The Point

STAFF OPINION: Want Friends? Do These Three Things

Freshmen+Jaylene+Perez+%28back%29+Alex+Quinones%2C+Hannah+Rose%2C+Josie+Gustin%2C+%28center+row%29+and+Evannylise+Martinez+%28front%29+are+great+friends+who+enjoy+spending+time+together+during+lunch.
Freshmen Jaylene Perez (back) Alex Quinones, Hannah Rose, Josie Gustin, (center row) and Evannylise Martinez (front) are great friends who enjoy spending time together during lunch.

Freshmen Jaylene Perez (back) Alex Quinones, Hannah Rose, Josie Gustin, (center row) and Evannylise Martinez (front) are great friends who enjoy spending time together during lunch.

Zamaiya Marquez

Zamaiya Marquez

Freshmen Jaylene Perez (back) Alex Quinones, Hannah Rose, Josie Gustin, (center row) and Evannylise Martinez (front) are great friends who enjoy spending time together during lunch.


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Friendship seems to be everywhere in 2017.

Apps such as Instagram and Twitter enable users to collect followers – a forgotten friend from elementary school, an ex-boyfriend or girlfriend or even people we have never met in real life.

But which one of your followers on social media is going to rush over with hot soup when you’re sick or help you paint your bedroom or let you cry on their shoulder after a breakup?

Friendship is everywhere and nowhere all at the same time.

We are so busy collecting superficial online friends that the traditional idea of friendship has become a forgotten art.

A recent study published in The Washington Post discussed the traits that make individuals a candidate for friendship – the real life kind – not the online version.

The study showed that a person who exhibits high levels of empathy are sought out by others.

Empathy is the ability to understand and share the feelings of another.

When they hurt, you hurt.

However, if we are juggling our phone and glancing back and forth between our real life friend and our 1,000 followers on Instagram, are we listening to our friend?

We’ve all done it. We call it multitasking to make it sound like a positive character trait.

The staff at the The Point hopes this editorial doesn’t sound preachy because each reporter struggles to be a better friend today that we were yesterday.

True empathy is putting the phone down and giving your friend 100 percent of your attention.

The other two ingredients to deep, lasting friendship, according to the study, are intimacy and vulnerability.

Intimacy is defined as closeness with another person and can be obtained by hanging out and getting to know each other.

Vulnerability is the tricky one.

To make oneself vulnerable, a person must expose something personal to another. That can be scary because we naturally put up walls to guard our emotions.

Have you ever shared a secret with someone who later used it against you?

However, the study reveals that for deep friendship to occur, two people must become vulnerable with one another.

Yes, everyone wants to be a YouTube star – a social media mogul, but who is going to pick you up when you hit your lowest point?

For all the talk of online followers, a true friend will come running when you call them at two in the morning. Everyone else is just an acquaintance.

Another study found that one common factor among those who lived a long life is they all had a strong, small circle of friends.

A wise person said once that if you die with five good friends, you’ve lived a good life.

For someone to come running to you in the middle of the night, you must be willing to run to them.

That takes us back to the three ingredients of friendship: empathy, intimacy and vulnerability.

As The Point staff self reflects, we hope you do to.

Let’s put the phone down when we are with real life friends. And let’s all try harder to form real life friendships with one another.

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1 Comment

One Response to “STAFF OPINION: Want Friends? Do These Three Things”

  1. Stenio martines on January 12th, 2018 9:29 AM

    A profound article

    [Reply]

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




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STAFF OPINION: Want Friends? Do These Three Things