Why do we love? What is it about this emotion that creates the want…the need… the desire… to love and be loved? How is it created and how can we intentionally build and sustain it?

The answers to these questions are varied and different for each of us. We all value and strive for different things within our relationships. Physical, mental, and emotional elements all contribute to the environments in which we are open and ready for the personal connectedness that happens when we feel and experience love.

One thing however, that remains consistent in relationships of continued love, is giving. We give to others and they give to us. It is this environment of mutual giving that creates strong, lasting relationships, and often times it is the lack of mutual giving that creates walls or roadblocks to continued feelings of love.

Each of us has specific wants, needs, and desires that must get fulfilled, and if they are not fulfilled by the important persons in our lives, many people eventually look outside of their relationships to other people or activities for fulfillment in these things.

We must communicate our needs, wants, and desires to the people important to us and we must look for the wants, needs, and desires in them. It is within this discovery process; involving open, honest communication around the things that each of us value that we are able to then fulfill and be fulfilled in these deepest drivers of our lives. This helps to create love and sustain it for the long-term.

Winning Leaders know that the same is true of their relationships with the team members who work for them…and with them. We all have specific and tangible wants, needs, and desires within our working relationships. We need to understand these things at the deepest levels and we need to express our own wants, needs, and desires as well. It is in this expression that our teams know what to expect from us and what we expect from them. These things must be communicated openly, honestly and clearly. This communication must be sought out, encouraged, and listened to by us as leaders if we are to close any Importance Gap.

What are the things that each individual wants, needs, and desires within the scope of their responsibilities and within our relationship with them? We must seek out and discover these things. In doing so, we are then able to give them the things that will satisfy them. Without the knowledge, we will fall short, creating walls and obstacles in the relationship that will continue to prevent the deep internal growth that is needed to move forward toward our mutual goals and expectations.

Just as in personal relationships, if our team members are not fulfilled in their professional wants, needs, and desires, they may tend to look for opportunities to obtain those things elsewhere. This risk, however, can be minimized and is something that is well within our scope of control.

We need to take control of these things that we can control. We need to let go of the things that we cannot. We can control our depth of knowledge and what actions we take with that knowledge. We can discover the needs of others and then fulfill those needs. We can understand the things that motivate and drive others and then supply those things. 

Asking…Listening…Understanding…and then providing the solutions to the wants, needs, and desires of others will help to create strong relationships with the people around us…at work and within our own personal lives.

It is not what we are given by others that make our relationships strong; it is what we give to others. Our act of giving provides the knowledge and feelings that we care and value the people in our lives. It is in these acts of physical, mental and emotional connectedness around the things that others desire which build our relationships for long-term stability and certainty.

We can control these things. We can impact these things. We can improve these things. Be curious…seek out information. Then take action on the information. Your team, your family, your friends will love you for it…and may just give back what you need.

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