8 things people with high emotional intelligence do that make them fantastic friends

by Paul Brian | April 2, 2024, 4:05 pm

High emotional intelligence is a very endearing quality. 

We often take it for granted or barely notice, but those who have a healthy relationship with their feelings make outstanding friends. 

We want to spend as much time around them as possible. 

Their warmth, their understanding and their generosity of spirit make them our favorite notification on our phone and the person we most like to hang out with. 

Here are the special things these emotionally intelligent people do that make them so extraordinary and make them such great friends.

1) They listen for real

It’s hard to find somebody who really listens, and when you do it’s very noticeable. 

Emotionally intelligent people don’t just lend us their ears, they also lend us their attention. 

They ask followup questions and show true diligence and attention in hearing us out and understanding the details of what we’re saying. 

If they don’t understand something we say, they ask for clarification.

We know that they hear what we’re saying but even more importantly they also care. 

And that makes all the difference. 

2) They genuinely respect us

Those with high emotional intelligence make excellent friends because they have respect. 

They genuinely care about others and want to know how their life is going.

This respect and sincerity makes these folks the best friends possible. 

They’re not putting on an act, they really do respect others, even those different from themselves.

In a world which so often only gives respect in return for a price or for those of us with the right titles, wealth or credentials, this is a breath of fresh air.

We all want to be respected, so we’re drawn to folks like this.

3) They see our true potential 

The emotionally intelligent friend sees our true potential. They see our strengths even when we don’t see them. 

Their own grasp of their feelings and those of others lets them notice things about us that we may not even notice ourselves. 

We feel seen, but not in an uncomfortable way and instead in a way that is empowering and full of potential.

4) They avoid snap judgments

Emotionally intelligent individuals are aware of their own shortcomings and flaws, so they tend to be very non-judgmental. 

They see us for who we are, including our flaws, but they also see our potential as I noted in the previous point. 

They avoid snap judgments and choose to give us space to be ourselves even if we still have lots to work on. 

Nobody’s perfect, and that’s OK. The emotionally intelligent friend truly has emotional space for us in our imperfection, and that gives us space to improve and feel valued and accepted. 

5) They offer realistic advice 

Those with high emotional intelligence offer realistic advice. 

They accept the limits of their own influence and know that some situations are easier to solve than others. 

But when they can give advice they do so. 

They know that sometimes what we need is a shoulder to lean on and a person to be there for us, even if nobody has all the answers. 

Advice comes and goes, but the emotionally intelligent person knows that sometimes it’s less about the advice given and more about the mood and support they create with others. 

Which brings me to the next point… 

6) They stick with us when we’re down

When we’re down it’s sometimes hard not to feel like a burden or feel like we’re losing at life.

But emotionally intelligent individuals know how to lift us out of that space and remind us of our own value. 

They stick with us even when we’re down, reminding us that they still care about us and they’re not judging. 

We all go through hard times, and emotionally intelligent people know more than anyone that you can never judge somebody by their worst moment if you want to see them at their best. 

Friendship is an up and down journey, not just a walk in the park, and emotionally intelligent people are there for all of it, not just the fun parts. 

7) They’re generous and not transactionalist

Those with high emotional intelligence are interested in friendship for the sake of connection, shared interest and having adventures and good times together. 

They aren’t conditional friends, or transactional. 

They don’t help you out on the weekend with getting a ride somewhere and then expect you to help them out in return with a short term loan. 

It’s not “I did this for you, now do X for me.”

They’re just your friend regardless of whether you’re doing something for them or causing any gain to come to them. And they’re there for you. It’s that simple. 

8) They make you more aware of your own strengths as a friend

Emotionally intelligent people serve as a kind of mirror, helping us see our own potential and strengths as a friend as well. 

They draw out our best qualities as a friend and make us aware when we’ve fallen short. 

By not being overly judgmental and being there for us when we’re done, they make us more aware of our own ability to be a good friend to them and others in our life. 

The emotionally intelligent individual is a beacon showing us the way to become the best friend we can and to keep improving our ability to communicate, care and be there for those in our lives. 

The emotionally intelligent friend

The emotionally intelligent friend is a blessing to us all. 

He or she is there when we need somebody and helps us rise to our full potential as a human being. 

They serve as the best example of what a caring and genuine person can be like and how valuable friendship truly is. 

This is one of the best overlooked benefits of emotionally intelligent friends. Being around an emotionally intelligent person rubs off on those around them. 

We all benefit from them and learn without even realizing it, absorbing their way of caring for others and being sincere and real.

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