Truly rich relationships require the trust that one can be honest and vulnerable, without fear of judgment, while searching for connection and understanding, done in a reasonably equal collaboration and with the expectation of forgiveness. If one or both parties feel that the other participant will hide their weirdness, while taking inventory of the other’s admitted flaws so as to move the goalposts in a battle for righteousness and control, then the relationship becomes superficial and uninteresting in my view. It’s purpose becomes defined by ‘how does this conversation fit into me getting what I want?’ and thus gets reduced to power struggles. The perceived importance of winning pushes aside the reality that the world is more nuanced, everyone has a point, everyone has baggage, while frittering away the richness of honest relationships.

Now it occurs to me that business relationships sometimes work best when openness is limited and are often defined by the purpose of getting what one wants. I suppose that having the ability to turn it on and off is the obvious answer, but that is a skill I do not have an overflowing abundance of. This perhaps explains why I have rarely enjoyed or been particularly good at sales. I feel that people that lie on the opposite end of the spectrum as me make far better salesmen and politicians, and often achieve their goals, but is there a price to pay? One must ask oneself, what is the ultimate goal?