Relationships: Importance and Impacts

Summary

Relationships are very important in the lives of individuals since they enhance social development. Effective relationships motivate people to unleash their potential, and thus empower them to perform well in various aspects of social development. In contrast, ineffective relationships discourage people from engaging in various social activities, which consequently reduce their performance and productivity in the society or workplaces.

In essence, relationships play a central role in the lives of humans because they mediate between human activities and happiness. Family relationships comprise the basic form of relationship that people come across at their tender ages. Fundamentally, family relationships form the basis of other forms of relationships and thus determine how people develop and nurture subsequent relationships. Therefore, it is important for guardians and parents to exercise a lot of concern and attention on family relationships because they influence the development of their children. Friendship, casual, and romantic are other forms of relationships, which require people to demonstrate assertiveness, professionalisms, and fair treatment of other people for a harmonious society. Diverse parties involved in the relationships need to exercise these values so that they can foster performance and productivity.

The paper aims to create awareness among individuals concerning the importance of developing healthy relationships. Performance and social development of individuals greatly depend on the type of relationships that they develop with other individuals in the society. Relationships affect individuals because they are vulnerable to influences and coercions from other members in the relationship. Good relationships are very critical in human development and productivity.

Therefore, parents and guardians as well as adult individuals in relationships need to exercise values such as professionalism, assertiveness, and respect so that relationships can lead to an enhanced productive and positive progress in the lives of people involved. In addition, good relationships are essential in the life of a person, and thus, individuals in a society need to be vigilant and exercise lots of concern. The vigilance and concern should be on the type and kind of relationships they nurture and the character of the parties involved in the relationship.

Paradigm

The paradigm behind the paper has its basis on the fact that human beings are social creatures, who need one another for good and successful livelihoods. Regardless of the diverse demographics and personalities, people will always develop different types of relationships with others so that they coexist peacefully and in a productive way. Notably, some types of relationships need initiation and nurturing, while the acquisition of other relationships is natural. Friendship, romantic, and casual relationships are the types of relationships, which require initiation and nurturing from the involved parties, whereas family relationships are naturally acquired. Relationships can be either negative or positive depending on the effects on the parties involved and the society (Weichold and Barber 5).

Bad relationships transpire when either of the parties in a relationship feel exploited or undermined, whereas good relationships occasion when the parties involved in a relationship receive equal treatment. The relationship awareness theory, which explains the essence of human relationships, is in line with the paradigm. The theory is very important in the study of family, friendship, casual, and romantic types of relationship among individuals. According to Pleasant-Immanuel, self-awareness is very important as it enables individuals to be assertive and respectful of other individuals in the society, hence developing healthy and productive relationships (15). Therefore, it is imperative to understand that relationships form an essential part of human life and people need to engage in ways that help make relationships productive and healthy.

Introduction

Human beings are social creatures since they are dependent on each other for existence and happiness. The social nature of individuals compels them to develop associations amongst themselves based on their interests and objectives. Some of the common forms of relationships include family, friendship, casual, and romantic relationships. Notably, relationships or associations between two or among many individuals have some level of influence on the life of a person.

Good and healthy relationships are productive and enriching, whereas unhealthy relationships are unproductive and depressing. Some of the social areas where people form relationships include churches, workplaces, homes, schools, as well as other social places. The interaction of people is one of the major factors that lead to the creation of different types of relationships. Therefore, the paper explains the types of relationships and their relevance to humans in relation to the relationship awareness theory.

Types of Relationships

Family Relationships

Presently, there are many types of relationships in the world, which dictate the daily interactions of individuals. Some of the main types of relationships that affect the daily livelihoods of human beings include family, friendships, casual, and romantic relationships. Family relationship encompasses the relationships among parents, children, and other members of the family. Relationships among family members are crucial as they affect the development of children from their tender age, and thus, affect how they perceive the environment. Parents are the main players in family relationship since they must instill moral values in the minds of the children (Bowes, Maughan, Caspi, and Moffitt 809).

The values instilled in the children help them to interact and relate well with other people in the society. Underprivileged parenting leads to the development of poor relationships among children, and consequently affects how they relate with the other people in the society throughout their lives. Thus, family relationships define moral development among children and determine their behaviors.

As a family comprises of parents, children, guardians, and relatives, it has a number of relationships that characterize it. Some of the relationships that exist in the family include parent-parent, sibling-sibling, and parent or guardian-children. Love, passion, tolerance, and kindness are some of the main values required for a peaceful existence in the family. Remarkably, friendship forms the basis of bond that holds family members together.

Friendship facilitates good relationships among the members of a family and helps them to relate effectively in a manner that leads to sharing of important information. The sharing of important information helps families to solve problems, encourage one another, and ensure that each member of the family endeavors to pursue economic, academic, social, and other aspects of life. Weichold and Barber explain that family relationships commence immediately after adoption or birth and extend until the period of death (4). Family relationship also determines how individuals perceive their immediate environment and how they interact and relate to other people in the society.

Friendships

Since humans are social in nature, the social forces drive them to acquire friends. No one can exist without friends because they form an essential part of the society and social structure. Friends normally dictate how an individual interacts, behaves, and performs daily activities in a society. Some of the main values that exist in a friendship as a type of relationship include trust, love, and respect. These values facilitate good friendship among friends thus perpetuating friendship.

Friends encourage one another, share challenges, and exchange ideas (Bowes et al. 812). Individuals choose friends depending on factors such as values, behaviors, and social orientations. Selection of friends requires serious scrutiny of their behaviors and values as they influence the life and character of an individual. For healthy friendship, the involved parties need to be assertive and empathetic to one another.

Friends play a very important role in the lives of individuals because they influence their character and perception of the environment. Parents and guardians should be vigilant about the type of friends that young children associate with since they influence their character. In addition, parents and caregivers need to ensure that their children associate with the right set of friends, who would facilitate their progress (Weichold and Barber 2). Remarkably, unhealthy relationships annihilate good morals that people uphold, and thus create room for the development of immorality in the society. The relationship among friends becomes unhealthy when friends treat or exploit each other unfairly, because relationship relies on the concept of respect, value, and equality. Therefore, for social development and well-being of humans, the type of friendship in a relationship is very crucial.

Casual relationships

A casual type of relationship exists among individuals, who are not friends and do not share any family ties. When individuals interact frequently at social places such as churches, schools, and business centers, they develop a certain type of relationship called casual relationship. Employees, students, believers, and business people often develop this type of relationship due to their frequent interaction at workplaces or business centers. The casual type of relationship is the initial type of relationship that builds up when individuals meet frequently. Some casual relationships later develop and progress into friendship or romantic types of relationships. According to Weichold and Barber, mutual respect, trust, and honesty are some of the values that are crucial for the development of healthy casual relationships (2). However, casual relationship becomes unhealthy when either of the parties in casual relationship treats the other unfairly.

Professionalism and integrity play a very important role in casual type of relationship because the majority of people, who engage in this type of relationship, usually interact regularly or daily. In addition, professionalism facilitates effective relationship among the individuals since it advocates for respect and value for one another. Integrity enables the people involved in a casual relationship to act in ways that are in line with the views of others and at the same time maintain their values (Carr 30). It is imperative to note that casual relationships take place in all aspects of life since the main catalyst of this type of relationship is frequent interaction of people. People need to employ good interpersonal and intra-personal skills for them to ensure that their relationships are practical, productive, and mutually beneficial.

Romantic Relationships

Romantic relationship occurs when people engage in a type of relationship that is intimate and involves two individuals. In this type of romantic relationship, the parties have emotional attachments and share various secrets and feelings with each other. As a result, respect, trust, and equal treatment are paramount values among the people, who have romantic relationships. Romantic relationship enables people to have intimacy with other people whom they can share feelings and emotions. Furthermore, equal treatment is important as unfair treatment leads to imbalance and feelings of resentment, which undermine the essence of romance among parties involved. Healthy romantic relationships help individuals to engage in romantic relationships that are productive and rewarding (Weichold and Barber 2).

On the other hand, if one of the members in a relationship feels undermined or disrespected, the productivity and performance of romance will reduce. Hence, romantic relationships should be productive and fulfilling for the parties involved to experience happiness.

Romantic relationships like other relationships, has the power to influence and change the life and character of an individual. Therefore, romantic relationships demand intensive scrutiny from a person before commencing the relationship. An unhealthy romantic relationship can influence and change the character of an individual negatively. When engaging in romantic relationships, people need to ensure that their friends will influence their lives and character positively and help them progress academically, socially, and economically.

Since romantic relationships have higher levels of attachments as opposed to casual and friendship, relationships, the people involved should exercise honesty and trust among themselves since they share intimate and personal information (Brown and Amatea 95). During the growth of young children, parents or guardians need to provide guidance and lead them on how to handle romantic relationships so that the children can develop healthy and productive relationships.

Relationship Awareness Theory

Elias Porter, a psychologist and a clinical therapist pioneered relationship awareness theory. According to the theory, human beings have a natural condition of attachment to other members of the society. The theory helps individuals to form relationships that are productive and positive, as it empowers them with the relevant skills and expertise on the creation of healthy relationships. The theory uses a concept of motivational value systems (MVS) that help people develop good and effective relationships, which are applicable in resolution of conflicts. The concept assists people to tolerate the behavior of other members of the society and be assertive.

Carr (30) argues that assertiveness enables individuals to respect their values and at the same time respect the views of others. According to the theory, communication, empathy, and trust are some of the values required in the formation of healthy and productive relationships.

The theory uses four premises that examine how individuals behave, obtain self worth, gain motivation, and apply their strengths. Another premise explains that people can enhance their self-discovery through the employment of face validity and clarity (Pleasant-Immanuel 12). Additionally, the theory applies to the seven themes of MVS. Effective use and application of the seven themes of MVS facilitate positive relationships among people in a society. The themes of MVS comprise of care, autonomy, unity, assertiveness, judicious or competition, caution, and support. Individuals behave differently during times of conflicts, unlike in the absence of conflicts, and thus, it is important to understand and tolerate the diverse behaviors of individuals for peaceful coexistence to prevail among members of a society.

One of the claims of the theory is that when people overdo their strengths in a relationship they initiate conflicts since they challenge the self worth of other individuals, who feel undermined or intimidated. The theory motivates and encourages people to address their daily relationship challenges of life. Some of the perspectives of the theory in terms of behavior include the fact that a person uses behavior as a tool of eliminating unwanted elements and confirm self-identity, which results in motivation. Moreover, the consistency of MVS dictates behaviors of a person and the fact that motives are inborn traits, which an individual can tap and use them in creating good relationships (Brown and Amatea 10). Therefore, the theory helps members of a society to develop good relationships that are productive and healthy.

Relevance

Relationships awareness theory is very important in the study of family, friendship, casual, and romantic types of relationship among individuals. The theory empowers people in a society with skills that they can use to improve their relationship with others. Since the theory elucidates the nature of relationships that exist in the minds of individuals, it helps people to understand how to live and interact in a complex society. Additionally, the theory champions of tolerance, accommodation, and assertiveness in enhancing good relationships among individuals. By encouraging people to be assertive, the theory facilitates advanced understanding, appreciation, and respect among individuals, and thus creation of productive and healthy relationships. By using the four premises and seven motivational value system (MVS) themes, the theory enhances good relationships in families, workplaces, schools, religious places, and business centers.

Conclusion

Relationships exist due to the social nature of human beings since they need others for effective coexistence. Family, friendships, casual, and romantic relationships are the main types of relationships that exist among individuals. Assertiveness, trust, honesty, tolerance, love, and respect are some of the important values that assist in formation of productive relationships, which initiate positive development among parties involved in the relationship. Parents and guardians need to provide guidance and support to the young members of the society so that they can help them develop productive and healthy relationships. Relationships awareness theory encourages individuals to create good relationships; and hence, an effective coexistence among people. The theory defines the relevant skills and expertise, which are central in relationship management.

Works Cited

Bowes, Lucy, Barbara Maughan, Avshalom Caspi, and Terrie Moffit “Families Promote Emotional and Behavioural Resilience to Bullying: Evidence of an Environmental Effect.” Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 51.7 (2010): 809-817. Print.

Brown, Norman., and Ellen Amatea. Love and Intimate Relationships: Journeys of theHeart. New York: Routledge, 2013. Print.

Carr, Dannie. Brilliant Assertiveness: What the most assertive people know, do and say. London: Pearson Publisher, 2012. Print.

Pleasant-Immanuel, Nicole. Finding My Way: Increasing Self-awareness and Self-goal Setting Among African American Youth. New York: ProQuest, 2008. Print.

Weichold, Karina and Bonnie Barber. “Introduction to Qualities of Romantic Relationships in Adolescence and Adulthood.” International Society for the Study of Behavioural Development 1.53 (2008): 1-28. Print