post written by: Marc Chernoff

10 Things Your Friends Wish You Knew


10 Things Your Friends Wish You Knew

Friends are the ones who know you as you are, understand where you have been, accept who you have become, and still encourage you to grow.  These people are special, and they should be treated as such.

Yet, sometimes you get so consumed with your own issues that you forget the basic principles of nurturing these relationships.  So it’s time to re-learn the little things you should know to help your friends smile wider as they walk beside you on the road of life.

Here are some friendly reminders:

  1. Your time is the best gift you can give. – In your relationships with others, nothing you can give is more appreciated than your sincere, focused attention.  It is indeed one of the most valuable things you can contribute to any relationship.  Being with someone, listening without a clock and without anticipation of results, teaches you about love.  In other words, the success of love is in the loving – it is not in the result of loving.  So don’t listen with an agenda or the intent to reply.  Hear what is being said with the intent to truly understand.  Read The 5 Love Languages.
  2. You have the power to make a big difference. – Everyone in life wants to be loved and accepted.  Your greatest achievements in life will be the direct result of finding this love and acceptance within yourself, and radiating it out to those around you.  So believe in your power to make a difference.  You truly are far more influential than you realize.  In each moment that you connect with another, you have the opportunity to etch a loving, inspiring memory into their minds forever.
  3. What makes us different is what makes us special. – Don’t be too quick to judge others (friends or otherwise) or bully them for being different.  And don’t put up with those who call you “a friend” and then judge and bully you.  Respect originality.  Welcome originality.  Be original.  Let go of the foolish need to prove yourself to everyone else, and you’ll free yourself to accomplish what matters most to you.  Sometimes you have to remind yourself that you don’t have to always be and do what everyone else is being and doing.  Be sure to remind your friends of this too, and support them as they pave their own path.
  4. Love is meant to be shared. – So many people save their ‘loving.’  They consciously avoid putting their heart into their relationships, surrendering, opening up, and sharing, because they want to save it all for the right people (best friends, lovers, etc.) and passions.  But the problem is when the right people or passions come along they don’t realize it, they don’t know how to open up, and they don’t know anything about the act of loving.
  5. You have to love yourself too. – The best thing you can do to improve the quality of your relationships is to work on loving and healing yourself.  It’s not the fact that you’re feeling angry, disgusted, helpless, anxious, defeated, or fearful that’s the problem.  The problems arise when you’re unaware of what you’re feeling and why – when you don’t know how or when to calm yourself down, pick yourself up, change your thoughts, and let go of the emotions that are prolonging your suffering.  Because when you lose control of these things, you end up losing your temper and taking your negative emotions out on those you care about most.  Read The Mastery of Love.
  6. Praise and recognition matters. – Give genuine praise.  Recognizing the contributions of others is a mighty act of service.  This is an investment in them that doesn’t cost you a thing, and the returns can be amazing.  Be sure to follow this rule: “Praise in public, penalize in private.”  Never publicly ridicule someone you care about.  Even in a disagreement there is an opportunity to be a guiding light, and restore happiness to the relationship, if you speak the truth out of love to help another learn and grow.
  7. Small gestures of kindness go a long way. – It seems like such a small thing, but in our busy lives we often forget that a kind word, a helping hand, or just a smile and a quick “thank you” can create a bright spot in another person’s life.  And the best part is, when you help those around you smile, their smiles will help you smile too.
  8. Without honesty there is no friendship. – Honesty is the first chapter in the book of all wisdom.  Honesty is the only path forward.  It’s always better to tell people the truth up front.  So don’t play games with people’s heads and hearts.  Telling the truth and making someone cry is better than telling a lie and making someone smile.  Speak and live the truth – the whole truth – all day, every day.  Read The Four Agreements.
  9. Loyalty means the world. – True love and real friendship aren’t about being inseparable.  These relationships are about two people being true to each other even when they are separated.  When it comes to relationships, remaining faithful is never an option, but an obligation.
  10. Reaching out and staying in touch is important. – Stay in touch with those who matter to you, not because it’s convenient, but because they’re worth the extra effort.  Remember, you don’t need a certain number of friends, just a number of friends you can be certain of.  Paying attention to these people is always a priority.

Photo by: Yug and Her

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26 Comments

  • I love, love your posts and eagerly wait to read each new one; like I have said many times your wisdom truly amazes me! Every point in this blog is valid but #1 really blew me away this time.

    Hope you realise Marc and Angel, how much good your posts do and also they are so much appreciated.

  • Friendship is essential. The reflections of being nice, honest, compassionate and friendly create an environment of bliss all around. Your articles are Inspiring, Invigorating and Uplifting. The path to Happiness is within oneself. Love is the mightiest Power in the world. Thanks for this.

  • Marc and Angel, your posts are always lovely. Your blog has really helped me in life. I’ve recommended your site to my friends and loved ones. Thanks for everything. I appreciate it.

  • Love this! Friendship is a blessing. The success of love is in the loving…

    Thanks for the reminders.

  • I truly believe that small gestures of love and kindness go a long way Marc which is similar to your posts, :) These posts are like those acts of kindness for which I cannot show my gratitude to you. It feels great to have you there. Thanks.

  • There you go again. You just nailed it again, like always. I’ve always focused on genuine relationships with people. Your pointers give so much clarity.

  • Definitely food for our souls here. I hesitated on this one: “Small gestures of kindness go a long way.” It seems like this reminder has been popping up to me in interesting ways this past week, and I’ve been meditating on this. I’ve been thinking about this not just in the context of friendship, but for strangers too. This is how we should be everywhere and everyday.
    Thank you for your writings.

  • Human beings are social creatures, but it’s important to choose the “right” friends. Have a friend who thinks they need to “buy” your friendship (and vice versus) isn’t a friend at all. True friends will be there for you no matter what. True friends won’t dump you if you move 2,000 miles away. They’ll be mature enough to respect the fact that you need to make changes in your life. It has nothing to do with them.

  • Great article. Struggling to pick my favorite point. Probably #1 - “Your Time Is The Biggest Gift You Can Give”, just swings it for me.

  • Thanks for great reminder!

  • Man, this was a great reminder for me. I’ve been living in Costa Rica for the past 14 months and it’s been too easy to “forget” about life back home. Every time I go back to visit friends and family they always ask me when I’m moving back. I chalk that up to them being sweet and caring about me, but this last trip back home it was different. They weren’t different, they said and did the same things, but I was different. I truly heard them this time, and I truly got that they really do want me back. They miss me, and they miss who I am to them. If you’re living abroad, I highly recommend that you reach out to your friends and family at least once/week (via phone or skype, not Facebook). We have to remember that people need us, and we need them. Great post you guys.

  • ” Never publicly ridicule someone you care about”… Very true, and not just those you care about, no one deserves public ridicule. Thanks for a great post! :)

  • :-) Loved this post. Well done.

  • I fortuitously fell upon your website one day when I was feeling extraordinarily defeated by love and life in general. I have continued to come back to this site every day since. Each time I make my visit, your words are consistently elevating for my mind and therefore my spirit :) Never-ending thanks.

  • Thank you both for your wonderful words. I am happy to have found your site. And I really appreciate this friendship advice.

  • Brilliant! Praise and encouragement are the best tools ever for building relationships!

  • Speaking of friendship, we consider each of you a friend, and we truly appreciate your presence in our lives.

    As always, thank you for the warm comments.

    Now back to working on the ebook… :)

  • Always love your posts…so insightful and healing.

  • This is a great list. Too many times we forget how the little things do go a long way. I am always looking for new and often old ways of keeping my friends close. I have been recently reading Women I Want to Grow Old With, and it has really opened my eyes to ways of keeping my friends in my life for the long haul! Posts like these are a great supplement to that process as well! If anyone wants to check out this book I got it at womeniwanttogrowoldwith.com. Thanks again for this post, I appreciate it so much!

  • I love the friendship advice here. So true. Thank you for posting. I look forward to your everyday words of wisdom. All my best to you and Angel.

  • The premise of this post reminds me of the quote: “Truly great friends are hard to find, difficult to leave, and impossible to forget.”

  • Great reminders. Thanks for the encouragement. I intend to apply a few of these ideas to my relationships immediately.

  • Really really really loved this post. Great relationship advice for sure. Thank you so much.

  • Your advice and quotes are awesome. Good read.

  • Wow! Fantastic blog…I was looking for some quotes & photos about friendship then, I found your site. I enjoyed reading your post, I love it so.

  • Very nice and definitely some ideas to reinforce in my life. Thanks.

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