It would be a strange world, if not lovely, if everyone just got on, wouldn't it?
I guess, life wouldn't be life though, with people getting on all the time. But, the big conundrum is why is it so easy for us to connect with some people and not others?
It would not just make our world simpler to get on, theorist Maslow who created The Hierarchy of Needs model, proposed that a requirement to survive is to belong; have friendship and be loved. Therefore, connecting is imperative.
Connecting to others has already been discussed in The Rules For Action. You can check the blog entry here. I also discussed Maslow in my blog entry on the psychology of customer service.
People feel close to individuals they connect with, meaning some relationships are based on similarity. This means some friendships are difficult to understand just because the interest is not there.
The problem with this statement is we can choose our friends, and this is probably based on connections we are interested in, and in some instances these companions are closer than family who we need to be close to but may struggle to be because there is no choice to be connected with. Yet, with family there may be no connection there but there is an expectation to get on. This makes understanding difficult.
I know this is a complicated one, particularly as understanding can be tough even with close friendships. It is only to easy to think I get on with everyone I know, so I am not being difficult, it must be the other person. There could be other reasons for a lack of understanding, and Social Psychology has tried to explain this.
The Attatchment Style Framework implies that the way we were bought up by our parents indicates who are relationships will be with and how others are interpreted.
For instance, parenting styles whereby imtimacy or closeness was encouraged will lead to individuals to seek relationships that are protective and could require reassurance. In contrast, those relationships where by parents let-down their offspring could lead to fears of being abandoned and this could be mirrored in friendships whereby individuals expect being let down.
As these positions are polar opposites, this makes understanding another or others difficult. One example of this is that individuals who seek protective relationships may consciously be more confident to express their feelings or views; whereas those individuals less comfortable will unconsciously put barriers up and engage in conflict with others.
Moreover, one sibling may seek out close friendships whereas another might not and these could be because parenting styles may not be the same.
Researchers Ricco and Sierra from California State University San Bernardino propose that individuals who actively chose to avoid close relationships will be less able to avoid conflict as they are distrustful of others. This effects how other people perceptions of them as they can appear uncaring when they are just struggling to find the right social position. For instance, those who do not want close relationships struggle to gauge how others feel and want to dominate in relationships using arguments as a form of control.
These details are noteworthy as they explain why it is difficult sometimes to understand others. As individuals we should be aware of what type of attachment we fall into, show understanding in how another responds and when there is a failure to understand, be patient. You should then Reconnect.
You may find my free resource 'Improving a Relationship' may help.
If you want to discuss this, email me at email@example.com or call me on 07544 899678.