I hear people say all the time, “I’m very loyal when I’m in a relationship” but what does that really mean? To some that means they don’t cheat on the person. To others that means they’re committed but they still have their own group of friends which can include any number of guy/girls. To others, it means you go out of your way to let the other person know that they are your one and only.
Loyalty is earned, and it’s a two-way street. Being loyal means giving a relationship the higher priority. If you care about someone, then be there for them. Be true to them. Do what’s in their best interests. Based on your choice, a relationship will grow—or atrophy. The problem is, most people have many loyalties, including loyalty to oneself. And loyalties can sometimes conflict with each other. So it may be hard to choose one over the other.
The importance of a sense of loyalty transcends beyond just a romantic relationship. It is imperative in friendships as well. A sense of loyalty is keeping your friend top of mind when he/she is going through a difficult time. It is defending him/her if someone makes a harsh judgment, even if that someone is you. It is treating him/her the same in all circumstances, regardless of who is around. It is believing in and encouraging him/her, being supportive regardless of circumstances. It is steadily maintaining your relationship, not diminishing or changing it without discussing together. It is undoubtedly being committed to the relationship and being willing to do what it takes to make it work.
Some people enter into relationships and wonder why things didn't work out the way they expected. They create a situation where they expect to get everything and give nothing in return. This seems like a waste of time for both parties involved. The pure emotion of loyalty can only come from strong feelings of respect for one’s self and for others.
When someone is lacking that quality they usually end up in short term relationships, careers, and marriages. This can lead to a very lonely and solitary lifestyle. Perhaps that's why so many people end up living their life alone in our society. The absence of loyalty can also affect the depth of our relationships that we have with each other.
Even though life is full of outward changes and relationships go through many seasons, loyalty transcends change. Loyalty bridges seasons. Loyalty is proven over time, often in stress-filled circumstances. Think of the words “steadfast” and “unwavering” from the definition of loyalty. There’s a sense of permanency and grit involved in these words. Consider: allegiance, duty, devotion and commitment. These words show an emotional direction. There’s nothing nebulous or unsure in these words.
Loyalty isn't something you can force people to give you. It's something that is developed by being the kind of person people want to be loyal to. The more you put your mate and friends first, and are seen as someone strong and reliable, the more the people around you will want to support you and be loyal to you.
Do everything you can to avoid messing people around, lying or being dishonest because karma always comes back around, especially when there are people looking to give it back to you.
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