Relationships are important in one’s life because we are all social beings, we all need to feel loved cared for, we need to feel compassion and empathy from others and most importantly we need to feel like we belong, as all of the above aids in our healthy development. If we have healthy relationships, they will build our self-esteem, improve mental and emotional health and help you live a fuller life.
If I was to reflect on the people who I have a healthy relationship with, it would be my:
My father and mother, my parents are supportive, loving, understanding and open. My relationship with my parents are healthy because we are constantly communicating with one another, if there are issues (which seldom happens) we speak about them respectfully and apologise. Our relationship is based purely on love and acceptance, as my parents never tried to live their life through me and constantly encourage me to follow my heart in everything I do!
My friend Kim, who is an ex-colleague of mine is a special friend of mine because we think and view life in the same perspective. I regard her as my mentor in teaching and life as a whole. Our relationship is strong because we make the effort to remain in contact with each other as I am in China and Kim is in South Africa. We are respectful to one another and we learn from one each other and often have very deep conversations about life.
Lastly my friend first and co-teacher at my current school Xiaotian is my rock. If there is someone that is level-headed about most things it would be her. She is kind, a good listener and a great teaching partner. We are respectful to one another and if there are issues we chat about them. All of the above makes us maintain a healthy partnership. We are friends first!
If I was to reflect on challenges that one can face maintaining relationships, it can be communication and your expectation of the other person. So often we give so much in a relationship and or partnership and the other person does not. I have certainly learnt to choose relationships, friendships and partnerships wisely.
I would consider many characteristics important to maintain a healthy relationship or partnership, here are a few:
- willingness to apologize and make right
- love unconditionally
- have realistic expectations of the other person
- support, encourage and guide
As an educator I feel all of the above characteristics are important in order to build healthy relationships with children and parents in your class. I am constantly reflecting on my actions and words I say as an early childhood educator. I have the ability to make or break a child and their parents with what I say, do and how I present myself.