Relationships are difficult. I am sure that is not the first time you have heard that statement. I will even go as far as to say that if you are reading this post and you have been out of bed for more than 2 hours you have encountered one of those difficult relationship moments. I am hit daily with the challenge of my relationships. I use the word challenge in the most affectionate way. – it is not to imply negativity, rather opportunities to determine how I will respond to these small tests. Here are a few real life examples. A typical weekday morning for me consist of relationship one; my wife. My wife is a morning person and she likes to ask me questions that require more than a grunt as a response the moment my feet hit the floor. Relationship number two; my daughters who are six. They like to ask me to chase them around the house before I have even hit the bathroom. Then relationship number three starts when I hit the office door and the folks I serve hit me with questions that need my input. Stepping back for a moment, the challenges of these relationships are all the same. How will I respond to each request? Will I let me selfishness prevail and grunt a response out to each of these demands, will I respond quickly with the intent of getting them to go way, or will I dig down deep (this is the where the difficulty comes in) and meet each of these relationships where they need to be met?
I would love to say that I always respond the right way. I don’t. The truth is I fail. I grumble, I avoid, and I even can appear irritated in all these situations. It is only when I can ask myself in that split second before I respond to this question that I tend to respond appropriately. The question is “How do I want this person to feel when they leave this moment with me?” When I can focus on that, on the moment, the experience, the longevity of the relationship I am free to overcome self.
Relationships are difficult, but nothing is more important in life. Our relationships form the foundation of our culture.