We’re all on a journey when it comes to friend-ing. But if there are habits that make a good friend, there are also traits that make a not-so-good friend. Overlooking more obvious traits (serial killing, constant lying, eating the last piece of dark chocolate, etc.), there are subtle characteristics that hurt. Speaking from my experience, these include:
1. Not Showing Up. This seems like a given, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had relationships severely damaged by lack of dependability. I totally understand that life happens, kids get sick, your car breaks down, yada yada. But as much as you can help it, as often as you can help it, show up when you say you’ll be there. Start habitually canceling and your friendships are sure to erode quicker than sandstone in a desert storm.
2. Talking Too Much. Friends want to hear about you. They really do. But after 45 minutes of listening to you talk non-stop about your family’s drama, your latest project, your fav show, and YOU, they want a turn, too. Just because your friend is politely nodding and smiling while you ramble, don’t assume that they have nothing to share. They might just be too polite to cut you off- or they might feel overwhelmed by all the jibber-jabber. Especially if they’re an introvert- or the quiet type. Which leads me to the next trait…
3. Not Knowing (Or Caring To Know) Your Friend’s Personality. You might not know their Myers-Briggs breakdown, but generally try to know your friend’s tendencies. Are they likely to speak up and offer their thoughts? Or do they need some gentle prodding, some skillful questioning to get them to open up? I LOVE people who ask good questions. Some people are so skillful at getting to the heart of the matter right away, asking just the right questions. Learn how to be one of those people.
4. Lack of Reciprocation. Some of the deepest friendship wounds come from lack of reciprocation. We’re all swamped, all tired, all everything. I get it. But it starts to cut into our friend’s soul when we don’t reciprocate. If you really do like your friend and want to keep being friends, then maybe it’s your turn to initiate. Instead of waiting for them to ask you out again, why not invite them? Why not ask them over? It hurts to feel that you’re not pursue-worthy.
5. Texting While I’m Sharing. This might just be a pet peeve of mine, but argh! Seriously? I finally get a chance to share my heart and then you start texting while I talk? Seriously?!? (Sorry- just had to include this one… ) I’d rather you just not show up.
Whew. Glad this list is done. My blood pressure was starting to rise…
Until next time!