Working on Relationships is Hard
Relationships are difficult to maintain… especially over the long term. How are your relationships? Good, bad, or so-so?
Take inventory. How many relationships are you juggling? Are you fully engaged? Do you want to be engaged with this or that person?
These are important questions to ask yourself because we all only have so much bandwidth and time. People come and go, priorities change, and people move on.
Be There, Be Present
The people that you’re closest with need to know how you feel. The people you’re closest with need to know that you’re there for them. Easier said than done, right?
Send the extra text. Make the extra call. Ask how they are doing. Ask them if they need any help.
Take the extra step. Make the extra effort.
Coach Tom Ryan
Ohio State’s wrestling coach, Tom Ryan, stopped by the office the other day. At one point, my son had the opportunity to meet him. I watched Tom talk to Alex for five minutes – completely engaged and undistracted – asking him about his life.
Tom was 100% present with Alex during those five minutes. He just met my son.
As an observer, I was taking down notes. To simply be there in a conversation with someone can be more challenging than you think, especially when the modern world is always competing for your attention.
Go All the Way In
Turn off the TV, put down the controller, and get off your phone if someone is trying to talk to you.
Do you think the person trying to engage with you feels important if you’re halfway listening and typing away on your phone? Not at all.
We’re all guilty. We’re all distracted to some degree. But we must make a conscious effort to do better.
How Can You Help?
What can you do to help? How can you contribute? Reach out and ask those people you are closest with. There will always be room to improve.
There are so many ways you can help your family, friends, and other relationships. It could be financially, it could be them asking for your advice, or it could be that they just want someone to listen and to be a sounding board.