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How to build better relationships

Opinion & Analysis
Some people build their romantic relationship thinking or assuming that they have to work on their body and be attractive to the opposite sex.

RELATIONSHIPS create our happiness and contribute to the quality of our lives. Some people have intellectual intelligence, but have failed in relationships. This applies in business, social and romantic relationships. Conflicts around us are mainly relational. In reality, conflicts are inevitable in every relationship or grouping. This article seeks to project tips for building better relationships.

When ‘sexy’ is not sexy enough

Some people build their romantic relationship thinking or assuming that they have to work on their body and be attractive to the opposite sex. The man tries to build his body and have the so-called “six pack”. The woman will spruce herself up and is mainly about the shape of her body. That is important, but it is not enough. Handsome and beautiful people fail in relationships.

Safety net

We thrive well where we feel safe to express our feelings, emotions and vulnerabilities. As creative beings we have imperfections and feel very uncomfortable if blamed for them. We have made our own fair share of mistakes and that makes us humans. Most people want to be in this safe space where they are encouraged to do better. If they are not appreciated, they slowly walk away from relationships that always see them in bad light.

Seeking happiness in wrong places

In relationships, we sometimes assume that happiness comes from sex. At times we think it is from money. At times we feel our partner should be the source of our happiness. Yes, those things can contribute to our excitement or enjoyment, but if you are not happy innately, you might not be happy even when you have a great partner. First, be a purpose-driven person. Secondly, your answers to your happiness are from within. Let other people complement what you have or who you are. The level of satisfaction is determined by your personal satisfaction before we involve other people. So, get yourself together before you get into a relationship. You need to be healed, or you might never get healing from your partner. Figure out how you can be the best.

Carol Ryff model of psychological well being

Carol Ryff gives a psychological model that will help individuals build themselves thereby positively affect those that they are in a relationship with. By understanding and nurturing those aspects, you can enhance your relationships and the overall quality of your personal life. Here is what is encapsulated in the Ryff Model:

Autonomy — a person has to have confidence in their opinion. At times these opinions may be contrary to the general beliefs. By demonstrating self-determination, independence and the ability to resist external pressures while evaluating oneself based on personal standards makes them confident in themselves.

Environmental mastery — Be in charge of the situation you are in. This takes being competent, in control of one’s environment, effectively managing external activities and leveraging available opportunities.

Positive relationships — We need to be willing to build positive relationships with other human beings. This includes giving and sharing times with others.

Purpose-driven life — In life everyone is wired for something special and you must find and live in that. Personal fulfilment comes from your inner drive. Finding meaning in current and past activities contributes to a sense of purpose and enhances positive relationships.

Personal growth — To build strong and positive relationships, you must be learning and willing to learn all the time. This shifts our beliefs systems and liberates our thinking. Personal growth changes how we think and opens our minds to the possibilities of success, including relationships. Being open to new experiences, opportunities for self-improvement and continuous development leads to success.

Self-acceptance — This involves having a positive attitude toward oneself, acknowledging both good and bad qualities and feeling positive about one’s past.

Parting Point: Your ability to build positive relationships might be the best winning tool you have at your disposal. Master yourself first before you build on other social skills.

  • Otildah Ndhlovu is a professional public speaker, certified communicator and rhetoric specialist and a teacher.
  • Jonah Nyoni is an author, speaker, and leadership trainer. He can be contacted on X @jonahnyoni. WhatsApp: +263 772 581 918

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