1. Your friendship probably formed in light of one of you going through a hard time, and the other always knowing how to lift you up and help you through it.
Now I would rather have one friend that’s there for me during my darkest hour than a million friends that are only there when things are good. They are just shadows that disappear when the light is out. In life, there are going to be numerous occasions wherein we will fall and sometimes we fall so hard that we forget to stand up. Yeah, you could just be sitting there moping around in your depression either telling the whole world your problem or just keeping it to yourself as a form of self-pity but there will be those people who will know when it’s time to cut the crap. They know when to stop consolidating your feelings and feeding your emotions and know when to just lift you up from your state of drowning in your own depression and just tell you simply: “Stop it, it’s going to be okay,” “You’ll be fine” or “There’s nothing to worry about.” No more big explanations, no more long-ass reassurance, just a certainty that you have to stand up and move forward. They won’t take no for an answer and will not accept any excuses from you. They just want to stop you from being hindered by your biggest obstacles which is oftentimes yourself.
2. They accept who you are, even when you’ve changed.
The only thing constant in this world is change and is not something that you can control. It’s been said that people only say that you’ve changed when you stop acting the way they want you to. It won’t really matter to them if you change. They probably won’t even notice it. Change is a part of growing and we constantly seek to renew ourselves especially If it’s for the better. A good friend loves unconditionally and doesn’t slip away when we make big life changes that could affect the friendship.
3. It’s always a give and take.
A good friend is someone who doesn’t count the many things that they have done for you. They don’t bring up something that they’ve done for you in hopes that you’ll somehow feel indebted or grateful towards them. They won’t count how many times they’ve treated you out for lunch or how they’d go to your house and bring pizza, or even the many times they’d offer to bring you home. These friends want nothing more than to show their love and affection by giving without expecting anything in return. Now these are friends that you should never take for granted. There’s a difference between them just giving it than you having to ask for it.
4. Silence is perfectly fine.
You know that feeling when you’re just driving and listening to your favourite music with your friends but there’s no one speaking? Well those are just the kinds of moments that you can have with your true friends. It’s that momentary silence that you just absorb like the passing of the road and all that encompasses it. It’s not an awkward silence where it feels like someone has to speak up but more of a silence to embrace the moment. It was the moment after such a great day with them that there are no words that can be said to describe what just took place. Instead you capture it as a sentimental memory that you can go back to and think and reminisce. Makes you understand what Hitch (2006) said “It’s not how many breaths you take; it’s the moments that take your breath away”.
5. Distance and time isn’t an obstacle.
It makes your friendship stronger. Knowing the value of time, they’ll be able to appreciate your presence more when they do get the chance to hang out with you. As we get older, it becomes increasingly difficult to maintain friendships. After high school or college, you will begin to live very separate lives where your paths will not cross unless you make it so. Having good friends means having people who will make an effort to reach out to you and find out how you are and not in the simple “How r u?” text but an actual attempt to see you in person. You continue where you last left off and the best part is when it feels like you guys never stopped talking.
6. You’re inspired by each other.
Too often are we riddled with toxic people in our life who serve more as an anchor pulling you down than a helping hand lifting you up. We need to be able to distinguish those who have a positive impact on those among those who seek to hold us back. These are not just the people who try to help us succeed and protect us from mistakes but they are also the ones who are there when we fail and help us learn when we make mistakes. These are mature friends in the sense that they know the where to draw line between good, bad, and completely stupid. Furthermore, these are good friends who will not let you suffer another episode of high school drama. You know what those are. We’ve all had people who bring nothing but negativity and petty fights all to meet some pointless end. I’m all for building bridges with people but we must also know when to burn them too especially when that bridge brings us nowhere good.
7. You’re legitimately happy for each other.
These are the people who will be in the front row of your biggest triumph. They are the friends who will be there looking at you with a tear in their eye saying “that son of a bitch did it” while doing a slow clap. Joking aside, your friend will not focus on what you have accomplished but will highlight the journey that took you there. They are genuinely happy for you because they know you’ve come such a long way from where you were before. Putting it into movie terms, you are the protagonist that they’ve been watching cheering you on even if you didn’t know it. There is no deep down envy, no “I wish that happened to me” but more of “I was hoping that would happen to you”. Not everyone wants to see you succeed but your good friend might even want to see you succeed more than you do yourself.