Maintaining a good relationship with another person requires taking a step back from your own value judgments and making an effort to understand the person without being prejudiced. Look for opportunities to speak with people who have different lifestyles than your own, and use the following tips to get the most out of these encounters. Having a good relationship with someone has the power to make you happier and more fulfilled.
Method 1 of 2: Maintain a good relationship with a friend or partner
Step 1. Make time for others
If you're having trouble connecting with someone close to you, these steps will help you understand them better. The first step is to see this person one-on-one so that you can better focus on them. This is especially valid if that friend is rather introverted or shy or if he (or she) is not comfortable discussing serious or personal matters in front of other people.
Step 2. Demonstrate active listening
Give the other person time to talk about their problems, their feelings or whatever is weighing on them. Make a serious effort to avoid distractions and to listen well. This is called active listening and it takes a bit of practice to develop. Turn off your phone, face the person you are listening to, say a few “mmm” and nod from time to time to show them that you are listening well. Practice focusing on what the person is saying, not your own reactions or what you plan to respond to.
Your friend may not be willing to talk about intimate matters when you are ready to take your time for this person. Allow that friend to have a more casual discussion, if that is what she wants, but keep practicing these listening and social skills
Step 3. Ask questions related to what the other person said
Make a connection and show the person you are listening to based on what they just said. Asking a question is a great way to do it while involving the person and clarifying what is not clear to you. Try the following examples by changing the content of the topics to match your own.
- "When you said your job was putting you under pressure, was it due to the workload or some other reason? "
- "If I understood you correctly, are you afraid of hurting your father if you leave town?" "
Step 4. Observe body language
While listening, observe the person's facial expressions, gestures and other movements. The person may be uncomfortable crossing their arms, taking a distance, or making repeated, nervous gestures such as fiddling with their hair. Consider a less personal topic of discussion.
Learn about body language
Step 5. Pause to consider the other person's perspective
Resist the urge to respond with the first line that comes to mind. Instead, take the time to imagine how the person might be feeling. Even if you think her view is wrong, pretend you are in her shoes and have the same glimpse of what's going on. Could you see yourself reacting in the same way or at least be tempted to give a similar answer?
Your friend accuses you, for example, of deliberately excluding them from a party when you were actually trying to reach that person but were unable to do so. Rather than fighting back right away and feeling upset, try to see how you would have wanted to be treated if you genuinely thought your friend was trying to avoid you. It might be more effective to let them know that this person is still your friend and that you plan to invite them to another party, rather than arguing about the last event
Step 6. Don't voice all of your disagreements
Nurturing a good relationship with someone isn't about fighting for a victory or even communicating all of your opinions. Be honest, but don't necessarily say anything that makes you angry or boring. Respect your friend by allowing them to have a different opinion than yours.
As a general rule, one should openly discuss any disagreements that can harm a relationship or cause negative emotions. You can let go of disagreements that don't significantly disrupt your relationship. Politically opposed views, for example, rarely have a negative impact in a friendship, as long as you refrain from arguing about it
Step 7. Concentrate exclusively on important issues
Take a fairly critical approach to disagreements or conflicts before rushing to find a solution. Will this problem put an end to this relationship or is it just a "fly fart" that you can ignore or work around? Maintaining a good relationship with someone involves letting the other make decisions that you don't necessarily agree with, understanding that it may be okay for them.
- It often happens that you both agree not to see each other on certain occasions. When, for example, you prefer to watch that TV show that the person finds destitute without the other, or when you let the other hang out with friends you don't get along with.
- Sometimes a respectable compromise can be found to resolve seemingly serious enough problems. You could, for example, attend a religious ceremony in connection with an important celebration or event, but agree not to go to church every week with the other.
Step 8. Forgive, if necessary, the actions of the other
It's easier said than done, but if there's a dispute between you and your friend, it's worth taking the time to resolve it, with the person or on your own. You don't necessarily need to understand the motivations behind your friend's actions, but you should let go of your grudge if you want to have a good relationship with that person in the future.
Note that if the other person is not ready to admit his wrong, he may get angry if you tell him that you forgive him. Keep your forgiveness to yourself if you think the person might react that way
Step 9. Express gratitude
Strengthen your bonds by recognizing what the other does for you. Thank the person when they give you a compliment, when they give you a hand, and when they are kind. This positive emotional connection can make it easier for you to understand your friend better in the future, or at least it can prevent you from jumping to conclusions about their actions too hastily.
Method 2 of 2: Maintain good relationships in general
Step 1. Be aware of the judgments you are making
Most of us quickly judge what we see or hear. It doesn't mean that we should do without it or that we are bad because we think this way. However, it is good to recognize that these judgments can prevent us from having good relationships with others. The first thing to do is notice when you have this type of preconception.
- Do you tend to avoid certain topics with certain people because you assume they won't be interested in them?
- Does the sight of an unknown person on the street or in public transport annoy you or make you nervous before that person has done or said anything to deserve your reaction?
- Do you dislike people who display visible features that seem superficial to you, like tattoos or a choice of activity?
Step 2. Don't criticize superficial behavior
A common complaint made by people who find it difficult to relate to others is that they find them too superficial, immature, or even stupid. Rejecting someone in this insulting way probably won't let you discover another side of it.
- Funny people can often be quite annoying for those who don't share their sense of entertainment. If someone seems too party-loving to you, or has an attitude that you find hateful in society, tell yourself that you could still get along with them in a quieter environment.
- The choices when it comes to fashion, makeup or even activities are often much more superficial than one might think. Don't let misconceptions get in the way of a discussion.
- Keep an open mind about the lifestyles of others. Activities that you might belittle can be fulfilling for others or offer benefits that your own lifestyle cannot. Even if someone admits to having a cute sin that seems to have no benefit for that person, see it as a way to relieve tension or give a boost of energy before that person returns to more serious or more activities. delicate.
Step 3. Try to "translate" another accent or style with your own voice
It's easy to judge someone by their accent, the way they speak, or even certain expressions that annoy you. Before you react, imagine yourself or a dear friend making the same statement in a different tone or other choice of words. Does that seem more acceptable to you?
Step 4. Practice starting a discussion
Find a good way to start a conversation if you want to meet new people. It's easier to get a clear idea of another person's personality once you chat together. Here are some easy ways to do it.
- Ask simple questions to start. If you smoke, ask the person for a fire. Ask a stranger in a big city if he lives here or is from somewhere else.
- Comment if something funny or strange is happening near you, or just raise your eyebrows and exchange glances.
- Find a topic to discuss, such as the appearance of a dog or some unusual and remarkable clothing.
Step 5. Read more literary fiction
At least one study has suggested that reading fiction or documentaries may increase your ability to connect with others. This may be because these writings explain the characters' intentions or show their experiences in a more realistic setting, which can help the reader understand the motivations of people in everyday life.
It probably won't have any effect if you read a story in which you are not emotionally involved. Try to find fiction that you might enjoy, if reading is a chore for you
Step 6. Watch movies and TV shows without sound
Practice reading body language and facial expressions by removing audio and captions and trying to guess what's going on. If you have a hard time doing this, try watching the movies with a friend who is good at reading body language and can explain their perspective to you. Try to do this too when you have more experience.