There aren't many things more heartbreaking than realizing the value of your connections much too late in life. Far too late. Too much time was spent chasing after the wrong goals, trying to succeed in a career no matter what the cost was, and becoming mired in unending rivalries and platonic relationships filled with hate.
Unfortunately, it's too late. To reap the benefits of real pleasure, satisfaction, and thankfulness, meaningful relationships need time and effort. Sadly, we frequently find only in retrospect that contemporary life, as depicted in the media, deceives us.
It directs us in the wrong direction. What really happens is that we let the incorrect things affect us and then blindly follow the herd. When we come to terms with this, we're disappointed in ourselves and disillusioned.
As James Hollis argues in his book, On this trip, we call our life, we are the sum of all the interactions we have with others. If we don't put effort into cultivating meaningful connections, it might be a sign that we're afraid to confront our own shortcomings.
Let me be quite clear about addressing oneself. Forget about being absorbed in your own thoughts and feelings, since that is not what it means. Analytical paralysis, navel-gazing, or apathy are not part of the definition. It also does not imply being egotistical.
According to Hollis, the most loving thing we can do for others is to "make our connection with ourselves more aware... If we are to serve partnerships properly, we are obligated to validate our particular path."
What the general public views as success may be deceptive, to say the least. While others praise me for being successful at work, taking command of all situations, and portraying a confident and accomplished persona, I'm left wondering why I have to feel in charge at all times.
Having a relentless drive might get you to respect in certain places, but it also comes with a bad side: the dread of losing control and feeling helpless as a result.
The truth is that the idea of losing control over a large part of our life terrifies us to death, so we go out of our way to keep ourselves as busy as possible. The obsessive, overworked leader should ask himself a brutally honest question: How loving, spontaneous, and free are my connections with others? Why does my life seem incomplete? Is there anything critical going on here?
The more that we attempt to suppress these questions, worries, or restless sensations in our lives, the less likely we are to see them as crucial signals for regaining balance in our lives. We can't love others if we can't love ourselves, and loving ourselves is a prerequisite for loving relationships.
So, let's think about our workplaces and daily lives at work. For those of us who believe work takes up much too much of our time and energy because we've accepted the concept of working like automatons with no sense of purpose or deeper fulfillment, then it's clear that striving for the actual community at work is the better option.
Being productive and profitable as part of a team of individuals who are trusted and compassionate while also finding purpose in their relationships adds a lot to our overall happiness and well-being. A real community may be difficult to envisage in the average huge firm, yet leaders have the opportunity to manage successful companies and effective institutions while also leading joyful work communities.
Whether we like it or not, we carry our spiritual demands to work, where they are ignored. Bottom-line thinking, as someone once stated, is "thinking with your bottom in your brain" too much. It's unavoidable to miss upon significant opportunities in life.
Intimate connections might be the most difficult to maintain and flourish for the rest of one's life. Although complete dedication to the relationship is critical, it does not ensure that it will develop and thrive. It is crucial to remember this.
Saying that unsuccessful marriages are the consequence of a lack of commitment on the part of one or both parties is a gross oversimplification. If you want to see your relationship bloom for the rest of your life, you need unwavering dedication.
Being committed to another person provides tremendous learning and self-knowledge opportunities. We can apply our knowledge of cultivating and stimulating the most important connection in our lives to our workplace relationships now that we've mastered the art of cultivating and stimulating the most important connection in our lives.
All of our relationships are characterized by a struggle between the need to be near and the need to be apart. (Peter Steinke, in his book How Your Church Family Works, describes this extremely effectively.)
We'd want to be a member of the group, but we also want to be on our own. To feel loved and appreciated, we need to know that other people respect and appreciate our presence.
However, we'd want to be able to 'hear' our own thoughts as well. When no one is looking, we want to be at ease with ourselves. We'll never be free of this stress. We can only improve our ability to maintain a healthy balance as time goes on. As we learn to better identify ourselves, we must also learn to keep in contact with others.
People who are close to us will tell us if they feel that we are emotionally distant if we question them directly about their perceptions of us. You may convince yourself it's all OK, but there comes a point when you stop believing yourself and start acting irrationally.
Wanting to be the opposite of others and avoiding confrontation and conflict are symptoms of being dysfunctional, according to the author. Life and relationships are not without conflict. In order to defend our stance, we may claim that we don't want to cause any additional trouble or discomfort.
In fact, we prefer to avoid others and will not strive to develop our knowledge and respect of diverse viewpoints, which are different from our own. This is the truth. Have you ever worked with a coworker that was a total pain in the neck and made no sense?
Is there anything on the opposite side of the spectrum to think about? What happens if we allow our desire to be close to people to tip the scales? Emotional fusion is a threat, as Steinke noted. The limits of our identity get blurred as our emotions become entangled with those of others.
People grow desperate when they don't feel welcomed or validated. Alternatively, we want a sense of dependence on our spouse or group. Once again, the unbalance is harmful, unhealthy, and dysfunctional in every sense of the words.
Being aware of one's own tendency to err on one side of the self-others scale is a vital first step in developing healthier interpersonal interactions.
This is followed by an unflinching dedication to make the connection as wonderful as possible by reaching out to others. When we look back on our professional careers, we'll remember and value the connections we built more than the things we've done and the titles we've earned.