Throughout our lives, we will meet many people whether these are acquaintances, friends, or lovers. Through these connections, we may get so caught up in the adventures and laughter that we forget who we are surrounding ourselves with. Friendship is an important foundation of any relationship, but how do you know if the connection is genuine? Here are four signs that your friendship is a healthy one and here to stay.
1. They support you through thick & thin.
I had a friend who wasn’t there for me emotionally. She always seemed to make my problems feel insignificant. As much as I tried to listen and offer advice for her issues, she didn’t do the same in return. She would interrupt my venting to discuss an issue she was facing, or she claimed that my problems weren’t as big as hers. To make matters worse, she would go to other people and gossip about the things I confided in.
A true friendship involves balance. When you have a real friend, they will empathize with whatever you’re facing, even if they don’t necessarily understand or agree with your actions or the severity of the issue. They’ll listen to you and offer suggestions when needed to support you.
2. They share your sense of humor.
There’s nothing more awkward than meeting someone for the first time and feeling like the energy is off from yours. You watch every sentence fade with an awkward silence and forced laughter. Once you finally escape, you think to yourself, “What just happened?”
While you want a serious connection in any relationship, you also want someone who can make you laugh and enjoy the moment. You don’t have to befriend a comedian, but it’s important that your friend is somebody who can make you smile. You deserve a connection where you can have at least one inside joke that nobody except the two of you understands.
3. They always show up.
A few years ago, I invited a friend to see a show that I was performing in. They ended up rejecting my invitation, stating that there was no alcohol there so they didn’t want to come. There actually was alcohol at this event, but I chose to leave that part out intentionally to see if they would actually show up.
You’ll find that people often will make other things and people a priority over you. While that’s their decision, you deserve someone who doesn’t treat you as an afterthought. A real friend will be by your side whenever they can, even when it’s inconvenient for them.
4. They support you.
I have a group of friends I see once every few months. No matter how much time has passed, we pick up exactly where we left off. We’re all adults busy with our lives, but that doesn’t mean we should neglect our connections. It’s important to keep in touch with your people regularly, even during the periods when you’re not hanging out. A true friend will put in just as much effort as you will into maintaining your relationship.
When you build healthy connections with other people, you find that communication seems effortless because you’re both making an effort to maintain consistency in each other’s lives. Without effort, there’s no connection. That’s what makes the difference between a fake friend and a genuine one.
Feature image via Omar Lopez on Unsplash