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  • Writer's pictureTrish Beauchamp

Realities of relationships

Relationships are one of the most important aspects of our lives and the quality of these connections is determined by many factors.

A relationship is a process, not a destination.” Daphne Rose Kingma. When we understand this concept and apply it to the four main types of relationships - family, romantic, friendships, and acquaintanceships – we can view the shifts and changes with a renewed perspective. Relationships are always evolving, positively or negatively. We may strive for positive connections but when relational conflict continues it becomes an unhealthy relationship. Sometimes, a resolution is achievable. Sometimes the only resolution is to end the relationship.

How can we recognise positive relationships? My first check-in is asking myself, how do I feel when I'm with this person or group? Whether they are a family member, friend, romantic partner, teammate, or a barista serving your daily coffee – their tone of voice, level of respect, and attentiveness towards you will influence how you feel in that moment of connection.

Recognising the realities of our relationships ensures we know whom we can trust, whom we may need to tolerate because of unavoidable contact, and whom we should keep a distance from physically, emotionally, and sometimes financially.

If trust has been established in a relationship I’ve learned to view uncomfortable interactions as personal growth opportunities- vulnerability and honesty are key to a healthy connection.

Suppose trust is not established or was broken with someone and I cannot avoid their ongoing presence. In that case, I will consciously retain my self-worth and self-confidence during necessary interactions.

If someone attempts to undermine or control me - creating an emotional boundary is my response. For me, this is the hardest to achieve as people-pleasing habits can sometimes override my ability to prioritise my well-being in relationships.

How you respond to people’s interactions indicates whether you have a healthy relationship with yourself.

What do I mean by that? Your relationship with yourself is the only one you have complete control of. Let’s face it – this is the longest relationship you will have so it serves you well to work on it daily. Regularly reviewing our close relationships, community groups, and work environment allows us to reflect on significant shifts and changes. The most important relationship to evolve positively will always be how you relate with yourself. "The relationship with yourself sets the tone for every other relationship you have." Robert Holden







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