A Quick Checklist For Getting Along With Other People
Human beings are tribal in nature. Being raised in community is part of our social evolution. With the exception of the occasional Tarzan, we're surrounded by humans from the beginning. Nature mimics this in how animals live in packs, schools, flocks, gaggles, herds, and prides. Yet for as natural as it is to live in tribes, we often struggle in getting along with others.
In kindergarten, we learn to share and play with others in the same sandbox. That doesn't mean it will always easy to get along. Most of us have a difficult person (or persons!) in our lives who challenges us in some way. The answer is not to kick them out, nor is it to leave the tribe. That is simply avoidance. If you follow that prescription, then at some point one of two things will happen: you'll run out of places to run, or everyone will be kicked out of your tribe and you’ll be by yourself.
3 key blocks to positive relationships include:
1. Assuming you know what the other persons intentions are or what they are thinking. We should do our best not to try to mind read. Everyone has their own story, and it is not the same as your story.
2. We talk too much and listen too little. Like the saying goes, there's a reason we have two ears and only one mouth.
3. Jealousy and good, old-fashioned envy. The “I want what they have” mentality.
Here are 5 suggestions we can implement to get along better:
1. Take responsibility for being clear in communication.
2. Turn down the volume on your need to be right. Would you rather be right or happy?
3. Practice being less self-critical and you’ll equally get better at being less critical of others.
4. Stop measuring what’s in it for you. Be nice anyway.
5. Stay focused on what's important. Let go of the petty annoyances.
In the end, we need to get along with ourselves first, with other humans second, and with the earth herself third. These three things can happen simultaneously. Truly this earth is just a single spaceship and we're all part of the crew. There is no them and us — it is all just us. In other words, we all belong to the same tribe. Love yourself, love your day, love your life!
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