Watch the video above and talk about it with a group or mentor. Learn more.

Friendliness is a great virtue. Over-friendliness can be an unexpected problem.

Key Points:

  • The Over-Friendly are guilty of three large errors: 
    1. They believe they must agree about everything
    2. Their praise is ill-targeted
    3. Their friendliness is remorselessly upbeat
  • In Contrast, the more genuinely friendly keep three things in mind:
    1. Disagreement isn’t always necessarily terrible
    2. People only want to be complimented on things they are actively proud of
    3. That we are cheered up not so much by people who say cheery things, but by people who understand us
  • The naturally friendly person uses their own experiences to think about the needs of others, while the over-friendly person forgets themselves in seeking to please others.
  • In order to succeed at befriending anyone, we must first accept the risk that we may displease them by being completely ourselves.
  • We must reconcile ourselves to the risk of not making any friends to stand any chance of making any. 

Quote This:

A good motto is: use friendliness but do not use your friends. -Frank Crane

See Also: Communication, Friendship, Relationships

Talk About It
  1. What is your initial reaction to this topic? What jumped out at you?
  2. Have you dealt with a lot of overly-friendly people? If so, have they ever gotten on your nerves and did you know why?
  3. What are some examples of ill-targeted praise? Why does this kind of praise often have the opposite effect?
  4. How can disagreeing actually be positive, engaging, or productive? Do you have examples from your own life?
  5. Have you ever avoided sharing difficult topics with a cheery person? If yes, what were some of the feelings that kept you from sharing? And who did you choose to share with instead?
  6. How can understanding your own feelings help you better relate to someone else’s feelings?
  7. Do you agree that you must learn to risk not making friends by being yourself in order to truly make friends? Why or why not?
  8. Write a personal action step based on this conversation.