Surrounding yourself with a bunch of amazing friends is one of the secrets to an amazing life. Having a diverse group of friends can keep things interesting. And you’ll be able to turn to different types of friends to help you through different areas of your life. You’ll also find there are a few trends between different groups of friends.
Why we need friends
Friends make life better.
They help steer us in the right direction
They provide us with a sense of belonging. Which is incredibly important when you are trying to find your place in the world.
They give us the harsh truth.
They help us lower our stress levels.
And close bonds lead to a happier life.
Do I need different types of friends?
That’s the short answer. Because different friends add different things to your life.
You might have one from a different culture that educates you on her way of life.
You might rely on one particular friend for emotional support that provides you with the hard truth sometimes.
Strong friendships rely on shared experiences, mutual respect, and a willingness to support and uplift each other.
I feel that I may need to add a disclaimer here though. I may or may not have based some of these on my IRL friends. The examples may or may not be true. And I consider myself to be at least one of these, can you guess which one?
The motivating mentor is always ready to share some personal growth wisdom. Either in the form of a quote or some real-life experience.
The motivating mentor can be blunt, telling you how it is. Because sometimes you need to hear the real truth to kick your butt into gear.
Being around a motivating mentor makes you feel like you can also get your life together to achieve great things.
Not always older, but perhaps a few steps ahead of where you want to be, they are looking out for you to motivate and inspire you to do bigger and better things.
And they are the person to turn to when you are having a bad mental health day. They will cheer you on for the smallest of things because they know it means something to you.
The always-available friend is just that. Always available. Day or night.
Need to be picked up from a hospital 30 minutes from her house at midnight? She’ll pick you up and make sure you’re all settled back at home before going back home to her own family.
Need a ride somewhere? She will pick you up (early) and take you there. She’ll probably also offer to pick you up later.
Need to pick up your child from school early but can’t get out of work? She will pick them up and feed them until you finish work.
She’s also a really good listener.
The mum friend is the one you turn to with all baby and kid-related questions. And you turn to her because she probably went through the same thing and maybe she’s done it more than once.
(These may or may not be real questions I asked of my most trusted mum friend)
How long do I put up with painful breastfeeding before I give it up?
My kid poops every two days, is this normal?
How long does this toilet training thing take to work? And what do I do about night-time toilet training?
How do I clean puke/poop/blood/food out of clothes/carpet/walls/my hair?
She can’t tell you the exact answer, but she can pass on her experience or what she would do in your situation.
You’ve known your forever friend since, well, forever. Which is a long time.
You’re probably old friends since school, whether that’s primary school or high school, or maybe even further back childhood friends.
They could have even been your first friend.
And even though you may not speak to each other that often anymore you still try to catch up at least once a year.
After all, no one else gets it when you explain that time you both made your brother jump barefoot off a 1-metre beam into fresh dog poop.
And you know you’ll always be lifelong friends.
The Wild One
The wild one is always up for anything. And often the provider of good times for everyone present.
The wild one usually instigates all the shenanigans and is voted most likely to get arrested for something dumb.
She has a sneaky way of getting you to join in.
She makes everything look fun and adventurous and you often envy her wild and free spirit.
And sometimes she helps you get out of your comfort zone
The Loud Friend
Always being told to use her inside voice, the loud one doesn’t know there is a difference.
She is great at getting everyone’s attention and telling people where to go. Which is anywhere but here.
She sometimes comes off as aggressive (mostly when you ask her to take it down a notch), but she is just passionate.
And the more alcohol involved, the louder she gets.
Just like the wild one, this one can get a little crazy. Hidden behind a veil of introversion or dumb questions, this friend is not what you first expect.
Often quiet, reserved and polite but turns into a totally wild one on the odd occasion, which comes as quite a surprise.
The closet freak can also be into some kinky stuff in the bedroom. She’ll keep you on your toes, that’s for sure.
The people you meet at work often become like a second family. After all, you do spend a lot of time there.
Many people find they are still friends with an old work pal, even when both of you have moved on to other jobs.
Work friends often come from different places, and will often have a different cultural background to you.
But the shared experience of the job helps you form social relationships.
Social media friends
We all have at least one friend that we are only friends with on social media.
Whether that’s because you met online and have never met in real life, met on an overseas trip or just don’t see them anymore.
I know I’m Facebook friends with a lot of people I went to high school. But I haven’t seen most of them since the 10-year reunion, or since graduation.
And there is nothing wrong with this type of friendship.
We all need a funny friend.
They are the kind of person that cheers you up with funny memes after a bad day.
Spending time with them is like going to a comedy show or watching a movie that always makes you laugh.
And it’s even better when the laughter becomes infectious, you can’t stop laughing and actually start crying. Or maybe someone wets themselves…
So which one are you? Do you fit into a few or just one? Can you match anyone from your social circle to any of these different types of friendships? Or maybe you need to make friends with one of these friendship types.