Let’s face it. RELATIONSHIPS are messy.
And success in life, no matter how you define it, requires a strong foundation of relationships – both professional and personal. Your relationships with coworkers, supervisors, customers, your significant other, friends, children, parents, siblings, and everyone in between, all support the quality of your life. Positive relationships and powerful connections are crucial for long-term well-being, happiness, and success.
Relationships require an understanding of healthy communication, realistic expectations, respect, support, and clear boundaries. Even that wonderful candy that promises to “melt in your mouth not in your hands” WILL melt in your hands if you hold it tight enough and long enough – the same thing happens with relationships.
This brings me to the question, are your messing up your relationships?
In the beginning of any relationships, we are often drawn to the positive aspects about others. It’s as the relationship continues to grow and develop that little quirks that were once ‘no big deal’ become a little, let’s say, less tolerable and the relationships becomes somewhat messy.
Many of us avoid disagreements, arguments, and risk in an effort to have perfect relationships wrapped in neat little bows. We’re afraid of being messy which means we are faking it, lying to ourselves and others, and not speaking our truth. Trust me I know; I was a big faker for a long time!
If you’re truly engaging, connecting, communicating, brainstorming, selling, and working with others, you’re bound to have messy moments. You’re bound to have frustrating moments in relationships at work and in your personal life.
How do we stay true to ourselves without experiencing a tumultuous emotional roller coaster? How do you think, live, and speak your truth without a mess of oozy gooey melted chocolate in your hands?
I suggest “CHOOSE LOVE”.
L – LISTEN. Everyone wants to be heard. Listen with all your senses – your eyes, ears, and heart. Rather than getting frustrated with a colleague who missed a deadline or a client calling to complain, hear them out and be patient. Until you hear their story, stop writing one that limits your level of understanding. Did your teenager walk in the door late and you’re about to explode? Listen, before reacting.
O – OWN your own stuff. Whenever I find myself in a messy situation, I’ve learned to internally ask, “What role did I play in this?” In other words, did I communicate ineffectively? Am I bringing baggage into this conversation? Is my needing to be right rearing its ugly head?
V -VULNERABILITY. True connection demands vulnerability. It took me years to understand that my fear of being vulnerable also prevented me from experiencing true happiness. Vulnerability is the key to close, meaningful relationships. I’m not suggesting you over-share, but rather, keep it real and speak from the heart.
E – EXPRESS your Truth. Hallmark coined the phrase “When you care enough to send the very best”. One of my favorite Colette-isms is “when you care enough to speak your truth.”
In your interactions this week (and beyond), choose an attitude of LOVE. Love for yourself and love for others. Listen, Own your stuff, be Vulnerable, and Express your truth with patience and compassion.
I think you’ll find the quality and depth of your relationships will improve…even if they get a little messy in the journey.
What do you think?