How to Be a Good Friend and How to Avoid Being a Bad One

I guess this would be appropriate for my first informational blog post, since this blog is intended for my friends anyways. So before I start, let me tell you that this will not apply to everyone, just look through it so you know what to improve on and what you are already doing good on (your friends will appreciate it!).

Sometimes we don’t stop to think about our actions or the things we say. We may be doing things that we don’t even realize we’re doing; we’re not even conscious of how horrible we can be as a person, friend, etc. We can get so used to our friends that we become insensitive to the things we say and do. Sure, that level of comfort can be a good thing, but do you really want to say these things to your friends? On the outside, it may seem that they don’t mind or care but on the inside, they may feeling hurt or otherwise. It could be a reflection of the person you really are. Right now, check out some of the signs below and see how many of these apply to you. These don’t automatically make you a bad friend, but they’re still things you should be aware of.

Signs That Show How You Might Be a Bad Friend

  1. Blame others for things they never did.

    When someone blames your friend, don’t immediately go along with their or even your own suspicion. First off, it may not even be true. Even if it is, your friend will lose their trust in you. Eventually, you yourself begin to blame others and talk about how they went and did something even though they never did. This gets really annoying and yes, your friends do notice this.

  2. You start criticizing or blaming your friends for everything.

    This is sort of like the first instance. You feel like nothing is your fault and you’re always right. Everything wrong is because of them. Then you start letting them know, how you feel about the situation (you’re right and they’re wrong). This just sets up arguments between friends and can slowly tear the friendship.

  3. You only spend time with your friends when you need something.

    When you reach for the phone and it’s never to see how they’re doing or to get together and have fun, then there’s a problem. If there’s always a reason why you call or text, only when you need something then yes, this may be one of your problems. If it becomes so natural that every time you call or text, their response is “What do you need?”  then you’ve got a clear warning sign.

  4. You evade all responsibility, leaving your friends to handle it all.

    When there’s work to be done or responsibilities that should be divided you just sort of sit in the back and relax. Teamwork is weakened just because you’d rather be doing something else (or nothing) than to help out. What’s worse is when you walk away when the others really need you. Soon enough, you’ll be the one your friends will be evading…

  5. You never think about how your friends may feel.

    As I stated, your words hurt like knives and you might not even know it (or care) because you have a disregard for how they may feel. Sure, it’s fine if you throw out a joke or tease them every once in a while and they’re O.K. with it, then it’s fine. However, if you constantly don’t stop to wonder how your decisions, actions, and words may affect what your friends think, then you may be hurting their feelings. Sometimes it’s your lack of thought that hurts them most.

  6. You have the need to put your friends down.

    Although this doesn’t always mean you’re a bad friend, it shows some serious flaws in character on your part. You could begin to wear down the friendship if the other person feels like you constantly show off or put down their accomplishments. People have enough insecurities and self-esteem issues in this world as is. Please don’t make them feel the same way around their own friends.

  7. You don’t listen to what your friends have to say.

    Their opinions mean nothing to you and it’s usually drowned out by your own stories. You fight for time to speak and when they are talking you’re usually tapping your feet impatiently for your turn to talk. BTW people can tell when you’re pretending to listen. Tossing in a question to make it seem like you care is insincere. What’s worse is when you ask them something only to interrupt them mid-answer so you can start talking. If this is you, people, not just your friends won’t want to talk to you.

  8. You never stick to your word.

    If you say you’ll do something, don’t go back on your word. Punctuality goes into this too. Don’t be the person who is consistently an hour later than promised. Trust is a big factor in this, don’t make your friends lose this.

I’ll update this to include suggestions on how to be a good friend.

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