“These are the times that try men’s souls.” -Thomas Paine
Have you felt like this? Yes, I know have been in lots of trying times. Life is not easily conquered or mastered. It’s either way too intense or way too slow. We have to work at it constantly or it easily overwhelms and conquers us. In today’s world, we live in an age devoted to labor-saving devices of all kinds. It saves us time and energy by not having to labor as much as previous generations. But I believe we have carried this over into how we value relationships with people.
I love all my modern convenience shortcuts, but I have noticed how easy it is for us to just throw things away because we can just get another one. If this were limited to just objects, it wouldn’t be such a big deal. But it happens all too often in our relationships with our friends and family.
Notice how easy we disregard and throw away friends and family today rather than work to build. If this is going to stop, we will definitely have to change how we value the relationships we have today and even the ones that we would have.
Healthy relationships are hard to build. It will require work and living unselfishly which is difficult. But when we value people, places in our lives, they become meaningful and we become better people.
I have come up with a few reasons how you can build better relationships and reasons you want them, too. To build stronger and better relationships you will need to know the missing ingredient.
(this is not necessarily about religion)
Faith – is a firm persuasion; complete trust or confidence in someone or something.
Here are a few synonyms for faith: trust, belief, confidence, conviction
Here are a few reasons using faith:
1. You already use it
Here’s an easy one, you’re already using it.
In fact, you’ve already used it today!
When you started your car; when you flipped the light switch; when you put the car in into drive, you expect the results of something you could not see and you got it.
2. Faith increases your effectiveness
When you build faith/trust in relationships, you increase your effectiveness and the effectiveness of the relationship.
Why is this important?
Relationships are an investment. The more you put in, the more you can get back.
By increasing your effectiveness you are building a deeper impact on relationships.
With this deeper impact, you can help influence others better.
And with this increased effectiveness, you can lead, motivate others more effectively and help them grow.
3. It causes growth within you
When you use faith to build relationships, it will GROW you into a leader. It is inevitable. By investing your time and energy into this kind of project, you will grow.
Another by-product of growing is success. Because of adding faith to relationships it adds more success for you. This will be clear as you will see and feel the reward of the work.
Five ways to build faith/trust in your relationships:
1. Get fully invested.
How committed are you in building relationships? Are you laying it all on the line holding nothing back? If you are, you’re ready to build. If you hold back, someone will notice it. Nothing builds trust like a total commitment.
2. Act in harmony with your words.
Make sure that your actions support your words with no need for excuses. Most communication is nonverbal. So if your mouth says “trust me” but your actions say “Don’t trust me” then you will have trust issues. An example of this is rolling your eyes at what people say or you have the look on your face that says I would rather not talk to you.
3. Be tactfully honest.
When you’re honest with your relationships, it shows that you respect that person and being tactful shows that you care. But when you’re not tactful with your words, it lacks consideration for the other person’s feelings and can be downright cruel for others. Sure, honestly give someone feedback if they ask but they shouldn’t feel horrible that they asked you for it. Say it tactfully.
4. Be reliable.
Reliability is clearly linked to trustworthiness. Make every effort to do what you say you will do. If something comes up and you can’t follow through, explain what happened so it leaves no one hanging. We all have responsibilities. You are being counted on to deliver on your word. No relationship flourishes when one is considered unreliable.
Take your commitments seriously if you want to be thought of as reliable.
5. Acknowledge people’s thoughts and feelings.
Do you acknowledge peoples thought and feelings? How much sarcasm are you giving? Are you using the “whatever” verbal expression? Thoughts and feelings don’t always make sense to everyone. We all have different ideas. Appreciate others’ thoughts and ideas. The important thing here is don’t say something that invalidates their point of view. Instead, listen! Do your best to see where they are coming from. By acknowledging their thoughts and feelings you validate them. By doing this, it says you respect them and they will communicate freely because you acknowledge and listen.
Why is any of this important? Because it’s all about people.
It’s about relationships with people. They matter. You matter. Your future matters. That is why it is important to use faith to build relationships. Because you are building people and you are building your future.