Tuesday, 16 July 2013

How relationships contribute to happiness

Humans are a social species that have evolved to seek out relationships. From the moment we come into the world, we are thrust into a world of interaction with other people. As a species, we need to be connected to others. We need to feel accepted, needed and that we belong.  The relationships we have throughout are lives significantly contribute to our happiness.

Having meaningful relationships with other people is essential to our happiness. This should not be interpreted to mean that we need other people to make us happy, far from it. From the moment we are born, we begin our relationship with our parents. As we grow older, we form relationships with our family, seek out friends in the playground, and seek out a partner to share our life with. We have professional relationships with co-workers and mentors; and then we have a relationship with our own children; and the cycle continues.

Relationships need to be nurtured, sometimes they can be extremely hard work. In any relationship, you are seeking something from the other person and they something from you. You may seek love, acceptance, respect. You may want to feel useful and needed. We all view relationships from our own perspective. How one person views a relationship and what they are seeking from it can be different to the other’s point of view.  When there is a mismatch in expectations from a relationship, this can be when problems start to occur.

Relationships are the foundation of human existence. We cannot live without them. Being connected to others emotionally, intellectually and physically can bring us profound happiness; if we are careful in choosing those relationships to nurture and those to sever. Sometimes we might take our relationships for granted, something we have hall been guilty of at some point in our lives.  To decide if a relationship is worth nurturing, think of how you would feel if that person was not in your life at all.  Fairly soon you can come to the conclusion as to those relationships you value and those that you could live without.

Having meaningful relationships contributes enormously to having a happy and fulfilling life. Being connected to people who are there to savour the good times and support us in our weakest moments helps keep us strong. Creating these connections takes a great deal of hard work, but it is work of the most rewarding kind. A life without meaningful relationships is a hollow existence.

No comments:

Post a Comment