Do you find yourself butting heads with people often? It’s possible to have better relationships with the people around you. A little bit of emotional intelligence can go a long way. Keep reading.
For a long time after losing a very close friend who was my “person,” I withdrew from society and became a bit of a hermit. I stopped talking to people for a long time, and eventually I even stopped liking people in general.
It took a
long time for me to adjust my thinking and get back out into the world with a
better attitude. I couldn’t sit around waiting for the world to come apologize
to me and swoop me up in its arms. I had to be the one to actively make amends
with the outer world by resolving things in my inner world.
some of the things I have learned along the way that have helped me to develop
better relationships with people.
1. Don’t Listen to Respond – Listen to Understand
If you’ve ever witnessed two people arguing, you’ll quickly realize that neither one is actually listening to what the other person is saying. That’s because they’re listening to respond instead of listening to understand. I believe Stephen Covey talked about this in his book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.
the purpose of a conversation if not to come to some sort of resolution at its
conclusion? A conversation will be so much more productive if you listen to
Be the more enlightened person the next time you find yourself in a heated discussion with someone and employ this practice. Be quiet, fold your hands in front of you, let the other person talk, and really hear what he or she is saying. Let them fully express themselves. Ask questions for clarification of their points. You’ll find that they start to calm down as they notice that you are actually hearing them!
you appreciate their side and now you understand their side of things more
clearly (even if you still disagree). Then, once they are finished, you can
tell your side calmly and seek understanding from them.
Most people just want to be heard. They are angry and frustrated because they feel that no one really listens to them. Making them feel heard will make them feel better not just about themselves but also about YOU.
People want to feel acknowledged, like they exist and their opinions matter.
You want to know one of my biggest pet peeves? When I walk into an empty business and the clerk or owner doesn’t bother to acknowledge my presence as I stand there waiting. Nowadays, if this happens, I quietly walk right back out of the door. If I’m going spend my resources to support a business, the very least the business owner can do is communicate and acknowledge me to say “hello, I’ll be right with you.”
beautiful quote from Maya Angelou: “I’ve learned that people will forget what
you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you
made them feel.”
2. Look in the Other Person’s Eyes When You’re Talking to Them
The best way to tell if someone is genuine is to look into their eyes when you are speaking with them. If they can hold a gaze with you and you feel comfortable in it, that is a good sign. If the other person’s eyes dart away often or you feel uncomfortable under their gaze, that’s a possible sign that you should keep them at arm’s length (or further). Listen to your intuition.
flip side, when you look into someone’s eyes when you’re talking to them it
lets them know that you are an upstanding individual who is fully engaged in
the conversation. You can send non-verbal reassurances by simply locking eyes
with another person.
please remember to turn off your cellphone when having an important
conversation with someone so that your eyes won’t wander. It matters.
3. Care About What the Other Person Cares About (If Only for a Moment)
genuine sense of care for what other people care about. It may not be particularly
what you value, have an interest in, or care for, but it matters to them. And
if the other person matters to you (even for a fleeting moment) let them
indulge in a moment of conversation about that topic. They will cherish you for
that. For instance, when talking to a grandmother, ask her about her grandkids
and watch as her face lights up. Even if you can’t relate, you are showing that
you care. People appreciate this.
4. Take Care of Yourself
The way you take care of yourself will have an effect on how well you relate with others. When you feel good about yourself, others can tell. The positive energy emanates from you. You start to glow.
Having that good energy starts with taking good care of yourself. Staying clean and smelling fresh. Making sure your hair and nails look good. Eating healthy whole foods and smoothies that make you feel good, happy, and energetic.
when you like yourself, people tend to like you too.
5. The Occasional Thoughtful Gift
to buy someone’s love or friendship isn’t ever a good idea, but giving an
occasional thoughtful gift can move mountains. For example, I have a buddy in
just about every store that I frequent. I’ll occasionally bring them a health
drink, water, or snack from my car because I know they’ll be on their feet all
day. When going to the office, I would bring my favorite coworker a treat.
These are inexpensive things that can really make a difference in someone’s
day. It’s nice to know that someone has been thinking about you.
mind that some people don’t like to receive gifts because they will feel some
sort of obligation to give something back, which is another reason why it’s
best to not spend a lot of money. There’s no need to go all out—small things
6. Respond and Check In
One of the most important ways that you can establish and maintain a strong relationship with another person is to stay in regular contact with them.
Before the internet and smartphones took over, I remember that my friends and I stayed in constant contact, like every day. We hung out a lot, laughed, and enjoyed each other’s company.
Now it seems like a strain for someone to send an “ok” text message back!
begin to change that, one relationship at a time? Make an effort to reach out
to someone you care about or a new friend you just met and just say “hey,
how are you?” I believe that checking in at least a couple of times per
week is key to human connection.
someone reaches out to you, don’t ignore them. Take the three seconds to respond,
if only to say, “I’m good” or “I’m busy right now but I’ll get
back to you.” It shows a level of respect and acknowledgement that I
believe a lot of people are craving in today’s world.
that a lot of people are scared and they’re hurting. Sometimes all it takes is
one positive text message to change their day. If you want to get along better
with people, be there for them when they need you the most—even in the smallest
7. Deal with People as They Are (Or Don’t)
One thing that I have been learning (and that I am still working on resolving within myself) is that people are who they are—especially when they reach a certain age. You are not going to change them. As Dr. Angelou said, “when someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.”
person you know who is very selfish and only thinks of his or her own needs. Or
that person who tosses out insults any chance she or he gets. Or that person
who complains a lot. Understand that that is who they are, and you’ll either have to deal with them as they are
or remove them from your life.
that not everyone thinks and behaves as you would. People are raised
differently and have varied life experiences that have made them into the
adults they are now. You’ll find a lot of peace once you begin to accept this
these 7 keys to getting along with people will help you improve your
relationships with the people around you, whether they are people you know or
people you meet when you’re out and about. There’s a general rule of thumb that
will always ring true for relating with people: treat others how you would want
to be treated.
In other words, don’t be a jerk.
Lynn Gilliard is the author of a popular relationship guide for women entitled Let Him Chase YOU. Her book You Matter encourages women to know and understand their worth.
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