In these last weeks of December, I’ll be answering 18 questions for an incredible review of your 2018 that I wrote in my previous post.
I hope this series inspires you to look at your life, career, family and relationship, and to reflect and plan for an awesome 2019. Let’s go.
6. Which 3 important relationships improved the most?
My relationships with my partner, my family and myself.
7. What were the things you did that improved those relationships?
MY PARTNER and I are so similar in some ways – we are both strong-minded, independent and somewhat smart (or smart-ass-y, I don’t know). Just to give you an idea, “what do you want to eat?” might be the hardest questions for many couples, but AMBIGUITY – answers like “whatever, anything” almost never happens to us. We are clear and specific. He might want to eat the char kuey teow behind the kopitiam in my Taman and I insist to eat the Korean food in Damansara Uptown. We will discuss and decide. Learning how to communicate effectively and managing expectations have been extremely important in maintaining our long-distance relationship. We are both learning to listen and understand each other’s opinion in our daily lives, career or even our political views. Miraculously, we hadn’t had any big argument…yet.
MY FAMILY – I didn’t see how much my upbringing has affected my personality until this year. For years, I’ve been really afraid of confrontations, arguments and difficult conversations. When you try to please everyone, you please no one. I felt really stressed. After reading about psychology and doing some self-reflections, I see that I got this habit from my parents, who are always the peace-makers. They like everyone to be happy and peaceful. As a result, some problems like money have never been resolved. This year I’ve really tried to go one-step beyond my comfort zone and speak up. I didn’t feel comfortable but it’s worth it. Problem solved.
MYSELF – For years I freaking hate myself. I’m always looking for flaws in myself. Partly it’s because I want to be perfect (which is impossible), partly it’s because I really care about other people’s opinion. This year I learn to accept things as they are. It could be looking at my pimples and stop feeling insecure, revising a rejected manuscript without feeling angry or disappointed, or listening to a friend’s success story without feeling I’m a failure. I also stop caring so much about other people’s opinion. These small steps of self-love have been life-changing. I feel so much better and happier.
IN SUMMARY, I did three things to improve my relationships.
1.Listen and try to really understand a situation (includes reading lots of articles on psychology)
2.Self-reflection through writing
3.Speak up and don’t be afraid of difficult conversations
Next year I’ll like to improve my relationship with friends. It’s harder to get new friends as we age, don’t you think so? Looking forward to having a normal social life, like hanging out with new friends….. hmm… sounds… exciting… and tiring.
How about you? Which 3 important relationships improved the most? What were the things you did that improved those relationships?