Friends play an important role in our lives. Often they are the ones whom we
turn to for help and comfort more than our own parents. Yet, it is not easy
to maintain a friendship. Like any other relationship, it involves some
effort on our part.
First and foremost, keep in touch with your friends.
Do not neglect them no matter how busy you are. With the advancement in
technology, many people do not have difficulty staying connected through the
e-mail and the telephone. You should also spend time doing activities you
both enjoy. Set a time to meet once a week and hang out together. Remember
their birthdays and other important dates.
Apart from that, be a good listener. Many friends like to share their
problems but they are sometimes bad listeners. It is important that you do
not judge their views or opinions. Just give them a listening ear and give
advice only when asked.
In a healthy friendship, there are bound to be arguments. Agree from the
start that no matter how difficult a situation is, your priority is to
remain friends. You may feel hurt, angry and disappointed when you disagree
with a friend. This is normal. It is how we manage an argument that is
important in maintaining friendships. When you are hurt and angry, do not
blame or lash back at the person nearest to you. Then, allow your friend to
finish her arguments and do not try to interrupt. If it helps, agree to
think about the situation and come to an agreement later. You should be
honest and resolve the situation even though you may still disagree with one
another. Respect each other's opinion. Be the first to apologise even if you
feel you have done nothing wrong. Send a card if you find it difficult to
face him or her.
In addition, never betray their trust. You should not divulge whatever
secrets told to you unless you have permission to do so. If you cannot keep
a secret which had been told in confidence, you lose the trust of your
friend. Many a friendship has been broken because of this.
Another important thing to do to maintain friendships is to be
supportive. Be willing to sacrifice your time and effort to help your
friends. Some may just need your moral support or your presence. Be happy
and celebrate their victories and suffer with them in times of sorrow and
It is very easy for some of us to make friends, but to maintain
friendships, you need to reach out and be willing to get hurt, to be
inconvenienced, to understand rather than to be understood, to give and to
love. Happy is the person who finds a true friend for he or she has found a