The Friendship Café
Where Best Friends Learn How to Become Great Friends




Best Friends - Choosing Image 

Friendship Advice, Quotes, Quips, and

Sayings about Choosing Best Friends

When choosing best friends, keep in mind that it takes a long time to grow a great friend. Trust and respect are the two most important elements for friendships to thrive.

If either are missing, it's not friendship. It is companionship at best. At worst, it's an unhealthy relationship waiting to go from bad to worse.

Don't be fooled by first impressions when making new friends. Ironically, nice people are often not good people. Just as ironically, good people are often not nice people. Some people may have some rough edges, and even be jerks, but they are generous and trustworthy - these are good people and can make good friends.

Know the difference between friends vs. acquaintances.

Pay heed to the following friendship articles.

Don’t Walk Away from

Negative People — Run!

We all have a negative acquaintance or two who seems to know everything there is to know about what is wrong with this world. These pessimistic individuals, no question, can be just a little unpleasant and difficult to be around. If you are like me, after a few moments with them, you begin to squirm in your seat, trying to determine your next course of action.

Unfortunately, there are no laws under which you can have negative people charged for interfering with your life. As a highly evolved human being, you will want to avoid being around pessimistic people, even if the alternative is being alone. It is important that you spot negative people as soon as possible so that you can take appropriate action. Negative people will try to undermine your optimism in any way they can.

They will bore you with bad tidings and gossip, continuing to tell you the negative things in their lives when you already know more about them than you care to know. If you hang around them for too long, they will influence you to start seeing nothing but a grim and gloomy world.

Pessimistic individuals think the whole world is against them. For some strange reason they want everyone else to have the same experience. They are critics who know everything — at least they think they do. Pessimistic people court others who will support them in their contention that the world is a lousy place. And once they know they can, they will stick to them like Krazy Glue® to hair. Some of these people spend their entire lives making others miserable. They seem to be pleased with their efforts for no justifiable reason.

Negative people are particularly noted for their lack of humor. They have the delightful view that life is a rip-off and that nothing is so bad that it can’t get worse. One of the most endearing traits of pessimistic people is their willingness to do anything possible to bring optimistic people down to a depressing level. Negative people have an endless supply of hard-luck stories capable of bringing down even the most enthusiastic and energetic people.

You may think that you can convince negative people to be remarkably positive like you. Reality says you probably won’t win many converts irrespective of how much effort you put into this experiment. Indeed, misery doesn’t only love company — it demands it! Nothing irks negative and unsuccessful people more than individuals who are positive and successful. Accept that some people prefer to look at the world from a perversely distorted point of view.

Perhaps you are a Good Samaritan who likes to take on one or two neurotics as a personal project. I must warn you about the futility of this venture. Unless you can get these people to have personality transplants, all your efforts will be in vain. Even if their happiness and survival are at stake, negative individuals won’t change. Although they have the ability to change, they go on defending their points of view at all costs.

As a matter of course, negative people will intrude into your life every chance they get. You must stop them before they get started. Some will claim you owe them some of your time; others will claim you owe them favors; and still others will even claim you owe them a living.

In short, it is futile to spend your time trying to make an unhappy person happy. Near as I can tell, you’d have to be a magician to pull it off. There is only one way to effectively deal with negative people — eliminate them from your life. Try to direct them in one direction while you head off in the opposite one. If you somehow find yourself in the company of someone who regularly drains your energy, it’s wise not to stick around. Look for any means of rapid escape. In other words, don’t walk away from negative people — run!

To be fair, negative people are just ignorant and don’t know any better. What’s more, they are not complete failures — we get to use them as great examples of the type of people we don’t want to become ourselves.

If You Hang Around with a Bunch of

 Blunderers Long Enough, You Will Become

 One Yourself

To get the most out of your friendship and companionship, you must choose your friends well. One of the greatest time-wasters and obstacles to success in all areas of life is associating with the wrong people.

Yet surprisingly many individuals spend time with dysfunctional characters whom they don’t even like. Associating with the wrong people can cost you your time, energy, creativity, and money. They can even cost you your health — mainly mental.

To achieve success in your career and personal life, it helps to have friends who are going to inspire you to greater heights. “Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions,” advised Mark Twain. “Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.”

In other words, the people closest to you will either keep you down or help you up. You want to hang around motivated people with whom you can trade ideas, find inspiration, and not end up dejected every time you meet with them.

It is a terrible mistake to befriend a bunch of misfits solely because it makes you look like a genius whenever you are around them. After all is said — and mostly left undone — there is no glory in outdoing a bunch of muddleheads and blunderers.

Hang around with a bunch of blunderers long enough and you will become one yourself. Just like them, you will come back from the Burger King with ketchup on your shirt after eating two more hamburgers than you should have.

Sure, negative people can come in handy if you are negative yourself. If you consult enough negative people, you can confirm any negative opinion you have of something or someone else. But being a skeptic is not in itself a virtue. What good is it to mix with negative people who are going to pump you up with negative energy and negative beliefs? If you are like me, you have enough of your own negativity that you have to continually conquer.

The best strategy is to avoid endarkened people at all costs — hang around with enlightened people instead. Stay away from people who set low personal standards that they constantly fail to achieve.

Make friends, instead, with individuals who have big dreams for themselves. Associate with people who are making it in life, not ones who are barely hanging on. The former are much harder to find than the latter, but when you find them, the price you will have paid will be well worth it.

Generally speaking, birds of a feather flock together. So if you want to soar with the eagles, don’t hang around with the turkeys. As you can well imagine, it’s difficult to be successful if you are constantly distracted by fools. What’s more, associate with just one loser and soon there will be more. Surprisingly, you wouldn’t think that losers can multiply, but they can.

If we force ourselves into constant contact with “cool and creative,” the odds are sky-high that cool and creative will wear off on us. Hang out with cool and creative Web designers, for instance, and you will end up cool and creative.

Ditto: Cool and creative life coaches. Ditto: Cool and creative janitors. Ditto: Cool and creative engineers (granted, having been an engineer in a former life, I realize that I may be stretching it here). The point is that a part of you becomes whom you hang with. No doubt your parents warned you that you shouldn’t associate with fools or losers. They were right, weren’t they?

It behooves every one of us to adopt the wisdom of Joseph Marshall Wade: “If I wanted to become a tramp, I would seek information and advice from the most successful tramp I could find,” wrote Wade. “If I wanted to become a failure, I would seek advice from men who have never succeeded. If I wanted to succeed in all things, I would look around me for those who are succeeding, and do as they have done.”

Thus, drink coffee only with positive, focused people who will teach you a lot and who will not drain your valuable energy with their constant complaining and lousy attitudes.

By developing relationships with individuals committed to constant improvement and the pursuit of the best that life has to offer, you will have plenty of company on your path to the top of whatever mountain you seek to climb. 

COPYRIGHT © 2011 by Ernie J. Zelinski

  All Rights Reserved 

Friendship Book - 101 Really Important Things

Note: The above two articles are excerpted from the book 101 Really Important Things You Already Know But Keep Forgetting by Ernie J. Zelinski.

See more from the book about Rules of Friendship.

Quotes and Sayings about

Choosing Best Friends

Here are some quotes and sayings that express the rules and principles related choosing your best friends:

It isn't kind to cultivate a friendship just so one will have an audience.
- Lawana Blackwell

A man should choose a friend who is better than himself.
- Chinese Friendship Proverb

Never judge someone by who he's in love with; judge him by his friends. People fall in love with the most appalling people. Take a cool, appraising glance at his pals.
- Cynthia Heimel

Every man is like the company he is wont to keep.
- Euripides

When you choose your friends, don't be short-changed by choosing personality over character.
- W. Somerset Maugham

When the character of a man is not clear to you, look at his friends.
- Japanese Proverb

A true friend is the greatest of all blessings, and that which we take the least care to acquire.
- La Rochefoucauld (1665)

He that walketh with wise men shall be wise.
- Solomon

If you always live with those who are lame, you will yourself learn to limp.
- Latin Proverb

Life is partly what we make it, and partly what it is made by thefriends whom we choose.
- Tehyi Hsieh

The only people who are worth being friends with are the people who like you as you are.
- Charlotte Levy

A wise man may look ridiculous in the company of fools.
- Thomas Fuller

Satin's friendship reaches to the prison door.
- Turkish Proverb

Associate yourself with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation, for 'tis better to be alone than in bad company.
- George Washington

It contributes greatly towards a man's moral and intellectual health, to be brought into habits of companionship with individuals unlike himself, who care little for his pursuits, and whose sphere and abilities he must go out of himself to appreciate.
- Nathaniel Hawthorne

Keep only cheerful, positive friends. You can pick your friends, and I like to choose those who are positive and people who challenge me. They make me feel good. They don't drag me down or make me angry at the world. Negative people see the difficulty in every opportunity, while positive people see the opportunity in every difficulty.
- Harvey Mackay

Wishing to be friends is quick work, but friendship is a slow ripening fruit.
- Aristotle

Men only become friends by community of pleasures.
- Samuel Johnson

It is better to weep with wise men than to laugh with fools.
- Spanish Proverb

Friendship demands a religious treatment. We talk of choosing our friends, but friends are self-elected. Reverence is a great part of it.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Untried friends are like uncracked eggs - you can't be sure what they are lie on the inside.
- Unknown Wise Person

Friendship needs a certain parallelism of life, a community of thought, a rivalry of aim.
- Henry Adams

Our friends should be companions who inspire us, who help us rise to our best.
- Joseph B. Wirthlin

I would prefer as a friend a good man who is ignorant than one moreclever who is evil, too.
- Euripides

A wise man associating with the vicious becomes an idiot; a dog traveling with good men becomes a rational being.
- Arabic Proverb

A friend that ain't in need is a friend indeed.
- Kin Hubbard

Have no friends not equal to yourself.
- Confucius

Shared joys make a friend, not shared sufferings.
- Friedrich Nietzsche

Many a person has held close, throughout their entire lives, two friends that always remained strange to one another, because one of them attracted by virtue of similarity, the other by difference.
- Emil Ludwig

Friends that you can buy are a dime a dozen, and will short change you if given a chance.
- Author Unknown

Only be admonished by what you already see, not to strike leagues of friendship with cheap persons, where no friendship can be. Our impatience betrays us into rash and foolish alliances which no God attends.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Be courteous to all, but intimate with few, and let those few be well tried before you give them your confidence.
- George Washington

In the sweetness of friendship let there be laughter, and sharing of pleasures.
- Kahil Gibran

Be cautious in choosing friends, and be even more cautious in changing them.
- Unknown Wise Person

Seek those who find your road agreeable, your personality stimulating, your philosophy acceptable, and your experiences helpful. Let those who do not, seek their own kind.
- Jean-Henri Fabre

There can be no Friendship where there is no Freedom.
- William Penn

You cannot be friends upon any other terms than upon the terms of equality.
- Woodrow Wilson

A true friend is the greatest possesion.
- Benjamin Franklin

One who knows how to show and to accept kindness will be a friend better than any possession.
- Sophocles

In short, there are no good reasons for keeping the wrong company. Again, a friend is someone who you admire and respect and who you have a great deal of affection for. That person must be someone you can share your deepest thoughts and feelings with without the fear that he or she will laugh at you. A friend will stick by you through good and ill: through heartbreaks and through fun-filled games, through losses and through crazy night outs and more.

By the same token, the person should also admire and respect you and have a lot of affection for you. To have a good friend to trust and count on, you must be a friend to them that they can trust and count on. Anything less, and you have an  unhealthy acquaintance relationship masquerading as friendship.

So, take your time cultivating friendship. It doesn't come easy. Once created, maintain it as if your ultimate happiness depends on it - by the way, it does.

For more information and opinions on friendship and money see:

1. Friendship: The Laws of Attraction: Pyschology Today Article: The conventional wisdom is that we choose friends because of who they are. But it turns out that we actually love them because of the way they support who we are.

WEBSITE CONTENT COPYRIGHT © 2011 by Ernie J. Zelinski
 All Rights Reserved



Top-10 List of Best Things Ever Said about Friendship

Nothing but heaven itself is better than a friend who is really a
— Plautus

Only your real friends will tell you when your face is dirty.
— Sicilian Proverb

It is one of the blessings of old friends that you can afford to be
stupid with them.
— Ralph Waldo Emerson

On the road between homes of friends, grass does not grow.
— Norwegian proverb

If I don't have friends, then I ain't nothing.
— Billie Holiday

Friendship is like money, easier made than kept.
— Samuel Butler 

To be rich in friends — is to be poor in nothing.
— Anon

A mere friend will agree with you, but a real friend will argue.
— Russian Proverb

Make new friends but cherish the old ones.
— H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

A loyal best friend is someone who sticks up for you even when you're not there.
— Anon

Best Friends
Great Friends Rock
Advice Between Best Friends
Friendship Poems
Old Friends
New Friends
True Friends
Importance of Friendship
Rules of Friendship
Funny Friendship Quotes
What Makes a Good Friend
Friendship Articles
Choosing Best Friends
Friendship Advice
Friendship Sayings
Friendship Proverbs
How to Make Friends
Friends and Money
101 Ways to Have Great Friends
Friends Heaven Sent
Friends vs Acquaintances
Friends vs Enemies
Quantity vs Quality
Friendship Resources
Definition of Friendship
Short Friendship Poems
Fun Things to Do with Friends