How to make true friends – Part 1 – Know Yourself

Steven Aitchison
Written by Steven Aitchison

Making friends is not easy for a lot of people, and for some the thought of speaking to others is terrifying. This can be debilitating in your life and if you’re the self conscious type it makes it even worse. You might worry about what people think of you, you might be thinking about saying the right thing too much, rather than being yourself and engaging in authentic conversation.

Many people suffer from self consciousness and the need to impress, and it shows. It’s easy for people to say: ‘relax, just be yourself’ that’s no good when you don’t really know who you are as you’re trying to impress too many different kinds of people.

I was self conscious around very intelligent people, but I got over it once I realised I was intelligent enough to speak to intelligent people, how intelligent is that!!

Know yourself

You can’t make friends with people until you know what type of people you want to like. To know what type of person you want to like you have to know yourself first.

How on earth do you begin to know yourself?

Write yourself down on a piece of paper, seriously.

On a sheet of paper get to know yourself by asking yourself questions, for example:

What type of films do you like?
What type of books do you like to read?
What sports do you like?
What are your hobbies?
Who do you like to spend time with?
What are your best personality traits?
What are your worst personality traits?
What are your goals?
What are your values?
What are your principles

By asking yourself lots of questions, you will begin to understand what makes you tick. When you know this you begin to see how you will live your life and then it will become clear what type of friends you want in your life. You have to know your own values and principles before you befriend other people.

Values and principles

If you don’t really know yourself you will befriend some people and maybe later on you will wonder why you ever befriended that person, it’s because they are not aligned to your true values and principles.

So, sit down with a good cup of tea, or whatever is your want, and make a date with yourself. Getting to know you, may sound ridiculous but you may be surprised how much you will find out about yourself.

Looking at your friends

Once you have found out what your true values and principles are, it’s time to look at your friends and find out if you really want to stay friends.

I remember having some friends in my teens. When I realised I wasn’t aligned to their values and principles and they were not aligned to mine, I decided to split from them. It was one of the most difficult decisions I ever had to make but it changed the course of my life.

Aligning yourself to the right people, and by that I mean the right people for you, you will become comfortable with yourself and you will start to feel confident and secure in your environment.

Once you are secure you can then start to move a little outside your comfort zone and stretch yourself. For example, if one of your values is to be a positive person, it will be natural to want to be around positive people. If you have been around negative people a lot, it might be out of your comfort zone to try and befriend positive people. However you will eventually do this, as you will be more secure and confident within yourself and know what you really want in life.

I hope you have found part 1 useful. If you have any questions or comments please let me know.


Read Part 2 of this series – The Pride of Loneliness

Other articles you might be interested in

Know yourself – Success Television

Know yourself tests – amusedbee

Isis on ego and choices – Spiritual Awakening

Benefits of Journaling – Rainbow dreams

Do you know yourself – AllNaturalWahm

What makes you fabulous – Powerful Living

Some Amazing Comments


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  • *raise hand*
    I have a doubt here…hehe…so,how about people who don’t match our values?
    We get antisocial with’em?

  • People will use you if they can. The more you give the more this will happen. Dont sell out because your lonely. Dont rush out buying books to give you false hope.
    Just love you because most times thats all we have in the end.
    Keep plenty of pets and treat them well & you cant be lonely.

  • Great Article.

    I used to wonder how to make friends and beat my head agaisnt the wall.

    Now, I have simple steps that I use to make new cool friends like clockwork. I teach people (young men) how to do it on one-on-one coaching.

    And I released a FREE Report on how to Make 3 New Friends In 3 Weeks. You can download it Now for free while it’s still available :

    Good luck all

    Paul Sanders

  • Its good to know how to make friends but in practical does it really helps?
    some of us a still shy to tell some one to be friend with us.
    Can this book make it happen over night??

    I will give it a try though!

  • hello everyone,no matter to make friends or find the true love ,or get a dat=-ing,you must believe yourself,!believe it or not,once i feel Life is so lonely. i am rich but still single. It’s hard to get my true love in my town,m ost of them like my money more than like me. I just want to find my true love. but later, a friend named Annee introduced a place for me, there i met many good guys and also beautiful, so i uploaded my photo on a=f=f-l-u-e-n-t=s=i=n=g=l=e.(C/-O/-M) under the name of weiwei. maybe you are the next to be loved , U can find your true love and d-a-t-ing there!why not try!i just some times in here,because here not too many guys,i also on the place (/a=fflu=e=n=t=single,c/o/m)that i sent to you,you also can find me weiwei2000 there,and my friend annee,they also look for their love there!it is sid that many guys find their love there.

  • Yep,

    The thing about knowing yourself is really important. Sometimes we want to be IMPORTANT and get the biggest cut of attention.. not even knowing ourselves..

    For those of you who are looking for great step by step guide to making friends I would also recommend visiting Really worth reading.

  • Thanks so much for this article. It has really helped me realise who I am and the friends I want:)

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  • To overcome self-consciousness, it often helps to analyze your expectations. Often such feelings arise because you have high hopes for the outcome of the conversation. Instead, learn to be a bit more indifferent, and just have fun.

    Also, make sure you are listening to the other person. Usually we feel self-conscious when we are focusing inwardly instead of outwardly. Pay attention to the content of the conversation, not to how you are feeling.

    Great post, thanks for the tips!

  • Sometimes a smile does do wonder. Be humble, friendly, really to help those in need and you will get friends easily.Once i was in the lift and i met this lady i smile at her when she was coming in.later i met her again in another floor, i was lost.Because of the smile i gave her earlier she was so helpful.
    .-= cyn´s last blog ..Mix n Match =-.

  • Thanks for sharing.I think you just need to believe in yourself. You need to realize that You are who you are.. There is nothing wrong with You. Others are perfect too. When You finally get that, the game is on. Your life is great, see the great things in Your life. celebrate today! Tomorrow may bring rain but it can’t rain forever .Seconded cribcat..

  • so i really wants to befriend with this person in my school but we barely know each other —- i got a bunch of friends and he got a bunch of friends so i really don’t know how to take the first step of becoming friend with him and his friends…help me….

  • Its all true I guess
    Principles as well as personal honor and integrity can be best seen as insurance along the byways and pathways of life in both our personal lives , our interactions and personal as well as business dealings

  • i’m a crusader of mind development and will always be. I’ve come to understand that lack of self confidence is nrmally seen among our students and if such will be eradicated, we must start preaching of ones ATTITUDE. Attitude have a lot of thing to do in mind development. If u can sum the word attitude with alphabetical numbering, it will amount to 100%

  • I have found that I know myself very well-and have always been a deep person-my problem is getting other people to want to know me and participate in my life. I am very active in other people’s life and in getting to know them and always giving to them first of generousity in spirit and material. But it is not reciprocated. I’m getting bitter and angry about it now that I am in my 50’s and want more qualitative reciprocative relationships. Even with friends who have similar values–it seems I’ve trained them well to take and not worry about giving back. I have one friend who does give back and want more friends like her-she is the person who has shown me that a mature relationship is giving and receiving amongst people who share the same values and ideals. I am utterly disgusted with my other friends but know they are just unaware. Any suggestions on how to develop more of what I want?

  • […] Your article is great and really gets to the point. Great suggestions, this will definitely be PERFECT–WALL-E’S WORLD IS WONDERFUL! First I have a confession. I am a sucker for anything […]

  • I used to be at ease with who I am, and never worried about what people would think of me, when I was speaking to them, now I find myself questioning everything I say to people, which make’s it hard for me to have eye contact, does anyone know what I can do, to make this better.


  • Hey can you tell me how to get rid of the self-consciousness.
    I suffer from it and it really affects my behaviour with others and makes it difficult to be myself.

  • This couldn’t have come at a more opportune time for me. Really. I’ve found myself getting a much closer look inside of ME to figure out what is most important and I have found that there has been a need for ‘weeding out’ relationships that are not fitting. Getting to know myself better has helped me make needed changes in that department. What are my priorities? Standards? Goals? Do my so-called friends enhance positive change for me? Do they hinder my progress?


  • Hi Steven,

    Thank you for this article. It’s good thoughts on how to get to know oneself. I find quiet times for introspection whether meditation, a hot bath or a simple walk around the neighborhood are also great ways to get to know oneself.

    I also think it’s important to enjoy oneself, to be your own friend. It may sound cliche but the best way to have friends is to be a friend and you better be a friend with yourself. After all, you are the one person you do HAVE to live with all the time. :)

    Have a great day.

  • As my tagline says, “If you don’t believe in yourself, who will?” It is essential to know yourself in order to create valued and meaningful relationships. Your article is great and really gets to the point. Great suggestions, this will definitely be a great series to keep up with!

  • You need to realize that You are perfect. There is nothing wrong with You. Others are perfect too. When You finally get that, the game is on. Your life is great, see the great things in Your life. celebrate today! Tomorrow may bring rain but it can’t rain forever.

  • All very nice. Know yourself. But dont think that people you believe are your friends will share your values or principles. You only find out where their depth is when the going gets tough. Trust your instincts!

  • This is a great idea – it couples with so many other things that you have to get right in yourself before you can attract all the things you want in your life. One of the key ones for me was to learn to love myself before I could truly love another. It takes commitment, but the results are life changing.

    Thanks Steve

  • Great series Steven. I think it is of most importance to know what your values are, because like you said you’re going to find someone that’s completely not right for you.

    I sometimes introduce myself in terms of possibilities instead of hobbies, accomplishments, career, or location. =)

  • Amen to saying how important it is to know yourself Steve

    I’m a broken record on that subject! You’re so right in pointing out how important values are. I also encourage folks to put language to their values – really define them rather than just put down words. This process really helps people gain greater clarity on what they stand for.

    Many thanks for the link back to my article – What Makes You Lovable, Wonderfull, Fabulous…?

    Have a terrififc day



  • I think that’s one of the reasons why some people are not happy with their lives because they don’t know what they want it’s because they don’t know their self well. “Dance like nobody’s watching”. 😉

  • Getting to know ourselves is not easy. The mind likes to chatter on about outside events. We worry about what people think of us instead of enjoying who we are. I know that I’ve struggled getting to know myself, but the more I do the more I enjoy my life.

    Great post!

  • “Know yourself” – what great advise. Very few people take the time to actually figure out who they are. Identifying our personal values and principles outside of the influence of others, I believe, is the first vital step on the path of personal development.

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