When you’re friends with someone for a long time, it’s easy to forget that they’re voluntarily in your life. They don’t need to listen to you cry over your favorite bands or help you Facebook stalk the dude in your Psych class, and yet, they do. In order to keep a friendship strong and solid, it’s important to acknowledge the little problems and tiny habits that can be changed. With that being said, here are some bad friendship habits to cut out of your life and your friendships for good!
Remembering to say “Thank you” even for the smallest thing is crucial for any relationship. In fact, saying it isn’t always necessary. Doing something as simple as picking up the tab on your next Starbucks outing or texting a sweet message on a day you know they’re stressed is a perfect way to show gratitude and brighten someone’s day. Remember that no one in life owes you anything–when you consider that it’s even easier to be thankful for people in your life.
Not to sound like your mother and every adult that’s ever seen you on your phone ever, but put it down! If your friend is speaking to you, put your phone down. Actually, if anyone is speaking to you, put your phone down. Seriously, is anything so fascinating happening on your tiny screen that you can’t afford to make eye contact for five seconds? Probably not. This is a habit to quit in general, but especially to those close to you. Looking at your phone while someone is speaking is essentially saying that you value what’s on your screen more than you do their words. It’s kind of offensive and it totally seems like you’re not listening. Give your full attention more often.
We all have friends who have friends that we don’t really vibe with. Yeah, it’s not the best, but talking about it is futile. Imagine you really care about someone and someone else you really care about constantly rags on them. Can’t you see how frustrating that is? Remember the good ‘ol rule that your momma taught you–if you have nothing nice to say, say nothing at all. Keeping your lips sealed when it comes to your friend’s friends that you’re not a fan of is the way to go (unless, of course, your friend asks for some words of wisdom…in which case, let loose).
If your friend looks like a disco ball with that dress or if the color is not doing her justice, tell her. Of course, you can put it in kinder words, but ultimately tell the truth. Disclaimer: tell her only if it’s something that can be changed. If you’re at a party and can’t change anything now, don’t suddenly blurt out that the dress she’s wearing is hideous but if you’re at the store and she’s trying it on, the truth will save her embarrassment in the long run.
This also goes for making up excuses. Having your plans cancelled is never fun and being the one to cancels plans isn’t a fun position either. If you must cancel plans or change them, be honest. If you’re going to be late because you got caught up in a season finale of your favorite Netflix series, say so, don’t lie about there being traffic. If you say you’re on your way but you’re really just starting to put your shoes on, be honest. If you have to cancel plans, try to be truthful and if that’s not an option, be vague. There’s no need for intricate excuses–friends deserve honesty.
When someone shows up late to something, it can be a little insulting. Just imagine it: you’re supposed to meet your friend at Starbucks and she’s running fifteen minutes late. By this time you’ve probably finished your drink and you’re sitting there on your phone, scrolling through the same posts you looked at a minute ago. We all have friends who are perpetually late, or you might be that friend, but why is this the case? Set an alarm, wake up earlier, leave at a good time…just get to things on time! Being on time is a great habit to get into for all aspects of life, show your friends you value their time and stop showing up late.