Relationship Demystified

“If civilization is to survive, we must cultivate the science of human relationships – the ability of all peoples, of all kinds, to live together, in the same world at peace.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt

Do I need to give any arguments in favor of why Relationships are important for us? We know that already. Despite that the count of people who struggle to live at peace or to create quality relationship is huge. We understand the need; perhaps execution is a little elusive.

Let’s make an attempt to unravel the nuances of Relationship, beginning with what is means?

A dictionary defines it quite simply as:

the way in which two or more people or things are connected, or the state of being connected’;

‘the state of being connected by blood or marriage’;

‘the way in which two or more people or groups regard and behave towards each other’.

So, we understand that Relationship is a connect with anything or anyone. We may be connected by birth, a legal contract or by choice. So, by virtue of being born, or as a part of society, we are surrounded by Relationships even before we learn to talk or walk. And then as we grow and learn, we create several relationships by choice. Hence, we have an innate ability to create relationships and live with other people.

To live at peace therefore, is less of a question of ability to create relationship and is more of creating the quality relationships, healthy relationships and learning to balance all the relationships we receive or create.

Healthy or balanced relationships give a person sense of safety – physical, emotional, mental and social safety; sense of satisfaction and harmony.

On the contrary, the rise in stress level, anxiety, depression, aggression, addictions and violent behaviors finds its root in the unbalanced or toxic relationships.

Strong and harmonious relationships can see a person through any adversity in life. Whereas, lack of these makes a person lonely and paranoid and susceptible to all ills.  

Characteristics of Relationship:

Unique –

Whether received or created, all relationships are different. No relationship is alike any other because with each person our connection will vary. So, to compare one relationship with another is absurd, futile and to ensure toxicity.

Impermanence –

Just like life, relationships are not for forever. Thinking that some relationship will stay with you till the end of time is a romantic idea that is pleasing to conceive but a far cry from truth. Therefore, it is important to learn to live in present and give each relationship your best.

Dynamic –

Relationships are not static. They are transformative. The nature of your relationships change with time, shared experiences, circumstances and with evolution of self. Our roles, expectations, understandings change and to accept the change in a relationship helps is strengthen further.   

Creating Quality Relationships:

Whether you received a relationship by birth or you create a relationship by choice, it is imperative to know the reason for the relationship. Is it because you are just bound by birth? Is it to fulfill social obligation? Is it to distract you from loneliness and boredom?

Unfortunately, none of the above reasons can help you create and healthy, quality relationship.

The essence of a good relationship is in the value you create for yourself and the other person in the relationship. There has to be some mutual Value that you bring to the person, yourself and to the connection.

The four essentials to create a Value based relationship are:

Self knowledge –

“When you acknowledge the integrity of your solitude, and settle into its mystery, your relationships with others take on a new warmth, adventure and wonder.”

John O’Donohue

Trust –

“Trust is the glue of life. It’s the most essential ingredient in effective communication. It’s the foundational principle that holds all relationships.”

Stephen Covey

Truth/ Honesty –

“Be honest, brutally honest. That is what’s going to maintain relationships.”

Lauryn Hill

Respect/ Dignity –

“Relationships based on obligation lack dignity.”

Wayne Dyer

The relationships based on value creation benefit not just the two people but entire society. These relationships do not need to be maintained or managed, they just flow.

If it requires to be managed, it cannot be a relationship. It will be some transaction misunderstood or misquoted as relationship be it personal or professional relationships.

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