Building Lasting Healthy Relationships
Getting into a relationship is one of the paramount phases of life that everyone has to pass through to live a fun-filled life. It could be that of parent/child (ren), marriage, Mentor& Protégé, Siblings, fellow colleagues at work.
This article will talk specifically on building that lasting healthy relationship that will help improve your social life.
To get this topic straightened out, we need to answer the following:
Q. What makes a relationship healthy?
a. Communication & Sharing.
When both parties involved talk to one another, help solve problems and lift up burdens, you tend to build a better relationship. This can be by talking; emailing, writing or even using body language e.g. nodding of the head in affirmation to what’s done.
When you have healthy communications, you both feel at ease. You can share your feelings with the other person and be confident that he/she will be there to listen to you and keep personal the things that you share private. In healthy relationships, people do not lie.
b. Respect & Trust.
People feel good about one another when they work through tough times together rather than giving up easily. You tend to build up a relationship when you can be 100% trusted and be relied upon for almost everything.
c. Self Esteem/ Self Worth:
Feeling good about yourself, having good self-esteem and knowing that you deserve a healthy relationship is very important.
How do I know I have a Healthy Relationship?
- You feel good about yourself when you are with that person
- You think that both people have to work hard to treat the other person nicely.
- You feel safe around the other person.
- You would like being with the other person.
- You feel that you trust him/her with your secrets.
Keep in mind, that it takes time and effort to build the trust and respect you need for a healthy relationship.
The relationship between Jesus and God the Father is an excellent model for building healthy relationships within the Family. An example was the validation of Jesus as the Son of God at the baptism of Jesus (Matthew 1vs11). Basically, God is saying “I claim you; I love you; I am proud of you.” To belong, to be loved, and to be praised are indispensable components for healthy relationships.
God gives to Jesus the assurance, “You are my son. I claim you. You belong to me.” This reveals that Jesus is not only the natural son of God, but he is also the chosen son of God. You may know the hurt of not being the chosen son or daughter of your parents. You may know the piercing pain of abandonment as an orphan. You may feel the anguish of rejection even while continuing as a member of the family.
When God claims Jesus as his son as well as by nature, he sets the stage for our adoption into the family of God. By nature, we are not the sons and daughters of God, because sin separates us from him. But God’s affirmation to us is that through faith in Christ Jesus, we belong to Him: “Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave right to become children of God”. (John 1vs 12, NIV)
To belong gives us our sense of identity, but we need to be loved for our security. Imagine the strength of security Jesus felt as he heard the words “You are my son, whom I love”.
Tragedy stalks any relationship where belonging is without love.
In family relationship, there is an immense need for an unchanging unconditional love that endures.
Another component of healthy relationships is Praise. Praise releases a sense of confidence in our lives.
We are often too quick to criticize, but slow to praise. This is particularly true with those who are closest to us. Family members grow faster in the direction of our praise than in the path of our criticism.
Three indispensable components of a healthy relationship are: a sense of identity, a sense of security, and a sense of confidence. Work on applying these components in relationships with your family and friends. Affirm them by saying that you claim them, love them and are proud of them.
Map out Objectives.
- Present a Christ-like model for a healthy friendship/relationship
- Experience fulfillment in the relationship
- Establish guidelines for developing a healthy relationship
- Demonstrate how a marriage can last a lifetime
- Understand the consequences of choices.
- Self Discovery; awareness of how the past can affect present and future relationships
- What do you need to be healthy in a relationship?
- What do you fear the most in a relationship? Why?
- What is the thing that is a relationship destroyer for you?
- What is the most important thing you need to discover about the other person?
- What is the most important thing the other person needs to discover about you?
- What is your biggest turn off?
Eight contrasts between Healthy and Unhealthy Relationships
1.Reality Vs Fantasy- Healthy relationships are based on reality. Each person is aware of his own strengths and weaknesses. There is no need to hide or try to fool the other. Unhealthy relationships, by contrast, are based on fantasy. The elements of unreality become the focus. The relationship is built on a foundation that isn’t really there.
2. Friendship Vs. Victimization
3 Sacrifice Vs Demand for Sacrifice
4 Forgiveness Vs Resentment
5. Security Vs Fear (1st John 4 vs. 18)
6. Vulnerability Vs Defensiveness
7. Honesty Vs Deception
8. Completion Vs. Finding Competition
How to Develop a Healthy Relationship between Mother and Son
-Communication is key (Learn to pay full attention)
- Show that you can be trusted.
- Add that feminine touch
- Be an example (Godly).
- Give reading materials on important topics, including dating, his role in the family plus others.
- Defer touchy subjects.
If you are a single mother, you should choose someone that you and your son are totally comfortable with to talk and answer questions about his physical developments and relationships. You should probably be present in the home when this is going on, just for peace of mind, but not in hearing distance of the conversation.
Advice for a Lasting, Healthy and Happy Relationship
1. Listen to how you talk
2. Control your Anger
3. Learn to say “I forgive you”
4. Fighting, “No-no”
5. Find someone to mentor, or find someone to mentor you.
6. Have the habits of giving gifts
7. Treat the person to his favorite meal
8. Take a day at the zoo, movies, or even have a dinner by the fire
9. Use the power of surprise (Find a gift to shock him/her)
10. Learn to communicate in times of troubles
11. For couples, you may want to try breakfast in bed
12. Listen, really listen
13. Motivate each other
10 Laws of Relationship Boundaries
1. Law of Sowing and Reaping: Our actions have consequences
2. Law of Responsibility: We are responsible to each other, but not for each other
3. Law of Power: We have power over some things; we don’t have power over others (including changing people)
4. Law of Respect: If we wish for others to respect our boundaries, we need to respect theirs.
5. Law of Motivation: We must be free to say No before we can wholeheartedly say Yes
6. Law of Evaluation: We need to evaluate the pain our boundaries cause others.
7. Law of Proactivity: We take action to solve problems based on our values, wants and needs.
8. Law of Envy: We will never get what we want if we focus outside our boundaries onto what others have.
9. Law of Activity: We need to take the initiative in setting limits rather than be passive.
10. Law of Exposure: We need to communicate our boundaries to each other.
4 Steps in God’s Prescription for Lasting Relationships
-Instead of looking at the right person, become the right person (Eph 4 vs. 32)
- Instead of falling in love, walk in love (Eph 5 vs. 1-2)
- Fix your hopes and dreams on God, rather than someone else.
- If failure occurs, repeat steps 1, 2, and 3
6 Ground Rules for Better Relationships
1. Try to be pleasant and cheerful throughout negotiations.
2. Put safety first (Trust)
3. If you reach an impasse and don’t seem to be getting anywhere, or if one of you starts making demands, show disrespect, or become angry, stop negotiating and come back to the issue later
4. Identify the problem from both perspectives.
5. Brainstorm with abandon
6. Choose the solution that meets the conditions of the policy of Joint Agreement- mutual and enthusiastic agreement.
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