Not everyone has to go on a pilgrimage to find their best friend. Some situations and circumstances create the opportunity built-in.
Built-in best friends have the good fortune to know that they already share a basis for potential true friendship. They already share space, an interest, or even family members to start.
However, it is up to them to cultivate this potential into a reality.
Yes, even right now you may have a potential built-in best friend right in front of you.
Recognize your built-in best friend in your life. See why their relationship is important for you. And learn how to nurture your connection.
Growing friendships is an important aspect of your overall social and mental well-being.
Acknowledging your built-in best friends cannot only demonstrate to you the richness of connection that you already have.
It can also give opportunity to further expand on the great relationship you already know.
What Makes Your Best Friend Built-In?
A built-in best friend is a special edition best friend friendship. The relationship may be very similar to any other best friend scenarios.
But what makes it just a little different is that you are already bound to this individual for another separate reason.
Fate brought you together to be in close proximity, spend extensive time, or otherwise be connected for things that did not require a close friendship.
However, it inadvertently created a fertile ground for friendship just the same.
This built-in connection can be a close family member like a brother or sister, a favorite cousin, or even your mom or dad.
It can also be a teammate, a co-worker, a mentor, or your boss.
These relationships have been established because of other life circumstances.
You already have a basis to connect with this person more than others in the world.
But this connection did not necessitate that you would become more. Again, it simply served as your fertile ground of opportunity.
Friendships grow from much more than proximity, however. You become friends because of:
- Shared trust
- Mutual respect
- Love, compassion, and care
- Supporting and encouraging each other
- Listening and being attentive to each other, and
- Finding more and more opportunities to connect in unique and special ways
All of these attributes and more create friendship bonds.
Now add your close proximity AND that you share these connections with no one else in the same way.
This is how built-in best friends are formed.
How Do I Know If I Am My Best Friend’s Best Friend?
In any close friend relationship, it is not always necessary to put names, titles, or other labels around it.
You can simply enjoy the closeness for what it is.
However, like any other title of honor, it can feel special to know that your best friend will name you in this way.
If you haven’t heard the words, check for other indications that your feelings for each other are mutual:
- Do you talk regularly about highly private or sensitive subjects?
- Are you the first one called for special events or accomplishments?
- Is it automatically assumed that if one of you shows up for an event the other one is likely there too?
- Do other people refer to you both as best friends?
While this list is not exhaustive, they are each good indicators that your relationship is pretty strong.
It is uncommon that a person will share all of these actions with more than one person.
But Am I THE BEST Friend?
There may be a small part of you that wonders if you are the one and only best friend.
No matter your age or your background, there is someone about that number one spot that makes anyone feel extra special.
The reality is that it is very possible for a person to have more than one uniquely close relationship.
Many married couples will call their spouse their best friend and still have another best friend in their life as well. (There has to be someone to complain about their spouse to!)
That said, being the one and only may not happen. But it doesn’t mean that your relationship is not valuable or needed.
Take queues from what you see as the strengths in your relationship. And if you still have doubts, muster up the courage and just ask.
You may find that by putting your feelings on the table openly you reach yet another level of bonding with your best friend.
How to Nurture Your Built-In-Best-Friend Friendship
Anything that you want to keep alive needs nurturing and care. A best friend friendship is no different than anything else.
Built-in-best-friend friendships can sometimes be neglected because they appear to come into your life easily and seamlessly.
You already live with your best friend, for example, so why would you need to schedule any additional time to spend with them.
Or you already work together, so why would you need to talk to them about work goals or stresses when you’re at home too.
While your relationship may be strong, it is never a bad idea to continue to nurture your relationship to ensure it stays strong.
- Be attentive to your best friend and their needs beyond just the ones you usually talk about
- Schedule time outside of your automatic habitat and explore how your friendship functions in different environments
- Be willing to support their healthy relationships with other people in their lives and be a trusted confidant when other relationships struggle or break.
- Most of all, be loving, caring, compassionate, thoughtful, and present as any good friend would be
You are best friends for a reason.
You already share a unique closeness and resonance with each other unparalleled with other people in each other’s lives.
But don’t rest on it being automatic that you will maintain that level of closeness as you both evolve on your separate life journeys.
Be mindful to nurture your relationship so that you can continue to ensure its closeness for a long time to come.
How to Mend a Broken Built-In-Best-Friend Friendship
Built-in-best-friend friendships are a little different than your average friendship.
You are tied in with this person beyond your friendship alone.
Siblings may still live together at their parents’ house. Boss and co-workers have to see each other every business day no matter what.
You can imagine that a friendship gone bad can have damaging effects on both the couple and others in their environment.
No one wants a war where you have to pick sides between one sister or another. And you certainly don’t want a broken-hearted boss doing your annual review!
While there are many who would suggest choosing your friends wisely to avoid these cumbersome backlashes to friendship, avoiding these relationships is not always the answer.
Best friends fight. That is just a fact.
And who else can hurt you more than someone you truly love.
When going through tough times, it is important to remember that not only the two of you but others can be affected. To minimize the collateral damage, try to deploy a little diplomacy:
- Try not to share your ugly details with others who share space in your same environment, such as at home, at work, amongst team members, etc.
- Remember that all emotions including anger, disappointment, or betrayal are fleeting. Try not to say or do anything that will be regretted once the emotions pass, such as quitting a job or breaking a lease.
- Be understanding that others may also have care and love for your friend so do not try to create a smear campaign
- If you do share the dirty details with others and they sympathize with you significantly, remember that others may not get over what you do. So, when your friendship is rekindled, they may still harbor ill feelings for your best friend and it may tarnish everyone’s shared environment
Aside from being considerate of those who share a similar environment with you and your best friend, it is ultimately important to focus on the friendship.
In any broken relationship, it is important to consider the bigger picture and not just the immediate incident.
You have a unique and special bond with your best friend. Is it worth throwing away all that you have become together for the problem in front of you now?
Speak to each other with love. Be open-minded and willing to listen. Acknowledge if you need space or silence to heal. But above all things, try to work through to resolution based on the best of your relationship and not the worst.
This is a friendship meant to be built-in. There is nothing gained in tearing down the house you live in.
A built-in best friend is one where you have been given a unique opportunity to create closeness with someone already in your world.
It didn’t have to happen. But you and your best friend became open, shared deeply, and from this grew a love and a special bond.
And all of this was fortunate to have happened in a shared environment or circumstance. This permitted you to spend more time, share more experiences, and to take your relationship further faster.
Nurturing your friendship, even outside of the ready-made environment that you share, can help your relationship deepen and grow. Be conscious that the ups and downs of your relationship can have impact on you and others in your environment too.
Remember even built-in best friends go through the occasional tough time. But no small dispute is worth diminishing the bond you have that should be treasured.
You are family, co-workers, teammates, or parent and child. Whatever the relationship, you are more than just best friends and that will forever make your relationship uniquely different and special.
Life brought you together so that you both could benefit from knowing each other. So mend any broken fences quickly, treasure all your special moments, and remember always that you have a unique and loving friendship….specially built-in.
Are you looking for ways to enhance other relationships in your life? The most important relationship to nurture first is your relationship with yourself. Check out The Perfect Self-Love Tips to Change Your Life or 7 Ways to Create Balance in Your Imbalanced Life and explore ways to love yourself more. Both you and those you love will blossom as you grow to become more.