Interpersonal Relationships - Creating Healthy Human Connections
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Interpersonal relationships form a very important part of our lives, and learning how to create and maintain good relationships with those around us is a key to happiness and fulfillment.
Having mutually respectful, open, honest, and caring interpersonal relationships is not just for the ‘lucky’ few that seem to be blessed with a knack for relating. Learning how to develop healthy and positive connections with family, lovers, friends, colleagues, and acquaintances is a skill that can be mastered just like driving a car.
Like learning any new skill, realize that it is going to take time, patience and effort. It will feel less than natural at first, and you will experience ups and downs. Keeping your focus on what you want to achieve, and being willing to keep picking yourself up, dusting yourself off, and ‘getting back on the horse,’ are vital points to mastering any new ability.
If you feel that your interpersonal relationships are less than ideal, and you would like to have better connections in your life, there are several things that you can do.
- Decide that you want to have great relationships in your life, and that you are willing to commit to doing what it takes to develop the skills you need to have them.
- Accept that it is possible for you to enjoy happy and fulfilling interpersonal relationships. If this seems far-fetched to you, then you probably need to look at the underlying beliefs that are blocking the relationships you want to have from being a part of your life. Some of these may include, “I am not good enough/attractive enough for people to want to be around me,” “I never know how to act in social situations,” “Nobody is ever going to love me for myself,” “I am such a dork/nerd/loser.”
If these are the types of things that you tell yourself, it makes it practically impossible for you to open up enough to get close to anyone, or let anyone get close to you. Once you become aware of beliefs that are making it difficult (if not impossible!) for you to have good interpersonal relationships, there are two great ways I can suggest for releasing these beliefs and creating new and healthy ones.
The first is affirmations, and the other is EFT tapping. Often a combination of these two methods is the most effective way of seeing rapid development in the areas you want to change. You might also want to consider some personal life coaching to help you in identifying what your obstacles are, and working through them.
- Visualize what you want to experience in your life. Picture yourself laughing, having fun, having meaningful conversations, loving and being loved. The more often you focus on this vision of what you want in your life, and the more real and detailed you can make it, the closer connection you can form between your dreams and your reality.
- Build your own self esteem. Treat yourself as you would like to be treated, and treat others that way too.
- Give yourself what you need to be happy and fulfilled in your life. Pay attention to your needs and desires. This can help to avoid the neediness of feeling that someone else should be giving you what you require to be happy. Neediness is a
very off-putting vibe to be sending out, so if you feel that this is a tendency for you, work at letting go of it.
- Focus on what you can bring to a relationship rather than only what you want to get from the relationship, but don’t fall into the trap of being a people pleaser.
- Be clear, and reasonable in what you want and expect from any relationship, and what you are prepared to offer in the relationship.
- Learn to set clear and healthy boundaries.
- Keep your goal in mind and just continue looking at what single small step you can take today, to bring you closer to that goal.
- Take time to appreciate yourself for the progress that you have made. Celebrate your accomplishments, and this will help you build on them.
This may all sound like a lot of work, and it is, but working at creating great interpersonal relationships in your life is time and effort well spent. You can also enjoy the process of learning to build the happy, healthy relationships that you desire, and the joy you will experience from the relationships you build is definitely worth it!
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