Keeping relationships alive, open and responsive pays dividends in your personal and business life.
In our busy and complex lives sometimes we may forget how important our relationships are to our well-being. Research shows that there is a direct correlation between the quality of our connections with others and our sense of contentment and happiness. So appreciate the value of your relationships and invest a little time and energy in them.
Relationships are rewarding, but can sometimes be a struggle too. If for any reason your relationship with someone important to you isn’t working as you would like, consider what you can do about it.
Here’s a few tips to get things back on track:
- Focus on yourself and what you’re thinking, feeling and doing in the relationship currently. Be aware of yourself and your ability to make or break or break a relationship. Consider your behaviour. What could you do differently? What could you change to improve relations?
- Remind yourself of what you like and value about the person and the relationship. If these things are still important to you, this will help motivate you to do what you can to improve things.
- If you’ve had ‘falling out’ over a particular topic, take a few moments to step into the other person’s shoes and ask yourself what it is like for them? Replay events from their point of view. What do you imagine they were seeing, hearing, feeling and saying to themselves? Its amazing the insights you can gain by doing this.
- Respect the thoughts and feelings of others – listen to them and respect they have a right to their point of view even if it differs from yours.
- Invite feedback – ask others to give their views and perspectives on events and their thoughts on what you said and did and the impact it had on them
- Share your thoughts and feelings about the relationship with the other party. Let them know that you do value the relationship, how you’re feeling about it currently and ask them to suggest what you can do to get things back on track.
- Be clear about your expectations of the relationship and share these with the other person/ people. It’s always useful to be aware of what people expect of us. Of course understanding someone’s expectations doesn’t oblige anyone to necessarily want to meet these, but the at least knowing them provides a more informed choice.
- Above all be aware of the fact that you can choose how you respond to people. There’s nothing in their behaviour that means you have to respond in a certain way. The choice is yours.
- Remember relationships develop and change over time. They vary between different people and different groups. Be flexible in your expectations and behaviours t
Without relationships, life can be empty, boring and lonely. With relationships, it can be fun, sometimes stressful but ultimately rewarding and fulfilling.