Are You Adding Value?

You know those really awesome people who you meet and feel instantly inspired by? Their energy is incredible, and you even share a few unique commonalities. Maybe you hung out with them a time or two feeling like you wanted and needed more of this incredible energy - because they provide you with genuine advice and authentic perspective.


This eclectic human sure knows how to hold space for other humans, but now your time with them has been limited. Why the sudden shift? You thought you guys really had a good thing going, but now you can hardly reach them. Believe me, there’s been many times when I questioned why I didn’t get a call back, which lead me to take a second look at the value that I brought to the relationship. Was the relationship equally yoked? What was I bringing to the table in this relationship? Was I also filling them with genuine advice and authentic perspective? Did I give and take, or just take and take? Was this relationship that we shared mutually beneficial, or just beneficial to me?


Some people might read this and think, “People can give their time without expecting material in return”, and that is absolutely correct. Material things are but one small part of the equation in a relationship, and to focus exclusively on them is disturbingly shallow. I’m talking being a decent human overall. A human who doesn’t just thrive on how good someone else makes them feel, but also returns the same energy to others. Simply holding space and listening to someone else is priceless.


Have you ever listened to someone for a half hour, only to be steamrolled over in conversation when you try and insert your own opinion, story, or belief? It doesn’t feel good. Period point blank, it just doesn’t. It feels insensitive. If it seems to you as though they do not care, it leads you to wonder why you are even there. You know how good it feels when someone allows you to share authentically and be heard. That’s why it can feel like a waste of time to subject yourself to someone who wants only to take from you, and rarely to give. It is energy draining and physically exhausting. It also feels like being an unpaid therapist. Nobody wants to do that in this economy.


Of course, in life sometimes we meet people briefly, and then continue to float on about our ways. That is normal, and that is just life. Other times we have the capability to keep these people whom we most enjoy in the forefront. All this requires is pushing out the positive energy we wish to receive in return, and more. Treating others the ways in which we wish to be treated. It really is that simple. This is the most basic principle of the law of attraction.


If you find yourself complaining often about feeling judged by others, ask yourself how you are treating others. Are you naturally judgmental in conversation? “Well… red really isn’t your color,” or “Engaged? You’ve only been together for three months!” These responses don’t help people to feel heard, they are more likely to feel ridiculed. Allowing people to express themselves is gentle and kind. How does allowing someone to express themselves negatively affect your life? And hey, you might not ever understand it, but in that case it was never for you to understand. All we can do is accept the ones we love and yearn to be near no matter how dull, or eccentric they may be. Especially if we want to continue seeing them.


Bringing your own value to a mutually beneficial relationship is everything, and I’m not just talking about friendships or romantic relationships. This applies to work, organizations, teams, clubs, and other groups you are involved in. Provide your authentic value to the ones in your life who are worth continuing a relationship with, a healthy balance between give and take, Yin and Yang. When the balance is synergistic neither party is left feeling drained post encounter. In turn, there is always an excitement that carries through to pick up where you left off. You want to keep that ember going, that spark. Be valuable, and don’t take more than you are giving.