What things hurt relationships most?


Answers that we received were:

  • dishonesty, and lack of trust
  • lack of respect (for yourself and your partner)
  • lack of trying to understand another
  • lack of intentionality
  • lack of communication
  • unforgiveness
  • apathy, no energy being put into the relationship
  • taking one another for granted
  • assumption
  • self-focus
  • lack of authenticity
  • lack of boundaries

The true component that maintains a healthy relationship is intentionality- of time, energy, appreciation, communication, understanding, etc.

Forgiveness is huge in the world of relationship, and a lot of times the hardest part of a partnership. Even when you have been hurt, the reality is that giving grace and forgiveness to your partner is better for you than anyone else to heal.

It’s good to acknowledge what hurts a relationship, but the most important thing is that this is an opportunity to take those acknowledgments, turn them around and work to create a stronger relationship for you and your spouse!

Show Transcription

[00:22] Welcome to The Ziglar Show, where we inspire your true performance. I’m your host Kevin Miller and today we listen to a two minutes clip from Zig Ziglar on the power of good relationships. He states that Relationships more important than anything else for your health, and of course vital for your success in life overall. From the clip I asked this question on Facebook, “In your experience, what things hurt relationships most? We received close to 80 comments, and this is just at my personal page at agentkmiller, not the Ziglar Facebook page of 4.5 million. I categorized the responses into 11 headlines and Michelle Prince and I talked through them counting down to the number one thing people cited most. It was incredibly revealing.  We start with our message from…Zig Ziglar after recognizing a great sponsor of today’s show!

[04:52] It’s from that message I asked the question, “In your experience, what things hurt relationships most?” Here are the 11 categories in sequence up to…the number one most cited thing people feel hurts relationships. Here we go!

[05:10] OK Michelle we are starting with, I don’t want to say last, don’t think anything’s any of these or least some of the ones we’re going to read here first that got the least amount of responses or that people related to I think are some of the most important, so it’s almost a pulse on just what was first in line for folks which isn’t interesting. So we’ll go down through here, so what I’ve got here at Number eleven I guess is understanding.

[05:35] 1. Understanding:

Wendy: the failure to take time to understand someone else’s perspective on an issue.

Judy: the inability to listen to each other without acceptance that they can have the other person can have their opinions and still have value.

[06:08] On that, you know it’s so true I mean how could you have a relationship if it’s not built on understanding. You have to be willing understand just because somebody is different doesn’t mean that it’s bad. I had a sixth grade teacher he says a different strokes for different folks and as long as you go into a relationship knowing they may not agree with every thing but to try to understand their perspective I love it when he brings that up and you’re right that’s definitely not the last of all the things that are important but if you know maybe there’s some other things more important but I think that’s huge, because you can’t have a friendship or relationship if you’re not willing to understand that they’re different and that’s ok.

[07:22] 2. Anger:

Heidi Herring: One of the mates storming out, instead of sitting to talk it over with the other one, to reason and make things right again.

Douglas Hollon: Speaking words before thinking. Letting anger take control of me.

[07:49] Sometimes we all get triggered in different ways to it and sometimes we can’t understand why or spouse is angry when it’s they did a going back to that number of eleven the understanding, they are sometimes angry because they’re not understanding our perspective or our point of view or maybe the opposite, were angry because we just don’t get where they’re coming from. I think anger destroys anger is very very hard to come back from if you’re angry and if you handle it orally you know it’s hard to forgive but hopefully you know we all know that in our relationships too, even if we feel angry to not treat somebody with. With those strong emotions.

[08:32] 3. Bad Self Esteem:

Dan Brandenburg: Low self-esteem, it’s cliché, but if you can’t love yourself, you can’t really love someone else.

Donna: Also low self esteem. If you don’t love you, you have a hard time believing anyone else loves you.

[09:09] You know what I think of the low self-esteem I think of you know when you don’t feel good about yourself you’re saying to that point you don’t believe that somebody else is going to love you, but I think it also impacts the way you treat them because if you don’t feel good about yourself you may not trust your spouse, you may not trust or believe what they always say because you’re you’re always in subconsciously thinking well they’re you know they’re never going to love me or that they’ve got an ulterior motive or something like that. I can totally see this. Hopefully that’s part of when you’re courting and dating and before you get married hopefully those things get resolved because if you bring that into a marriage like that is going to that’s going to be really tough to overcome.

[10:39] 4. Taking for Granted:

Dave:  Another biggie I see is taking one another for granted. Guys can be especially bad at this.

Gerry Baird: Neglect – failing to continually invest in the relationship. Like Chinese water torture, it slowly erodes the connection between even the best couples.

Andee Rudloff: Apathy and/or assumption.

Daniel Goodwin: apathy, stagnation.

[11:16] You know Zig would always say if you treat your wife the way you treated your her when she was your girlfriend you know I’m paraphrasing how he says that but basically we wouldn’t have any marital issues right, but there is something that shifts and you know speaking from my own marriage I mean I can remember him when we were dating to host so many little things just to make sure Chris knew how much I loved him and knew that I was thinking about him, leaving little notes he’d leave me notes on my windshield or you know or I’d leave him a little something at his doorstep and and you’re right you sort of stop doing that sometimes and you take for granted because you know the commitment is already there and you know they’re going to be there for you because you know you took vows. But we need to be that way because we need it continuously remind them how much we appreciate.

[12:40] 5. Lack of Intentionality:

Wesley Wiley: The difference between good and great relationships is the level of intentionality.

Donna Roberts: Taking time to invest in the relationship even when your tired at times and communication.

[13:02] Well the energy go hand in hand and you know the whole like scheduling date nights I think that’s probably one of the easiest ways to really be intentional, because through that, that’s when you’re going to communicate when you’re going to you know have time to reconnect. And one thing I was going to say about the taking for granted and special with kids and just anyone listening to this that maybe you know similar to my life, I think there are seasons because there are seasons when you’re kind of in a transaction especially when the kids are little like OK you take such and such as baseball and I’ll take this ones or this board and we’ll meet up at dinner and you know and you can’t really help that but that’s where that intentionality comes in. Despite our crazy lives despite how sometimes we’re passing ships and that night that we’re still going to make an effort to to be there for one another to go to a date night to you know to just sit and talk or you know try to figure out what each other’s love languages and and really be intentional about that I think is so important.

[16:08] 6. Self Focus:

Jennifer Meisel: Selfishness

Greg Vance: Being solely focused on self.

Kristin Hubenthal Jackson: Self-protection

Jason Vandehey: Self-centeredness

[16:41] It is but when it becomes that when a relationship you know if you’re only focused on yourself and you’re so selfish and somebody is losing there and over time that spouse is going to feel like you know you’re taking care you, I’m taking here you, who’s taking care of me you know. And you know it’s funny with writing books I hear a lot of stories and there’s different words and I’m not suggesting this is for but you know narcissism or people that are just so focused on themselves you know regardless of their family or their spouse and those that’s deadly I mean that is a that’s crushing to a relationship. Relationships are built on giving back and forth and so the selfishness there’s just no room for it.

[17:48] 7. Unforgiveness:

Mark Burch: Unforgiveness, lack of grace, lack of mercy.

Phillip: Un forgiveness

Kingsley Grant: I think one of the killers of relationships is resentment. This builds up over time and either explode or leak.

Richard: Unwillingness to ask for forgiveness.

[18:20] Well the thing with forgiveness is you know you’re carrying around so much more than the person who hurt you. You’re hurting yourself more by it by not forgiving them but it’s hard especially in married relationship that there’s been a wound or something that happened, that is really hard to forgive but it’s really tough but I just always try to think of forgiveness as it’s better for you than even as for the person you’re trying to forgive.

[19:39] 8. Being Real:

Archie Winningham: Not being real with the other person.

Audrey Steele: Not being able to say NO when needed. Unwilligness to respect the other person’s NO. Both of these lead to resentment.

Christopher Lochhead: When you meet someone you know, spouse or partner, pay special attention to any change in their behaviour. Because people who can’t / won’t be themselves in-front of their partner are in a lot of trouble in life.

Holly Rigsby: Afraid to speak up – speak your mind.

Gerald Wiebe: I agree with Holly, and let me add, being afraid of the result of speaking your mind. So maybe that has something to do with trust, or lack of it.

Leticia Salazar: Lack of boundaries.

[21:02] I’m the same way and you know and it’s interesting because I think sometimes spouses may not being our be real because maybe it’s that fine line between showing respect and you know and say exactly what you want. And it’s that balance right, you have to have your boundaries and I had a situation in life. So when I decided to kind of follow my passion and go into writing and speaking and doing all that, there one of my concerns and I’m very open and vulnerable not much and this one of my concerns was what is my has been going to think of all this like you know is he going to be supportive of this. There’s a little bit of fear of you know showing this is my authentic self this is who I really want to you know I want this part of me to come out and it was amazing because I live here and I did it that way and what happened out of that was a better relationship with him, better relationship my kids, because I think our spouses they want us to be happy.

[22:50] 9. Respect:

Dan Miller: Lack of respect for the person or for their ideas.

Jody Head: I believe trust and respect are both paramount. Without both of them a healthy relationship cannot exist.

David Merckel: No respect for each other. Short and sweet

Libby Webb: Disrespect, lack of communication, not having each other’s back

Reginald Holloway: Not being on the same page. Disagreement. Broken unity.

Joanne Miller: Lack of respect no matter how long the relationship. Treating others, the way you want to be treated.

Bill McConnell: Contempt.

[24:13] It’s interesting because respect is so close to the top but yes the very first one was understanding and I think the two go hand in hand. I think that there’s not respect for one another, it’s not necessarily because you’re trying to be difficult or you want to be mean to your spouse it’s just that you probably don’t understand where they’re coming from. So you don’t respect what they’re saying no respect you know their dreams or goals or wishes. And that’s it you know it’s a fine line between like you said present preservation of believe in what you believe in doing what’s right for you and then also respecting your spouse and doing what’s right for the for the marriage and I think it goes back to that case in an understanding.

[26:12] 10. Communication:

[26:35] Skip Prichard: Lack of true communication, listening, and identifying with the other person; Not doing what you say you will do; not living shared values; breaking trust.

[27:14] I remember when we were doing premarital counselling, there are church that was something that it was required but we really enjoyed it and I remember somebody saying that don’t be afraid of society. Because when you stop fighting it’s usually when there’s trouble, because there’s a fight is really just communicating, it’s really just communicating each other’s wishes, thoughts, concerns, all you know which are cut least communicating. When that stops, that’s when things get scary because you’re no longer saying anything to either stand up for yourself or helping them to understand. And that’s when things start to fall away.

[28:27] 11. Dishonesty:

Joel Davidson: Dishonesty

Bobby Hopper: Dishonesty

Michael Norton: Broken trust

Shawna Yarbrough: Deception / Dishonesty = the the most damaging.

Erin Casey: Lying. Dishonesty breaks trust.

Laura Reyburn: Repeated deception; remorse without repentance.

Kriste Elmore: Dishonesty, poor communication, any relationship built on a poor foundation.

Renee Bosworth Schultz: Lack of honesty and respect.

Tyson E Franklin: Breaking promises and reliability, which probably relates to trust.

Mary Smith: dishonesty

Janna Finkbeiner Anderson: Keeping secrets

Pamela Calabrese: Lies

[29:16] And I wonder if that’s why I want to that’s maybe that’s the main, that’s the hardest one to come back from well it’s for sure the hurt and I think that ties into the the forgiveness the unforgiveness. Yeah that’s a tough one and that’s not just in marriage, I mean that’s in all relationships. Once you went, once you think you can’t trust someone it just causes a wedge.

[31:39] Well friends, I’m betting many of you had a bit of a gut check like I did on some of these issues. So many thanks to all who submitted comments, it gives us such great content to discuss here. You’re welcome to join in at my Facebook page, agentkmiller. Coming up next in show 543 we have a treat for you.

[32:05] Chances are you’ve seen the blockbuster show, America’s Got Talent. And if so, you may have seen Mandy Harvey, the incredible singer who is…deaf. Talk about an overcoming, inspiring story! She was in college pursuing a vocal music education degree, then lost her hearing. She left the program to pursue other career options, but later…returned to music. There is a great story on what led to that. Fast forward to America’s Got Talent where she reached the finals and was Simon Cowell’s Golden Buzzer Winner, and in addition, CNN’s Great Big Story captured over 10 million hits on social media, Burt’s Bees signed her up for their “Remarkable Women” campaign, NBC Nightly News profiled her, and she has started performing at the world’s most prestigious clubs, concert stages and festivals.

[32:56] Now in addition to her recording career, live performances, and inspirational speaking, Mandy has just released her first book title; Sensing The Rhythm, Finding My Voice In a World Without Sound and it’s a message of helping others to realize their dreams and pursue their hopes. As an Ambassador for No Barriers USA, she travels the country to heighten awareness, break down blocks, challenge stereotypes, and lead the charge toward a brighter future for all. We talk about her, her life and her message. Till then thank you as always as we walk together inspiring our true performance.