Have you ever looked for a best friend? Probably not. Best friends generally just seem to appear. But if you did look for a best friend, what criteria would you use? Here are a few that I think might be important.

1. A best friend will care about you. To use the word "care" is somewhat nebulous; but in this instance, I mean one who is sensitive to your needs.

2. A best friend will speak well of you. He will never run you down or miss an opportunity to build you up.

3. A best friend will help you build on your strengths. He will cheer you on for your accomplishments, and help you overcome your setbacks.

4. A best friend is good company. He is one whose company you find interesting, entertaining, and/or stimulating.

5. A best friend is one you know will be there for you when you need him. It's easy to lie down and quit in the face of adversity; but a best friend will stay the course and remain strong.

6. A best friend will see beyond your faults. None of us are so perfect that we do not have faults. A best friend sees through the surface faults and dwells on the goodness within us.

7. A best friend will challenge you. He will help you, as the U.S. Army used to say,"... to be all you can be."

8. A best friend will hold you accountable. He will accept your word, and he will insist that you keep it.

There are more ways to define a best friend, but this list is a good start. The question is, do you know anyone who meets this criteria in your life-one who you can call a best friend? There should be at least one-and that one should be YOU.

Look at the list. See how well you do at being your own best friend. Are you as sensitive to what you need as you are to the needs of others? Do you speak well of yourself? Do you concentrate on getting better? Do you enjoy your own company? Do you strive to keep your word-especially to yourself? Can you see the goodness within you, and do you challenge yourself to greater levels of accomplishment? If you can say yes to most of these questions, then you are probably a great best friend to yourself and have much to offer to others.

Author's Bio: 

Copyright 2003 William N Hodges
William (Bill) Hodges is president of the Professional Speakers Guild an organization formed by speakers to help buyers of services find professional speakers, trainers, presenters, authors and others involved in the seminar, conference, training and meeting market. Information on the Professional Speakers Guild can be found at http://www.professionalspeakersguild.comBill is also president of Hodges Seminars International Inc. a training a business consulting firm specializing in leadership, communications and motivation. Information on Hodges Seminars International Inc. can be found at http://www.billhodges.com