“To have a friend and be a friend is what makes life worthwhile.” ~Unknown
Studies show that perhaps the most important component of psychological well-being is not family, material possessions, or career successes, but rather our friendships.
For someone like me, that is terrifying news.
I have few friends. There are several reasons for that: I’ve moved often throughout my life, I’m an introvert, I was always deeply afraid of rejection. But the root cause was that I never learned how to be a friend.
Books and movies became my source of information about friendship and as a result I had wildly unrealistic expectations. People constantly disappointed me; I was hurt by and fought with every significant friend in my life.
My inability to create and maintain authentic relationships brought me great pain. I wrote myself off as a loser, inherently flawed, and doomed to be friendless. Luckily, I realized I could teach myself to be a better friend and build meaningful connections.
Now, I actively seek out new friendships, evaluate my current ones, and fully invest in continuing those that have all the elements of an amazing friendship. It isn’t easy, but it’s worth it.
It is never too late to learn to be an amazing friend.