How many times have you “liked” a friend's post when, actually, you didn’t like it at all? How many times have you said how lovely a gift is when you know you’ll never use it? How many times have you answered someone's question of, “What do you think?” by instead saying what they want to hear? We are a caring and loving society. At an early age we are taught to be mindful of others, to care how they feel, and to measure the impacts of our words and actions. In time we learn how to be appropriate, to say the “right” thing at the "right" time. We do this so as not to hurt the feelings of those we care about. And yet in doing so, we often focus more on how we will be viewed from our response, than what our response means to them. We worry that if we tell the truth, we’ll be seen badly, and we’ll lose a friend. Yet a true friend is one who will tell us what need to hear, even when we don’t want to hear it. That’s not to say that being truthful isn't hard. It’s easier to go with the flow. The expected answer and reaction. We justify our actions in the interests of the relationship. But by greasing the wheels the way we do, we have created a track that is too slippery. One where the smallest bump can separate us from those we care about and one where we are not truly caring in the first place. I suggest that we focus on building tighter bonds in our relationships, delicately balancing our words and actions with our true sentiments, and genuinely paying attention in order to respond tactfully. It may take time to strengthen the bond, no different than it takes time to strengthen a muscle. And it may hurt sometimes. But in the end we will be able to carry heavier loads. Our responses will be sincere, and our friendships stronger and truer!