Money, career, reputation, achievements—that’s all well and good! But who do we share it with? Right, with friends. Let’s be honest with ourselves: Do we need all that if we have real friends? I should think not. The only thing that really counts are friends, and the greatest happiness doesn’t matter at all if you can’t share it with your neighbors, loved ones, and favorite people. What may seem like empty phrases hold a lot of truth.

Overhead view of female friends pepping through blanket while lying on bed at home - CAVF00763

The value of real friends is immense and goes far beyond the limits of your own happiness. Our friends want things to go well for us. And we want things to go well for our friends. We are willing to make compromises and put our own needs, demands, and desires last. Basically, this fact confirms the above assertion that prestige or status symbols are not absolutely necessary if you have friends in your life.

To Lightbox "Friendship"

It’s simple, with friends you’re also a friend.

It’s often asked whether humans are lone wolves or herd animals. Actually, neither of the two extremes are right, because we are really something in between: a group animal. We have about three really good friends in our lives: The people to whom we almost completely open ourselves, who know us and our weaknesses.

Two happy old men standing face to face in the park - UUF000693

They are joined by relationships that we can call average friendships. These are the people with whom we celebrate our birthday, go out for an after-work drink, or help with the move…albeit with a grumble. With these people, we share beautiful memories and have an incredible amount of fun, just like with our close, inner circle. With the negative experiences, heartaches, and hardships, the wheat divides the chaff, so to speak.

Two best friends having fun on the beach - PACF00035The other “friends” are then only acquaintances, and, after all, in 2019, we must consider that the still wider circle would then probably be fans, followers, and Facebook friends. It remains to be said that friendship is an equation. If someone is our friend, then we are also someone’s friend. That’s a simple and nice thought, isn’t it?

Friends sitting on couch, planning road trip - AFVF02539

An equation with lots of variables

Well, we all had math lessons at school at which some were better, and some were worse. Now, to say that some people are better or worse at “being friends” would be an assertion that we can hardly generalize. But what we can say is that everyone defines friendship and its limits differently. So it happens that some of us quickly find new friends, whereas others take a little longer and find it more difficult.

Young man at home giving high five with his dog - RAEF01744

Some have a really thick membrane to their friendship, and some are just friends with many people and share without building big hurdles. Then there is the time or attention that some require in a friendship. On the other hand, there are free-spirited characters who, even after a year without contact, can value friendship in the same way and seamlessly build on it. In one point, however, all friendships are the same: They arise between two people who are sympathetic to each other, by their own choice.

Friends making faces while taking selfie at yard - FSIF01560

Friendship: The best medicine

Strong and stable friendships foster our well-being. Nothing makes people happier than intact social relationships. We grow from the little twigs that friendships sometimes stick in the spokes, because, let’s be honest, even the best social networks aren’t always rosy. Nevertheless, they spare us from degenerating stress levels or even mental suffering. A good friendship can simultaneously ground us and catapult us euphorically into space. When we have someone by our side to share our worries and fears, then one by one we’ll cast those worries and fears aside—which certainly has a positive effect on our life expectancy.

To Lightbox "Friendship

At Westend61, we always attach great importance to friendly interaction with our photographers, our customers, and, of course, our team. If life gives you a bit of a pinch, then we prescribe a dose of friendship. For how this looks, there is our perfectly matching Lightbox.