5 Ways to be a Low Maintenance Friend

5 Ways to be a Low-Maintenance Friend - Women Abiding - www.womenabiding.comI considered it such a compliment when a sister in the Lord told me recently that I was a low-maintenance friend.

The dictionary defines low-maintenance as: 

Not requiring a lot of work or attention to maintain.

I thought it would be a blessing to contemplate some aspects that you could endeavor to practice in becoming a low-maintenance friend to those whom God has brought into your life.

Following are 5 ways that you and I can become the kind of friend that everyone wants:

1. Don’t get easily offended

If we are thick skinned, giving others the benefit of the doubt in every situation, we will save both ourselves and our friends much awkwardness and heartache.

Always believe the best.
Don’t assume.
Communicate.

Love believes all things – 1 Corinthians 13:7

2. Take initiative. Be the first.

  • Be the first to invite without waiting for an invitation.
  • Be the first to say sorry rather than anticipating an apology.
  • Be the first to offer assistance instead of expecting your friend to reach out to you.
  • Be the first. Then go the extra mile!

A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly – Proverbs 18:24 (KJV)

3. Listen and Talk

Exemplify a balanced talking/listening stance. Enjoy practicing the skillful art of true listening when your friend has something to share. Offer what is on your heart freely by openly talking, carrying your quotient of communication in the friendship.

4. Treat and spoil

Display a generous and thoughtful heart in spoiling your friend with little treats. Some ways could be to:

  • Send her an unexpected card in the mail just to say that you are thankful for her friendship.
  • Pick a pretty flower and deliver it to her with a smile.
  • Place a yummy treat in her handbag when she’s not looking.
  • Email a link of something she would enjoy reading or watching, to show that you are thinking of her.

There are countless creative ways…

He who withholds kindness from a friend forsakes the fear of the Almighty. – Job 6:14

5. Be real!

To me, this is one of the most crucial and important aspects of being a low-maintenance friend!

Not many activities are more draining and discouraging than trying to detect how someone is really doing from behind an “everything’s great” façade.

Reveal the true circumstances of your life to friends that you trust. Vulnerability, honesty, truthfulness, and openness go a long way in saving a sister the guesswork (feel free to tweet that), giving her the privilege and opportunity to speak into your life.

Whoever speaks the truth gives honest evidence, but a false witness utters deceit. Proverbs 12:17

I would love to hear any other suggestion that you have for being a low-maintenance friend?

If you have been blessed by this post, pass on the love and share it  :-).

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50 Responses to 5 Ways to be a Low Maintenance Friend

  1. I really appreciated this post. I struggle with #2: taking initiative and being the first to go the extra mile. I always worry that I’m being too pushy or trying too hard when I do something nice for someone.

    I think a low-maintenance friend is one who I can call on at a moment’s notice for help and get it. I don’t have to do a lot of explaining but she will willing lend a hand because that’s what friends do.

    Blessings to you,
    Keri

    • womenabiding says:

      Thank you so much Keri for your insight. I agree that a true friend is one whom you don’t have to hesitate umpteen times to call on in time of need. You just know she will be delighted to come to the rescue, because as you said, that’s what friends do.

      I have also struggled in the past to find balance in taking initiative. I have learned to pace myself, especially with new friendships, trying not to overwhelm the person. So I can completely relate to you. I think that when we take the initiative to serve someone, asking God what their needs are, and selflessly assisting them, it is always a blessing to the other person. Reciprocating usually comes quite naturally afterwards and the friendship becomes more mutual. Can’t go wrong with serving… God bless you!

  2. Karen says:

    Love this post! This is an area where I struggle as I seem to get ‘burned’ a lot in friendships… you’ve given me a lot to ponder as I go through my pre-Thanksgiving cleaning tonight….
    Thank you so much!!!!

    • womenabiding says:

      I appreciate you sharing, Karen. I will be praying for much wisdom and insight as the Lord brings friends into your life. I think the tendency is to blame others for our hurts, but often it is our own sin and sensitivities that burn a friendship that could have continued if we had overlooked certain areas or words, and lowered our expectations. Thank you for sharing your heart!

  3. Angie B says:

    Loved this post! thanks for sharing great tips on how to become a low maintenance friend! I particularly struggle in point 4 :S but will try to do it better ;)
    May God continue blessing your ministry, visting from Raising Homemakers!

  4. Debbie T says:

    What a beautiful post! It is really easy as a wife & mom to forget HOW to be a friend. This was a really great reminder, and #1 is a big part of it. Patience is another key. Timing is everything and being able to get together may take some juggling – but for me, it has always been worth the effort to have a few moments with a really good friend. Love this! And I’m subscribing – your site is beautiful!

    • womenabiding says:

      Debbie, I was so moved by your words, and you encouraged me GREATLY! Thank you for your valuable input. I agree that as wives and moms we can (and should) be focused on our families, but at times overlook the importance of being a good friend to others. I truly appreciate your comment and time! :-)

  5. Thank you for a wonderful blog ! I appriciate that we had alot to say on the same subject. Thank you for visiting my blog as well and giving me some input. Your words are a blessing and encouragement to others, God bless !!!

    http://tenminustwo.blogspot.com/2012/11/the-essence-of-true-friend.html

    Hope you don’t mind I share mine as well. I think together, we both have great points to share !

  6. Jen says:

    What a compliment! Yes, the world needs more low maintenance friends. Especially those to laugh with & who don’t get easily offended. What a great post! Thanks for UNITING with us this week at Rich Faith Rising. Hope to see you again Tuesday! Have a blessed Thanksgiving! ~ Jen

  7. Taking the initiative sticks out to me as a key item to being a low maintenance friend. Coupled with that is also relaxing about a lack of time spent together. Guilt tripping people when you haven’t seen them for a while makes everyone miserable.

    • womenabiding says:

      Absolutely, Loren! Thanks for pointing that out. I guess that would fall under not being easily offended. A definite way to be a kind friend is definitely not guilt-tripping others. Great thought… I feel so honoured that you have taken the time to read and comment on my blog! Thank you!

  8. Lisa says:

    What a great post! Thanks for sharing such simple and necessary ideas!

  9. Headant says:

    I struggle to maintain friendships. This post came at the right time.

  10. Crystal says:

    What a great post. I have managed to do all but the first one. I’m overly sensitiveness so I pick up on every new or awkward feeling people have around me. For my friends who have been my friends for years, they treasure that fact about me, but for people who are just meeting me it scares the tar out of them and most often causes them to run for the hills.

  11. Lori Hatcher says:

    I will never forget the day Maryann called me. When I answered the phone and we began to chat, I kept waiting for her to get to the reason for her phone call. She never did. I realized later that the point of her phone call was just to visit with me. I had never had another Christian woman call me just because. It was a delight and a joy, and now. 22 years later, we are still dear friends. Thank you for your post today. It’s my first visit to your lovely site, and I”m glad I stopped by. I think I”ll go send her an email to encourage her this day. Lori, from Be Not Weary

    • womenabiding says:

      Thank you for sharing that beautiful story of friendship! I agree that just a simple act of being a friend with no strings attached can make someone’s day, and build a foundation for a lasting friendship! God bless you as you abide in Him!

  12. Stopping by from Raising Homemakers. I truly love this post. I hope that my friends feel the same way about me. But after reading your post, I see areas where I need to improve. I will be referring back to this post often. And I’m sharing it on FB and Twitter! Blessings from Croatia: http://www.littlerandr.org: Rosilind from A Little R & R

  13. Dianna says:

    Thank you! I needed these tips.

  14. Angela says:

    I love this. I’m sharing on my fb page.

  15. Barbie says:

    I am visting today from the Unite link up! What a great post. I too struggle with number 2, especially when I am going through hard times. I can get self-absorbed and it’s hard for me to reach other to others. But I’ve learned that when I focus on others and their needs, my problems get smaller.

    • womenabiding says:

      Thanks for stopping by, Barbie! I think you’re not the only one out there that struggles with taking initiative, for various reasons…Appreciate your honesty, and hope to see you around here again :-)

  16. Sue says:

    What a lovely post! Thanks for sharing. I need a little practice in that area myself! :)

    • womenabiding says:

      Thanks so much, Sue. There is no perfect friend, because there are no perfect people. We are all a work of friendship in progress :-). God bless you and thanks for stopping by!

  17. Jennifer says:

    Not being easily offended is so important. Thanks for sharing this advice and for linking up with Scripture & A Snapshot.

    • womenabiding says:

      You are so right Jennifer! That’s the first step in being a low maintenance friend for sure! For our friends always to be aware of offending us, would just lead them to walk on eggshells, and we would miss the blessing of them being able to be totally free and real with us. God bless you, my sister!

  18. This was a wonderful post that blessed my heart today :-)

  19. Misty Kearns says:

    This is such a great post! I need to work on the “not getting easily offended” part more. I am sensitive and self-conscious and tend to take things personal I shouldn’t. Thank you for the great advice & also for linking up at CEO of Me’s Motivating Monday link up!

    • womenabiding says:

      Hi Misty and thank you so much for your honest comment. Unfortunately, I don’t think that any of us is the ‘perfect’ friend. There is always room for improvement… God bless you, and thanks again for stopping by…

  20. Meredith says:

    Oh my, what great, honest advice. Figuring out and navigating friendships can be so tricky, and I can see how this would be a wonderful compliment indeed. Thanks for sharing these tips here.–perfect ways to pursue friendship the way God intended!

    • womenabiding says:

      So glad you liked the post, Meredith. It is a worthwhile investment of our time to figure out how to be good friends to those that God places on our paths… Blessings to you!

  21. Jelli says:

    Great tips! Sometimes I definitely lack in taking the initiative…usually just to invite someone to spend time together. I think you’ve done a great job outlining some good keys to lasting friendship. Thank you for linking up with me at the Mommy-Brain Mixer.

    • womenabiding says:

      Thank you SO much Jelli, for your honest comments. Spoiler: That’s the weakness I have too… I’d much rather go to someone else’s home, than have them come to mine. I find it quite stressful, unfortunately. But God is definitely working in my heart in this area, and since I desire to be a low maintenance friend, I truly desire to grow in hospitality of my friends too, and taking that initiative. Love having you here, and am a great fan of your blog as well! God bless you, sis!

  22. I agree with KEri. I got a bit of a problem with NO 2 as well. But with the rest, easy peasy. ;)

    • womenabiding says:

      Thanks so much for your honesty. I guess No. 2 is often more a choice than a feeling. I know, for me, once I make the choice, the decision, to reach out to someone, even if it doesn’t come naturally to me, it is usually always a blessing! Something to work on :-)… Blessings…

  23. Great article. We could all use more friends like you describe! And we should all seek to be that sort of friend to others!

  24. Karmen says:

    You had me at “low maintenance”..LOVE this post! You sound like my kinda gal! I’m REAL, I don’t believe in accidents, cherish my family and LOVE the Lord. Found you at MercyInk and would be honored if you would drop by Blessings Beyond the Barnyard sometime:O)
    Blessings,
    Karmen

    • womenabiding says:

      If I’m your kinda girl, then you’re definitely MY kinda girl too! :-) Love the realness… no time for fake in this short life. Give me real any day! Thanks so much, Karmen! Loved your comment…

  25. Trinity says:

    Absolutely! I wish that everybody understood this. It is not often that I have found low-maintenance friends. But, I definitely try to be a low-maintenance friend. This is a really good post.

  26. Ivan says:

    My spouse and I stumbled over here coming from a different page and
    thought I might as well check things out. I like
    what I see so now i’m following you. Look forward to looking at your web page yet again.

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