Before even being born every person gets a place in the web of relationships.
Strange as it might appear, but lifelong ties like our immediate family comprising of parents, grandparents and siblings are a set of already existing relationships, we step into this world with.
Since time immemorial human have lived in groups. Initially it was believed that due to the natural constraints of harsh weather, wild animals, food gathering and hunting ancient men stayed together.
It cannot be denied that their inherent desire and need to share, love, listen and understand each other was a major binding factor above all.
We humans are fragile beings. Though strong and self-sufficient, all of us long for care, concern, love and someone to share our lives with.
The empathy which we are blessed with helps us understand the pain of plants animals and birds as well. We befriend animals and birds, developed domestication practices.
This power to connect, relate and bind at emotional level is at the core of relationships web around us. Humans relate not just with other humans or other living beings.
Relationship of men can be with a place, position they hold and their work. The degree and type of connectivity with someone or something is based on several factors.
Some closely knit relation like family are such that we don’t choose them. But as we grow, relationships are developed by commonness.
Consider a baby playing outside his home, on witnessing an elder with a toddler this baby would connect and associate with the toddler instantly in majority of cases. Similarity of age is a factor here.
Whereas in a school a child would be friend of a classmate who has similar interest, be it in cartoons or the game they select to play in the recess.
In school apart from friend’s children get into another type of relationship. Consider the Student Teacher relation.
Students don’t get to choose a teacher they are supposed to greet them, and behave in a certain way. This is quite a formal relationship but student can choose his/her favorite teacher and is free to go an extra mile.
With favorite teacher student can share and discuss more than just subjects. One teacher is related to many children in such setting of Relationships.
On the other hand, if we observe the relation between a fan or admirer with his sport star, though they never meet physically still share a connection.
No understanding is required but a liking for common sport and performance of star is what defines a relationship here.
Relationship becomes inherent part of our identity. As kids we are identified by our elders like “Mr. Singh’s child” or “Sushila’s niece” etc.
They define us, like belonging to a state makes us “Punjabi/Tamilian” first. In a similar manner the position we hold be it being “Monitor” of your class at school level or “Manager” in your workplace.
The relationship with these non-living things also shape us and in turn are impacted by us. Relationships are always two-way interaction.
It would not be wrong to say they follow the handshake principle. Inputs from both sides matter most with room for effect of external circumstances as well to some extent.
The bedrock of any relationship is based on what one derives from it and how much is one keen to invest. In interpersonal association what humans derive is happiness, sense of belonging, care from other person, satisfaction in working with them or for them.
The investment is in the form of time spent, sacrifices done, selflessness, caring attitude, love, listening patiently and being on each other’s side in all situations.
An important aspect of Relationships is they are both complex and dynamic. A relationship can be multifaceted and change in what you feel about it over time.
This may happen due to changing priorities of one’s life, proximity or distance, misunderstandings and too much expectation and comparison with others.
At an individual level a man is part of multiple setting like being a Father, son and a husband in his family. He can be a boss to some and an employee in the office simultaneously.
He can be a cricket fan and Animal Rights activist during weekends. He can be associated with a shopkeeper near his residence on political views but share a different taste for clothing.
Degree of relation is like concentric circle for majority and follows a pattern. The innermost circle is our family with whom we can share deepest joy and concerns.
Next or second circle is of our dear friends and relatives chosen by us with whom we open up and look up to in crisis.
Third is circle of institutes like school, college or workplace where we open ourselves in a limited manner and are conscious of our actions and image.
Fourth is circle of strangers we share public places like malls, road, Parks and transport with, here we follow norms of society and moral standards that we may or may not believe in.
Fifth is widest circle where we relate to citizens of our country, all humans, entire ecosystem of earth, solar system and the Universe alike, which means we have views and knowledge about them but aren’t significantly concerned or impacted.
As we move out in these circles, some people may keep changing level or even share two or many circles at the same time.
Consider having a schoolmate as your team member at work and then getting married thus coming into your family circle. Relationships are diverse and full of interlinking, overlapping and many weird possibilities.
We are at center of our web and decide how these association at various levels would bring us peace and joy. Also, our actions impact the greater social order and good of all.
A person experiences many variations in relationship which broadly can be categorized as good or bad.
Relationships are considered good when they help a person improve and succeed, stay focused, ensures well-being, bring peace, involves sharing without fears of judgement, has trust, respect and both parties involved invest in it voluntarily.
Such relationship is noticed in Parents and young children – here selflessness of parents and innocence with truthfulness of child disperses positivity all around.
An unhealthy or bad relationship is marked by violence and stress at emotional, psychological and in extreme cases by physical tortures.
When people start blaming others, loses hope of improvement, doubt, don’t care or respect each other, become too selfish and self-centered or are influenced by lucrative but self-harming things like drug addiction their relationships get ruined.
They develop negative aura and spoil their association with good people around them too. Such relationship can leave one in despair.
But beauty of human life is possibilities it serves. The power of hope with which we can better our condition and relationships.
With due diligence, empathy and sympathy for all. With sharing only what is required, with resilience and no dependency that we can’t overcome.
With self-introspection and finding faults within before starting the blame game, we can strengthen ourselves. Mutual coexistence requires playing one’s part with utmost honesty.
By staying strong amid a negative phase of relationships one can turn them into healthy relationships.