If we treat a person as he/she is, he/she will remain as he/she is. If we treat a person as what he/she could be, he/she will become what he/she should be. Here are some suggestions to build a successful relationship inspired by the writings of Al Ritter. 

What is the most effective way to create and sustain great relationships with others? It's The 100/0 Principle: We take full responsibility (the 100) for the relationship, expecting nothing  (the 0) in return.

Implementing The 100/0 Principle is not natural for most of us. It takes real commitment to the relationship and a good dose of self-discipline to think, act and give 100 percent.

The very best we can give each other is our love not our advice, and certainly not our judgment.

The 100/0 Principle applies to those people in our life where the relationships are too important to react automatically or judgmentally. Each of us must determine the relationships to which this principle should apply. For most of us, it applies to work associates, customers, suppliers, family members and friends.

STEP 1 - Determine what you can do to make the relationship work...then do it. Demonstrate respect and kindness to the other person, whether he/she deserves it or not.

STEP 2 - Do not expect anything in return, zero, zip, nada.

STEP 3 - Do not allow anything the other person says or does (no matter how annoying!) to affect you. In other words, don't take the bait.

STEP 4 - Be persistent with your graciousness and kindness. Often we give up too soon, especially when others don't respond in kind. Remember to expect nothing in return.

The most important single influence in the life of a person is another person.

At times (usually few), the relationship can remain challenging, even toxic, despite our 100 percent commitment and self-discipline. When this occurs, we need to avoid being the "knower" and shift to being the "learner." Avoid knower statements/thoughts like: "That won't work," "I'm right, you are wrong," "I know it and you don't," "I'll teach you," "That's just the way it is," "I need to tell you what I know," etc.

Instead use learner statements/thoughts like: "Let me find out what is going on and try to understand the situation," "I could be wrong," "I wonder if there is anything of value here," "I wonder if..." etc. In other words, as a learner, be curious! This "knower/learner" approach is really effective most of the time unless the person is determined to remain immature and  refuses to grow.

This may strike you as strange, but here's the paradox: When you take authentic responsibility for a relationship, more often than not the other person quickly chooses to take responsibility as well. Consequently, the 100/0 relationship quickly transforms into something approaching 100/100.

We sometimes lose perspective of the difference we can make, when we care more of our giving and care less of what we take.  The way to impress people is not by telling them how wonderful we are. If we want to impress people we need to listen to how wonderful they are.

By Tim Pedrosa

A careless word may kindle strife. The cruel word usually wrecks a life. Timely word help level stress… but it’s the loving words that heal and bless.