At work, they often appraise us based on our results. If we don’t crack that deal, make a sale, or get more clients, our efforts aren’t recognized. When we reach the stage of having a performance appraisal, we aren’t able to sell what we did when it didn’t get the intended result.

In personal relationships, the paradigm is different. Our efforts are more important than the result. If we worked hard to make a good meal for someone and they didn’t like it, the effort is more important; if we tried to be the best version of ourselves in a relationship and it failed, our attempt to have a good relationship counts more than the fact that it didn’t work out.

The shift in mindset needs to be done consciously. If in personal relationships we carry the same mindset as in the workplace, our relationships become more of business deals. People feel unappreciated and anxious, as the expectations of better results burden them.

Being driven and goal-oriented is good, as it helps us achieve our biggest goals. Our relationships, however, are not goals to be achieved. They are the foundation of our lives. The work that went in toward maintaining those relationships needs to be recognized, not what happened subsequently.


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