The thing about friendship is that it can go sour at one point. Some friends grow apart through the years while others just have a falling out for one reason or two. However, most of the time, friendships are ruined just because someone made a mistake.
In this modern world where all it takes is a tap of a finger to unfriend each other, having long lasting friendships has almost become tricky. To ensure that you can keep your squad for as long as you want, here are the top 5 mistakes people make in friendships that you should avoid at all cost.
1. Having Idealistic Expectations
It is impossible connect if you set every single term and condition. This is why it is important to watch out for those unrealistic expectations that you sometimes bring in friendship and how these can get you disappointed even before you start.
You need to sacrifice your lengthy list of demands, expectations, and wants. You have to be willing enough compromise and turn things over as needed. Best friends won’t force you into wearing clothes you are no comfortable. Instead, they will ditch their own expectations and support your choice of wearing baggy clothes as you please.
If you are always disappointed in the way that your friends don’t meet your need for encouragement, you are probably expecting them to give you a validation that they can’t give in the first place. If your friends are also having a hard time themselves, you cannot expect them to provide you with the validation you want.
When it comes to friendships, you have to bring your own unique identity instead of trying to take your own identity from your friends. A friendship based on your identity, faith and idea is the healthiest kind of friendship worth nurturing.
2. Allowing a Single Mistake to Kill Your Friendship
Maybe you forgot about your movie date with your friends or you made fun of something about your friend that you shouldn’t have. For friendships that are just getting started, there are times when just one wrong move is enough to make you feel that it has come to an end.
However, it is not the mistake itself but how you deal with that mistake that has a longer lasting impact on your friendship. A genuine apology and making an effort to ensure that it doesn’t happen again is sometimes all it takes for the friendship to bounce back.
Disappearing out of thin air just because you feel ashamed is going to kill your friendship faster than the mistake itself that you made.
3. Spending Too Much or Too Little Time Together
Yes, it can be downright fun to hang out with your friends but every person in this planet also needs and deserves some alone time from time to time. If most of your free time is spent with your friends, you might feel a bit smothered. For your friendship to work, you have to ensure that you and your friends don’t get too clingy. Your friendship shouldn’t stop you from spending your time with your family and loved ones.
On the other hand, you still need to spend time together or talk regularly if you are living in different cities. If you cannot find some time for your friends, it is likely that you don’t even need that friendship.
4. Thinking That You Don’t Need Friends in Your Life
Some of the loneliest and unhappiest people are those who always tell themselves that they don’t really need friends or those who believe that they are much better off without friends in the first place. Well, here’s the truth. You need friends.
Yes, you might feel like you are already better off with the few friends you have. But, you will realize how unhappy and lonely this can make you feel.
Why is it that some people want more friends but still tell themselves that they don’t need them? The answer is simple. There are those who had bad experiences with their friends in the past and this is what served as their basis for not wanting to make new friends.
To convince yourself that you are not afraid of getting hurt, you try to think of reasons why you don’t need more steps. For friendships to work, be honest with how you need your friends and more of them in your life. It will help you break free from the frustrations and tension that often happens in friendships.
5. You Don’t Really Listen
It is all too easy to fall into this common trap if you have become too comfortable with the friendship. You have been spending so much time with the person that you can even tell what they want to say by just looking into their eyes. The tendency is that you always interrupt whatever they are trying to say and miss some important details all because you already formed your own assumptions. After some time, there will be more miscommunications and misunderstandings that remain unsolved.
If you want your friendship to work, never think that you already know what your friends are going to say. Just so you know, listening is active and not passive. Try to hone your skills in active listening by ignoring or removing any distraction. The best active listeners are also keen observers and they know how to identify communication cues like body language or tone of voice.
Good active listeners also ask follow-up questions before giving their own input. For all you know, your friend only needs your sympathetic ear and not your advice.
Honing your skills in active listening can change your friendships for the better as well as other types of relationships that you have in your life.
Friendships are wonderful but they also have their own fair share of ups and downs. This is why you need to nurture these connections in the best way that you can do. Avoid these top 5 mistakes people make in friendships so you can be well on your way to a happy and better life.