Hopefully, we each have a special person in our lives that we can go to for anything. This person is our best friend and seems to know us as well as we know ourselves. Whether that person is your spouse, sister or someone you've known for only a short period of time, best friends come in a wide variety. August 15 is Best Friends Day. This day is the perfect reminder of how to maintain a strong relationship with those we care about. True best friends are hard to come by. When you have one, you need to do everything to keep that relationship alive. Below are four ways you can be a true best friend.

1. Listen

One of the most important things a best friend can do is listen. When life throws us difficult challenges and we are left confused, overwhelmed and frustrated our best friend can help us sort everything out. Let your friend talk. Listen to what he or she is telling you. Ask questions and be sincere. A true friend always listens and lets the other person share her problems and difficulties.

2. Evaluate yourself

Have you ever stopped for a minute and thought, what is holding me back from being a true friend? Doing a self-evaluation is an excellent way to look at your weaknesses and become a better friend. Think about all of the qualities you look for in a friend. Do you possess those qualities? What areas in your relationships could use some improvement? Building and maintaining a strong relationship with another individual begins with you. Evaluate yourself and see where you can make improvements.

3. Be willing to share and sacrifice

Being a true friend is about being willing to share and sacrifice. Sometimes you have to give up your time to hear her when she is facing a difficult challenge. Or, maybe she needs to borrow something you own. Sharing and sacrificing are two ways to help your friend and show her you care. You don't always have to share everything. Sometimes it is OK to say no. But when you make those sacrifices and are willing to share your time, talents and material items your friend will recognize your willing behavior.

4. Be loyal and trustworthy

The best way to become a true friend is to be loyal and trustworthy. There is nothing that can damage a relationship faster than stabbing another behind her back and sharing her most personal information. Remember, you wouldn't want your friend to do that to you so why should you do that to someone else? Loyalty and trustworthiness are some of the most valued traits in a relationship. Yet are often the ones that can cause strife. Never talk negatively about your friend. Never reveal personal information to others that she has told you in confidence. It can damage your relationship much faster than you may realize.

Finding a true friend becomes much easier when you display the traits that you look for in a friend. A strong friendship starts with you and when you do all you can to keep that relationship alive usually your friend will, as well.

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