Hands down the most important thing we have in our lives is our connection with other people. Positive, supportive, trusting relationships give us super-powers. With good people around us we are strong, healthy and brimming with possibilities. We can’t think of anything more valuable, so we’ve put together our top five list of how to develop happy relationships in all areas of our lives:
- Listen – as worn out mothers have warned for countless generations, you’ve two ears and one mouth. Listen for twice the amount of time you talk. It’s true that we grow through learning. If you’re always talking, you’re just repeating what you already know. Listening and understanding what others communicate to us feeds what we are as human beings and nourishes relationships. Being a good listener is a silent form of flattery and one that everyone appreciates.
- Time – give over your time to be together. Time is our most valuable commodity, we’re always busy, always zipping in and out, half in the moment. In a world of instant likes on social media, there’s nothing instant about deep, intimate relationships, that are a lot more rewarding than insta-likes. Building genuine relationships takes time. When you’re with someone, be with them, be present. Drop the multi-tasking. No texting while talking with friends.
- Empathy – the more you have the better your life will be – fact. Understanding, listening and not judging other people builds connections. Offering support develops trust. Your life will be richer for it.
- Respect – Aretha sung about it, we’ve all danced to it, but have we lived it? It’s so important to treat everyone as you would like to be treated. Kindness is infectious. As Maya Angelou, the American Poet once said, ‘People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.’
- Laugh – find the giggles in life. Create inside jokes with friends and extra laughs. Find humor in the serious, and never deny the laughter. Consider humor the fertile soil where relationships bloom.