Relationships, in general, are needed for each of us to feel connected, wanted and appreciated. Regardless if these relationships are family, partner or friends, they can be a powerful advantage for our life. Research tells us that good relationships improve our mental, emotional and physical health.
Most of us have friendships where we can relax, have fun and share those intimate secrets. Our friends are those who never judge us, keep us on track, care about us and are always there when things get a bit tough. They are our grounding people always ready to help us out.
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Like all relationships, those with friends need certain boundaries. There are some protocols to follow to ensure they flourish, not wither or burn. The following points are those we find that can damage or ruin a friendship. Avoiding these can keep your friendships healthy, connected and long-lasting. If you have a friend that is doing these, perhaps a rethink on the health of that relationship is in order. A friendship should add to the fun and enjoyment of our life, not cost us in stress or hurt. As you read, ask yourself, have you ever done, or perhaps doing, any of these?
Is it all about you all the time?
Taking time to listen to your friends’ stories, issues or success is essential in any friendship. Rather than turning a conversation of their success or heartache about yourself, listen, empathise or congratulate them leaving your experience out of it. This is about them, not you.
Although life can be challenging, it is nice to have some conversations that are not about your issues all the time. Many of our friends are going through their own problems and when you meet up and complain about your life, that awful job, your terrible parents, your annoying partner, this can result in your friend switching off to protect themself from going down with you.
None of us should accept incessant complaining from friends any more than you expect them to put up with it from you. If your friend can’t seem to stop complaining, point it out respectfully and change the subject.
Use words cautiously.
Regardless of how well we know our friend, harsh words can damage and cut to our core.