Remember in high school when we could not even count the number of friends we had with just our fingers? I guess we can say those were the good days—with not a care in the world. Making friends as an adult can be a difficult thing to do, especially for women. I can truly say I only require one hand to count my ride or die friends and honestly, that is all I really need.
As you get older, you realize that the number of friends is not what matters, however; it is the quality of the individual that does. I would rather have one true friend who I know will be there for me through thick and thin as opposed to five "iffy" friends who I know might not have my back when I need them most.
Here is a list of essential qualities I look for in people before deciding if I want to include them for the long run.
The Essential Qualities of a Good Friend:
Kindness. I genuinely love people who are kind and open-minded. I prefer to surround myself with others who do not judge and who are basically just pure at heart. Being mean or rude is an extremely ugly personality trait.
Honesty. It is extremely important for me to have someone who is sincere and who I can always count on to keep it 100% true with me. I would rather hear my good friend tell me the hurtful truth, rather than a stranger whom I have just met. Correct me when I am wrong and help me be a better person and vice versa—it is a partnership for me.
Loyalty. It is essential to know that my friend will have my back whenever I need them to. This also includes no bad-mouthing one another to other people because that is a big no no. If I feel I may have to watch myself with you, this is the number one red flag for me. I want to feel completely comfortable and able to be my raw self without fear of judgement.
Trustworthiness. I want to feel like I can emotionally rely on you when things get bad. If I sense a theme of you not being there for me, this is a red flag. Alos, it is okay to vent when you are unhappy. I want to know that I can count on you to be there when I am at my worst or going through the worst.
Like-mindedness. As bad as this sounds, the people I choose to surround myself with need to have similar goals and aspirations in life. I find that when you befriend people who do not aspire similar things, they can sometimes hold you back or make you feel badly about what you want your life to look like. Personally, I have had negative experiences where some have said my goals are unrealistic—this is exactly what I do not want in my life because any goal is possible if you put in the correct amount of effort and consistency. This type of mindset is what I am looking for.
Positivity. If you are constantly bringing negative energy to the table or always have a negative comment to make, this can really be draining for an individual to constantly be surrounded by a dark cloud. Times will get tough, but the point of life is to learn how to cope with the stress and to make the best out of bad situations. Life is too short to spend it being sad or feeling sorry for yourself. Again, it is okay to be sad but try to work through your struggles and stay as positive as you can throughout.
Non-judgmental. If you always have an opinion about another person (or me), that is surely going to bother me. Keeping it real and judging a person based on your feelings are two totally different things in my book. Besides, judging others in not a nice quality—how would you feel if a stranger was judging you off first impression? Trying to see things from the opposite point of view is extremely important.
Maturity. We are all adults so let’s be ones. I am not here for the drama and gossip. This also falls under like-mindedness for me because if we are not at the same stages in our lives it is going to be more difficult to find things in common. Have aspirations for your life and work towards them.
Has their stuff together. Okay, so we are either in our mid-twenties or early thirties and if you are still running like a chicken with its head cut off, this is a red flag for me (as mean as it sounds). I totally respect that we all might be in different chapters of our lives, but for me, this raises the question as to what type of value this person would bring to me. If you are always wanting to go out and “party” each weekend, odds are that I will probably not grow close to you because this is a stage in my life that I have passed.
Not jealous. So important for me. It is a huge red flag if you are always throwing "shade" or trying to make me feel bad about something or what I am trying to accomplish. This is a major sign of jealousy for me. Being great friends means being happy for your friend’s accomplishments and success. Our success is going to look different and the most important part is to be thankful and glad for your friend.
Realness. If we have established that we genuinely like one another's company and want to pursue a friendship, all I ask is to just keep it real with me. Tell me how it is and if the friendship is not working out for you anymore, let me know why. We all have our faults and not every relationship is going to work out—it is important to always communicate your feelings, so it provides the chance for the other individual to reflect and correct whatever is needed.