Have you ever wondered why everyone, around you has a best friend, well some even have more than one best friend and you don’t? How do they do it? Why are you so unlucky??
We all have siblings, relatives but we can’t share our intimate feelings with them all the time, because of conflict of interests or maybe because they have formed certain biases about us, having known us so closely. Whatever, our respective reasons, we all need, friends who share similar interests, whom we can turn to in times of need, when we feel that our families just won’t get it. Friends who can make us see reason when we are losing it, friends who are well meaning, who are not our family but care about us just as much, are there for us, they hurt when we hurt. ‘Man is a social animal’, as Aristotle rightly observed, he needs to be part of a society. Friends are proof of his acceptance in ‘society’. When this very basic need of ‘acceptance in society’ is not met, he is miserable. You will see that the happier, people generally have lots of friends while the loner is often associated with sadness.
Though being a loner, can totally be a choice, so what we are discussing here are not people who don’t interact much because they don’t want to, but those who really want and try to but are mostly avoided by others. It can be hurtful, so giving some thought to the points below might help you realize, where you could be lacking and what you can do to make better friends.
You love to talk, when the topic is ‘you’ but the minute, it moves on to someone else you, zone out. You are hearing but not listening. You stay quiet, only as long as you can’t think of anything else to talk about, regarding yourself. You may not even bother to feign interest at times. Next time, you are interacting with someone, check yourself, are you just going on and on yourself or are you listening to what the other person has to say too?
In order to make good friends, it is absolutely necessary that you hear and understand when others speak their hearts out. Make sure to give substantial input. A good listener probes, asks questions, reflects, thinks about the other person’s problems and tries to come up with solutions. It takes time and effort but that’s the cost that good friends come at.
2. You Connect With Others Only When You Need To
You only remember to call or check up on someone, when you either need something or are bored out of your wits. It is never for them or to see how they are doing, because you couldn’t care less. It is always for ‘you’. When you are so self-centered, you just cannot expect others to treat you any differently. Friendship is give and take. That is why ‘takers’ lose out on good friendships.
So it is a good idea to leave a message or drop a call just to say ‘hi’. Sometimes, we go without contacting our friends for so long, we don’t even know what is happening in their lives, may be they have some good news or may be, they suffered from some blow. We are so wrapped up in our lives that we fall totally out of sync, if we are good friends, we feel bad in time to make up for our unavailability. But if we are not bothered, or worst still, accuse the other person of not telling us what’s been going on, than we are just not being good friends. Consequently, we cannot expect others to be there in our hour of need either.
3. People Are Uncomfortable Around You
Some people are particularly skilled in bringing up topics, that have others shifting in their seats. It could be the job they lost, the guy who cheated on them or the baby they are not having. If you are one of those people who ask others such questions, which could hit a sore spot, you need to stop doing that as soon as possible. Try to put yourself in the other person’s situation, if those are questions you would not like to be asked, then why ask them of others. Compassion, feeling the other person’s pain, as it were your own one of the essential components of good friendship.
Make people comfortable around you, so that they want to open up themselves. One way you can do this, is by staying away from subjects, you know they might be struggling with, unless they themselves initiate about what’s ailing them. Another way, you can put people at ease, is by avoiding judgment. If you keep passing harsh judgments on every other person you know, the person you are talking to will take that as a cue that you will judge them too. Thus, they will keep from divulging their deep dark secrets to you and you will never be able to form a deeper bond with them.
People who are very judgmental, unforgiving, whine and ask a lot of unwelcome questions can make others uneasy. They can suck positive energy out of others and leave them unhappier than they found them. Therefore, anyone’s natural response would be to steer clear of such energy vampires. If you indulge in any negative behavior like this, it is still not too late to change yourself. Make amends and you will attract true friendship in your life.
4. You Are Clingy
To attract friends in your life, you need to strike a balance. If you connect with others only at your whims, you come off as selfish. On the contrary if you incessantly keep calling or messaging others, you end up turning them off. People can sense it from afar, if you are needy; once they do, they run for their lives.
Clinginess is a major repellant, it is interpreted by others, as responsibility. Needy people demand a lot of time, they pin too many hopes on others and most people find these expectations a burden. As it is not possible to entertain and solve another’s issues 24/7. It is quite like the saying that, relationships are like holding sand in your hand, if you hold it loosely, it stays in place, the minute you clench your fist, it starts to run through your finger. So the more the needy person tries to hold on to friends, the more they slip from between their fingers. Hence, if you are the obsessive type who leaves 15-20 missed calls for no good reason. Please stop, just make it one or maximum two, plus a message. If the other person wants to, they will get back to you when they are free. Do not push it, know when to stop. You lose respect, when you keep going without getting a response from the other person. No matter how nice or well-intentioned you are, people do not like to develop close relationships with, those they do not respect.
5. You are Downright Boring
If you are not like the voiceless Mr. Bean, than probably you keep blabbering about, topics that, perhaps fascinate you only. If you have been talking for a good 5 minutes, and the person in front of you has been looking here and there or checking their watch one too many times, maybe you should reconsider your topic. Ask them something about themselves instead. The quickest way to get someone talking is to ask questions concerning their selves. If you still do not manage to provoke a response, then you know it’s not you but the other person who is downright boring.
For any interaction to, turn into a genuine bond of friendship it is necessary to stay at par, make sure you add to the conversation equally. Stay involved and keep the other person involved. Who said making real friends was easy?!