There isn’t much in this world better than deep friendship. It gives us happiness, good times and good health. Being a better friend is not only about having fun together, it’s also about being there for the ups and downs, while providing advice and support. It reinforces mankind’s relational nature given by God and reminds us of our purpose—to be more like Him. But it doesn’t always come easy. Sometimes, we have to consider how to be a better friend.
You might have let a guy down when he counted on you. Or more likely, you’ve drifted apart from the friends in your life. You’re all so busy, with full work lives, full family lives and full schedules. But you want to know how to be a better friend and enjoy the bonds of deep friendship again.
Good news! You’ve already taken the first step to find out how you can better yourself. I’ve been speaking about men’s friendships for decades, looking at the research and talking to guys all around the country. Based on everything I’ve learned; these are the five keys to learning how to be a good friend.
“Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other.” —1 John 4:11
5 Keys of Retaining A Fruitful Friendship
- Be Intentional – Being intentional in your friendships means actively choosing to invest time, effort, and emotion into it. You have to make a conscious decision to prioritize your friend and their well-being. This might mean setting aside dedicated time for regular catch-ups, checking in on their life, and being present in the moment when you’re together. By showing that you value and prioritize the friendship, you’re demonstrating a sincere commitment to being a better friend.
- Be Committed – The best friendships get to a deep level when two or more friends make a clear commitment between friends to be a part of each other’s lives. It means showing up and being reliable, dependable, and dedicated to your friend. When you make plans, honor those commitments. You won’t just pass on a couple weekends with this guy every once in a while. You’ll go through life together and learn how to be a better friend every day.
- Be Consistent – Set up a time to meet every week to catch up with your friend and don’t miss it! That’s how to be a good friend for the long haul. It’s vitally important for knowing what’s really going on in the other guy’s heart. You’ll be able to give and receive better insights with intimate knowledge of each other’s dreams and struggles, rely on the continued support and inspire spiritual growth for one another.
- Be Open – None of the above will work if you can’t be open with each other. Create a space where everyone can be honest and have vulnerable conversations without the worry of their stuff getting spread publicly. For your part, it means being willing to share your thoughts, feelings, and experiences, as well as actively listening to your friends when they do the same. Once you’ve learned how to be a better friend, you’ll be open to deeper connection and foster a sense of trust for your friendship to grow.
- Be Like Jesus – Jesus demonstrated all the behaviors above. He gave us the perfect model to learn how to be a good friend. Study His servant-leadership, compassion, understanding and forgiveness. Ask Him to help you become more like Him, showing unconditional love, patience, and forgiveness. This not only strengthens your bonds but also reflects the love of God in your relationships.
Ready for a deeper dive on how to be a better friend? Download the Playbook for Level 5 Friendship today.