Relationships are a beautiful part of life. Whether they are romantic or just friendly, connecting with another human being is undoubtedly one of the best experiences that life has to offer. Of course, within relationships, as with so many other things in life, change is inevitable. I doubt that there are very many of us, if any, that have maintained the exact same partner and/or core group of friends throughout the vast majority of our lives.
When evaluating the relationships in your life—whether it be family, friends, co-workers, or significant others—be mindful of those relationships that lift you up, and those which, sadly, drag you down. Here are four relationships worth keeping!
The “Balanced Give and Take” Relationship
The balance of give and take in a relationship is essential to its success or failure. If the giver feels depleted or used, the relationship degrades, resentments build, self-esteem is eroded and depression can sink in. The taker cannot fully respect the giver either, even though he or she will continue to take advantage of their partner. In a healthy relationship, both people give and take, enjoying giving to the other and being able to receive in return. If you have a relationship that is seriously skewed in one direction, realize that this is a relationship that is probably not worth keeping.
Every relationship requires compromise, which must be done with a sense of grace and without resentment. If you find yourselves arguing all the time, with one person unhappy and sulking after a compromise is made, each day with that person will feel more like an battle than a relationship. When both people realize that they enjoy having the other person in their lives more than the compromises they are making, a healthy and happy bond has occurred. You want to keep those relationships where the compromises seem insignificant compared to what each individual brings to the other’s life.
The “Challenge You to Grow” Relationship
Certain relationships will challenge you—your patience, your fears, your doubts and your comfort zone. Realize that defeating these challenges makes you stronger and helps you grow. If the person in your life sees that you are holding yourself back, and they challenge you to defeat your short-comings, that is a relationship to hang onto!
The “Bring Out the Best in You” Relationship
While some people make us feel less than, there will be other people in our lives who, just by being who they are, will bring out the best in us. These are the people who see your strengths and potential while accepting and forgiving your imperfections. These relationships challenge you to be the better person, and support you in your journey towards becoming that person.