Of all of the relationships in your life, your friendships are probably the ones that seem least rocky. Marriages have their struggles and strife. Parents and children go through their own trials and tribulations. But, through it all, friends remain tried and true. It’s really odd when you think about it. The friends you choose don’t stick with you out of obligation; there’s no friendship license that you sign, and though they may feel like your brothers and sisters, you aren’t really bound by blood the way you are with your actual siblings. So, what makes friendship so special that it defies legal and biological bonds to be some of the most meaningful relationships in life? It all boils down to choice. Being an intentional friend and forging lasting friendships all come down to the intentional choices that you make each and every day.
Curious about how to become a more intentional friend? Check out these three simple tenets.
Choose to Be There, Even When You Don’t Have to Be
The best friends—and incidentally, the most intentional friends—are the ones that choose to be there, even when they don’t have to be. They’re the ones that show up to lend a helping hand in your greatest hour of need, and they’re also the ones that offer a comforting presences even when the need is not so great.
If you’re wanting to become a more intentional friend, the first choice you have to make is just to be there—whatever that means to your friends. Let them know that you’re a steady influence, someone that can be relied upon in any circumstance: good or bad.
Choose to Forgive Your Friends, Even When They Hurt You
While we’re on the subject of bad circumstances, it’s important to note that intentional friends choose to forgive one another, even when they’ve been hurt.
Now, that’s not to say, though, that intentional friends are doormats or that they condone manipulation or abuse. They simply recognize that all relationships, even friendships, take work. And not everyone gets along 100 percent of the time. That ability to accept another person’s humanity is what sets intentional friends apart from fair weather friends.
Choose to Love One Another, Through Thick and Thin
At the heart of all intentional friendships is love. Not romantic love, but the kind of love that endures through thick and thin.
Intentional friends choose to love one another, no matter what. Distance may separate them, and circumstances may test them, but intentional friends stay true. And that’s the beauty of intentional friendship.