Irrespective of our background, nationality, age, social status, educational qualification or race, the absolute truth remains the same: we are social beings. We are not here by ourselves. We have to build relationships with people in order to survive. At home, we should have a good relationship with our parents, siblings, spouse and children. At work, we should maintain a healthy rapport with our colleagues and authorities. In our neighborhood, we should be in good terms with everyone. Relationship skills are one of the most important skills in life.
But, establishing and maintaining relationships is never easy; considering the fact that each person is different and everyone has their share of positives and negatives. Here are some simple yet important keys to good relationship skills:
Shift your focus
Some people have a habit of overlooking the positives in others, and focus on the one minute detail that is not right about them. We must accept the fact that nobody`s perfect! Instead of amplifying the mistakes and weakness’ of others, we should start magnifying their strengths and acknowledging their benefits. Take a count of all the positives and you will surely overwrite the negatives.
Surrender your ego
Just as a small matchstick can bring forth a big forest fire, most times, it’s the small things that can cause much devastation in relationships. An old saying goes like this: “when our nails grow, we cut the nails and not the finger”. Same way, we ought to surrender and cut our ego just to keep the relationship going. Sometimes it’s better to lose a temporary argument than to lose that friendship permanently.
Stop being judgmental
We might come across people who went off track because of their own poor decisions. It’s easy to throw arrows of judgment at them and condemn them for their wrong choices. But, that will not help them in any way. We should cover them with love which will enable them to rise up and start again. In that process, even your relationship will be strengthened. Be patient and kind to them as they slowly make a comeback.
Shower them with appreciation
The world is desperately looking for people who accept and love them for who they are. Make it a priority to be a channel of encouragement to those who are around you. You could bring a smile on your mother`s face by saying, “thank you for that lovely meal”, or lift up the countenance of your junior at work by saying, “you did a great job. We are so happy to have you here”. Learn to appreciate the efforts of others even if it’s not up to the mark. People respond better when they are acknowledged, appreciated and praised. That’s one of the catalysts for effective relationships.
Start accepting them instead of trying to change them
We should start accepting people the way they are instead of trying to change them. A person behaves, thinks, feels and reacts in a certain way because of his past experiences, upbringing and psychological makeup. When we keep trying to change them, they feel threatened, insecure and hide under a shell of self-pity and depression. But, if we accept them the way they are, that will enable them to slowly open up and become better.
Support them in their race
Each person has a race to run. The challenges and obstacles that each person faces will vary. Even the final destination of each person is different. They cannot make it on their own. We must be mindful of that and support them in every way possible. You can help them by mentoring or by encouraging them.
Building your relationship skills is one of the most important aspects of life.