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10 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do in Relationships

10 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do in Relationships

Most of us remember a crazy relationship we were in, or a time we acted crazy toward someone we love. Looking back, it’s often difficult to remember what our mindset was in that moment. We ask ourselves, “Did I really act like that?” I wish I knew more then than I know now about how to be a better partner, son, and friend.

The sad reality is that we just aren’t taught how to be mentally strong when faced with adversity. The good news is that it’s never too late to start. Here are 10 things mentally strong people DON’T do when it comes to relationships.

1. They don’t analyze everything

Mentally strong people don’t analyze the meaning behind everything someone else does. As an introvert, I pride myself on my ability to find the deeper meaning in life. But I caution you not to get to caught up in analyzing everything! Sometimes a head scratch is just a head scratch. (It doesn’t mean they are bored with you and would rather be with someone else.)

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2. They don’t believe the other person will “complete” them

Mentally strong people complete themselves before they look for someone else to enhance their lives. You have to enjoy your own company first and nobody else can replace that part of you. Many people live their lives as if they were a character in a romantic comedy, and believe that they must eat, sleep, and breath their partner. Mentally strong people remind themselves they are complete just the way they are.

3. They don’t bring up the past to justify the present

Mentally strong people don’t bring up the past to win an argument or use it as relationship collateral. They try to work toward improving the relationship in that moment, instead of bringing up past events to justify their actions. Mentally strong people seek to live in the moment by understanding that the past has its place but will never solve today’s problems.

4. They don’t look outside the relationship to improve the relationship

Mentally strong people devote their full attention to themselves and their partner, when it comes to fixing problems in the relationship.  They don’t seek another person to fulfill their needs. They don’t become distant and justify their behavior by looking outside of the relationship to feel better about themselves. They don’t engage in destructive behavior to avoid the inevitable.

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5. They don’t put the other person down to feel better about themselves

Mentally strong people understand that you don’t treat other people this way. It’s a lot easier to blame someone else for the way you act or feel, instead of looking at why you react the way you do. Mentally strong people know that the only way to have a successful relationship is to lift the other person up, not put them down in order to temporarily feel better about themselves.

6. They don’t stop communicating

Mentally strong people communicate with others in the good times and in the bad. They don’t avoid conversations that need to be had. They seek to better understand their partner, instead of avoiding topics that are uncomfortable or awkward. The mentally strong don’t avoid things because they are uncomfortable, but rather look at these situations as welcome opportunities to improve the relationship.

7. They don’t stop loving themselves

Mentally strong people love themselves first, so they can love other people, not the other way around. Mentally strong people spend time improving their lives first, before they try and help anyone else. They know that by radiating love, it will only help the relationship succeed. Mentally strong people put themselves first.

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8. They don’t believe they can fix the other person

Mentally strong people help their partners in any way they can, but they understand that they cannot change the other person. Only an individual can change themself. Mentally strong people don’t live in the future and convince themselves that if only they put enough effort or time into someone, then that person will change. Moreover, mentally strong people seek to understand the other person’s perspective, before they try and offer them advice.

9. They don’t try to make relationships progress faster

Mentally strong people accept that the relationship will develop in the right way. Of course, there are ways to improve the relationship and develop a deeper understanding of one another. However, mentally strong people know deep down that they can’t force something that will take time to develop. They give up control and surrender to the natural progression of the relationship.

10. They don’t stay in unhealthy relationships

Mentally strong people know when a relationship of any kind is no longer working. Not only do they look out for themselves, but they look out for the other person by communicating clearly. They understand that they’ve put in as much time and effort as they could, but would rather spend that time on someone who is right for them. The mentally strong know that everything will work out just fine.

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It’s a lot easier to find fault in someone else, especially when we become vulnerable and trust someone we love. I encourage you to be mentally strong first, then ro seek someone who complements who you already are. Only through self discovery can we better understand the types of people who will enhance our lives.

To successfully improve any relationship, you no longer seek to change the other person, but you will instead seek to continually enhance a long and prosperous life together.

Featured photo credit: Up-Free via pixabay.com

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Last Updated on April 11, 2019

How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

Possessing strong communication skills will help you in every phase of your life. This is especially true in the workplace.

I have personally worked with several leaders who were masters of communication. A few were wonderful speakers who could tell a great story and get everyone in the room engaged. Those of us in attendance would walk away feeling inspired and eager to help with what came next. Others were very skilled at sharing a clear direction and job expectations.

I knew exactly what was expected of me and how to achieve my goals. This was the foundation of an energized and vibrant role I was in. What I have found is strong communication skills are incredibly helpful and sometimes critical in how well we perform at work.

Here we will take a look at how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

How Communication Skills Help Your Success

Strong communication skills pave the way for success in many ways. Let’s look at a few of the big ones.

Create a Positive Experience

Here are two examples of how well developed communication skills helps create a positive experience:

When I first moved to the city I now live in, I began a job search. Prior to my first live interview, I was told an address to go to. Upon arriving at the address provided, I drove around and around attempting to find the location. After 15 minutes of circling and looking for the address, I finally grabbed a parking spot and set out on foot.

What I discovered was the address was actually down an alley and only had the number over the door. No sign for the actual company. The person that gave me those very unclear directions provided a bad experience for me.

Had they communicated the directions to get there in a clear manner, my experience would have been much better. Instead the entire experience started off poorly and colored the entire meeting.

As a recruiter, I frequently provide potential candidates with information about a job I’m speaking to them about. In order to do this, I also provide a picture of the overall company, the group they might be joining, and how their role fits in and impacts the entire company.

Time and time again I have been told by candidates that I have provided the clearest picture of a company and role they have ever heard. They have a positive experience when I clearly communicate to them. Even when the position does not work out for them, often times they will want to stay in touch with me due to the open communication and beneficial experience they had during the interviewing process.

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Strong communication skills will provide a positive experience in virtually any interaction you have with someone.

Help Leadership Skills

It’s certainly a skill all its own to be able to lead others.

Being a mentor and guiding others towards success is a major hallmark of great leaders. Another characteristic of effective leaders is the ability to communicate clearly.

As I referenced above, having a leader who can plainly articulate the company’s mission and direction goes a really long way towards being the Captain of the boat that others want to follow. It’s like saying “here’s our destination and this is how we are going to get there” in a way that everyone can get on board with.

Another critical component of everyone helping to sail the boat in the right direction is knowing what your portion is all about. How are you helping the boat move towards its destination in the manner than is consistent with the leaders’ vision?

If you have a boss or a manager that can show you what it takes for not only you to be successful, but also how your performance helps the company’s success then you’ve got a winner. A boss with superior communication skills.

Build Better Teams

Most of us work in teams of some sort or another. During the course of my career, I have led teams up to 80 and also been an individual contributor.

In my individual contributor roles, I have been part of a larger team. Even if you are in business for yourself, you have to interact with others in one manner or another.

If you have strong communication skills, it helps to build better teams. This is true whether you are in an IT department with 100 other fellow programmers or if you own your own business and have customers or vendors you communicate with.

When you showcase your robust ability to communicate well with others while interacting with them, you are building a better team.

Now let’s jump in to how to improve communication skills to help you pave the way for your workplace success.

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How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

There are many tips, tricks, and techniques to improve communication skills. I don’t want to overwhelm you with too much information, so let’s focus on the things that will provide the biggest return on your time investment.

Most of these tips will be fairly easy to become aware of but will take time and effort to implement. So let’s go!

1. Listen

Ever heard the saying you have two ears and one mouth for a reason? If you haven’t, then here’s the reason:

Being a good listener is half the equation to being a good communicator.

People who have the ability to really listen to someone can then actually answer questions in a meaningful way. If you don’t make the effort to actively listen, then you are really doing yourself and the other person a disservice in the communication department.

Know that person who is chomping at the bit to open his or her mouth the second you stop talking? Don’t be that person. They haven’t listened to at least 1/2 of what you’ve said. Therefore the words that spill out of their mouth are going to be about 1/2 relevant to what you just said.

Listen to someone completely and be comfortable with short periods of silence. Work on your listening skills first and foremost.

2. Know Your Audience

Knowing your audience is another critical component to having strong communication skills. The way you interact with your manager should be different than how you interact with your kids. This isn’t to say you need to be a different person with everyone you interact with. Far from it.

Here is a good way to think about it:

Imagine using your the same choice of words and body language you use with your spouse while interacting with your boss. That puts things in a graphic light!

You want to ensure you are using the type of communication most relevant to your audience.

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3. Minimize

I have lunch with a business associate about 3 times a year. We’ve been talking for several years now about putting a business deal together.

He is one of those people that simply overwhelms others with a lot of words. Sometimes when I ask him a question, I get buried beneath such an avalanche of words that I’m more confused than when I asked the question. Needless to say this is most likely a large portion of why we never put the deal together.

Don’t be like my lunch business associate. The goal of talking to or communicating with someone is to share actual information. The goal is not to confuse someone, it’s to provide clarity in many cases.

State what needs to be stated as succinctly as possible. That doesn’t mean you can’t have some pleasant conversation about the weather too.

The point is to not create such an onslaught of words and information that the other person walks away more confused than when they started.

4. Over Communicate

So this probably sounds completely counter intuitive to what I just wrote about minimizing your communication. It seems like it might be but it’s not.

What I mean by over communicating is ensuring that the other person understands the important parts of what you are sharing with them. This can be done simply yet effectively. Here’s a good example:

Most companies have open enrollment for benefits for the employees in the fall. The company I work for has open enrollment from November 1 to 15. The benefits department will send out a communication to all employees around October 1st, letting them know open enrollment is right around the corner and any major changes that year. There’s also a phone number and email for people to contact them with any questions.

Two weeks later, we all get a follow up email with basically the same information. We get a 3rd communication the week before open enrollment and another one 1 day before it starts.

Finally we get 2 emails during enrollment reminding us when open enrollment ends.

There’s minimal information, it’s more of a reminder. This is effective over communication.

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5. Body Language

The final critical component to how to improve communication skills for workplace success is body language. This is something most of us have heard about before but, a reminder is probably a good idea.

When I am in a meeting with someone I am comfortable with, I tend to kind of slouch down in my chair and cross my arms. When I catch myself doing this, I sit up straight and uncross my arms. I remember that crossing arms can many times be interpreted as a sign of disagreement or conflict.

In general, the best rule of thumb is to work towards having open body language whenever possible at work. This means relaxing your posture, not crossing your arms, and looking people in the eye when speaking with them.

When you are speaking in front of others, stand up straight and speak in a clear voice. This will convey confidence in your words.

Conclusion

Possessing strong communication skills will help you in many facets of your life and most certainly in the workplace.

Good communication helps create better teams, positive experiences with those we interact with, and are critical for leadership.

There are numerous tactics and techniques to be used to improve communication skills. Here we’ve reviewed how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

Now go communicate your way to success.

More Resources About Effective Communication

Featured photo credit: HIVAN ARVIZU via unsplash.com

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