Learn What Makes a Good Friendship and Do Your Best to Work at It

What makes a good friendship? Have you learned over the years how to make close friends?

Good friends add richness to life. To have friends, prove yourself friendly. Don’t expect them to contact you if you never make any effort to contact them. Friendship takes work, but the work is worth it.

Time with friends refreshes and renews. Arguably it lets you tackle your work with greater enthusiasm and focus. And during times of crisis, friends are often the first line of defense against spiraling into inactivity and negativity.

To manage your time well, include friends. Don’t discount these vital social relationships. While you may not see how they directly impact productivity, know that they do. People with good friends tend to get more done with greater fulfillment and effectiveness.

"Busyness is the great enemy of relationships. We become preoccupied with making a living, doing our work, paying bills, and accomplishing goals as if these tasks are the point of life. They are not. The point of life is learning to love – God and people. Life minus love equals zero. "

Rick Warren, The Purpose Driven Life

Five Days of Coaching to Find Out What Makes a Good Friendship, Then Do It



A huge part of a rewarding and effective life comes from good friendships. Ask yourself today who your good friends are, and how much you have invested in each friendship. Friendship takes work. What makes a good friendship? How are you doing with yours?

The Coach asks: 

  • Make a list of those you consider your really good friends. 
  • Record what it is that binds you together as friends. How do they contribute to your life? In what areas of life do they impact you the most?  
  • Consider each friend on your list. How have you intentionally invested in the friendship? How do you feed into their life? When is the last time you have "made a deposit" in the bank of that particular friendship? 
  • What do you like to do together with your friends? 


Resolve to spend some time with a friend or friends this week. Enjoy their company. Have fun together. Relax. Share.

The Coach asks:

  • Pick one friend (or a couple) and enjoy their company this week. Would you have them over? Would you go out and do some activity? Will it be active or more passive? Think about the interaction. Put something together and reach out. 
  • What did you enjoy about this time you just spent? How were you intentional but authentic? What conversation came up that really encouraged you? Encouraged them? What did you learn from reaching out to your good friend? 
  • If you have them, think about your circle of friends. What do they have in common? How are they unique and different? How connected are they outside of you? Take some time to be grateful for such a group around you. If it isn't yet there, begin to build your circle of friends. It might not happen overnight, but work at it. The payback will be significant.
  • Those who wish to have friends need to prove themselves friendly. What does "being friendly" mean to you in the context of developing a close friendship? 


Think about those friends who are there for you when life seems to go off the rails ... the friends who listen without judgment, who care, who inquire about your welfare, who don't have any other agenda. Be thankful for them. Contact them. Tell them you are glad to have their friendship.

The Coach asks:

  • What are you learning about what makes a good friendship? Take some time to search online for insight into this. 
  • Which of your friends do you feel you can tell anything to, without them passing it along or making judgement on you? How important is this type of friendship to you personally? As a leader or executive?
  • Contact one such friend today and thank them for the depth of their friendship. 
  • When really tough things happen, who is it you'd like to have come alongside you, because you know the depth of their empathy and care? Are you able to return that kind of care? If not, how could you? 


Good relationships with people make for greater effectiveness at work. Why? Friends reduce stress. They give you another avenue for your thoughts and activities. Encourage your key people in their friendships. Life isn't all about work.

The Coach asks:

  • How do you promote friendships at work? Not artificial, "let us push you together and make you be with one another" type relationship, but real connection between people.
  • How is the presence of happy team members with healthy relationships contributing to the overall culture of the organization? How important is this to you? To your objectives as an organization, ministry or initiative?
  • How fearful are you that encouraging friendships and relationships at work will be unproductive? How convinced are you that it will be productive and make for an engaged, satisfied workforce? What is your "philosophy" of friendships in the workplace?


Today, prove yourself friendly to those you don't know. Greet them. Be cheerful. It doesn't have to be formal or long. Be a happier you and lift the spirits of those you come into contact with.

The Coach asks:

  • In what ways could you be a friendlier you today to people you don't even know, or have never talked to? People on your staff? 
  • Step out and greet some new people. Look them in the eyes, smile, and be cheerful (not rah rah rah.) If there is opportunity and it seems appropriate ask them a safe question just to be personable. What did you experience? 
  • Who do you know that really seems to lift the spirits of those around them, almost without trying? What is it they do? What attitude do they seem to hold? What are they modelling for you? What can you incorporate into your own behavior?
  • What would it look like to expand your circle of good friends over the next year? How desirable a goal is that for you? What will you do about it?


Spiritual Reflection for Christian Leaders

As a Christian Executive Leadership Coach I encourage Christian leaders to reflect on God's Word to add to their wisdom.

  • Pr 27:9  Perfume and incense bring joy to the heart, and the pleasantness of a friend springs from their heartfelt advice.
  • I Thes 5:11  Therefore encourage one another and build each other up.
  • Rm 12:10  Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. 
  • Jn 15:13  Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one's life for one's friends.
  • Pr 17:17  A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a time of adversity.
  • Pr 27:17  As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another. 
  • Pr 12:26  The righteous choose their friends carefully, but the way of the wicked leads them astray.

If you are a leader, executive, or senior level professional looking to work with a Christian Executive Coach, I invite you to connect with me here.

If appropriate, we can meet by phone or Zoom to discuss your situation. 

Record Your Progress

This is your opportunity to track your progress. Start by asking yourself how important this practice is to you? Record the importance as - not at all, somewhat, fairly, highly or extremely. 

Now next to it ask yourself how well you carry out this practice. Record your performance as - very poor, poor, okay, good or very good. 

Importance Performance Check

The things we track, we pay attention to. Across time, come back and record your new results. You will find that as you are intentional about making improvements, you will bump your "score" up higher. 

This is significant. Don't miss the opportunity to acknowledge your success, and use it as a springboard for making even further gain. 


I am very fortunate to say that I have a highly valued circle of friends. Some of us aren't together for long stretches of time, but when we connect it's like we start up right where we left off. 

We can have the deepest conversation and then switch to "fall on the floor" laughing. It's rich. It's inviting. It's safe. It really is wonderful. I wish the same for you.

But, I have to remain conscious of investing in these relationships. Almost without thinking it's too easy to let time slide by and not reach out. Don't let that happen. Once you find out what makes a good friendship, tend it like a garden, and keep it growing and bearing fruit.

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