Can you readily identify how things need to change in a problem relationship? What percentage of the time would you say those changes include action on your part? If you’re like most of us, it’s way easier to point out where the other person is going wrong. But whether it’s marriage, friendship, parenting, or in your workplace, changing relationships for the better always starts in the same place. If you need change, here’s step one: YOU GO FIRST.
You Go First.
OK, so let’s get to it. “YOU FIRST” means a few things. Relationships of all kinds are like a two-lane road. Each person has the choice to travel in the same direction or head the other way. And since it takes two people to create a healthy or an unhealthy relationship, you should examine how you’re contributing to the success or failure of this road trip.
“YOU FIRST” also means that even if you aren’t knowingly doing things to sabotage an important relationship, you should assume there’s something you can do to shift things in a positive direction. Ultimately, YOU FIRST requires you to identify how you can change to become even more of the amazing person God designed you to become.
If the other person is the main problem, why would becoming more of myself help?
Great question! The answer lies in this fact: when you operate your unique set of inner strengths, it creates momentum that’s contagious. If you’ve found a groove from positive changes you’ve made, and they’re clearly visible to others, it creates inspiration and personal conviction. They can’t help but ask themselves, “What’s she doing differently? He seems happier.” Maybe they notice you’re operating with a sense of fulfillment and a more positive attitude (two of the most common results of operating in your design-driven strengths). They may observe that the negative dynamics that have plagued your problematic relationship in the past no longer greatly affect you. Your legitimate response to the same old banter has even been upgraded to a positive or at least neutral position.
Regardless of what others notice, you have changed first. Now, you’re ready to create a new dynamic with that child, spouse, friend, or co-worker. This is so because the right use of your inner strengths propels you toward the Real You. It creates lasting motivation, renews your desire to resolve differences, and regains momentum where it’s needed.
They May Not Come with You.
Since we’ve already described relationships as a road you either travel together or separately, let’s observe another fact. You can’t make someone travel with you. It’s their choice, of course. It’s their choice to either improve their interactions with you or continue contributing to the relationship’s failure. Your best efforts to make a positive change still may not work if they just don’t want it to work. Fortunately, that is rarely the case! Everyone inherently wants to succeed in relationships. They want to know others and be known themselves. We’re designed to find our greatest successes in the context of community and relationships of all kinds.
Along the Way, You Find What You’re Looking For.
“When we seek to discover the best in others, we somehow bring out the best in ourselves.”
~ William Arthur Ward
Since we can only focus on one thing at a time, this fact remains true: If you’re too busy finding the faults in others, you’ll never experience positive change in your most important relationships. However, if you are looking to help someone else discover, develop and live in their strengths, you are performing the ultimate service. Operating in design-driven inner strengths is transformative. It changes the possibilities for everyone involved. So, whether we’re talking about you, or the person with whom you’re experiencing conflict, the effects are similar: Inner Strengths = Positive Change.
So, you go first. And then, help others to follow your lead.
- Step 1: Take the InnerKinetics® Assessment to determine your unique inner design and discover your unique strengths.
- Step 2: Share this assessment with others and grab a copy of a book that shows you how to live in your strengths. InnerKinetics – Your Blueprint to Excellence and Happiness
- Step 3: Consider personal coaching. If your particular circumstances are just too complicated to sort through on your own, request a consultation and an InnerKinetics® consultant will call you to answer questions and schedule your meeting. Schedule an Initial Consultation.