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What Does a REAL Friendship Feel Like?

Here is what I look for in a friendship. You should too!

During various decades of my life, I’ve had a few best friends. They first started in elementary school, junior high, high school, and then college. And then as I grew older and entered my 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, and now 60s, some of my friends traveled the distance with me.

We went through dating experiences, marriages, divorces, careers, and motherhood together. There were many ups and downs through our lives, but the one common thread was that those best friends stayed with me throughout all my successes AND failures.

As I look at those past and present friendships I had with men and women, I found the true definition of friendship for me. Maybe it will resonate with you, too.

This is my definition of a TRUE friend.

Someone who would do anything for you, who revels in your happiness and is there to comfort you in your sadness and who shares that certain quality I like to call a “soulful bond.”

Those friends feel the same pride and joy for me as I do for them. There’s no spirit of competition or desire to be and do better than each other.  We celebrate one another and take turns celebrating each other’s wins. We lift one another to comfort and love one another when we experience difficulties and heartaches. We’re on equal terms. One person is not above another. 

We don’t perceive that either one of us is in the shadow or the light of one another. If that happens with your bestie, you can sense it, and it keeps each of you from being open and genuinely trusting one another.

A true friend can’t be jealous of you or want to take advantage of you in any way!

It’s essential to treat your bestie (or besties) with respect and regard. I know these kinds of friendships are hard to find. It requires discernment. 

I have a couple of besties in my life. There are five women and two men that I know to love me and are my biggest cheerleaders in my life, as I am in theirs’. It is reciprocal, and it must be to be equal. I can tell them anything! And sometimes when I share my true feelings about certain situations, it’s not always a pretty or uplifting experience. But, they listen anyway and will share their opinions, suggestions, and tell me stories of their struggles and share how they overcame them. And I can freely share my wins without feeling like I’m bragging, selfish, or thinking that I’m better than them! They celebrate with me, and without feeling jealous, or less than. You know and can feel when you’re absolutely supported and loved unconditionally.

I have a particular bestie girlfriend who ALWAYS tells me the truth, even if it’s difficult for me to hear. However, I never question her motive because she ALWAYS wants the best for me. She’s also my biggest supporter! She reads everything I write, listens to all my summits, and almost every morning sends me a text or email to let me know how much she appreciated, and learned from my writings. And because of her love and support for me, I trust her. And I know if anyone would say anything negative about me, she would have my back.

I know and understand quite well how girls and women can be competitive with one another, even with their closest girlfriends. It can be exceedingly hurtful. We’re not here to tear each other down so that we can lift ourselves and be “better” than one another. That’s destructive. We’re here to love and support each other and become that friend that we all want in our lives. 

If the green-eyed monster rises in you, look within yourself and ask, “Why do I feel this way towards my girlfriend?” It’s usually a sign of low self-esteem. Maybe you aren’t happy with where your life is going. Don’t blame a sister; look within and find the answer. Write about it instead of gossiping or talking badly about her just because you’re triggered and jealous. True friendship includes listening, talking, listening some more, laughing, crying, honesty, cheering each other on, building dreams together, and speaking your truth.

Don’t allow jealousy to end some fantastic, loving, beautiful friendships. You’ll know and recognize who truly is your friend and who isn’t. Ask for discernment, and watch their actions towards you, not just their words. If it doesn’t feel right being around them, then keep them out of your life and make space for REAL friends. 

  • Remember the Golden Rule – Treat others the way you would treat yourself. Don’t treat them above or below you, treat them like an equal.
  • Realize that NO ONE is perfect! We all have quirks and flaws, and accepting each other’s faults is critical. Don’t judge your friend.
  • Respect one another’s opinions. Your friends are allowed to have a different view than you, that’s what makes us all individuals. 
  • Realize that even the best of friends can’t be together 24/7 and they can have other friends, too. Plus, you don’t have to like their other friends!
  • Communicate, communicate, communicate! Friends can’t read our minds! If something is affecting your friendship, talk about it. Be honest and truthful.
  • Be a good listener when he or she needs to talk. And don’t make the story about you. Use heart-centered listening. 
  • Be trustworthy. Don’t share any personal secrets you’ve been entrusted you with. Keep and guard secrets; they’re not for you to share without permission.
  • Keep your word. If you say you’re going to do something, then do it! Actions speak louder than words. 
  • Don’t talk or gossip behind your friends back. Gossip is toxic and the biggest killer of trust. 
  • Don’t expect your friendships to be perfect. We’re all messy people! Allow each other space, and don’t take actions personally. If you’re wondering about something, ask! Give the benefit of the doubt, as you would want the same. 
  • Don’t talk or gossip behind your friends back. Gossip is toxic and the biggest killer of trust. 
  • Don’t expect your friendships to be perfect. We’re all messy people! Allow each other space, and don’t take actions personally. If you’re wondering about something, ask! Give the benefit of the doubt, as you would want the same. 

Remember to listen, laugh, and be kind. 💗

I love Mother Teresa’s quote, “Let no one ever come to you without leaving them feeling better and happier.”

Behind every successful woman is a tribe of other successful women who have her back.

Love & Light 

Pirie

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