What are your relationship goals in love, in the workplace, with family and friends? Do you want total domination? To be obeyed without question?
You may assign an employee a task and expect it to be completed just as you’ve directed. You may nag a significant other to change a habit or get a chore done.
You won’t always be happy with the results, but there are times in life you’ll have to grant people a win, commend them, even when they fall short of your expectations.
Signaling for a Touchdown When a Foot Was Out of Bounds
We have to remember that almost anyone can let us down.
You may want to:
- Fire them.
- Dig up the password to your match.com account.
But it’s critical not to undervalue a willing heart. Having people in your life who care about pleasing you and who value your opinion can be worth preserving. Even if they don’t always get things quite right. Giving them a victory can do wonders for them and for you.
Rewarding Effort in Our Relationships
Not everyone will strive for your approval and not everyone will mind if they fail you. You may think there are better candidates out there. But, too often we hand the people in our lives emotional pink slips, only to find the next person up doesn’t care near as much about satisfying you?
We must strive to appreciate those people in our lives who desire to make us happy. Effort and intention are valuable.
People who care enough to listen and act on our words, shouldn’t be taken for granted. It they hold you in high regard, maybe they are smarter than you think.
If they are willing to give it another go, give them a shot.
Consider rewarding the effort, if not the results.
Don’t Force Others to Quit on You
The sweat someone invests in gaining your approval is something to honor when possible. Because when people feel they can’t please you, you can lose them.
People who disappoint you can either try harder or choose to give up.
They can decide that winning is unattainable, so they become like everyone else in your life. They tune you out.
You want people to have the incentive to keep trying. Sometimes an unexpected win or reward can be that incentive.
There will be time later to go over how they could improve.
If they continue to work to win your approval, you can reap the benefits down the road. But that payoff can be lost when you choose the nuclear option after a failure.
“Trying their best” is a moving goal post. Their best can be pathetic at the start. But give it a few months and their best could be quite impressive.
You can regret blowing up a relationship with someone who is giving their all to receive a nod of approval from you. Sometimes you have to give that nod on faith. It’s an investment that may just pay off.
Consider a Premptive Kudo
This principle is true for all of our interactions in life…with coworkers, children, pets, great aunts, spouses, former child actors, and baristas.
People will very rarely meet all of your expectations, especially in the early going. Sometimes we have to evaluate the passion and heart behind their efforts.
The next time individuals around you screw up and let you down, consider the intention. If they don’t seem to care that they disappointed you, don’t waste too much time when considering their futures.
But when they show the willingness to take responsibility and want another chance to check your boxes, consider granting the opportunity.
Assign a value to that determination, before you leave a girlfriend, terminate an employee, turn away from a family member, or revoke a barista’s privilege to make you a latte.
Invest in that effort and wait patiently for future dividends.