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What Makes a Good Friend

What Makes a Good Friend

Communication is an integral aspect of successful friendships. Friends include workplace colleagues, social networks based on day-to-day interactions, social media connections, and even people in need. Effective communication leads to enduring friendships. One of the characteristics of successful communication is listening. Friends should listen to one another keenly without interruption to understand one another’s needs. Listening is not only limited to word of mouth but also paying attention to non-verbal cues such as body language and facial expressions (Brown et al. 172). Another feature associated with successful communication friendships is empathy. Empathy emanates from emotional intelligence, whereby one connects with their friend’s situation emotionally (Brown et al. 214). For instance, if a friend is expressing an unfortunate circumstance they have undergone, the other party should not interject them to explain how they have experienced a similar situation before. Instead, they should listen carefully and, at the very least, express their sympathies. Also, effective communication between friends should be two-way. That means that once one party gives their opinion, they should also listen to their friend’s perspective.

Conversely, one of the factors that may limit effective communication between friends is preoccupation with oneself. When one party in a communication process is preoccupied with self, they may reply in such a way that prevents them from grasping the message (Pfeiffer 2). Also, emotional blocks hinder effective communication between friends. For instance, a white friend may refer to their black counterpart as ‘colored’ because they were raised in an environment where such a reference was permissible (Pfeiffer 2). Also, hostility arising from past experience may inhibit effective communication between friends (Pfeiffer 3). For instance, a friend expressing their desire to offer help may be met with hostility by another party, who may take that as disregard of their capabilities.

In summary, effective communication is fundamental to friendship endurance. Successful communication incorporates active listening, empathy, and a two-way communication process. On the other hand, preoccupation with self, emotional blocks, and hostility hinder effective communication between friends. It is incumbent upon all parties in the relationship to be self-aware and understand the characteristics of an effective communication process to alleviate misunderstanding.

Works Cited

Brown Sr, Michael A., and Leigh Hersey, eds. Returning to interpersonal dialogue and understanding human communication in the digital age. IGI Global, 2018.

Pfeiffer, J. William. “Conditions that hinder effective communication.” The Pfeiffer Library 6.2   (1998)


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What Makes a Good Friend

What Makes a Good Friend

Describe the qualities that make someone a “good friend.” Specifically, discuss the communication.
What should good communication look like between good friends?
What does poor communication look like in friendships?

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