VITAL RELATIONSHIP LESSONS YOU MUST LEARN

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The year is almost over and before we close it and begin another one, it is wise to reflect and evaluate our relationship with those around us. You may come to the realisation some relationships were worth it while others toxic. You might also realise that some could have been better. How do you remedy this? Read on for vital relationship lessons you must adopt if you are to develop meaningful and fulfilling relationships in the years to come.

Seek to understand the other person’s perspective. It is inevitable to have miscommunication in a relationship and when that happens there is need for both parties to hear each other out and clear the air.

Often in an argument, each party is keen to get their point across in finality and often times they end up ignoring the other person’s point of view. Be intentional about giving the other person the benefit of doubt and listen to their views with the intent of understanding and not just so that you can respond to what they have to say.

Also, avoid selective listening where you only hear certain parts of the conversation or focus on specific words being said instead of focussing on the meaning of the words and context. Without communication being made clear and well understood by both parties, there is bound to be arguments and agitation. In light of this, always 2enhance clarity in your communication.

No relationship can make you happier than you already are. People always think that they can find happiness from relationships. It is not uncommon to hear statements like, ‘I will be happy when I get married’, or ‘If I had a best friend, we would travel the world together, have fun and be excited at life.’ They are wrong! No one can make you happy if you aren’t happy with yourself already.

To expect someone else’s commitment to you is to keep you in a constant state of happiness is a recipe for failure in that relationship. To give someone the keys to your happiness is giving away too much power.

Focus on making yourself happy. Relationships are about being authentic, not perfect. We live in a world where people are obsessed with portraying themselves as perfect and social media has helped to perpetuate this lie. People upload photos taken with precision; the best lighting, best angle and most appealing filter showcasing them as perfect. But the reality is that nobody is perfect and so it is absurd to want to seem as if you have no imperfections, yet if anything, it makes us human.

Strive to be authentic in all your relationships; that is, your raw, genuine self and let people decide to love or hate you. It is better to be authentic and have few people love you than being pretentious just to make people love or like you. Being authentic means you love yourself regardless of what others think or feel towards you.

Have a give and take attitude. Healthy relationships are based on mutual care and love. And because it takes two to make any relationship work, it is important to play your part in the relationship because no matter how hard one person tries, that relationship is bound to fail if the other person isn’t putting in any effort.

You cannot expect to receive something if you are not willing to offer something when it’s your turn. And it is fair to say that you won’t always have your way in your relationships and so it is important to learn the art of compromise in order to achieve a win-win situation.

Buky Ojelabi’s quote: “relationships are give and take, where people make deposits and withdrawals” couldn’t be truer. And while no one is keeping scores, we need to be fair and considerate and not take advantage of the other person’s kind nature.

Buy a copy of the December issue to read this and many more