Want to upgrade your relationships? Consider these suggestions.
14. Be a safe person. Trust is everything in relationships. If you are trustworthy and your friend is trustworthy, your friendship has a chance at being something very special. However, break that trust and it is very, very difficult to restore the same kind of transparency that you might have once had. Safe people do not betray confidences. They do not tell secrets. They do not hurt you where you are vulnerable. Safe people do not threaten to leave you when you have a conflict. Instead, they value the relationship enough to work it out.
15. Practice generosity. I have always been impressed with the group of people in Macedonia who were described as being generous, even to the point of giving out of their poverty (2 Corinthians 8:2). On the other hand, there are some people who never seem to even think about the meaning of generosity.
The Smith family takes the Jones family to dinner at a nice restaurant. The Smith’s, very generously pay for the entire dinner. On their way back to the Jones’ family home, they decide to buy a gallon of ice cream at the grocery store. The plan is enjoy it together at the Jones’ home.
Now, Mr. Jones and Mr. Smith are together in the check-out line.
The checker tells them that the total is $4.80.
Mr. Jones hands the checker $2.40 and then says to Mr. Smith, “I guess your half is $2.40.”
The Smiths just took this family out to eat and it was quite expensive. You would have thought that Mr. Jones might have said, “I’ve got this! You treated us to such a nice dinner, the least I can do is buy the ice cream.”
Yet, there are people who don’t ever think in terms of generosity.
To upgrade your relationships, try becoming generous. Be generous with your time, your money, and your help. Are you eating lunch with some others? Offer to get refills for everyone’s drinks. Do anything practical which reflects that you are really looking out for others.
16. Catch people doing what is right. We are conscious of how often we make mistakes and mess up. Right? Yet, maybe you know what it is like to be around a person who seems to always be on the lookout for the mistakes of others. Why not be a person who catches people doing what is right and affirm them. Look for the good that others are doing and mention it.
17. Stay connected with others while giving them space. Friends connect. We communicate. We spend time together. We laugh together. We share our lives together. At the same time, it is important for a friend to give a friend some space. We can smother one another, not recognizing the value of giving space. For example, there may be people who are willing to be your friend but they feel very threatened if you have other friends as well. Such an expectation can destroy relationships.
What else would you add to this list?