Friday, October 16, 2009

Relationships and Communication: by Brenda Williams

Relationships are hard work. In fact, there are many people who would argue that maintaining a relationship with another person is the most difficult thing one can endure. Human beings have been building relationships with one another since the beginning of time. Even in modern days, failed relationships can be linked to much of the undue stress and tragedy that humans face in the world.

Think about all of the people who use drugs illegally. Now, think of all the people who commit crimes. At the heart of it all, it seems like relationships play an extremely important role. There’s a saying that a lot of young couples hear when they are first married, which is that you shouldn’t go to bed mad at each other. This is true. People who get married today have over a 50 chance of getting divorced. So, now the question becomes “why?” Why is it that we can’t seem to stay together? Has the view on marriage changed? Perhaps. It seems as if a lot of young people today get married for the wrong reasons. Many people marry for financial reasons, and the the financial strain develops into the cause of the couple breaking up.

The number one reason that people fail at relationships with one another is due to a lapse or lack of communication. It takes two people to communicate effectively to the other. If one person is constantly doing all of the work in trying to convey feelings or ideas to the other person, then it is only a matter of time before problems arise. We are not mind readers. No one person is the same as the next, therefore we aren’t expected to get along. However, good relationships require good communication which requires compromise from either party involved. For example, if your husband is slovenly and leaves things out around the house, rather than reprimand him, let him know how you are feeling without nagging him to death. “Usually, you are so good about not leaving things out, honey would you mind just picking that up and putting it away?” sounds ten times better than: “I’m sick and tired of having to clean up after you!”

When it comes to communicating well, you have to be innovative. Everyone has something that makes him or her tick. Figure out what that thing is and use it to communicate more effectively. When you are first starting out in a relationship, you need to make sure that you’re getting involved for the right reasons. Simply recognizing someone for the physical attributes that they possess is not going to be enough to sustain you through the long term because as time goes on, people’s physical appearances tend to change. Similarly, you shouldn’t just get involved with someone based on material items or because of how much money they make because that, too, can change. Instead, look at the person’s character. How do they make you feel? How do their actions affect you? How do they treat other people? What sorts of things do others have to say about them?
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