Life without people is lonely, boring and sickening. It is said that loneliness can cause illnesses such as depression. It is therefore not good for anyone to be alone or feel lonely especially for long periods of time. Even hardened criminals cannot handle being alone in the maximum imprisonment of solitary confinement, and isolation is usually a punishment for the worst offenders, so unless you have committed the “terrible-awful” deed, you do not want to be isolated in prison away from people.
We need people in our lives, but essentially we need to understand how to maximise the relationships that we have so that we are not in one-sided relationships where the one party is leaning heavily on the other and not investing anything in the relationship or someone is pouring and giving and not receiving anything in return. Everyone wants profit and equity on their investment. It is significant to know how to relate better with our friends, family and colleagues as well as people we meet and those we are desperately trying to walk away from as well as making way for new people in our lives.
So how do you maximise your relationships
Equal burden– it is important to bring in your all into the relationship, 100% of what you have; this might not be equal. Someone’s 100% may be 40% of what the other person has, but when it is their all, the other person’s “more” covers the other person’s “less” and picks up where they lack. It is hard to feel like you are pulling the load and the bulk of the relationship alone, or with someone who is not willing to pull – so be very specific who you carry the load with, because it is not everyone you want to be yoked with, equally or otherwise.
Restructure relationships– at some point in your life, you might have had someone who played a very significant role in your life, but no longer does; realize when people should be demoted and some promoted, so that they do not keep holding prominence in your life, and promote those who should and know when to retrench those who are weighing heavily on you, those who are just occupying space that should be reserved for other people. Let them go. If the relationship is dead, bury it and maybe erect a stone of memorial in their honour but don’t try to resurrect a dead relationship with your ex, consider it dead.
Set playlist of your relationships – Just because a CD has 12 songs, does not mean you want to listen to all of them, you might only prefer 3 that you chose to play on repeat. It is the same with relationships, of the 12 friends that you have, only 3 may be important to you. Being loyal to the artist if you only like 3 songs can leave you broke if you keep buying songs that you don’t listen to. Love some from a distance, and realize that you cannot be everything to everyone and you cannot please everyone and that not everyone should have free access to you.
Sometimes we feel indebted to some people in our past; especially if they have helped us in some way or if we have good memories with them, so you hang onto each other even when the relationship is no longer beneficial to either party. Love people, but do not be indebted to anyone.
Being loyal and devoted to a relationship that is no longer relevant and beneficial to you can hinder you from finding your purpose; our need for love and approval by certain people in our lives, especially family and people who we are with because we share similar experiences could hinder us from reaching our goals and dreams, especially if we always have to stop and rescue them.
Walk away from weighty and toxic relationships that are killing you emotionally; drain your energy; overwhelm your heart and rob you of your zest for life and suffocates you. Appreciative them for who they are and the memories you share as well as where you have been with them; but know when to love them from afar.
Two can’t walk together unless they agree. Don’t drag anybody where they do not want to go.