Guest Contributor Mary Wong
There are times in life where you need a sidekick. Someone to pick you up when you feel down, and someone who encourages you to be a better you. For some, they call it their partner in crime. Others, the title of ‘best friend’ will do. Regardless, this pal is your point person, and therefore, needs to harbor characteristics that make them a lifetime friend.
Let the following qualities serve as a guiding light in your quest for ideal female friendship:
- CONSIDERATE. Being a caring individual is one of the basic qualities of the human experience. Find a wing woman who cares for you when you need it most. You want a friend who considers your feelings and does what is best for you. Sometimes, it is not the easiest thing to hear, but someone must tell you. Being caring cultivates relationships and strengthens friendship. Achieve balance when pushing someone to be their best and caring for them to nurture such growth.
- LOYAL. The term girl power exists for a reason. You are in this world together with a shared tenacity and a comradery that can’t be denied. Often women get this wrong and compete with one another. We need to stand together and raise each other up. Have a loyal best friend that looks out for your best interest. Someone that is always looking out for you and the betterment of females. A lady to stand by your side for life, through the good and bad times.
- MOTIVATOR. You want a friend that will work with you not against you. Besties in business and life, are those that challenge us to succeed when we ourselves don’t feel we can. That extra seed of motivation is one that can be planted by a soul sister. For business, you want someone who helps push you over the obstacles, and cheers you on along the way. Find someone who will dare you to always seek growth and continue to achieve your best you.
- A CONFIDANT. Your wing-gal should be able to keep your private information, private. Secrecy isn’t always needed, but being a shoulder to cry on that doesn’t gossip is essential. Trustworthiness is made up of honesty, dependability, and loyalty. These are the most dynamic assets to curate a triangle of trust.
- INSPIRATIONAL. Inspiration can come from attitudes, outlooks, and behaviors. Your best girlfriend should inspire you to best person you can. Inspiration of the mind keeps us absorbed regardless of obstacles. Have a friend that inspires you on a soul level. Surround yourself with positive, like-minded women. Cultivate and flourish from the inspiration of your girlfriends. If you have the right friends, you will be surrounded by an energy that inspires you to create beautiful things in every facet of life.
- AWARE. Your perfect friend in business and life is someone with a keen awareness of empathy. Their ability to understand and identify feelings should be tailored to cooperate and react appropriately. Sometimes empathetic qualities take practice to improve, and it is a reciprocal quality in any relationship.
- GOOD LISTENER. It is magnificent for your wing-woman to listen to your ideas. You yourself can practice active listening to remain engaged in meaningful conversations. If your friend is listening to what you say, and responding with insightful feedback, great ideas can bloom into realities. A good listener is often more knowledgeable than someone spouting the great ideas. Critical thinking is a derivative of quality active listening.
- NON-JUDGEMENTAL. A non-judgmental person exhibits acceptance with other’s choices. Even with a difference in views, an accepting attitude fosters bonding. Non-judgement is a practice that is vital to the communication of authenticity and intimate communications. Gradual sharing is a process of trust that expands throughout time.
- DOWN-TO-EARTH. The enemy to selfless relationships is ego. It exploits feelings of inadequacy and insecurity. Subdue your ego, either alone or with the help of a trusted group of friends, because the consequences are damaging to friendships. Seek friends, and reflect on how to demonstrate altruism and remain down-to-earth in your friendships. Keep friends around that keep you in check when you need to be kicked off your high horse. True friends will admire you, while concurrently informing you to tone down the entitlement.
Keep in mind that friendships are a two-way street. If you expect your wing-woman to have these qualities, you too better work on yourself. Don’t lower your expectations, but know that no one is perfect. Find a friend that will stick by your side and remain true with you from business to love and everything in between.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Mary Wong is the president of the Office Depot Foundation, the 501(c)(3) independent charitable giving arm of Office Depot, Inc. To learn more about the Foundation and its new Difference Maker! Movement, visit www.officedepotfoundation.org.