Your closest relationships are among your greatest assets!

We are 100% responsible for our actions. If we choose not to study or decide to go the extra mile at work, there is no one who can be accountable for our actions. However, it doesn’t mean we go through life alone. In fact, people surround us through our lives who are willing to listen and help. One of the greatest assets around is that of the significant other, spouse or friend.

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It is true that several marriages fail, but what are the qualities that likely set apart those who fail from those who last a lifetime? In a healthy relationship, who is there to support, challenge and console people more than a spouse or a best friend? Within healthy relationships, there is trust, respect, communication and honesty. In addition, there is someone with you during the ups and downs of the relationship who is equally interested in your success and well-being.

So are you in a relationship? How about the relationships you have with close friends and other family members? Do you find yourself being supported by them? Do they encourage you? Do you experience moments when you are the strong one helping them over an obstacle? If so, think about how these relationships already influence your success and what they could do for you if you allowed yourself to view them differently.

1) You have a team around you. No matter who you are, there is at least one person truly invested in your well-being.  Are you making the most of their support? Are  you making the most of this connection? How do you think you could contribute to this supportive and trusting relationship?

2) A healthy relationship can help you succeed like never before! It’s difficult, but work on your relationship skills. What values and characteristics are important for you? Do you know what’s important for them? Talk about it! Share! Develop greater awareness and a deeper connection. Make sure you listen to them. You don’t always need to give your feedback or your opinion. Sometimes all you have to do is acknowledge what the person is saying. We all need to feel respected, heard and understood.

3) Remind yourself that you are experiencing life. Relationships don’t exist in a vacuum. Both people know that there will be good days and hard days. Don’t shut down. There is a lot that will happen if you allow yourself to open up with the important people in your life. Each one is likely skilled at supporting you in some way. The more you open up and let others be there for you, the easier obstacles can be overcome.

4) Develop gratitude statements. How do you already feel gratitude for these significant relationships in your life? Do you ever spend brief moments intentionally thinking about the great blessings bestowed upon you as a result of these relationships? Think of three things every day made brighter by the people who care and love you.

5) Listen and consider their advice. Again, open yourself up to their feedback. You don’t have to take it. However, these people who are close to you know you well and they care about you. Often times, advice that we most need to hear is also something we don’t want to hear. Fortunately, people who care about you will at least be honest with their advice. Remember not to punish them for their honesty!

No one is made of steel. Even if you were made of steel, you’d likely not be very good at most jobs because we all have to interact with people at some point or another. Allowing ourselves to interact and develop a strong connection with friends, family and significant others can go a long way towards helping us shed our fear and embrace the wonderful things we can accomplish in life. Remember to let yourself be cared for by others and do the same to those who are in need. They can be as instrumental in your success as you can be in that of others.