Friday, January 24, 2014

The Relationship Equation

I recently went to lunch with a woman who made me feel <. You know. Less than. Less than important. Less than worthy. Less than her.

Most of our discussion centered on wealth. While nothing was ever said directly, she clearly communicated that I didn't have enough money to matter. 

Now, those of you who know me know that money has never been my primary motivator. On the other hand, I have made a good living -- and a good life -- as a writer and I'm very proud of that.

So why did I take her comments to heart? I don't know. I don't know. All I can tell you is that she reminded me of the truth in the old cliche: People will forget what you say. People will forget what you do. But they'll never forget how you made them feel.

Fortunately, I am typically surrounded by people who make me feel =. Even a handful who make me feel >. Not greater than them -- that wouldn't be fun. But greater than your average Joe. Greater than ordinary. Definitely greater than I did when I walked into the room.

I love these people. They're > than anything. 

What about your people? What about you? When you consider your relationship equations, are you making people feel less than? Equal? Greater than?

There are lots of ways to know. A little self-actualization helps. But you can also watch the other person's body language. Does he make eye contact? Is she suddenly slumping in her chair? Is he physically pulling away?

Then, take a psychic step back and listen. Does she sound defensive? Is he getting awfully quiet?

People matter. Feelings matter. Words matter. Why, just writing this post is my way of getting my mojo back. With that in mind, I've got one more thing to say and then I'll let it go:

Kindness is > wealth.


Beth Bahner said...

Jan, you right. People matter. Feelings matter. I will always remember how I feel when I spend time with you: Happy. And, I will always remember your sweet kindness when I needed it the most. That makes us both wealthy!

Jan said...

Thank you, Toots!!

Vicki said...

Jan, you are one of the kindest people I know. You are a good listener and I think that's a really rare and valuable trait. I'm glad to know you!

Jan said...

Thank you, Vicki! I really appreciate it. :-) And I'm glad to know you!