Eleven Tips for Getting Along Well

Added: Jul 01, 2014 UTC
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One of the commonly understand meanings of "to get along with" is "to have smooth relations with" or "to be friendly or compatible with". There are many reasons as to why we get along well or do not with others. Most of these reasons have either an emotional basis or a logical basis or a combo. Fundamentally, every person has, among others, two basic needs irrespective of social status or economic status. They are "meaningful social inclusion" and "an acceptable & recognizable identity". It is the ability of a person to get along well with others that largely determines the extent of fulfillment of these two needs.

How to get along well with others? Well, there are these "one-less-in-dozen" time-tested ways, not in any particular order, that largely determine how well a person is getting along with others.

Before saying anything to anyone, ask 3 things: Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary? - Ideally, the answer for each should be affirmative for the next action. However, there is a catch i.e. Necessary and truthful statements could be perceived as "being unkind to the recipient" of the message, in quite a few situations. If that is so, then it requires a tactful calibration in the way the statement is presented or communicated.

Make promises sparingly and keep them faithfully - Does this need any elaboration? Nevertheless, it is useful to decode what drives a person into making promises. Is it anxiety? Is it excitement? Is it pressure? Is it confidence? There can be more such motives. Decoding would help in curtailing the dysfunctional or detrimental motives. In case if the promise is not kept, it is useful and rather necessary to regret with credible reasons. It is a must if the faith has to remain constant.

Never miss an opportunity to compliment or say something encouraging to someone - Who does not want to be complimented? It is about spotting the opportunity and delivering an apt statement. Most of us would know that compliments enhance a person's confidence and strengthens the "self-image". Both together can even make a person more motivated, intrinsically. In fact, complimenting when needed is a great enabler.

Minimize indulging in negative talk about others - Talking negatively about others is one of the most energy-draining dysfunctional behaviors. Best part is that most of us do recognize this and still engage in it. This is possibly because it is one of the guaranteed ways for self-gratification and / or for venting negative energy out. Let us attempt and curtail negative talking about others. At the end, we will be better-of.

Have a forgiving view of people and a belief that most people, at a given point of time, are doing the best they can - Ease to do! Not that easy. We ought to be high on compassion and empathy for doing this. It is also about our need for being forgiven and others believing in us, professionally and personally. Forgiving is more than being religious. It helps us process our negative emotions more effectively.

Keep an open mind; discuss and minimize arguing - It is said that an argument leads to "who is right" and "(healthy) discussion" leads to "what is right". It is tough to keep an open mind, but is entirely possible. An open mind is an acknowledgement of other person's ability to contribute and of absence of any (pre-existing) bias. We all know that it is possible to disagree without being disagreeable. Agreed?

Count to 1000 and not to 10, before doing or saying anything that could make matters worse - Whether expressed or not, each person has a varying degree of sensitivity. Also, each situation has it positives and negatives. It is about anticipating and then doing or saying. We all would have experienced that at times, situations could have been controlled only if what was said was either avoided or said differently. Many of us, at times, say or act without anticipation more due to our need for being "safe" and in some situations, for getting rid of our "guilt". Check it out.

Let your "body of work" speak for you - In today's world, it is very necessary for every person to "self-promote", suitably and regularly. But remember; the more one promotes, more are the expectations, and if the "delivery" is not matching the promotion, then it certainly can harm individual's credentials. The best way is to let people know about your "body of work" and leave the rest to "action speaks louder than words".

When criticized, check if there is any truth to what is being said; if so, make amends. Or else, ignore it and move on - It is an interesting aspect that we get emotionally charged; whenever praised or criticized. We find it "pleasing" when praised and "disturbing" when criticized. In both situations, there is a need to check for truth or the extent of truth. If taken unfiltered, both could damage. Hence, being neutral as far possible could be the best course.

Cultivate sense of humor; laughter is the shortest distance between two people - Enough has been spoken and written about laughter and its power. Still, the weapon is used sparingly. For being seen as serious about a topic, one need not look serious. The challenge is to find a meaningful substance for laughter that would connect the other person. But remember, laughter has to be genuine and not a typical dry "smile" or "giggling". Warning: Laughing without a valid reason could be detrimental to one's image.

Do not seek so much to be consoled, as to console; do not seek so much to be understood, as to understand; do not seek so much to be loved as to love - It is only when we give, we receive. Don't we know this? We do. Only when the outward path opens up, the inward path becomes visible to others. And don't square up each "giving out" against each "coming in". Let the "total" take care of itself.

In nutshell, we ought to realize that getting along well with others, is a social or classically a survival need. Therefore, we need to get along well with others, as far as possible, in all spheres of life. Only if when we get along well, can we build enduring relationships and is it not an important motive?


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