The Art Of Friendship
Home Rules Connect Pics Press About the Authors

Rule Of The Day

  Rule 15   File Important Facts  

Remembering details that you learn about people in early meetings can serve to be a great friendship-building tool. If you can recall a remark made during a previous conversation, then refer to it the next time you are chatting, your potential friend will know you were interested enough to remember what she said. Similarly, if a colleague happens to mention an upcoming birthday, surprise him with a card. If a new neighbor comments on how much she loves tiramisu, invite her for tea and serve that special treat. The recipient of such thoughtfulness is sure to be flattered that you remembered.

This kind of careful listening is also useful in maintaining or deepening existing friendships. Imagine your friend’s happiness when you send him a new book by an author he mentioned liking, or the warm reaction of a childhood pal when you remind her of times gone by with a box of Girl Scout cookies.

You might wonder how such attentiveness is possible. How can you be expected to remember the details of every conversation at every party? Of course, you can’t and we don’t expect you to. We advise keeping a friendship journal or calendar to record important dates and make notes. If you’re more technologically proficient, put your PDA or laptop to good use.

   To Do: Get into the habit of noting “friend facts” in your address book or calendar.

The Art of Friendship: 70 Simple Rules for Making Meaningful Connections, by Roger Horchow & Sally Horchow (St. Martin's Press.)