & respond respectfully without making personal judgments or attacks.
SITE: BENEFITS of LAUGHTER
✦ Someone who is able to trust others in a realistic way is someone who’s comfortable with their own vulnerability.
A healthy friend can share their authentic self with you, because they have self-esteem as well as boundaries. This means they’re not superficial – willing to go deep with you
✦ Trustworthy – You know you can share secrets, fears & deep thoughts because they’ll stay private, & never be used against you in any way.
Honesty & dependability are considered the most vital qualities of friendship.
✦ Honest – They’re not afraid to speak openly from the heartland can also be objective. They’re able & willing to give you their real opinion, even when they disagree with your choices, especially if they think it’s in your best interest – BUT done without either people-pleasing or trying to control you
✦ Dependable – Someone you can count on to be there when they say they will, do what they say, and be willing to stand up for you, especially when you can’t stand up for yourself
✦ Generous – Giving comes naturally between best friends, with each person willing to share what they have with the other. A true friendship has boundaries, but abundance is key. No tabs are kept on who gives & who receives – or how much – creating a flow of sharing & caring
✦ Fun to be around – A healthy friend generally has a positive attitude, is quick to laugh, & makes you feel good just to be around them. They often lift you up, wanting to enjoy life with you.
Someone you’re compatible with shares your sense of humor. Rolling on the floor laughing ’till your stomach hurts doesn’t happen with just anyone.
A true friend laughs with you – They have experiences with you that don’t always require words, but even in the hard times you’ll laugh your way through it together. Between the personal jokes & shared experiences, your bestie knows how to tickle your funny bone.
✦ Love us unconditionally – A healthy friend loves you in spite of your imperfections – if they’re not overriding & self-destructive. They can overlook these flaws, knowing it doesn’t represent all of who you are. They can see your Real Self, accepting that we all come with baggage
A true friend sees your blind spots & unattractive habits, & isn’t afraid to call you out on them. They can sit you down & say “Listen, I see some things you need to take a look at!” They’re honest, but it’s done in a loving way
✦ Not judgmental – A real friend has a way of helping you through tough times without shame or judgment. They know your true essence, & have faith that you have the intelligence & guts to get back on track. They will give you a hug, listen without giving advice, help you get back on solid ground, & laugh with you about it when it’s over
✦ Keeps you humble – We all want to brag a little (or a lot) over the top – your kids, your job, what you have.… A true friend will celebrate you & yours, but also remind you of your values. You’re not better than the next person, so they encourage being realistic
✦ Quick to forgive & forget – A real friend accepts your apology when you mess up, & is willing to talk it thru & then move on – without guilting or shaming or hanging on to their hurt feelings. A real friend wants to heal the connection, especially when you have apologized sincerely. Your part is to be careful not to repeat the injury.
NEXT: Real Friends – #2
SITEs: “How to Spot a Fake Friend”
▪︎ 12 Signs of a Fake Friendship – Expanded info, with cartoons
Some FAKE FRIEND (FF) Characteristics
MENTAL / VERBAL – THEY:
◎ often gossip about other friends with you (so are very likely to gossip about you too)
◎ are not interested in getting to know you on a deeper level
◎ put down your opinions or beliefs
◎ judge your limitations or mistakes harshly
◎ always turn the conversation back to themselves
◎ forget the important things going on in your life
◎ insist on convincing you of their point / opinion
◎ tend to disappear when you need their friendship the most
◎ try to make you feel guilty or get passive-aggressive when things don’t go their way
◎ have a hard time being happy for your successes & achievements (envy / jealousy)
◎ use back-handed compliments to confuse & wound you
◎ are quick to take offense or get angry with you
◎ infect you & everyone else with their continual bad mood or ill temper
◎ have a heightened sense of self-importance & entitlement
◎ hold your past mistakes over you & won’t let them go
◎ try to control & change you
SOCIAL – THEY:
◎ rarely initiate calls or get-togethers
◎ never stand up for you in front of others
◎ frequently break promises or “forget” commitments
◎ say things to embarrass or shame you in front of others
◎ call you only when it seems they have nothing better to do
◎ can easily drop you as a friend when it suits them
◎ selfishly take up a lot of your time
◎ don’t like your other friends (possessive)
☛ ADD YOUR OWN to the list
FAKE FRIENDS (FFs) :
⦿ ask about you but aren’t actually interested
FF may say, “Hi! How are you?”, & then turn away to talk to someone else before you can open your mouth, OR immediately start talking about themselves, & never take a breath!
⦿ always demand convenience
FFs make sure they have everything they need first – & to their taste – before considering others. They may be charming, smooth, even cheerful, yet it’s all done for their own benefit, even when it means others will suffer
Notice: they’re only nice as long as a situation suits them, & not a minute longer. As soon as they’re not happy, they’re not nice (high-maintenance).
⦿ leave your side for someone ‘better’
FFs use others to comfort themselves – only act friendly when they don’t want to be alone. In an unfamiliar or uncomfortable social situation they’ll act like your friend so they’ll feel better & look popular (not a wallflower). As soon as they spot someone with a higher social status or is more interesting, they’ll mosey over to the ‘more valuable’ person.
⦿ are inappropriately excited to see you
If you run into an old friend you haven’t seen in a long time, you might exclaim & hug each other. But when someone you barely know does that (you’ve only exchanged small talk with, at work or other group), it’s not about friendship. It’s boundary invasion & being presumptuous.
Maybe the FF is just desperate to be liked, wants to look better to others, hopes to placate you if they think you’re angry at or displeased with them, or just buttering you up to get something from you later.
⦿ constantly talk over you
Some people just likes to hear themselves talk – who ask a question just so they can gives their version or opinion, or who forever tell the same story, even using the very same words & expressions.
Sometimes FFs will act really interested in what you have to say, nodding with enthusiasm – but later you realize they never seem to remember things you’ve told them over & over.
ALWAYS notice people’s pattern of interaction with you & with others.
IF you want to tell a FF they’ve hurt you, remember to be respectful & have good boundaries.
IF they don’t want to hear it, but instead get defensive, change the subject or turn it back on you – making you the bad-guy – then it’s time to let go . Life’s too short to hang onto to a toxic relationship.
NEXT: Real friends
PREVIOUS: Real vs Fake #3
IMAGE shows relationships in TIERS ⬆️
The following article is modified from Tim Urban’s site. See other images & longer explanations at “The Friendship Quadrant”
“Once student-life ends, the people in your life start to shake into more distinct tiers….. Whatever your particular mountain looks like, eventually the blur of youth is behind you, the dust has settled, & there you are living your life – when one day, usually around your mid or late 20s, it hits you: It’s not that easy to make friends anymore…”
Tier 1 – those who feel like close siblings (if you like any of those!)
Tier 2 – your Pretty Good friends…
Tier 3 – your Not Really friends…. the lowest part starts to blend indistinguishably into your large group of acquaintances (pink zone),
who gradually blend into the endless world of strangers (white).
Some TYPES ➡️ :
▪︎ Walled-Off Wally – surrounded but totally alone
▪︎ Phony Phoebe – trying to be everyone’s best friend, but ends up with lots of people mad at her
▪︎ Unabomber Ulysses – who gets rid of everyone
ODD FRIENDSHIPS (unhealthy)
1) The Non-Question-Asking Friend
– extremely self-absorbed & only wants to talk about themself
– avoids getting close to others & won’t talk either about you or themself (nothing personal, just third-party topics)
– considers you as being insufferably self-absorbed, & knows if they ask about your life, you’ll talk their ear off
2) The Friend in your Group YOU can’t ever be Alone with
– because you’re jealous of each other, or are too similar, have too much rivalry, or are both alpha dogs / queen bees…..
3) The Non-Character-Breaking Friend you have to be “On” with
– they’re terrified of having a genuine interaction, so your friendship with them is always some kind of performance. They’re only capable of shallow communication, based on a facade
4) The Double-Obligated Friendship
– neither of you really want to spend time together – but won’t admit it, somehow believing you have to keep up the pretense (“don’t want to hurt their feelings”// better them than no one)
5) The Half “Marriage” Friendship
– it would be a marriage if only the other person weren’t very, very, extremely not interested in that happening…. It feels like one long, continuous rejection of you as a human being, but you stay, & wallow in longing
6) The Frenemy
– the one who roots very hard against you – just because you’re you… usually someone you go way back with – & have or though you had – a very deep friendship, but the trouble probably started a long time ago (they’re envious, you have unspoken hurt feelings, one of you is holding a grudge….)
7) The Non-Parallel Life Paths Friendship
– early friends who seemed to be going in the same direction as you (under 30), but later some of them suddenly veered in a completely different life direction you couldn’t have imagined…. so can’t be as close as you used to be
8) The Historical Friend
– someone you met when you were little & stayed friends with through the years, even though you’re a very weird match…. often someone you absolutely would not be friends with if you met them today
9) The Facebook Celebrity Friend
– a rare Tier 3 friend or just an acquaintance, who you turned into a ‘deep connection’, but it’s all in your mind – since you’re not actually friends… like someone at work you’ve a ‘thing’ for, or someone on Facebook you’re following fanatically, but they have no idea of your obsessive attention
10) The Lopsided Friendship
– one can be higher on one friend’s mountain than the other
– one can want to spend more time with a friend than the other does
– one will consistently spend 90% of their time listening & only 10% of the time being listened to…..
URBAN concludes: Not All Friendships Are Grim….
“No friendship is perfect, but those in Quadrant 1 are doing what they’re supposed to – making the lives of both parties better.
And when a friendship is both in Quadrant 1 and on Tier 1 of your mountain – they’re a rock to depend on” ….
✦ Figure out which ‘friends’ are NOT in Quadrant 1, & demote them down the mountain
✦ Since Tier 1 people are a comfort & a joy, dedicate more time to them
NEXT: False people
PREVIOUS: REAL vs FAKE – #2
QUOTE: “When someone shows you who they are, believe them – the first time.” Maya Angelou
GP = Genuine Person
FP = Fake Person
NOTE: Fake people can fall into 2 broad categories:
a. The mean, selfish narcissists who are good at pretending to be friendly & interested in others, but are really angry, manipulative & (indirectly) controlling, sure they know what they’re doing.
b. The self-hating, fearful, depressed, needy co-dependents who don’t know who they are, desperate to avoid abandonment in any form, who try to feel OK by attaching themselves to Real people.
GPs can express their opinions & feelings clearly, so when they have a problem with you, they’ll talk about it directly. They’re ‘adult’ enough to deal with an issue respectfully, hoping a positive conversation will resolve it.
GPs think about the best way to deal with a dispute or hard feelings. They know that sometimes waiting a while before saying anything it better, & sometimes letting go is best.
FPs are cowards when it comes to speaking up. They confuse self-assertion with confrontation (angry communication) – assuming assertion & processing out an issue is the same as attacking the other person.
This is because most of the the time they are angry & don’t know how to deal with it correctly. Instead, they’ll smile when they see you, but complain about you to anyone else who’ll listen. When you’re back is turned you become the enemy, so they gossip, venting their frustration & annoyance by triangulating.
✦ No Ulterior Motives
GPs are honestly nice & helpful – because it makes them feel good to make others happy & safe. They don’t ne-e-ed recognition or praise, but do enjoy a thank-you. They don’t play games or have hidden motives. They consider the effect of their behavior on others – without losing their own identity.
Their relationships aren’t based on using others to get something for themselves. If they spend time with someone it’s because they genuinely want to, & are interested in them as a person. Whenever possible – within boundaries & reality – they’ll be available even when there’s nothing practical or material to be gained by it. EXP: they’ll reach out randomly to say Hi, or check on someone’s who’s having hard time – because they care.
vs. Ulterior Motives
FPs have that a “I’ll scratch your back IF you scratch mine” attitude. Usually they’re only nice when they want something. If they help, they expect a return, but if they sense there’s no reciprocation, they can’t be bothered.
▸ FPs always think about how they can be happy by using others. The carefully choose who to respect & when, based on what the other person can do for their image & personal gratification. They’re only nice when it suits them, since they only care about their own satisfaction. If others can help them or have something they want, they’ll be ‘your best friend’, but when the person has fulfilled their purpose, the FP will be gone without a trace.
✦ Cleaning Up Messes
GPs take care of their own messes, which are relatively rare. However, being thoughtful & generous, they may end up compensating for or cleaning up after a dysfunctional person they care about, whether physically or emotionally. But being healthy, GPs also have a limit. When someone persists in being irresponsible or has gone too far, GPs with back off or back out altogether. (Cartoon)
vs. Making Messes
Many FP are selfish, immature users. They try to get away with as much as possible, taking advantage of anyone who’s willing to rescue them.
EXP: They may ask for one thing which the helper agrees to, & then spring on them a sting of other “requests” (expectations / demands) added on to the first – at theist minute, when it’s too late to change the situation.
And, some FPs are perverse enough that they’ll make messes even worse on purpose.
NEXT: Real FRIENDS
REAL vs FAKE – #1
▪︎ The Science Of Smiles, Real & Fake
GP = Genuine Person
FP = Fake Person
GPs are comfortable in their own company. Being alone is needed for self-reflection, & they know everyone benefits from down-time to process & recharge. This is not isolation, but rather a comfort zone, whether occasionally enjoying some solitude at home or going places unaccompanied. “Healthy” others will understand & respect this need, & some maybe even learn to do the same for themselves.
PS: Introverts need this more often than Extroverts.
Regardless of their MBTI type, many FPs don’t like to be on their own for too long, surrounding themselves with lots of events, groups & acquaintances. Not everyone will see their true colors & so will fall for their manipulations, thinking they’re ‘great’.
Some will do whatever it takes to stay center-stage, showing off, constantly talking, or playing victim to get sympathy by talking about their misfortunes, even throwing a ‘tantrum’.
✦ PRIVATELY HELPFUL
GPs ALSO don’t need to brag or go out of their way to get recognition – for doing something good for another person or group (professional help or as a favor). But it’s more important to them to do a good job & that others are encouraged & helped.
vs. HELPING for RECOGNITION
FPs think they’re vital to other people’ lives (no-one can do without them!). They try to live up to others’ expectations, always wanting to be (or seem like) the ‘good guy / gal’, trying to please everyone.
They’ll rush in to be helpful – even when someone doesn’t need it or didn’t ask, then tell everyone about it so they can feel important. At work – they want to look like the boss’s favorite, but others can usually tell they’re not sincere.
GPs don’t need to brag. While it’s natural & healthy to be proud of one’s achievements, & to share them with others, GPs know it’s not imperative. They have enough self-esteem to be modest – but not self-facing (false humility). They can easily talk about their own positive experiences & abilities – or not.
FPs are generally more materialistic & self-gratifying. They have a hard time empathizing with others, only interested in promoting their own agenda.
Because they need to be the center of attention, they’re constantly bragging about their assets & achievements, talking up even their smallest action to get admiration & praise. They often embellish stories or outright lie, & tend to tell the same story over & over
GPs are not afraid to take responsibility for their life, without having to be perfect. They always make an effort to keep their commitments, & if they can’t for any reason, they admit it with a sincere apology. They don’t need to make excuses, & while sometimes a non-whiney explanation is appropriate, at other times none is required.
However, what really makes the difference is that GPs takes time to consider if they can realistically follow-thru on something, so don’t make promises easily or often, & never just to people-please.
FPs are not great at taking personal responsibility – for any of their T.E.A.s. They can talk a big game, agreeing to or offering to do things, but rarely follow through. They’re the ones who make plans with you, but often cancel – & usually at the last minute. They carelessly make promises, wanting to feel important without having to earn it.
When called out, they come up with a list of excuses, even recycling the same old ones. They may be people-pleasers, afraid to say no, don’t think they’re in control of their own destiny, or they feel entitle & basically are inconsiderate.
GPs are careful, attentive listeners, noticing what someone is saying about themselves, without the GP having to give advice or insist on their opinion. IF asked, they offer their experience, options & suggestions, without having to ‘be right’.
vs. PRETEND to LISTEN
FP will either talk over others, interrupt, insist on giving advice (only their point of view), or only listen if there’s something juicy for them to pass along (gossip’).
NEXT: GPs vs FPs #3