How can I figure out how to be free to live my life the way I want to live it and still get along well with the people I need? Do I treat my good friends differently from my partner, children, student, and employees? How can forcing and retaliation be replaced with negotiation? Am I on the giving or receiving side of coercion, force, compel, punish, reward, manipulate, boss, motivate, criticize, blame, complain, nag, badger, rank, rate and withdraw? How would it be to give or receive care, listen, support, negotiate, encourage, love, befriend, trust, accept, welcome and esteem?

To achieve a good relationship, most of us are willing to suffer pain, even a lot of pain, because the relationship is more important to us than the suffering. To gain, keep, and improve relationships, we are willing to engage in long-term unpleasant activities because we believe that in the end, we will feel better and get closer to the people we need. Even without the promise of a better relationship, most of us are willing to delay pleasure or suffer pain in the hope that we will feel better or suffer less later.

"We are social beings, and to satisfy our needs we must have good relationships. Robinson Crusoe did not need Friday to survive, but he was a lot happier when Friday came along." William Glasser: Choice Theory


Counselling and psychotherapy can help!