Have you ever taken a moment to stop, sit back, and just reflect about life — the relationships you have, the people whom you share these relationships with, the friends you see and talk to every day?
We often take the word “friend” for granted. We call everyone our friend. We have friends whom we’re friends with just because we’re classmates, organization-mates, workmates, colleagues, blockmates, etc. We have friends with whom we exchange intellectual ideas and random facts with just to fill up a conversation. We have friends whom we talk to because we need something from them. And the list goes on. But what will happen when you’re no longer classmates or workmates with them? What’ll happen when you no longer share the common interests with them?
So, what exactly is a friend — a genuine friend? Try asking yourself: just whom among your friends are you comfortable sharing your personal problems and experiences with? Just who among your friends genuinely rejoices with you for your achievements and stays by your side during your downfalls? Just who among your friends can you ask favors from and would not hold it against you, would not make you feel like you owe them? Just who among your friends will have the courage to always be honest with you, despite sometimes having to hurt you just for the sake your own good? Just who among your friends can you have heart-to-heart conversations with, feel better and energized afterwards and not worse than what you’re feeling before the conversation.
A true friend would never hold your imperfections, weaknesses, failures, and honest mistakes against you. A true friend knows that you are human, that you have your own shortcomings, but will love you anyway.
These for me are what a true friend is. They may not necessarily be the people you spend most of your time with every day because sometimes, we may have those friends whom we don’t really hang that much with, but in the end, are the ones whom we know that’ll always gladly lend an ear to listen. We know that we don’t have to see or talk to them everyday to know that they’ll always be on our side, especially when we need them the most. They are the ones who help you grow as a person, that leave a positive impact in our lives. But if your real friends are also the people you spend most of your time with, then lucky you.
You don’t build meaningful and substantial relationships from talking about stuff like celebrity gossips, sports news, or scientific facts and discoveries. Truly knowing someone from the inside — someone’s personal life, experiences, problems, and aspirations — is the foundation of a true and everlasting friendship that I’m sure everyone one of us is aiming for.
To all of those who’ve luckily found their true friends, treat them the same way as they treat you, if not better. For those who are still looking, in the meantime, just be the person you are looking for.