9 Character Traits of True Friends

Aged brothers laughing while sitting on a sofa together.

If you're working with a positive person, you'll become much sunnier. (Image: Motortion via Dreamstime)

There is a famous Chinese proverb: “Your world outlook shall be influenced by your true friends as well as by your own conduct. So whom you associate with, you will likely behave like them or be affected by them”

If you’re working with a positive person, you’ll become much sunnier; if you’re working with a negative person, you’ll likely become gloomy. If you’re getting along with an honest person, you will learn to act in an honest way. If you’re working with a person who you can’t trust and can’t depend on, you will have to learn how to manage your way out of trouble.

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Maybe you will be inspired to learn from these suggestions, have good working relationships, and make true friends.

Character traits of true friends

1. Eye contact 

We often say that the eyes are the window of the soul. When a person is talking to you and while looking at each other, you can often see into a person’s nature: narrow-minded people have a dull and distant gaze; open-minded and cheerful people have the gaze of kindness and confidence and will maintain good eye contact. You feel at ease.

While talking with someone, if we pay attention to the other person’s eyes, they can tell us many things. If they are always evasive or unwilling to make eye contact it is probably time in this situation to consider that there may be an issue that needs your attention. We, of course, should not jump to rash conclusions, but we can use our wisdom to discern what is happening.

2. Talking

True friends know instinctively what to say and what not to say at any given time. This is a reflection of their empathy and sensitivity. When asked to keep something private and confidential they will keep it all sealed up in their heart and never reveal it. They are careful not to speak ill of others behind their back and do not gossip about others. 

If something serious needs to be discussed they do so in a respectable and kindly tone. They speak in a constructive, good and respectable manner, not in a bossy or aggressive shouting style. A good speaking manner can be effective in solving problems and making progress.

True friends know instinctively what to say and what not to say at any given time.
True friends know instinctively what to say and what not to say at any given time. (Image: 1081843 via Pixabay)

3. The relationships with the boss and colleagues

If he or she tries to please the boss with incipit flattery while at the same time to his or her colleagues behaves in a false and calculating manner, a red flag goes up and colleagues become very cautious around such an individual. Particularly if this conduct is persistent, this is generally regarded as divisive, rude, and offensive. So from how a colleague regularly behaves, we can reasonably gauge what sort of a character this is.

4. Taking care of details

People who pay attention to details in their work and dress sense; polished shoes, ironed clothes… we know roughly that those individuals respect themselves and respect others enough to take care of personal details and look after themselves. This kind of person will usually think about how their actions affect and impact others.

5. Punctuality

Punctuality is good timekeeping. It means having respect for others’ valuable time and being courteous. It also builds up your own credibility and good reputation. Punctuality is a basic requirement of professional ethics and a sign of responsibility for one’s reputation. Reliable people know that no one’s time can be wasted for any reason. That’s why they never fail to keep their word on what they promised. This is the kind of person who can be trusted and entrusted with responsibilities

Two elderly men wearing cardigans and hats and holding canes shake hands.
Punctuality is good timekeeping. It means having respect for others’ valuable time and being courteous. (Image: Ljupco via Dreamstime)

6. Humble and modest 

The more capable a person is, the more modest he or she is. They are humble because they believe that they are no greater or lesser than anyone else. Being humble will help them achieve success and they do not need to show off. They are comfortable within themselves and with their capabilities. 

“When you are humble you cannot be humiliated.”

7. High principles

Having noble and high principles of life are the hallmarks of a good person. If an individual is not guided by high principles it is easy to lose oneself and go astray in a world full of temptations. A principled individual knows instinctively the right thing to do and what not to do and is able to keep his heart steady and self-restraint his desires at all times and in all places.

No matter how much the outside world changes, they are still faithful to their high principles and never go to extremes. They will always remain true friends.

8. Generosity of spirit

People who are generous, particularly generous in spirit, and have true empathy for people, will have true friends and will have good credibility. They show their generosity in so many ways. So they win the hearts of people and will not be left all alone in times of their own difficulties. Those who are mean-spirited and only seek quick profits and returns lose sight of the big picture. When they fail and fall, and their career is broken, as is often inevitable, they may find themselves all alone and struggling to find a single friend.

A laughing Japanese school girl with her friends, all in their school uniforms eating ice cream cones.
People who are generous, particularly generous in spirit, and have true empathy for people. (Image: Shalom Rufeisen via Dreamstime)

9. Responsibility

Responsible individuals are self-confident and secure within. These are the ones that are accountable and answerable to themselves in all circumstances. Blaming others and pointing the finger at others when things go wrong is not their modus operandi. They lead others by focusing on their strengths and helping them overcome their weaknesses. A person who doesn’t make excuses and has the courage to take on duties is the one who deserves to be the leader.

A truly reliable person is not necessarily the best candidate for the job, but he or she must have the quality of being reliable and responsible and shoulder those responsibilities.

A wise man once said to me: “It’s not what we say; it’s the way we say it. It’s not what we do; it’s the way that we do it.”

Translation by Eva

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