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Compassion for hope

Jan 23,2023 - Last updated at Jan 23,2023

If we pay attention to daily human interaction, we will find an untapped realm full of needs expressed in spoken words and actions. But it is seldom that we pick up on these hidden messages. Not all are born master communicators of essential human needs. Rather, we fall short of achieving perfection. This imperfection provides a missed opportunity to become more compassionate and empathetic with one another. The less we care about human relational needs, the more likely for conflict and clashes to arise in human relationships. So why pay attention to relational needs? What are they? do they matter?

Relational needs are categorised as the need for respect, appreciation, encouragement, support, security, acceptance, affection, encouragement, approval and attention. How often do we indulge in conversations that heat up quickly because of an unmet need? This can be avoided if we pay attention not only to our voice tone but how to present our needs so that others may understand our intentions instead of using a hostile approach to acquiring our needs. If we desire for our relationships to grow and flourish then serious consideration must be given to relational needs in our daily lives, relationships and inside our organisations.

Imagine if you as a husband, wife, teacher, engineer, doctor, manager, or leader start putting more effort into observing people’s needs, how would that change your world one step at a time? If you and I invest the time and effort to meet each other’s needs correctly we are gradually building rapport and thus creating a more compassionate world. For example, if your highest relational need is respect, someone else’s need could be the need for feeling accepted and when both minds meet whilst knowing how to give each other’s needs in the context of the workplace then this could help groups de-escalate interpersonal and intergroup conflict in organizational settings. Thus, in turn, helps organisations foster cohesive strong teamwork, and ultimately enhance employee productivity and decrease employee turnover. We are all driven by needs and these needs if not met will lead to negative consequences such as stress, depression, and un-healthy self-esteem.

Let us make a difference in our family relationships, marriages, organisations and communities. By recognising human relational needs, we will build a foundational awareness in the context of conflict avoidance and resolution and thus contribute for compassionate communities. A rather brilliant course that has been in the business of changing lives for more than 17 years in Amman is taught by the distinguished Ithraa training centre whose relational needs course has changed the lives of the many people and organisations. I dedicate this article as a thank you to the team behind Ithraa whose mission has been for the betterment of people and society.


The writer is the founder at International Association of Facilitators  —  Jordan Chapter. A social platform dedicated to promoting a culture of participation and collaboration in organisations and communities and across sectors. He contributed this article to The Jordan Times

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