About a few months ago, I bumped into a poll on Facebook, which funnily enough managed to gather more respondents — more than 1000 — than any ad-agency-paid focus group could.
Aside from reducing conventional corporate practices to redundancy, the poll asked a rather simple question: "What is the most important aspect of a relationship?"
The listed options below were limited. They were: A) Trust; B) Communication; C) Respect.
Now, being as cynical and opinionated as I am, the only thing my smug self was looking for was option "D) Some other view: Elaborate your answer below", and felt disappointed at the complete lack of a fourth option. So I went ahead and voted for 'B' as I felt it was the closest thing to any answer I could hold.
And the subsequent curious thought that struck my head was: What did the thousand-strong poll lean towards?
I found the majority, by a small margin of difference, had voted in favour of 'B'.
So I thought, "Everyone concurs then".
And then scrolling down, I noticed a few comments below from people who had other views on the poll — namely the ones that had voted for the second-best option: 'A'.
And better yet, there, I found a friend who had expressed her opinion below after picking 'A'.
She said, based on her relationship experiences, that "Trust" was the glue that held a relationship together, and that without it, the rest (of the options) would not hold.
I thought a bit and felt it made sense as I generally find her views to be very agreeable, but then it occurred to me: Isn’t communication necessary at first to develop that trust?
Isn’t communication essentially the very foundation to building a relationship -- be it of any nature: romance, friendship or otherwise? Where does ‘Trust’ or ‘Respect’ come in without it?
So, I stuck to my view -- that communication is the ultimate leader in that hierarchy of three.
But then I thought what if option ‘A’ & ‘B’ are equally No.1 on the charts? Since they do seem intertwined and co-dependent on each other to thrive. Maybe that was the right answer we all missed.
Option ‘C’, I felt, becomes a sort-of-a-given when ‘A’ & ‘B’ are met. But whatever the answer is, it most clearly is subjective as the very views and experiences people gain from their relationships.
I am not a big fan of old adages, but they often say to men: ‘Pick a woman by your ears and not your eyes’.
Another classic maxim is: ‘Marry someone you can talk to, because when you grow older that’s all you will want to do’.
Those two sayings essentially reiterate one thing: That communication is the key factor that molds and binds a relationship for most.
When communication falters, it is almost always likely to lead to the collapse of the structure. Maybe that’s why couples that are on the verge of a breakup always stop talking first before heading further down the slippery slope.
On that note, a good friend of mine recently told me that one of the characteristics she seeks in a potential boyfriend/hubby is the ability to make her laugh. She finds that comforting and necessary. While another said, being chatty, she would get bored if she didn’t end up with someone who likes talking as much as her.
They both seem to want the same thing -- a relationship founded on the principles of good communication -- and for good reason.