40 Ways to Be a Great Friend

A friend is a precious treasure. She may have shared a room with you in college the year you met your husband. Or prayed with you faithfully just about every week of your adult life. Or been acquaintances in high school, whose love and loyalty grew steadily every year since.  Maybe she sat next to you on the first day of middle school when you’d both just moved to town. Or she drove you in the middle of the night to the hospital where she held your hand as you delivered your first baby.

There are a million ways to build a friendship. But it only takes a few close friends to have a rich life. As someone who tends to be a bit of a loner independent, I’ve had to learn a lot about friendship from a handful of dear friends who’ve stuck with me through many years of ups and downs. Here’s what they’ve revealed about how to be a friend:

  1. Be willing to call them first
  2. Send notes, cards or gifts
  3. Listen when they talk (without thinking about what you’ll say next)
  4. Remember and ask about what you last talked about together
  5. Ask them about their life
  6. Be genuine
  7. Be accessible
  8. Be honest
  9. Have a sense of humor
  10. Tell them how much they mean to you
  11. Celebrate their milestones and successes
  12. Honor their choices
  13. Give them space when they need it
  14. Be confident in your own strengths
  15. Offer to help them when they need it
  16. Be loyal
  17. Keep a confidence
  18. Support their important relationships with others
  19. Talk nicely about them to others
  20. Be silly and playful together
  21. Stick with them through tough times
  22. Encourage them to follow their dreams
  23. Pray for them
  24. Forgive them
  25. Tell them when you’re wrong
  26. Think of them when you’re apart
  27. Show grace when they’re having a bad day
  28. Comfort them when they grieve
  29. Remember to call when you say you will
  30. Be dependable
  31. Keep them in the loop in your life
  32. Trust them with your heart
  33. Give them a chance to make it up to you
  34. Travel or go on outings together
  35. Sit and do nothing in particular together
  36. Get excited about what their kids accomplish
  37. Be affectionate
  38. Offer them a piece of your chocolate
  39. Tell them when they have something in their teeth
  40. Love them with all your heart

It’s a tall order, and I’m sure you could add even more to the list! I screw up just about every one of these over the course of a month. But I still have each of the friends from the first paragraph above. Some I see and talk to every week. Others live far away and their friendship resides more in my heart now. But I’m so grateful for the ways they each reveal the love of God in their love for me.

You’ve got them too – friends who get it. Who love you like that whole list. Have you told them recently how much they mean to you? Give them a call. Send an email. Let them know. Take that risk. The friendship is worth it!

Be blessed,
Laurie

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Comments

  1. says

    Wow, Laurie! This is a wisdom-packed list. Thanks for sharing it. I love #1 “Be willing to call them first” and #3 “Listen when they talk (w/o) thinking about what you'll say next).
    Altho the list is long, the tips are doable and reasonable as they're learn-able skills. Brings smile to my face.

  2. says

    Wow, Laurie! This is a wisdom-packed list. Thanks for sharing it. I love #1 “Be willing to call them first” and #3 “Listen when they talk (w/o) thinking about what you'll say next).
    Altho the list is long, the tips are doable and reasonable as they're learn-able skills. Brings smile to my face.

  3. says

    I know what you mean, Rachel. It's hard to walk the line between being honest about who we are and giving people the freedom to not love us back how we wish they would. 🙁 Very true that none of us is perfect. We're talking about that very thing on my coaching page today!

  4. says

    Great ideas, Laurie! It's so easy to get caught up in the busywork of life and forget the really important stuff like friends… I think I'm going to have to pick up the phone to tell a few people how much they mean to me.
    Thanks!

  5. says

    You are an amazing, powerful, loving and inspiring woman! I so admire who you have become in the years we've been friends. You are one of my favorite people on the planet and I love you very very much, my friend!

  6. Anonymous says

    I love the list Laurie! Sometimes it is hard to be all those things. But glad to know I'm not the only one who messes up 🙂 Thank you for word of wisdom for the day! Hope you have a good one!

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