Saturday Musings – Developing Strong Relationships


I wanted to continue the series I’ve been writing about on what it means to conduct your life through principles. I hope you appreciate and value the openness of which I’m sharing and that you receive a benefit for your own life from reading these articles.

The previous articles in the series can be accessed from the following links:
Three Vital Aspects of the Truth
How to Develop Trust
The Power in a Learning Mindset
It’s All About Character

In this article I would like to start exploring the relationships between the three underpinning principles. If you wish to build strong relationships with others, then there is no better way of doing it by conducting yourself under the guidance of the principles of truth and trust.

Strong Relationships

Too many people expect to have great marriages and wonderful relationships with their children while conducting themselves in a manner that is contrary to a positive outcome. The key that unlocks the power of truth and trust is consistency.

I remember many years ago I had a disaster in one of my businesses. I ended up leaving to go to work at 5am and getting home at around 9pm each night. Our son Timothy was around eight years old at the time and one of his chores was to set the table for dinner each night.We’d talk on the phone and he used to ask me if I’d be home for dinner. Of course, I told him, “Yes”. The reality was that I didn’t make it and was inevitably caught up in all the things at work. Eventually he learned and stopped asking me the question.

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Saturday Musings – It’s All About Character


Over the last few weeks I’ve been unpacking the traits of truth, trust and learning and how they’ve helped me in my own personal relationships. A good way of thinking about the principles is as the three points of a triangle. In this article I’m going to explore what is in the centre of all of us…..our character.

Many people confuse doing good as their character. Doing good is the result of good character and NOT character in itself. What is character? One dictionary defines good character as:

“The stable and distinctive qualities built into an individual’s life which determine his or her response regardless of circumstances.”

A stable person often has a set of values that form the bedrock of their life. These values determine how they interact with others and how they respond to circumstances. Notice, that I haven’t made a judgement call on what the values are.

Some people have a value of selfishness that results in every interaction they have being focused on benefiting them. From their perspective life is all about accumulating more rather than giving out.

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I can't really say when I developed my Character, but it was at an early age. I choose to help others deal with stressful situat... Read More
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As always, I really enjoy reading your comments Rawgi. You'll be happy to hear that we finally have everything back in order and t... Read More
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The Power in a Learning Mindset


In my last two “Saturday Musings” I’ve shared about the two life principles of truth and trust. Both these principles are the foundation stones for building strong relationships that stand the test of time. Even though they are vitally important, without the third principle learning, truth and trust can become soul destroying as you berate yourself for, yet again making another mistake.

A learning mindset means that when you “blow it”, you give yourself the grace to learn from the situation. This provides the liberty to improve yourself if you’re faced with the same issue again. A learning mind focuses not on condemnation but on improvement.

To illustrate this point, let me share with you a story that I read a number of years ago. An IBM salesman received a phone call that meant he’d missed out on a $10 million-dollar deal. He’d put a lot of effort into trying to secure the agreement, but the results clearly showed that he’d cost the company a lot of money.

With a downcast face he packed his personal belongings into a box, stepped out into the hallway and closed his office door for the last behind him. He headed to his boss’s office to say good-bye. “It’s always better to resign rather than be fired,” he said to himself.

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Saturday Musings - How to Develop Trust


There is nothing stronger than when you trust a person completely and nothing more devastating when trust is broken. So how do you gain someone’s trust and how do you maintain it?

Both these questions are at the heart of our society as trust is the glue that bonds us all together. Without some level of trust, your relationship with your spouse, children, neighbours, and government would shatter.

From a business perspective, contracts may spell out what each party expects of the other but ultimately, it’s trust that underpins the agreements. Without trust, we won’t have business and society fall into anarchy.

The first thing to realise about trust is like every relationship it’s built upon a solid foundation of truth. I discussed truth in last week’s Saturday musings and you may want to have a read of that article. Assuming you are truthful then how do you build trust?

The fact is, trust takes time to develop. Although it can be instantly lost, it’s rarely, if ever, immediately given. A good way to think about trust is to imagine everyone has a “trust bank account” that you can deposit or withdraw from. The question is, what are you depositing and withdrawing?

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Saturday Musings - Three Vital Aspects of the Truth


Whether it be with work colleagues, clients or even family members building relationships can be one of the most difficult, time consuming but fulfilling activities you can do. Let’s assume we are all telling the truth….so what do we do when we discover someone is lying?

Truth is a Perspective
Over the years, I’ve seen so many people accuse their friends and even family members of lying. Sadly, it’s almost with a sense of glee that they pounce on a perceived untruth and fling it in the face of a loved one. I have no idea why some people like doing this….after all, aren’t they accusing someone they care for?

Here’s a good lesson. Always remember that truth is a perspective and when you are looking from the outside at another person’s life you may not know the full details of the picture. Because you believe you’ve caught a person in a bold faced lie doesn’t mean that it’s true…..

I recently received an email from a person accusing me of a whole lot of things….none of which were true. They’d leapt to a huge number of conclusions based upon an external perspective and without knowing the actual facts. The challenge for me was how to respond to the accusations in a manner that I hoped would be received. This leads into the next topic…..

How to Share the Truth
Here’s the catch with the truth…..huge amounts of damage can be inflicted on relationships when the truth is shared in a negative, rather than a positive manner. It’s very easy to shove the truth in someone else’s face but much, much harder to share it in a way that it will be received.

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Good post M.
26 February 2018
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