On the short list of good things from the global pandemic is it's shown me who are my friends and who are my "frenz."
I think another item on the list of good things from the pandemic is I also learned it is okay, in fact, BETTER to have a handful of legitimate and caring friends, rather than 1,000 frenz. Quality over quantity, always.
I've done things on this list out of an unclear picture about what constitutes communication. Prior to reading an earlier article about sh*tty communicators, I thought that by adding my own, "I know what you mean. I once had that issue as well," helped convey that I understood how the friend felt because I had experienced something similar. I didn't know I was turning the conversation around to me. But now that I know better, I do better. I've learned to ask follow-up questions rather than immediately interject my own stories. When it's appropriate, I might share my own experience but only if it adds to the conversation and if it doesn't appear that I'm trying to one-up the speaker.
You can teach an old lapdog new tricks.