Relationships: Assets Not Liabilities
I have been doing a lot thinking about relationships lately. Our relationships should lift us up, motivate us and help us be better people – this is of course reciprocal. Our relationships should never tear us down, be full of negativity, or harm us. Our relationships should be our assets, not our liabilities.
What do I mean when I say an asset? An asset is something that adds value to what you already have in the business world. A relationship as an asset does the same for you as a person. The other person adds value to you. Their perspective, goals, work and love adds value to you as a whole person.
What do I mean when I say a liability? A liability in the business world is something or someone that is risky for you to continue to do business dealings with or have in your business circle. A liability will cause damage to you in the end, even if it looks good on the outside. A person who is a relationship liability in a friendship or an intimate relationship (e.g. marriage, long-term relationship) will also cause damage in the end. They are a risk you are taking with your emotional, mental and perhaps even physical well-being.
No relationship should be a liability. How do we keep our relationships from being liabilities? We need to be careful and pay attention to who we get involved with on all levels – business, personal, spiritual, etc. As I mentioned before, what looks good may not always be good – in fact it can be quite rotten on the inside with a fantastic or charming exterior. My late husband, as much as I loved him and tried to love him, was such a liability. He was irresponsible, lacked self-control, lied on many fronts, and in the end was abusive. He lacked the ability to be self-aware nor did he want to change any of this to my knowledge. He was good at playing the victim and playing it well for a time.
As harsh as these truths were for me to acknowledge, I had to acknowledge that I had allowed a relationship liability to be a part of my life. In fact, he had been a relationship liability because of learned and chosen behavior for most of his life. People who are or have been a relationship liability to you have usually been a liability to others as well. I don’t want anyone to feel bad if they have a person like this currently in their life or did have this kind of person in their life in the past. We all live and learn and we can all change the course of our lives anytime we want to do so. I sure have! I will no longer tolerate relationship liabilities in friendships or any other future marriages. If the people in my life aren’t building me up, adding to my life and making me a better person, then they have no place in my life. I remove relationship liabilities, I don’t keep them around hoping they will change. I seek out people who will be relationship assets, whether in friendship or later in marriage. I want to be an asset to them too. I want to build them up, add to their lives and make them better people. If I am not this type of person to them, I want them to send me on down the road. Is this making sense to you today? I want you to know I am not asking anyone to haphazardly throw people away. I am asking you to do a real inventory of the people in your life and see who are the assets and who are the liabilities. Some of you reading this blog right now know who these people are in your lives. You already know who needs to go and who needs to stay so make that happen.
Cultivate your relationship assets, not your liabilities. You, your friends and your future spouse will be healthier people.
There are “friends” who destroy each other, but a real friend sticks closer than a brother. Proverbs 18:24
Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm. Proverbs 13:20
Until next time,