How to Deliberately Grow Any Relationship

Today I am going to teach you a model to grow any relationship. In fact, it’s a model that I use with every client that I coach.

There is a ton of subtlety in this topic and I would normally spend up to an hour discussing this, so understand this is an overview.

It starts with understanding what an equilateral tetrahedron is. There are four sides. Each side is a triangle and each side is exactly the same size.

This is is the visual model for human relationships. There are four points. Each point represents one tool of creation in relationships.


The Four Tools Are:

Affinity
The degree of interest, friendliness, likingness, or lovingness you
have for the person.

Reality
Specifically the degree of reality that you share with the person (if you
are both liberal, that is a shared reality).

Communication
The quantity and quality of communication that occurs between you.

Understanding
The degree to which you understand each other.


We tend to form relationships based on this model. At a party, the people you will spend time with will be people that feel an affinity towards. This will often happen because you find a shared reality that you enjoy communicating about, and therefore you will feel understood and also that you understand them.

What gets in the way of relationships growing is an upset. Sometimes many of them.

Often an upset happens when we realise that our Reality is different to the other person’s. They might say ‘All black dogs are dangerous’ and they don’t know you have a black dog. When you hear this, it’s likely that your Affinity will decrease (if you are upset with someone, you tend to use Affinity a lot less). You clearly don’t Understand their reality, and your Communication will be a lesser quality (you might want to say ‘clearly you’re an idiot and have no idea about dogs’).

This is an example of when a relationship can shrink in an instant. If you choose to, you can use these four tools to grow the relationship even in this example. If you hear the comment ‘All black dogs are dangerous’ you could use my favourite question.

When you use genuine intention to ask that question (which is Communication) with Affinity, in order to gain an Understanding of what this person’s Reality is (and you ask the question with a neutral tone) it’s amazing the difference that occurs.

You’re showing interest in the person’s statement. If done well, you might even support this person to inspect their statement for truth, and they may just see that all black dogs are not dangerous. All of a sudden, you’ve actually expanded this relationship instead of allowing it to shrink.

Recognise that the skill to be developed here is your ability to be aware of these four tools and your ability to use them with intention even in a situation where you might want to tear the person’s throat out.

Think about how this model may serve you in your relationships at work, at home, and in your social life.

Please don’t mistake this info! Affinity is a valuable tool sometimes, particularly when you want to grow a relationship. Other times, anger is a much more valuable tool.  The point is, there are tools that are available for you to use when you see fit.

If you’ve found this helpful, let me know what it did for you and share it.

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