4 Ways to Be a More Encouraging Friend.

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(ThyBlackMan.com) One of the best things about having friends is the support that they offer. When you find someone who cares about you and wants to see you win, it is a great feeling. As we go through life, we come into contact with all kinds of people and for those of us fortunate enough, the good ones become a part of our earthly journey.

I have a lot of friends. I have always been that social person on the playground that wants to be around everyone and have fun. At one point, counting up all of my girlfriends, I was poised to have nearly 15 bridesmaids (yeah, I know- that’s A LOT). What I’ve found about having friends is that you also have to be just as good a friend to the people who have your back. The world and the things that go on in it can make you forget that. But know that there are times you have to look in the mirror and ask yourself, “Am I an encouraging friend?”

This is an important question. If you find that, after some real self-evaluation, you can stand to be a better friend, here are some ways to do that.

Be Available

We can all get caught in the hustle and bustle of life. Take the time to consider how you make time for your friends. When you are a go-getter and trying to make things happen, if your friends are not in the same circles, you can lose touch with them. Try to make yourself more available for the people who have been there for you.

Open Up More

I know for me, I keep things to myself and rarely will I talk to a friend about the serious things going on in my life. They are there for me, but because I’ve had to deal with things over the years on my own, I don’t open up as much. Being an encouraging friend means that you have to show yourself vulnerable sometimes so that your friend knows that you understand where they are coming from. I am working on that.

Don’t Be Selfish

How many times have you been selfish with your time, energy, and money? Probably too many to remember. Being selfless is a cornerstone of being a good friend. I understand how the grind can cause you to be less giving, but that is no excuse. You have to show yourself willing to put things out there, on a variety of levels, in order to be an effective and or better friend.

Be Purposeful

Make it a habit to purposefully be encouraging. People go through a lot and although you may be close to someone, that doesn’t mean they tell you what they are really dealing with inside. Regardless if they spill their heart to you, make it a point to be positive and encouraging to them. You will be surprised how far that goes in a friendship.

Nothing can replace a dedicated and loyal friend. If you have even one in your corner, it is in your best interest to cultivate that relationship as much as possible because the old saying is definitely true; real friends are hard to come by.

Staff Writer; Rasheda Abdullah