Jose Thomas

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BUILDING RELATIONSHIPS
Friday 06th August, 2010



     

 

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A little over a year ago, I had released a small little book on relationships, which was titled,
“The Red Book of Relationships.” Here, I had compiled some thoughts which were based on the many books that I have read, relationships that I have lost and found, and friendships that I have successfully managed to retain. I had only released a limited amount of these ‘handbooks’ and have personally gifted them to a select few, to whom I thought the book would make a difference.

I wouldn’t be where I am today if it hadn’t been for the numerous relationships I have developed over the years, be it business or friendship. Having abruptly ended my education in the 11th grade, I had to look beyond the four walls of a classroom to further pursue my ‘education’. I wasn’t fortunate enough to attend the big business schools of today and receive the sort of education that many of you reading this might have had. I had to fend for myself when I had joined the business. I had no father figure to turn to for advice and my mother was even more helpless as she had many other children and grand children to tend to.

I often challenged myself beyond my own capabilities. Apart from being a business man, I’m also a pretty good drummer, an avid flyer (as I have taken classes for a private pilot’s license), I carry an ocean-going boat license and I am a reasonable whiz on the subjects of maritime law and corporate finance among other areas. How you ask? How is it that I learned any of this without going to school or college and getting a formal education? Simple. And you guessed it, by Building Relationships!

As I was a young kid growing up, I always tried to interact with people whom I considered to be better and more knowledgeable than I was. I had identified certain Individuals who were considered to be masters in their respective fields, those that were of interest to me. By being and spending time with these individuals, I learned more about their professions through their infinite stories and real life examples. Whenever I got any time to myself, I remember how I used to call one of these individuals and request their time. There were even points when these people got fed up of me because of my constant questions! But I wasn’t fazed and kept going back to them for more.
Today, most of these great individuals are still some of my very close friends. Whenever there is an opportunity to meet, or when there is a moment to say hello, I make sure that it isn’t wasted.
The wealth of knowledge and experience they imparted, are of great treasure.

This is what a relationship is to me. It’s just not about hanging out with friends and watching a movie or going out for dinner…Which is absolutely fine, but a relationship to me is what builds knowledge and enlightens thought. It creates and evolves a person from being a single individual with a narrow perspective into an individual who has a much broader scope of thinking and a more holistic point of view.

If there is one thing I want all of you to not mistake from this message is to view friendship from the perspective of “what can I get from this?” If you do, you are making a huge mistake. This kind of relationship proves very tentative. If you make friendships with the hope of gaining some benefit, you will find that people will have a similar attitude towards you. This kind of friendship leads to insecurity and jealousy. Furthermore, these so-called ‘friends’ will most likely disappear just when you need them most. Don’t look upon friends with the perspective “what can I get out of this?”
True friendship should be based on mutual support and good will, irrespective of any personal gain.

If we are willing and able to listen to others, we will find it much appreciated by our friends. Some people are not aware of how much they dominate the conversation. If you find you are always talking about yourself, consider the advice of the great Greek philosopher, Epictectus:

“Nature gave us one tongue and two ears so we could hear twice as much as we speak.”

And that my dear readers, is the key.

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Responses to
 justin says:
bookmarked!!, I love your blogs!