6 Qualities A Friend Should Have According To Psychology


Maintaining friendships is a really important aspect of our lives. Generally, most people have a sense of what it takes to be a good friend – don’t talk about the other person behind their back or flirt with their boyfriend, for example. However, psychology shows that there are specific features of a relationship that are important for a friendship to succeed. Often, friendships end because one or both people did not have these qualities. If you’d like to learn what 6 qualities a friend should have, keep reading. 



  • Trust

Science shows that trust is one of the most important qualities of a good friend. It’s important to have friends who you can trust because a great friendship involves confidentiality. If you don’t feel you can talk about personal things with your friend, then that friendship is not one to keep. As Suzanne Degges-White Ph.D. writes for Psychology Today, “Any breach [of trust], regardless of perceived magnitude, can devastate a relationship.”


  • Dependability

A part of being a great friend is being dependable. If your friend is not there for you during hard times and vise-vera, then perhaps the friendship is fizzling out. While it is possible to rekindle friendships that are not what they used to be, sometimes, people just grow apart.


  • They Uplift You

Friends don’t make you feel bad about yourself. In fact, when you are with your friends, you should feel a sense of comfort and easiness. If you are getting anxious around your friends, then this might be a sign that there is a deeper issue with the relationship.


For example, if your friend makes backhanded compliments or insults your job, then they are not properly uplifting you. The best course of action in this scenario is to consider what might be making your friend make such comments; perhaps they are dealing with some things they don’t feel they can tell you about and are taking it out on you.


  • Listening

Good listeners are rare. Nevertheless, your friends should be able to listen to you vent without focusing on themselves or talking only about how their experiences relate to you. Even suggesting ways to fix the problem can be aggravating when you just need to get it all off your chest. Sometimes, people need a shoulder to cry on.


  • Honesty

White lies are sometimes necessary, but true honesty is a very important quality in a friend and person in general. Honesty comes in many forms, but arguably the most important is honesty in communication. Disagreements should be met always with in-person discussion as opposed to gossiping with other friends.


  • There’s No Competition

If you feel like you and your friend are always competing against each other, then it might be time to reevaluate the friendship. Real friends don’t compete with each other in any way. In fact, real friends will accept each other for who they are without feeling like they have to show off and show out.


If you had friendships you had to end because they weren’t being good to you, let us know what criteria they missed in the comments below.

See also: How To Make Connections As An Introvert

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