As an undergrad in college, I remember noticing how different my various friends were–most of them were in vastly different majors and cliques and very few of them mixed well (I had the antithesis of the classic college experience, fyi). Some friends would ask me why I was friends with others. To answer this question, for myself as much as anyone else, I developed a theory…or formula for what key qualities a person needed to have in order to be friend-worthy. I distilled them down to:
-Interestingness (I know that’s not a word)
The theory was, you could have one, two, or three of all these qualities. If you had a mix of all three, amazing. You’re a five-star friend. If you had two, that was all fine, and if you had just one–well…that ONE quality better be oozing out of your pores. Basically, you really had to make up for the lacking qualities by having bushels of the other(s).
I’ve found this seems to hold pretty true. Many times I like a person because they are just so darn KIND. They may not be funny or interesting, in particular, but their kindness makes them a golden person. Same goes for that friend with the wicked sense of humor that has me cracking up, but maybe isn’t so NICE to everyone all the time. And then there are people that are just plain fascinating…maybe they have a crazy cool job, or they’ve traveled the world…or you’re able to talk for hours about philosophy and the Big Bang with them.
Now, I’m not so sure this VERY simplistic formula still holds up. I’ve told it to people and many of them have shot it down, said it doesn’t work for them…and I’m not even sure it still works for me. But it’s kind of a fun thought process.
What are YOUR three must-have qualities in a friend?