Today is the most important day you have. You will never have this day available again; make it work for you.
Today we make choices. We answer the four “Whats”:
What is IMPORTANT today?
What is my ATTITUDE today?
What ACTIONS will I take today?
What RELATIONSHIPS will I build today?
How many of us wake up and ask ourselves, “What relationships will I build today?”
I would guess very few. We usually begin our focus on what is happening that day—how to dress, the morning routine, what time we need to leave the house and what we need to take with us—lunch, coffee, the kids. You know the drill.
I’d like to challenge you to think a bit deeper about your task list… Instead of focusing on the “what” and “when,” focus on the people your path will cross and how you can make them feel more special.
I’m not suggesting a gift (although sometimes that is the thing you want to do), but the way you see, hear, and converse with people. Potentially, choose one person with whom you especially want to build a relationship. Consider how you can help him or her know you care.
Let me share an example. This morning, I walked into one of my favorite coffee shops to get some work done (I like people and noise and actually work more creatively in that atmosphere—the coffee isn’t bad either!). I was greeted by name (made me feel special). I was able to call the barista by name (made her feel special). I introduced the person I was meeting there to the owner—all by name—and told the coffee shop owner about the person’s occupation with an affirmative statement about the type of work they do. There was a connection made and potential for a new relationship. I spent no money. I simply put forth an effort to create a relationship, and everyone involved felt valued.
A word of warning: Don’t assume that because you have already established a relationship with someone that you don’t need to show you want to continue that relationship. Relationships are the most significant thing I can give or receive. They deserve our effort. Relationships will crumble when someone ceases feeling valued. I was told once that as a spouse, men need to feel respected and women need to feel cherished. Whether that is true of you or not, I’m not certain. What I do know is that feeling respected or cherished requires consistent attention. And if I want the relationship to grow more, I must put forth even more effort.
Here’s the rub… The best way to go into a relationship is the 101 Percent Principle. I must be willing to give 101 percent to my relationships—unconditionally—and expect nothing in return (that’s the unconditional part). I am NOT saying accept unacceptable behavior or allow yourself abuse in the process. Every relationship comes with expectations. You deserve to be treated well—respected and/or cherished! Hopefully, you apply your values to a relationship, and if that relationship does not meet those values, you, and only you, can decide if you are willing to accept or reject the relationship. Note I said the relationship received the acceptance or rejection—not the person. Who we spend our time with, and at what level that relationship goes, is our choice. The reverse is also true. Don’t expect to be made to feel special if you aren’t willing to place your focus on the other person.
Do something special for others and you’ll become something special to others.
What relationships will you build today? Live intentionally.
If you’d like to become more intentional in your relationship building, consider joining Leadership Harbor for a mastermind group on Intentional Living. Go to our events page to find out more.