Relationships Matter

It's the relationships we have in life that make it meaningful.

Of course the relationships that we hold most dear are with loved ones. They inspire you, make you happy, and help you feel safe and loved.

Mother and daughter with their horse and dog

But other kinds of relationships are also meaningful, just in different ways. Let me give you a couple of examples.

Last week a last-minute schedule change with my dental hygienist brought this idea to mind about relationships. I could have kept my scheduled time, but I didn't want a different hygienist. So I took a less convenient time to keep my usual gal. I've realized that many places that I do business with—hair stylist, favorite restaurants, doctors, even a photo lab—they know who I am or show genuine interest in me. Not that they all know my name, but they do recognize me and take an interest in my life. And that matters. They remember little tidbits of my life that I've shared, or they share a friendly smile of recognition—that's all it takes! I frequent these businesses because I feel like I matter.

Recently I had to change my pharmacy because mine was no longer part of my insurance plan. The new pharmacy greeted me with that happy customer service voice that never quite made it to the guy's face—fake fake fake. And when my prescription was ready just ten minutes later, he greeted me with the same canned welcome. He didn't even recognize that he had just spoken with me! Before getting home that day, I stopped in at my old pharmacy to tell them how much I missed them. And you know what? They greeted me with their friendly smiles and asked how I was doing, even though they know that I can't be a regular customer anymore.

What things keep you going back to businesses your frequent? Or even a business you are choosing for the first time—what things attract you to them?

~Barb Kellogg, photographer, tea drinker, and dark chocolate lover