Maintaining healthy, thriving, life-producing relationships.
Easier said than done. There’s everything to gain, and maybe everything to lose as well. So, what does it take to really win when it comes to relationships?
The dirty word here is “intentionality”. It’s what no one really wants to talk about. Why is that?
Some things in life are incredibly important, but instead of taking responsibility for them, we tend to just float along – going with the flow – as if we had no control of how it all turns out.
We can be that way when it comes to relationships. For better or for worse.
We’d like to believe that it is all just happenstance and coincidence. From who we fall in with, spend our time with, and get married to. But, nothing could be further from the truth!
Taking a proactive approach to your relationships might just be the thing that propels you to the next level in the next few years. Not being proactive could cost you. Big time.
On today’s episode, we’re going to do some soul-searching to find what’s holding us back from the life we were meant to live and take our relationships to the next level.
Grace and peace,
Chris LoCurto 0:00
In today's episode, relationships, are everything to gain and everything to lose. Maintaining healthy relationships is easier said than done. So what does it look like to win? The truth is intentionality that is coming up next.
Chris LoCurto 0:29
Welcome to the Chris LoCurto show where we discuss leadership and life and discover that business is what you do, not who you are.
Chris LoCurto 0:41
Welcome to the show, folks, I hope you're having a fabulous day, wherever you are. Today we're talking about relationships and relationships are probably the greatest resource that you and I will ever manage. Yes, we're going to talk about managing relationships today people and your relationship with them are more valuable than money. Let me say that again. People and your relationships with them are way more valuable than money now all of my 100% High Seas out there going I don't know if I agree with that.
high sea can deal with people can be happy with people and sometimes not need people. So don't be offended Hi eyes, the high seas are actually okay with that. So here's the funny thing. We don't tend to look at managing a relationship with people. But we do. It's valuable, it's even more valuable than your money.
Chris LoCurto 1:41
I don't know if I'd say it's more valuable than your time. But it's pretty important to your time, right? Healthy Relationships are fundamental to living a fulfilled life. God created us to be communal. The problem is, is that we tend to take a passive approach when it comes to our relationships. So let's start with the first point. What really matters now
Chris LoCurto 2:08
facing death and reflecting on their lives. People on their deathbeds rarely ever say anything. Like, you know, I wish I had that new BMW. Oh, you know, I wish I made more money. You know, I wish I had worked more than I did. I wish I had spent more time in the office. I wish I had done everything I wanted to do. Nope. What do people actually say on their deathbeds? Well, you might find this very interesting. A nurse revealed that she had found the top five answers that people expressed just before their death to be number one. I wish I'd had the courage to live a life true to myself. In other words, you know, not the life that others expected of them. Hello, hi, SS.
Chris LoCurto 3:01
Right, number two, I wish I hadn't worked so hard. You know, they'd missed their children's games or events or first steps or whatever, or maybe missed their, their spouses, you know, companionship or time together vacations. Number three, I wish I had the courage to express my feelings. Many people believe or not suppress their feelings in order to keep peace with others. And I'm not saying you need to go out there and express all your feelings. Alright. But it's interesting that the number three thing is, is that people have not expressed their feelings. Now I can tell you I can look back at many times in my life. And I used to I don't regret them now. But there are times in my life. I regretted telling that girl, you know that I liked her. You're asking her out on a date I regretted asking for help on something or right. I'm sure we can all go back and think through that. Praise God. That's something that I've worked on a lot over the decades. And that's not something I regret. I don't regret not expressing my feelings. But there are folks who go to their deathbed, regretting that they have not expressed certain things. So number four, I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends who there are many, many, many deep regrets about not giving friendships, the time and effort that they deserved. And maybe not even just deserved, but what you wanted out of it, you would have traded the amount of time that you spent making money to spend more time with friends. Number five, I wish I had let myself be happier.
Chris LoCurto 4:47
How many people didn't realize until the end that happiness is a choice? I wish I had let myself be happier. Folks. Fear of change had them pretending to others and to themselves that they were content. And the truth is, happiness is a choice, you can be happy no matter what your situation is.
Chris LoCurto 5:12
You can be happy right now. You just got to learn to choose it. So what's the point of all of this? Right? Well, look at how many of these statements deal with relationships. Yep. All of them. for better or worse. Relationships come into play with every area of our lives, every area of our lives that really matter. And in each of these cases, we could argue that a lack of intentionality was a major factor. Think about it. If I intentionally focused on my happiness, would I be happy? If I understood that happiness is a choice, and I was intentional about choosing happiness? Could I be happy? Of course, if I wanted to spend more time with friends, and I was intentional about it, would I do it? Absolutely. And so on and so forth.
Chris LoCurto 6:09
Folks, relationships matter. relationships matter? Number two points are toxic relationships. What does it look like to be intentional with the toxic or negative relationships in your life, there is a downside to relationships when we're not actively and intentionally examining them. Think about that for a second. The people in your life can be incredible assets to you. That can be assets to your quality of life, to your trajectory of life, and even to your destiny. However, they can also be liabilities. And I think so many folks put too much emphasis on the importance of relationships, even if it's toxic. And I will tell you, when you take a look at how your shoe or walk the earth when he came across toxic people, what did he tend to do? He tended to try and help. And when they decided they just wanted to be toxic, he moved on to the next person.
Chris LoCurto 7:24
It's in there, go ahead and look it up. Here's the deal. toxic relationships can trip you up, they can hold you back, they can keep you from going to the next level in your life. They can keep you from going to the next level in your relationships, they can keep you from going to the next level in your happiness, your finances, and everything right.
Chris LoCurto 7:45
Now, while you can't change your family members, you can at least establish healthy boundaries. And I can tell you that it is vitally important. Now let me tell you two things. The first thing is for all of you out there, who are believers. Do yourself a favor and recognize that God has never changed or taken away his commandments. He still wants you to follow them. Yes, he does. And one very important one in there is honoring your parents.
Chris LoCurto 8:27
So the way that I like to help people to recognize that is to not dishonor your parents. What does it look like to take care of your parents and honor them? It does not mean that if your parents are toxic if your parents are abusive, if your parents are manipulative, that you allow it, it does not mean that you cannot have healthy boundaries in place. So, honor your parents and recognize that right? Do what's needed. Make sure that God is on your side with how you take care of your parents. But that in no way shape or form means that you don't have healthy boundaries. It just means how you instill those boundaries might look different than the way you would put boundaries in place with a sibling, a neighbor, a friend, or a co-worker, right?
Chris LoCurto 9:28
Now try to honor everybody. But if you've got an abusive toxic person in your life, you might have to put seriously hard boundaries in place if it happens to be a parent. Just try not to dishonor them in the process do the best that you possibly can. Again, it does not in any way, shape, or form mean that you justify their actions or you allow them to be toxic to you. Hopefully, that is clear. On the other hand, when it comes to friends and other people, you can change them. Some of you might need to write. And here's the point nothing is as fulfilling and beneficial as being in a healthy, growing relationship. Nothing is more detrimental on the other hand, and exhausting and painful as a toxic one.
Chris LoCurto 10:24
It is so tiring being in toxic relationships. So being intentional with your relationships means at least three things. Number one, it involves being aware of how your actions impact those around you. On the other hand, I've got a lot of tibia.
Chris LoCurto 10:44
Today, if you've seen Fiddler on the Roof, on the other hand, it means understanding how they are affecting you. Right, super important. Number two, it's a call to be more purposeful, thoughtful, and careful about how you interact and connect with others. You are influencing others all the time, even if you don't think so You are the Number three thing that being intentional with your relationship means It means learning to limit at times, or perhaps even increase at other times, your interaction with people, healthy relationships are worth investing in. So for those of you that are like, I just don't want to spend the time we get, you know, a lot of C's don't want to spend the time you know, and by the way, C's you don't have to have 25 friends like the high ones, okay? It's okay for the high that's their energy, it is perfectly fine for you to have 123. But you got to have relationships that were meant to be communal, right? So you don't have to go out there and be the partier. You know, but you have to understand you need relationships, entrepreneurs, business owners, you've got to come to a place of understanding. You need relationships, you can't just work 24 hours a day, and then go home and sit on your keister. You've got to have healthy relationships as well. And believe me, it's worth investing in. So what do you do when you find that a relationship is having a negative impact on you? How do you limit that? What do you do about it? How do you change that? Now, I'm not advocating that you go into your Rolodex, for those of you who remember what that is, and throughout all of your friends who are dead weight, I'm saying that you need to intentionally and honestly assess where relationships are having a negative effect on your life, where there's a deficit, are they a liability?
Chris LoCurto 12:49
And you need to honestly and intentionally limit their withdrawal, place healthy boundaries, and determine how much or even if you should continue your connection with them. Are you hearing what I'm saying? For those of you that feel like breaking up a relationship just means you're horrible and unworthy, and not good enough? toxic relationships may have to go. They may have to go.
Chris LoCurto 13:21
And in many situations, they need to go. I will tell you, I don't have toxic people in my inner circles. Yes, I have circles of relationships. I have my most inner circle of relationships, which is the people I trust the most and the people that are really putting God before anything else and are focused on following his ways. Those are the people who get closest to me.
Chris LoCurto 13:45
Outside of that, it's not a whole lot less than that. But it continues to each circle outside is a little bit less. Do I know toxic people? Do I have relationships with toxic people? Totally. Absolutely. They're just not great relationships. They are not close to me. They are not influencing me. Hopefully, I'm influencing them if at all possible, to try and become less toxic. But I definitely have healthy boundaries in place with toxic people. Why? Because I spent way too much of my life with toxic people having influences on me.
Chris LoCurto 14:27
And when you get tired of it, you make the right decisions. Now with that being said, I do have to share a buddy of mine, Lance Osborne. I love that years ago. I got a text from him. And he had deleted everybody from his phonebook has his phone. The phonebook is the address book.
Chris LoCurto 14:51
I don't know what you call it. I just book on his phone. He said he went through his phone and anybody that he couldn't cut if He landed in jail, and he couldn't call that person to bail him out. He deleted him. And I just thought now, of course, my guide, Lance is not going to do stuff to lend himself in jail. But I loved his thought process. If you're not that close to me that I can call you up when I'm in trouble, why are you in my phonebook? Right?
Chris LoCurto 15:25
Now? I'm using that example, to ask you a serious question. If the person in your life is not willing to support you, help you, and not hurt you, intentionally not manipulate you and not control you and not treat you like crap and not be toxic in your life. Why are you in a relationship with them? Or at the very least, what is the relationship you have with them? Like I said, there are toxic people in my life. The relationship just isn't close.
Chris LoCurto 16:04
It's distant, right? I see them from time to time, and I tried to help them out from time to time, but they're not in my inner circles. So important things for you to think about. Why? Because at the end of the day, you are responsible for your relationships, good or bad, good or bad. Frank Sonnenberg said, keeping bad companies like being in a germ-infested area, you never know what you'll catch. But that's just nasty. So what are some earmarks, that the relationship is toxic, check out these characteristics. One, they rarely apologize for their mistakes. And they try to make you feel guilty, instead of taking responsibility for their own mistakes. Number two, they want you to make them a top priority, but they don't do the same for you. Number three, they keep bringing up your past mistakes and failures and judge you for them. Number four, you can't do anything right in their opinion, and it's difficult to communicate with them. Number five, they make everything about them while ignoring your expressed thoughts or feelings. And I'm gonna throw another one in there.
Chris LoCurto 17:24
All of their problems somehow become your responsibility to solve. So somebody once said toxic relationships are like a good pasta that has been overcooked. And for those of us Sicilians, we get that you don't need it, you just throw it out. Once it's been overcooked, that is a colossal waste of time. It's pointless, get rid of it. Move on to something healthy right? Now, I'm not saying that all pasta dishes are healthy. Very few are pulling number three, let's talk about the healthy ones. Are you intentionally in healthy relationships? How are you actively investing in healthy relationships? Are you actively investing in healthy relationships? Are they positively influencing you? Are they positively influencing others? What are those look like? If you're married, are you adequately contributing to your partner's health and success?
Chris LoCurto 18:22
What are you doing to be healthy for your spouse? Right, what are you doing to aid in their health and their success? What are you doing to cherish them and help them to feel cherished, to know your love, and to feel healthy? What about if you're a parent? How are you investing in your children? Are you influencing them and training them to be successful? And by success? I do not mean, working 70 hours a week to try and make money so that their worth is tied to money. That is not what I'm talking about for me. And I'm always gonna say success in the eyes of God. What does a child's success look like in the eyes of God, completely sold out for God, understanding that he is our ultimate father and that he owns everything in his life
Chris LoCurto 19:17
and that we are to obey Him. And that we are to be concerned about his opinions of us. Not those of other people around us, right? So are you investing in your children's success? If you're a business owner or leader, is there somebody around you that you can positively influence or actively invest in, even if it has little to no return on you personally? Do you care to develop people in that kind of way? Right? So, here's the point. Healthy relationships don't just happen. There's always something intentional and purposeful behind them. People must consistently communicate well and have a similar commitment to the relationship. Let me repeat that. People must consistently communicate well and have a similar commitment to the relationship. In relationships like these, with those traits, here's what happens. You respect each other's opinions and points of view, even when you disagree with them. And you're mindful of the other person's communication, you know, their, their content, their style, and you reciprocate.
Chris LoCurto 20:34
So here's the deal, intentionality, no more casual, haphazard relationships that bring you nothing but complication and chaos, folks. It's time it is time to do something about it. You who know what I'm talking about, you get it. You need to be done. For those of you, if you're sitting out there going, Man, I just don't have any of those. Maybe you don't. But I bet you you got people around you who do. And if you're saying, I don't have those, maybe you're the toxic one. Maybe or the complicated one, maybe not?
Are you being intentional? By being intentional, we inevitably deepen the relationship, we inevitably establish and or build trust, and enhance communication. And we have more meaningful connections. Is that happening in your relationships? If not, then why not? Where are the deficits and the liabilities? Where in your relationships, are they healthy, but you can invest more into the health of those relationships? So let's take another step. Let me push you a little bit more here. Where do you see a deficit in your life? That you need to intentionally search for Phil? What do I mean by that? Well, do you need to pursue a new friendship? That may very well be a top priority. If you don't have good quality friendships? What would it be like to have one?
Chris LoCurto 22:24
Do you need to pursue a new mentor? Do you need to pursue a new coach, a new leader, a new trainer, or a counselor? Folks, if you're struggling here, get help and get it now. Don't keep putting this off. If you need help with this, maybe a good starting point is a two-day immersive life coaching event called Next-Level Life. Go to Chris the kernel.com/next level life and just get the information. So I got to do but it's probably time. For many of you out there. You've been listening to this and hearing people's testimonies and saying someday I need to go do that.
Chris LoCurto 23:06
Every time we get somebody who comes in who says yeah, you know, years ago, I said I needed to do this. They always wished they'd come not always there's some that it's perfect time. But many folks like I wish I'd have done this couple of years ago. Be intentional. While you're here, be intentional with your relationships. None of us know how long we've got on this earth.
Chris LoCurto 23:29
But time is too short not to be intentional with one of the greatest assets or unfortunately liabilities that we have the responsibility to manage. Be intentional. Make the choice today. Well, folks, that's all the time we have. Gosh, I hope this is helping you. I know so many of you out there like Goodness gracious man. He just stepped all over my toes all in a good way. Yes, it's painful. Yes, it's difficult. Yes, many of you have incredibly toxic relationships and you may need help on how to set those healthy boundaries. Let us help out we can do that. But I know a lot of you out there today are going through this was tough but good.
Unknown Speaker 24:15
Just choose to be intentional today. You know a lot of people out there that need to hear this episode specifically share with them. Help them to hear this. Help them to be intentional.
Unknown Speaker 24:26
Again, I hope this information has helped you today. As always, take this information, change your leadership, change your business, change your life, and join us on the next episode.