“Some people want the responsibility of an acquaintance with the perks of a best friend…”
When I Think of friendship, specific people in my life pop up before others. Some friends live closer and others farther away, but it is not necessarily their proximity that makes them good friends. There are qualities that we all can glean from in being the best best friend we can be, but to dive into being the best best friend, I want to first confront the different kind of friendships. There are plenty, and we can have healthy friendships of all kinds.
The following categories are both terminology of my own making as well as general terminology in our English language.
Acquaintances are those people that we know about, hang around or otherwise see on occasion, but rarely purposefully. We see them only when obligated by work or geographical proximity.
A general Friend is one you know and enjoy, but I like to break it off into some sub-groups, including, Catch-up Friend, Hang-out Friend, and a Group Friend.
A Catch-up Friend is one that you don’t see often, although you love to talk to and hear about what’s been going on in their life. A Hang-out Friend on the other hand, you know what they’re up to, so when you hang out there can be either deep discussion or Netflix going on and neither party questions the friendship. A Group Friend is often affiliated with your hang out friend, although you either feel semi awkward being alone with them, or you’ve never been in that scenario to know.
Now that all of this has been established, here comes the…
Real talk- some people want the responsibility of an acquaintance with the perks of a best friend, or a hang-out friend. One of the MOST important things to remember in any relationship is it is as much your responsibility as it is theirs.
Communication is the cornerstone of a friendship, and I am so thankful that I have friends that aren’t afraid to hit me up. I really need it sometimes, even when I don’t want anyone around. In that same way, I want to never forget to hit them up. They desire your affirmation as much as you wish for theirs.
Never become entitled to someone else’s phone call or praise.
Withholding compliments and encouragement from your friends is worse then seeing their zipper down and not telling them. It’s an abstract example but you get the concept; when your friend is doing awesome, tell them! On the other end, when they’re not doing awesome, remind them that even though the circumstance isn’t gravy, they’re still awesome!
Live in gratitude and service.
That person who is your friend or who you really want to be best friends with is going through life. There’s things they need to get accomplished when you have free time, so why not give them a hand? Offer to, if nothing else, be with them so that they don’t feel like they’re doing it alone. Don’t keep credits and debits for and against each other. Just serve in the theme of serving, and be grateful for friendship and the opportunity to share of yourself.
Friendship are amazing, so don’t take them lightly. Don’t overwhelm people and expect them to want to be your bestie, but at the same time, when someone is looking to drain you, don’t feel bad to let that friendship drift into another category. Make your best friends the ones that you can invest in and are willing to invest into you. Keep those good catch-up friends and keep catching up and encouraging each other. Keep those group friends and have fun with them and discuss all of life together! Keep those acquaintances and encourage them and look out for them when you can.
Let those who try to make you into what they need-the ones that use you, the ones that are content with mediocrity or encourage you to do wrong or unhealthy things-fall to the side. Pray for them, but don’t feed from their land. Their fruit is unpruned and selfish, rotten and destructive.
When you are the best friend you can be, and are being fed by the best of friends; you refresh one another. From there, have the energy to serve people without any need for anything in return. The best best friend becomes the best acquaintance, and any kind of friend.