Written by Ali Brown

“True happiness consists not in the multitude of friends, but in their worth and choice.” – Samuel Johnston

They are your closest confidants and most passionate cheerleaders who make the bad times bearable and the good times even better. Your gal pals know you better than anyone else. But no matter how much you love them, you can’t expect your friends to be everything for you all the time. Life is so complex and multi-layered — no single friend is equipped to handle your multitude of different needs, wants, and desires.

You must cultivate a collection of friends to help you handle every aspect of your life. Think of it as being a little like running your business. You always employ the right person for the right job, so in your private life, pick the right friend for the right need. Worried about taking the company in a new direction? Call Barbara; she’s adventurous and has sound business advice. Can’t decide whether your new boots will go with the purple trench coat? Get in touch with Jane — she’s a fashion diva, always on top of the latest trends. To cover all your bases, surround yourself with friends who each possess at least one of the following traits.

The positive pal

This is someone endowed with boundless energy who is always looking on the bright side of things — even when it appears a bright side cannot be found. She sees potential barriers as mere hurdles to kick over. This is the friend that not only gives her approval by way of a thumbs up and an emphatic “Go for it!” when told you’re taking a year off to write poetry — this is the friend that takes less than a nanosecond to do it.

The truthful pal

There’s no hidden agenda here. She’ll always tell it like it is. If that outfit makes you look like a balloon, she won’t be shy about saying so. This isn’t done with any malice — the truthful pal only has your best intentions at heart.

The fashionable friend

Avoid those clothing calamities and wardrobe disasters with a fashionable friend who has the style tips and advice that are just right for you. She always knows what shoes go with which outfit and is a genius when it comes to accessorizing your look.

The forgiving friend

No one is perfect, but this friend will always forgive your faults. As Elbert Hubbard once said, “A friend is someone who knows all about you and loves you just the same.”

The travel buddy

Whether you want to dive off the Great Barrier Reef, explore the pyramids of Egypt, or be pampered in a health spa, this friend wants to discover the world with you. She’s good at compromising; and like you, is just as happy by the pool, the bar, or on top of a mountain.

The party pal

When it’s time to dress up like a diva and hit the party hotspots, grab the friend who’ll make you giggle and forget the burdens of business. This friendship is about spontaneity, fun, and great times.

The faithful friend

She is devoted to you at all times. Whatever life throws at you, the faithful friend is always there at the other end of the phone and willing to jump on that plane, train, or automobile to be with you in your hour of need.

Picking and cultivating good friends is one of life’s greatest skills. It’s not easy but the results can be truly amazing. Think of each pal as a specialist, and you can call on their expertise at anytime. It’s like having your own team of special advisors.

© 2010 Ali International, LLC

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Self-made entrepreneur and Inc. 500-ranked CEO Ali Brown teaches women around the world how to start and grow profitable businesses that make a positive impact. Get her FREE weekly articles and advice at http://www.AliBrown.com

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