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What Type of Friend Are You?

Odds are you think about your friends a lot. But how often do you think about the type of friend you are? The truth is, we all take on different roles in our relationships, says psychologist Andrea Bonior.  Each friendship type has its own strengths and weaknesses, so knowing which one you are can pay off in surprising ways. “How we relate to others impacts all aspects of our lives, like school, our future careers, how we spend our time, and even how we treat strangers,” Bonior says. Understanding yourself as a friend can help you have strong connections with everyone from future roommates to future bosses. Read on to find out how.

If you got mostly A’s, you’re . . . The Party Starter

Why it’s Awesome: When it comes to making things happen, you’re the friend who steps up, so no one’s bored when you’re around. Your group appreciates the effort you put into keeping things exciting and creating Insta-worthy moments.

Potential Pitfall: Because you’re such a natural at bringing people together, you sometimes forget that your way isn’t the only way. Your friends can have some pretty good ideas too!

Self-Care Secret: “You’re someone who runs the risk of filling up your schedule so much that you don’t get time to breathe,” says Bonior. Try leaving room for quiet, unstructured moments with your friends, as well as plenty of solo relaxation time.

Beyond Your Bonds: Party Starters make stellar leaders and organizers. Wrangling your friends’ schedules takes real drive and time management skills, after all. Not only do those strengths come in handy at school, they’ll also help you in your future career.

If you got mostly B’s, you’re . . . The Therapist

Why it’s Awesome: You’re patient, compassionate, and kind, making you the go-to person for advice or a shoulder to cry on. In fact, your friends have probably told you what an amazing listener you are. Because of your knack for having meaningful conversations, developing close, deep friendships comes naturally to you.

Potential Pitfall: Therapists often listen more than they talk, so make sure you take the time to share. Otherwise, your friends might not get to know you as well as you know them.

Self-Care Secret: You might find yourself putting others’ needs above your own, so remember it’s OK if you need someone to listen to you too. “It might be very hard for you to ask for help if you’re always the one providing help,” says Bonior. But everyone needs someone to talk to now and then.

Beyond Your Bonds: Therapists have empathy coming out of their ears, which makes you particularly well-suited for a career supporting those in need—maybe even as an actual therapist! “You’re someone who wants to make the world a better place by helping others,” says Bonior.

If you got mostly C’s, you’re . . . The Comedian

Why it’s Awesome: Your friends can count on you to brighten their day and cheer them up when they’re feeling down. Everyone appreciates how you can put a lighthearted spin on just about anything—especially when the world is feeling dark.

Potential Pitfall: You have a hard time holding back your funny commentary—even when it’s not super appropriate. “Sometimes if you’re too quick with the joke, it comes across like you’re not really listening,” says Bonior.

Self-Care Secret: Pay attention to times your humor feels like a defense mechanism—meaning you’re using it to push people away instead of using it to connect. It’s easy to hide behind jokes to avoid being vulnerable, but letting your guard down is key to forming strong friendships.

Beyond Your Bonds: “People who veer toward comedy tend to see the world differently,” says Bonior. You’ll rock a creative career, especially one that brings joy to other people.

If you got mostly D’s, you’re . . . The Biggest Fan

Why it’s Awesome: Loyal to the end, you’re the type of friend everyone wants in their corner. You’re the first person to stick up for people you love, and you’re in it for the long haul. Your friends know they can count on you.

Potential Pitfall: Biggest Fans sometimes have trouble pushing back when friends need to be challenged—because, hey, you want to be on their side, right? But sometimes being a good friend means telling your friends what they don’t want to hear.

Self-Care Secret: Keep an eye out for toxic friends who take advantage of your allegiance. Just because you’re loyal doesn’t mean people can push you around!

Beyond Your Bonds: Friends aren’t the only ones who value dependability. “Seeing your friends through thick and thin means that you’re reliable,” says Bonior. Teachers, co-workers, and bosses will know they can trust you with important responsibilities.

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