For many of us, few things are as irritating as having a road you frequently travel come under construction. You often have to deal with dust, delays, bumps and detours for many months. The upside to having to endure the challenges of construction is that if the job is well done it will make your future travel much easier and enjoyable – the same is true for relationships under construction.
Like roadwork, successful relationships, whether at home or work, require a process of assessment, planning, and construction. Whether you are building a new relationship or attempting to improve an existing one, if you fail to adequately prepare and build you will not be able to effectively meet the demands that come your way.
Building or improving a relationship begins where you are right now. What values need to be in place? Is your foundation set on honesty and trust?
Talking about shared interests and things you have in common can draw you closer to someone. Sometimes you need to set some ground rules for times you disagree.
Spend time with each other! Doing things together will give you opportunity to get to know one another on a deeper level and create memories that strengthen the foundation of your relationship.
Every relationship you have is under construction to some extent. Whether you’re thinking about a friendship, parent-child relationship, or romantic partnership, sometimes it can be hard to notice the work being done, like deeper trust and enjoyment of time spent together. At other times it involves significant detours, like arguments, disappointments or breaks in trust. With intentional commitment, the rough patches can become areas of strength.
Building a strong relationship requires careful assessment, hard work and commitment. When done effectively, you can smooth out the potholes and have in place the guiding principles that will help you travel in the right direction and effectively navigate the obstacles that lie ahead.
With proper assessment, dedication and action you can all build the kind of relationships that hold up under high demand and heavy use.
Live, Work & Relate Well,
Dr. Linaman is a psychologist and executive coach providing counseling and professional development services to individuals, couples, work teams and organizations.