Every day we meet people. Many of them become instant acquaintances and most acquaintances bloom into friendship. Often this transition period occurs gradually. Friends come into ours live and go. Few stay a while longer and fewer still leave footprints in our hearts and the sands of time.
Who is a friend and what are the qualities a friend should possess? The definition of a friend and friendship varies with each individual. For me, a good friend is someone who understands me, accepts me for what I am and at the same time inspires me to do the best. At a personal level, a true friend should not give up on me, should always forgive my mistakes and never judge me by actions as sometimes my actions may be rash and inconsiderate.
We live in a very competitive world. Most of us are caught up in the rat race of paper chase, mounting work pressure and demanding family commitments take a toll on our time and energy. Consequently most of us experience mood swings due to high expectations placed upon us. It is during times like these, when we are burdened with responsibilities and life seems to be an endless uphill struggle, that we seek the comforting words of a friend. A friend who urges you to pick up the pieces and move on. A good friend is always there to lend a helping hand or to lend us a shoulder to cry on.
At the same time, a friend should be trust-worthy and loyal. When friends trust us with secrets, we should never betray their confidence. No one can confide in someone whom he cannot trust to keep his secrets.
True friendship is demanding. It requires loyalty, trust, empathy, support and understanding. However, one should never expect such virtues in a friend unless he is willing to offer these virtues in return. In other words, one must be a friend to have a friend.
It may be impossible to find all these virtues in a single friend. However, should I come across such a friend? I shall treasure our friendship for life. As I reminisce about the good times I have shared with the best of my friends, the word of William Shakespeare keeps ringing in my ears. 'The friends thou has, and their adoption tired, Grapple them to thy soul with hoops of steel'
Yes friendship that has stood the test of time should be most revered and happy is the man who is blessed with such a friend.