For many years now, I have endeavored to embrace and live by the following principle: “People will either increase you or decrease you.” This principle is based upon the fact that in the course of human relations and interactions, every person brings both positives and negatives into relationships. This is the case whether it’s marriages, families, friends, work peers, or congregations. No one can make a claim that they are perfect in their character, attitude, behavior, or interaction with others. However, there are some people (though humanely flawed like all of us are) who have managed to be pleasant, kind, and considerate when dealing with others in any environment. These types of people are the perfume that help to refresh and sanitize an environment that has been polluted by bad attitudes, competition, bitterness, and pettiness. Let me list a few of the attributes and practices that a person must possess, or more appropriately put, be possessed by in order to be a bona fide member of the group I am talking about here.
Those Who Have a Smile and Positive Attitude
Whether you believe it or not, when you wear a smile on your face, it sends a positive signal to others that are in your presence. It says something good about you that others can relate to and glean from. Never mind what you might be experiencing on the inside or in your circumstances, a continual smile on your face can be therapeutic to both you and those who are around you. The Good Book confirms this to be true and that a merry heart does good like medicine (Proverbs 17:22). People with a positive attitude are pleasant people who are infectious. They help to impact others in a positive and constructive way. They are good people to be around in any setting or environment where people interact.
Those Who Encourage Others with
Words of Affirmation
Encouragers who speak words of affirmation or comfort to others are definitely the type of people that any sensible and sane person would prefer to be around. Through their words of encouragement, people who are experiencing various types of troubles are affirmed and inspired to look up. Often, unbeknown to these encouragers, the words that they speak to others are both timely and curative, just what the doctor ordered to relieve the pain and misery to help take them through the day. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if each of us would strive to be encouragers who others would love having in their presence anytime?
Those Who Practice Neutrality Without
Believe it or not, it is difficult and very challenging to arrive at a place of genuine neutrality where you can remain impartial. This is especially the case when you are endeavoring to deal with grievances and disputes that involve someone who is a close relative or friend. Then, we must be truly careful to avoid taking the side of the first person who approaches us with a complaint about someone until we hear the other side. This will better enable us to weigh things out and give the proper advice or instructions to both parties involved.
Those who can serve as arbitrators without bias or favoritism are good people to hang out with. They will tell you the truth in love, even if it hurts.
Those Who are Affable
Arguably, the most desired people who others would prefer to be around or interact with are those who are affable. Affable people are very easy to talk to. They are courteous and pleasant in receiving and responding to the conversations and approaches of others. It is very important that when selecting people to be receptionists, ushers, greeters, waiters, or any position that people initially meet when entering an establishment, they choose people who are affable. Like some of you, I have had some bad experiences at certain business establishments, due to discourteous and unfriendly treatment by receptionists, greeters, and such like. I once would ignore such treatment and dismiss it as perhaps they are just having a bad day. However, I have come to believe that my refusal to confront them in an affable way is just adding to their problems. So, now when I encounter someone who is not acting right in their position, I will kindly let them know it.
Those Who Are
As a pastor who has the responsibility (from a biblical perspective) to help to organize and lead a team of believers in the execution of Kingdom business, oftentimes the greatest need is not for gifted or talented people. Instead, the greatest need is for faithful people who know the value of team work. This need is applicable in every facet of our culture. There is a need in the military, marketplace, sports, and every enterprise or endeavor that requires two or more people to work in concert to get a job done to have those who know the value of team work. Any coach, supervisor, sergeant, or person who is over a group of people know that team players are pleasant people whose presence blesses others and serve as assets in getting the job done.