Evaluate Your Relationships

by | May 3, 2023 | Holistic Leadership, Personal Development

Do you often wonder about people’s true intentions? Have you ever thought, “Why are they acting this way?” It’s often difficult to understand why people do the things they do, but it shouldn’t be when it comes to the people closest to you. Whether it’s a close friend, family member, or even a co-worker, you don’t want to always be guessing about their intentions. One of the best ways to guarantee that the people close to you won’t be so unpredictable is to evaluate your relationships.

Signs that your relationships need improvement.

A red flag stands in the sand at the edge of a beach.

Here are factors to consider when you start to evaluate your relationships:

  • Quality of communication 
  • Level of trust 
  • Types of behavior 
  • Equality 

First, we want to make sure that all our relationships have strong, healthy, and effective communication. Another vital component of relationships is trust. No matter the relationship, trust should be something both people can rely on. If the relationship lacks trust, then it’ll be difficult to know the other person’s true intentions.

On top of trust and communication, being able to recognize and analyze behaviors in a relationship is important. If someone in your circle is always trying to control you or can’t help but show their jealousy instead of being happy for you, you might be in a toxic relationship.

Another indicator that your relationship is toxic (or becoming that way) is inequality. If you feel like the other person isn’t pulling their weight, it’s probably worth mentioning to them. Check out this link from Healthline for other examples of toxicity in relationships.

Signs that your relationships are good!

A person extends a "thumbs-up" in front of a beach scene.

If you’re looking for someone to validate your relationships, this is the wrong place. Only you can say whether you’re happy with and fulfilled by your relationships. We’re not psychologists, but we do care about your mental health and your well-being. So, we’ve collected a few ways to confirm your suspicions … You’ve got good people in your life!

The first ways to confirm that the people around you care are the four listed above. In addition to those factors, these characteristics will help you recognize how good your relationships are!

  • You feel supported. 
  • You feel heard and understood. 
  • You hear only the truth, even when it hurts a little. 
  • You don’t have to prove your love or gratitude; they know it’s there. 
  • Your friends know when to celebrate with you, cry with you, or give you space.

For more indicators that your relationships are a-okay, check out this article from Psychology Today.

Are you bringing everything you can to the relationship?

After you evaluate your relationships, take a close look at yourself. We’re sure that you’re not the person making the relationship unhealthy, but let’s be honest, there’s always room for improvement, even if it’s minimal. 

So, if you’ve arrived at the conclusion that one of your friendships doesn’t seem to improve your life, bring you joy, or help you grow, ask yourself these questions:

“Am I honest with the people around me?” 

“Am I accountable and dependable?” 

“Do I support people no matter what they’re going through?” 

“Do I communicate effectively?” 

“How can I be a better listener?” 

“How can I be more understanding?” 

If you believe that you could improve on these traits in any of your relationships, then start making that change. Once you feel you’ve improved, evaluate your relationships again. Do you think something else might be missing from the friendship? Check out this article, “The 13 Essential Traits of Good Friends” to see if you possess them all.

Where do you stand?

If you’ve completed all the steps and you no longer need to evaluate your relationships, you should have a good idea of how to proceed. You may need to end some relationships, or you might need to sit down with the friend or family member and address your concerns.  

Remember, there’s good in all people, and sometimes communication can help bring out the best in them. If the two of you decide to continue to work on the relationship because you value one another, that’s the first step in the right direction! Should you choose to go your own ways, do it respectfully and peacefully.

At the end of it all, remember that no matter the relationship, don’t run away from the issues or challenges. Learn to use those obstacles as opportunities! 

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