A group of friends laughing and drinking (Photo by Kampus Production from Pexels)

NEW YORK — How big is your social circle? A new survey finds the average adult has 10 “good” friends — including one childhood pal they’ve known since the age of six!

The survey of 2,000 people in the United Kingdom, commissioned by Disney, also discovered that the average person spends over 2,000 nights out over the lifetime of a friendship. They also spend 39,000 hours laughing and share 630 secrets with their closest companions.

Obviously, most people don’t meet all of their friends during childhood and, unfortunately, not all friendships last forever. The poll found that the average friendship lasts for 17 years, however, 17 percent say they’ve had the same best friend for over 30 years!

What are the secret ingredients of friendship?

The study, conducted by OnePoll, also looked at the factors that people believe makes someone a good friend.

Along with being a good listener (which topped the list), respondents also say their best friends give them honest outfit advice, make them laugh, and always remember to send embarrassing photos on their birthday.

Friendships are vital, but as we get older, they can become more difficult to maintain for a variety of different reasons,” notes Sarah Fox, vice president of marketing and communications for Disney consumer products, gaming and publishing EMEA, in a statement.

“That’s why it’s so uplifting to see how much importance we put on having strong, lasting bonds with our friends, and celebrate Disney best Pals Mickey and Friends, who exemplify a lifetime of friendship this International Friendship Day.”

Seven in 10 people add that their close friends see them as someone they can always turn to when they need help. The biggest topic adults seek out their friends for is relationship advice. Overall, the average adult spends four hours a week with their friends, and 48 percent say it’s strange if they go an entire day without speaking to their best friends.

Top 20 Things That Make a Good Friend:

  1. Be a good listener
  2. Listen to each other’s problems
  3. Make each other laugh
  4. Always tell the truth
  5. Keep each other’s secrets
  6. Give a second and honest opinion on something
  7. Don’t judge mistakes
  8. Treat them/cheer them up when someone has bad news
  9. Always be willing to chat over some coffee
  10. Always there in a pinch to help with any situation – no matter big or small
  11. Give them a lift home if they are stranded somewhere
  12. Call them out when they aren’t themselves
  13. Provide honest advice on an outfit
  14. Share films, games, records, books that they haven’t seen, played, or read
  15. Help them move to a new house
  16. Take them on a night out after a breakup
  17. Pick them up from the airport after a holiday
  18. Motivate them to go that extra mile/lift heavier when exercising
  19. Send silly and embarrassing pictures on your birthday
  20. Pet sit for you

About Chris Melore

Chris Melore has been a writer, researcher, editor, and producer in the New York-area since 2006. He won a local Emmy award for his work in sports television in 2011.

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