Building On Friendships (Part 4)

by Patrick Liew on October 17, 2011

I’m proud of the fact that I have many friends in my life. They come from different walks of life and many different parts of the world.

From the young to the old, poor to the rich, not-educated to the educated…

I can call on many of them anytime I want. I can sit with them and talk about life.

Friendships do not come by accident. It must be planned for and developed over time.

There are some ingredients that I believe can help to cement my relationships and strengthen the bond with them.

1.       Focused and Dedicated Time

Friends must make time for each other.

There must be an investment of time to know one another. We must spend time to develop the depth of our communication – from mouth-to-mouth level (small talks), to head-to-head (communication about issues in life), and finally to heart-to-heart level (sharing of personal secrets).

It is only through time that we can share different experiences in life. As we go through different issues on the journey in life, we deepen our communication and strengthen our bond.

2.       Gratitude, Admiration, Appreciation and Affection

There must be positive communications instead of negative ones in the process of building the friendships.

I have learned that if I want to be loved, I must extend love to my friends. In the same way, I must make them feel important, valued and respected.

Obviously, I must do it sincerely. If necessary, I must edify them not just in private but also in public too.

3.       Compliment and Celebration

It is important to speak ‘words of life’ when I am with my friends. In other words, they will feel that I am behind them, supporting them, and cheering them on their way to success.

To do that, I need to catch them doing good and compliment them.

I should affirm and help to reinforce their positive values and strengths.

I need to be active in responding to any good news from my friends. I want to celebrate their achievements and successes in life.

4.       Conflict Mediation and Resolution

In the process of building friendships, inevitably, there will be controversies, conflicts and contentions. We may even have to go through crises and challenges together.

In such times, it is important to be humble and be willing to talk over the concerns. If need be, we may have to bring in a credible third party to mediate and help us patch up the relationships.

We need to recognize that we are humans – and will commit many errors and major failures in our lives. There is a need to bury the ego and say, “I’m sorry.”

Without a forgiving spirit, friendships cannot be strong and grow.

5.       Support and Service

As they say, “A friend in need is a friend indeed.”

For friendships to be strong, we need to stand by and support each other through times of difficulties.

We can offer a listening ear, words of comfort, and other acts of kindness.

When we join hands together, we are in a better position to sail through the storms of life.

I have come to realize that when I face any challenge, I too will need my friends to give me moral support and help me to go and grow through them.

6.       Heart-to-Heart Bonding

When I think of some of the best friends that I had, I realized we have been very open with one another and have taken each other into confidence.

We have shared our secrets, including our dreams, fears, vulnerabilities and failures.

We become more closely knitted as we share and keep each other’s secrets. As we bear each other’s burdens, we become more strongly bonded.

When we make ourselves vulnerable to one another, we increase our trust and interdependence. Our friendship will also become deeper and stronger.

As I reflect on my life, I have come to the conclusion that without friendships, life will not be as meaningful, exciting and fulfilling.

It’s worth investing the time, effort and other resources to build friendships.


I hope this message will find a place in your heart.

By the way, I have also recorded other reflections.

Please go to ‘Notes’ found below my profile picture.

Visit my Transformation blog at

Visit my Inspiration blog at

Please read them and continue to teach me.

Life is FUNtastic!


Question: How can we strengthen our friendships?



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