The Most Important Qualities of A Good Friend

Have you ever found it difficult to make friends? Do you even know what true friendship is, and which qualities you should look for when picking your friends?

In this article, I highlight seven key qualities of a good friend and why it’s so important for you to define what friendship means to you.

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1. Loyalty

They’ll Always Be There For You

Friends who are always there for you, both in times of need and happiness, is a good sign of loyalty.

If you find yourself in a terrible situation, a ditch, with no way out, a good friend will be one of the first people in your life to offer their support and help towards your problem – even before your family in some cases.

Whether this problem is financial, emotional or otherwise, a truly great friend will put the state of your well-being above their own, purely because they care about you.

Finding people who are authentic can be a difficult feat, especially if you’ve always been let down by others.

Good friends are those who don’t live life purely for their own self-interest, but take pleasure in seeing you happy and well.

2. Respect

They’ll Never Bitch About You Behind Your Back

Good friends don’t play ‘Divide and Conquer’ anymore.

We haven’t played that game since we were about 10. An good friend won’t care much for your ‘reputation’ either, unless you’re some sort of criminal.

Great minds talk about ideas, average minds talk about events and small minds talk about people.

What is the main gist of your conversations with your ‘friendship group’? To what degree do you talk about ideas, events and people, as a percentage?

For me it’s about 50% ideas, 40% events and 10% people. And the 10% of time I spent talking about people, it’s mostly praise.

A good friend is not two-faced; they won’t slate you behind your back, because they have values which they adhere to, and because you’re an important person to them.

3. Selflessness

They Don’t Contact You Simply Because They Want Something

You know the type.

The people who contact you only when they have a favour to ask of you.

A friendship based on a bribe, is not friendship worth your time and effort. It is a façade, which will eat at you from your blind spot, leaving you helpless and angry.

In other words, you will be left taken for granted, time and again.

I’m sure you’ve had the so called ‘friend’ in the past; the one who will only contact you when they want something from you.

A good friend is a huge advocate and believer in ‘give and take’.

They’re not the type of person who will only contact you when they have a problem and require assistance. Because they care about you as a person, they will always be wondering how you’re getting on, even if you spend loads of time apart due to work and home responsibilities.

4. They’re The Most Genuine Beings On The Planet

They don’t succumb to the idea that money, looks, rank and accreditation is everything.

They don’t choose their friends based on physical attraction or popularity either.

They don't think they are better than anyone.

An authentic friend embraces their own flaws, as well as yours.

Being with them feels like having weight off your shoulders; you can comfortably be yourself and speak your mind.

Silhouette of two people in hoodies sitting under a tree and watching a pink sunset
Photo by Harli Marten / Unsplash

5. Trust and Honesty

They Practice The 3 Core Values Required For Relationship Survival

The three most important qualities and values required for any relationship to survive is trust, honesty and respect.

They’re one of the few people who you can trust completely. If you gave them your life on a plate, they’ll return it unscathed.

In fact, you will notice that your life has been returned with some extra polish!

In addition to trust, honesty is a quality which goes under the radar a lot, especially amongst friends.

Some people feel so intimidated by their ‘friend’ that they’re unwilling to criticise them when it matters most.

I feel that sometimes we need to be told the absolute truth.

When we’ve been extremely rude or horrible to another individual, a good friend will rip into your actions with a touch of love.

6-7. Inspirational and Admirable

Present During Your Struggle and During Your Success

One of my favourite and most admired qualities of a good friend. They will be there when you’re struggling to improve any area of your life, and will make sure they’re present during your triumphs too.

They don’t pick and choose which time to enter your life like they’re at a pic’n’mix sweet shop.

They’ll motivate and inspire you – and will hope that you’ll do the same for them.

I’ve spoken to a wide range of people who have said to me, “I don’t need friends, they’re not worth putting your time, effort, money, sweat and tears into.”

And to a certain extent they’re right…but in more ways they’re very wrong.

They haven’t defined what ‘friendship’ means to them, nor have they consciously sought out the kind of individuals they want to spend their time with.

They’ve just accepted what society has thrown at them.

Choose your friends wisely; quality should always take precedence over quantity.

Quality friendships can last a lifetime. Don't miss out on the best friendships by downloading this ebook: How to Build Healthier, Stronger Relationships.