Blog Post

How to be a better friend

The sacred space blog

We all want to be the best version of ourself and we should all want to be a good friend to others.
It is important with mental health rates affecting 1 in 4 people in their lifetime and suicide the biggest killer of men aged between 20-49, that we spread kindness, compassion and are empathetic to all.

Be mindful of your speech

Before you speak think.

Is what you are saying true?
Is it helpful?
Is it kind?
Is it necessary
Is it inspirational?

Word hurt people and have a lasting impression. Your words are a reflection of yourself and should always be kind and positive.

Listen do not hear

Have you ever been confiding in a friend about something important and know they are not listening to you. Yes they hear your words whilst glancing around the room, too busy with their own thoughts. They are not listening. I have experienced this many times and as an a very empathetic human I am always the one to help and listen to my friends. Therefore I used to find it very hurtful when I needed help that I was treated that way.

I have 2 points to make regarding this.

Firstly, do not be offended or hurt if someone is not listening to you. Yes, it can be hard. Their actions can come across rude and uncaring however do not be angry at them. They are not being mindful or fully conscious in the present because their mind is full of many thoughts and they are jumping from one to the next and they do not have the mental capability at that moment to help you.

That is ok, we are only human. If you find a friend is not listening stop speaking. Do not waste your energy, understand they are unable to help you and seek help from someone who is able to help.

Secondly, I will explain to you about mindful listening which is what you should always aim to do if someone is talking to you. You need to bring your conscious and thoughts to the present moment. Be aware of body language, your environment, unspoken words and tone of voice of yourself and others.

If you feel you have too much going on yourself to help someone, be honest. Being honest and saying ” I promise I am always here for you and we will get through your problems together. Today my mind is full of my own thoughts and I would not be able to help you in the way you deserve. As soon as my mind is more clear I will listen to everything you have to say.” It is ok to say no.

Be compassionate

Show compassion and kindness not just to others but also to yourself. Negative self talk and gossiping can become a bad habit that needs to be broken to be truly compassionate. If you notice negative thoughts pop into your mind stop them and replace them with something positive. Also if your friend is being negative about themselves stop them and teach them the importance of self love and acceptance.

7 tips to encourage self love

Boundaries

Set boundaries for yourself and be mindful of other people’s boundaries. There is nothing worse than someone stepping over your boundary or you bending your boundaries to be a people pleaser. Therefore, always treat others how you would want to be treated. Respect their boundaries and stop pushing something if you sense a person becoming uncomfortable or confrontational. Do not raise to the confrontation instead look at yourself in that present moment and be conscious of how your actions or words have affected someone.

Have a non judgemental attitude

Having a non judgemental attitude in one of the key concepts of Mindfulness. It’s become embedded in us that it is ‘normal‘ to judge others. I’m going to tell you that it is not normal and that mind set needs to end. Be open-minded towards everyone and every situation. Being judgemental you automatically feed yourself negative thoughts and emotions based on nothing but a judgement from your own mind. This is unhealthy for you and others.
Judging a person does not make you a good friend. You will hurt others and yourself. This does not mean you have to agree with everything someone says or does but it does mean that you do not judge them or make them feel bad about their life or choices.

Lastly, and most importantly…

If you miss someone call them and tell them.
If you haven’t heard from someone text them.
If your worried about someone call them, text them or go and see them.

Life is too short to wait and be dishonest about about our feelings. Double text people, pick up the phone and don’t be afraid to be honest about your feelings. It’s human nature to love and care. Spread kind words and love. Sometimes it is too late to tell people you love them.

My inbox on a social platforms are always open to anyone who needs someone to talk to. Your never alone.

Sending love and light to you all,

Alyssa x

(44) Comments

  1. Great post! I personally find it most difficult to not respond negatively if someone else is not listenening to me. I feel ignored and this is kryponite for any middle child like me. Hehe.
    Thank you!

    Roger Petersen
    Mind and Love

  2. This is such great advice. More people in the world should read this and understand what it is to be a better friend. I always try to do these things, but talking to people that ignore you is upsetting at times. You really are wise, thanks for posting this.

    1. Alyssa says:

      Thank you so much. I agree it can be upset, thank you for reading.

  3. Very good tips, especially the last one! A friend recently contacted me because she’d had a bad dream about me and I’m so glad she did as it gave me a chance to talk and she encouraged me to fix the issue. Boundaries are also so important as I’ve found – me and a friend had a bit of an issue about a year ago. He is my partner’s best friend and we’ve become friends too, but he became upset with me as I was making fun of him and he ended up getting really angry. My humour is very banter-focused/borderline offensive (basically I like you if I constantly mock you, if I never do I probably dislike you) but I hadn’t vocalised that to him, and he hadn’t vocalised to me that he automatically takes things personally. Communication is key! Now we have communicated and understood each other’s boundaries we are back to being friends again.

    1. Alyssa says:

      So true Hannah, communication is key! I’m glad you managed to resolve things with him and became friend again. Boundaries are so important.
      Thank you for taking the time to read and comment.

  4. This is the best post on friendship I have ever seen 😉
    We are all in great need of better friends and the best way to start is by changing our behaviours and become the best friend we would like to have. These tips are really a fantastic help to makes us think about that! Conscious hugs! 🙂

    1. Alyssa says:

      Thank you so much! Your support is so appreciated.

  5. Some great advice!! Will definitely keep these in mind!!
    Beautiful blog!!
    Love,
    Gratisoul

    1. Alyssa says:

      Thank you so much.

  6. This is such a good post and very thought-provoking! I guess the last point resonated with me because I know I am terrible at keeping in touch with people. It’s not because I don’t want to keep in touch, I just forget and before you know it another day, week or month has passed!
    Definitely great advice, thanks for sharing!

    Aimsy xoxo
    https://www.aimsysantics.co.uk

  7. This has really touched a nerve with me. I’m really struggling to connect with a friend of mine at the moment but I know she needs help. I’ve reached out to her in every possible way that I can but she becomes very insular when times get tough for her. I’m finding it hard to strike the balance between showing her I care and allowing her the space to deal with things in her own way. I just hope I’ve done enough. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the subject, it’s a toughie isn’t it?

    1. Alyssa says:

      I’m sure you have Rachael. It can be very difficult to know what is best to do for others. Sometimes people, no matter how much you help, need to do some soul searching or work alone. I can understand why that it is difficult for you and you sound like a very loving supportive friend. I hope your freind is ok. Thank you for reading.

  8. excellent tips. that you shared. It also give me the inspiration of tring this out with my friends.

    1. Alyssa says:

      Thank you Laura.

  9. Very good points and important information to consider when we value our relationships. Thank you!

    1. Alyssa says:

      Thank you Karen.

  10. This is so true! It’s so easy to feel annoyed when we realize we are being heard, like what we are saying is not important, however we need to stay mindful and see if they’re going through problems too or if they are just not the best type of friends, loved this post!

  11. Great tips and advice Alyssa. I will definitely be implementing these to help me be a better friend. Thank you

    1. Alyssa says:

      Thank you for reading.

  12. Thank you for sharing this, you raised really interesting points. Since I developed an ed I lost some friends. I find really hard to cope with people you didn’t make an effort to understand me. It was hard for me and hard for them. I certainly need to tell some of my friends that I miss them.

  13. Awesome post! I find it easier to talk and listen while doing a “fiddle” (such as at knit night where we are all playing with yarn while chatting) or it becomes too intense for me to be verbal.

    1. Alyssa says:

      Thank you so much for reading. That’s great you know what works for and helps you, we are all different.

  14. Some excellent advice here – it’s so important to consider how our words might affect other people. xxx

    Ashley
    https://lellalee.com

  15. Great post! I really like where you were discussing how to listen. So many times conversations generally go in the pattern of waiting for your turn to talk, it is enriching to have someone pay attention to what it is you say.

  16. I used to have a few friends who did some of these. They would listen but in their attempts to understand they would end up making it all about them so in the end I just stopped sharing and found a new circle which can be a very hard thing to do because for some moments you need to be okay with having nobody around you. This post is so nicely written and a very important read ♥

    1. Alyssa says:

      I know those friends, I also had a best friend of many years who did that and I ended up ending our friendship. Thank you so much for reading.

    1. Alyssa says:

      Thank you!

  17. Amazing advice and some that I needed to hear. I’ve certain people in my life that I can be telling my problems to and they make no attempt to listen, some of them it isn’t even because they have their own thing going on but because they are just plain rude. The ones that like to overrule your feelings and turn it around so then it becomes all about them, maybe I need new people to talk to! Haha.

    I’ve also been the same where somebody is telling me about things going on in their lives and my mind is just on something else, they mention something and then it triggers something in my mind and im then concentrating more on the thought that listening, we are strange beings and sometimes it’s weird how we work! 🙈

    I’m going to make a conscious effort to try out the mindful listening and tell people too if I don’t have the listening mode switched on.

    Thanks for sharing!
    Much Love,
    Laura
    https://www.directlylaura.com

    1. Alyssa says:

      Thank you so much for your comment. Your comment is greatly appreciated!

  18. Great tips Alyssa. Loved the last point if you miss someone call them. A lot of people should practice this more.
    And as much as we need good friends…we ourselves should be good friends too x

    1. Alyssa says:

      Very true Pat, thank you for reading.

  19. This is such a lovely post. I know so many people who should read this!

    1. Alyssa says:

      Thank you Chloe!

  20. These are really wonderful tips. I think that listening and not just hearing, as well as acting with true empathy and mindfulness are really the cornerstones of a good relationship. Thank you for the prompt to be the best version of myself!

    1. Alyssa says:

      Thank you for reading.

  21. great post! and great tips! thank you for sharing!

    1. Alyssa says:

      Thank you so much for reading!

  22. This is a really great post! I talk a LOT.. so I see people spacing out when I am talking all the time and have been hurt by it on occasion. Especially because when my friends need me I am always there to really listen. This is really good advise, I too have gotten distracted with my own thoughts so it shouldn’t be hard to understand that others do the same. Thanks you!

  23. … [Trackback]

    […] There you will find 58473 more Infos: thesacredspaceap.com/2019/03/23/how-to-be-a-better-friend/ […]

  24. Such a great post. I was able to connect with this on a personal level, thank you so much for this !😊

    1. Alyssa says:

      Thank you so much for taking the time to read and respond.

  25. Really fantastic article here! It’s so easy to hear someone as opposed to truly listening to them, which is unfortunate, but it’s just one of those things that everyone needs to be aware of.

    Great work!

    1. Alyssa says:

      Thank you so much for taking the time to read and respond.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *