Four Friendship Communication Styles

You are a Chatterbox: You love to communicate and converse. And you know how to use discussion to motivate a crowd of pals, cheer up a friend and even charm prospective friends. You're the bright spark everyone loves to be near. While you love to share your own stories (you have a way of telling a tale that makes it truly Seinfeld-worthy), you also love to hear what's going on with your friends. Just be careful that your excitement over a good story doesn't get the better of you -- what your friends tell you in confidence should remain between the two of you. Likewise, know that it's a myth that you can tell a friend anything, warns Jan Yager, Ph.D., author of Friendshifts: The Power of Friendship and How It Shapes Our Lives. In truth, you have to always think about how your words will affect the friend you're telling and what they'll do to your friendship.

You are a Private: You're not comfortable sharing all of your deepest thoughts and feelings, no matter how close you feel to your friend. While friends should respect each other's privacy, willingness to share, especially to share personal information about oneself, is a basic feature of friendship, says Florence Isaacs, author of Toxic Friends, True Friends: How Your Friends Can Make or Break Your Health, Happiness, Family, and Career. If someone confides in you and you never reciprocate, it weakens the relationship. After all, talk is what makes women value friendship and feel valued in those relationships, as Ellen Goodman and Patricia O'Brien point out in

I Know Just What You Mean: The Power of Friendship in Women's Lives. Women reveal themselves and the friendship grows and deepens.

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