Article by Paula Quinsee

Paula Quinsee is a Relationship Expert speaker and author of the self-help guide Embracing Conflict. Paula works with individuals and organisations to cultivate healthy relationships in both personal and professional arenas by focusing on personal growth and development. Go to for more info.

Our whole life revolves around relationships. In fact we were born to be in relationships and to have a connection with others. We are social animals by nature and need to be social to survive.  It is society that determines our human personality.

We start off our life in a relationship. It is because of our parents relationship that we are conceived of.

We then have a relationship with our mother in the womb through the umbilical cord. Not only do we get important nutrients and other such elements for our development. We also start to feel emotion in the womb – especially pain.

We are then born into a relationship. The relationships with our parents, our siblings (if we are not the firstborn), and with our extended family.

As we grow and evolve through life, our friendships throughout school and university play a significant relationship role in our life.

When we move into the working world, we have relationships with our colleagues and peers. As well as our customers and suppliers. Both internally across departments and externally.

Lastly, our spiritual relationship is what feeds our soul and keeps us grounded. For some this may be religion. For others it may be activities such as meditation, sport, hobbies, getting away to the bush or sea or just some quiet “me” time.

Relationships drift and wane as individuals pursue their own interests and goals in life. Either the connection remains or it reaches the point at which it is no longer strong enough to sustain the relationship. Making it time to move on.

This can happen in a number of ways. Friendships end and people move, leave relationships and/or get divorced. Customers stop using your products/services or suppliers stop delivering or their contracts are not renewed.

The 6 key relationships throughout our lifetime therefore are:

  • Self
  • Partner
  • Family
  • Friends
  • Peers/Colleagues
  • Spiritual

The relationship with “Self” is the most important of all. This forms the foundation of our relationships with others. How we think about ourselves, how we talk to ourselves (i.e. self talk) and how we treat ourselves will be an exact reflection of how we allow others to treat us.

If we don’t think highly of ourselves (i.e. self-worth, self-value, self-confidence, self-love), we will allow others to treat us this way too. We will not be able to implement personal boundaries, stand up for ourselves or believe in ourselves and our abilities.

Our relationship with “Self” is influenced by our upbringing and the environment we are exposed to in our childhood. This is where we form the foundation of our emotional intelligence and relational abilities. It’s where we learn to communicate, express emotion, listen, manage conflict, be vulnerable and more. This will ultimately influence your relationships with others and determine your emotional coping mechanisms.

In any situation there is one common denominator and that is You.

Situations don’t just happen to us. We co-create them by what we are bringing into the space. If you are experiencing conflict and drama in your relationships, perhaps it’s time to look within. What you are bringing into the relational space and how this is serving you.

Paula is the author of Embracing Conflict – a self-help guide filled with practical tools and insights. Get your copy from Amazon or Smashwords. Attend one of her regular monthly workshops for great empowering tools. Go to for  more information

What do you think?

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

No Comments Yet.