Within the last year or so I've given myself a challenge: to become a better friend. I realized that it had been many years since there was someone in my life that I would call a "close friend" (besides my husband, of course). Don't get me wrong, I have plenty of friends but I couldn't point to one 'single' person that I would be comfortable calling up to go see a movie or have coffee with, someone I hung out with on a regular basis, someone who really knew me and I knew them. This is a problem. How did this happen? I'm sure I could make a list of excuses but that's just what it would be. A list of EXCUSES. Let me get on my soapbox for a second and say that if you don't have any close friendships in your life currently and it's everyone else's fault, well... maybe it's not. Maybe it's you. Maybe you're not a good friend. (Stepping down from my soapbox now.) I say that only because that's what I came to realize about myself. I didn't have any close friendships because I wasn't a good friend. So here's what I learned....
1) If you want to be a good friend, learn to ask great questions. You can't get to know someone if you don't ask them questions. Skip the small talk and really get to know them. Ask them about their 'story', their hopes, their dreams, their fears.
2) YOU have to be the pursuer. Don't expect everyone to come to you. If you want some solid, tight friendships, then call someone. Ask them to meet you for coffee and then ask them some great questions:)
If you're an introvert like me, then being the pursuer can be really intimidating. But being an introvert doesn't excuse you from becoming someone who is a good friend.
3) Friendships require TIME. This one is big for me because one of my top love languages is quality time. I need QT in order to feel close to someone. This is why I'm driving to Atlanta in a couple of weeks to spend the weekend with my friend Miriam. Because friendships you care about require quality TIME.
I'm still on the journey to becoming a good friend and I hope you'll join me.
|These are some of the best friends I've ever had. Andrea (best friend from high school), Rachel (worked in the inner-city of Brooklyn, NY together), Jacee (past roommate and also worked together in Brooklyn together), Thomesine (amazing sister-in-law), Caroline (greatest example of a wife and mom in my life). Four out of five of these ladies now live in other countries but they are still close to my heart.|