1. People & Relationships
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Signs Of Healthy Friendships

Friends Who Are In a Good Place

By

Let's face it, great friendships are priceless. Good friends can lift your spirits, make you laugh, and remind you that you are loved. Is your friendship as strong as it can be? Here are traits that healthy friendships share.

Good Friends Are Real and Honest

Two couples having a drink & chatting
Photodisc//Getty Images

Friends make you feel comfortable with yourself, so you don't need to act like something you're not. Your friends know your shortcomings and love you anyway. You are perhaps the "best version" of yourself when you're with your friend.

To that end, a healthy friendship includes plenty of gentle honesty. Your friend won't lie to you, but they won't try and hurt your feelings either. As a result, you'll know where you stand with your friend and won't be afraid to share your true opinions.

Arguing in a Healthy Way

56679043.jpg
Medioimages/Photodisc/Getty Images

Great friends want their relationship to be solid, which means they aren't afraid to talk through disagreements. They argue with the intent of coming to a compromise in their friendship, which may mean that they agree to disagree sometimes. As a result of honest communication, healthy friendships won't let underlying tension or negativity linger very long. They address issues, forgive, and move on.

Encourage Other Friendships

Even if you have the best BFF imaginable, it doesn't hurt to expand your social circle. That's why great friends will nurture your relationship yet still encourage you to meet people and try new things without them. A healthy friendship means that sometimes the two of you spend time apart, and that's okay. Because your friend helps you be a strong version of yourself, you feel free to establish your own identity.

Trust

Oprah Winfrey and Gayle King
Jemal Countess/Getty Images

A healthy friendship has a large degree of trust. Just look at a friendship like the one between Oprah Winfrey and Gayle King. Gayle could probably share a lot of details about Oprah but she doesn't because the trust level between the two is high.

Trust means that you feel comfortable sharing your feelings or the details of your life because you know your friend won't gossip behind your back or throw it back in your face.

Respect Boundaries

Friends Who Are Opposites
Jamie Grill/Getty Images

Healthy friendships "feel" right to both parties involved. This means that one person isn't longing for more time together, acting clingy, or feeling ignored. A friendship like this may take some time to develop until there is a balance that works so both people can settle in to the relationship.

Nurture Each Other

Female Friends Enjoying an Afternoon
Henrik Sorensen/Getty Images

Any relationship worth having takes work, but that doesn't mean it has to be difficult. Spending time on the friendship in a variety of ways (cards, time together, phone calls, Facebook) can help keep it a priority for both individuals involved. While good friends don't need to spend time together constantly, they do think of each other regularly and take time to nurture their relationship.

 

Stay up to date on the latest Friendship news and learn more about meeting new people, forming friendships, and keeping great pals in your life. Sign up for our free Friendship newsletter today!

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.