Tips to Build Healthy Relationships and Lasting Friendships
1. Be Yourself
A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out. ~ Walter Winchell
A key step to building healthy relationships is to have the liberty to be yourself. Lasting friendships do not require pretensions to impress someone else. True friends love you for who you are, not what they want you to be.
2. Giving Space and Respecting Boundaries
When we fail to set boundaries and hold people accountable, we feel used and mistreated. This is why we sometimes attack who they are, which is far more hurtful than addressing a behavior or a choice. ~ Brene Brown
This is absolutely essential to building fantastic friendships. Space and privacy contribute to a healthy friendship like nothing else can. Building a close friendship does not imply intruding into private areas and getting stuck at the hip. Step back and give air.
3. Learning to Settle Differences in Opinions
Whenever you’re in conflict with someone, there is one factor that can make the difference between damaging your relationship and deepening it. That factor is attitude. ~ William James
Encouraging healthy relationships is deeply linked to being able to communicate your issues without triggering negativity and tension. Differences of opinion will always crop up in any friendship (after all you are two different individuals) and a mature friendship will enjoy amicable settling of differences.
4. Make Friends for Different Occasions
Walking with a friend in the dark is better than walking alone in the light. ~Hellen Keller
Nurturing relationships becomes easier when you enjoy different friends for different activities. For example, you could consider having a friend for your workout, one for your cooking class and another to party with.
5. Maintain Trust and Avoid Gossiping
Eleanor Roosevelt said Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people.Great relationships thrive on trust. Keep all private details known to you strictly to yourself. Gossiping about your friend threatens the confidence she has in you and will leave her mistrusting you in future.
6. Avoid getting Judgmental
Be curious, not judgemental. ~ Walt Whitman
An important of creating healthy relationships with friends is to accept them as they are. There may be times when you may feel tempted to judge her life and choices but remember that lasting friendships survive on unconditional acceptance.
7. Let Little Things Go
When you stop expecting people to be perfect, you can like them for who they are. ~ Donald Miller
Friendships are formed between human beings who do make mistakes. No one is perfect. Let petty and small issues go their way instead of allowing them to spoil a superb relationship. It takes a lot of time building relationships but they can get destroyed in minutes.
8. Each Friendship is different
It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences. ~ Audre Lorde
Each person is different and consequently, each friendship is different too. The emotions and dynamics driving each relationship differ widely from each other. Treat all important relationships with the love and care they deserve and revel in the lasting happiness that comes from being loved and cherished by another human being.
Food for Thought
An interesting research project conducted by the Harvard Medical School showed that individuals with more friends had a stronger likelihood of living longer by 22%. Making friends is easy but creating lasting relationships requires an investment of time and effort.
Also published on Medium.
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