F R I E N D S
A C Q U A I N T A N C E S
“So that’s what the Safety Pyramid looks like.”
It’s so simple yet complex.
Easy to understand yet profound in its implications.
It is a way to stay safe and be safe to others.
You take time to get to know others before fully trusting yourselves to them and letting them entrust themselves to you.
Remember the rules?
- All people (and I mean ALL) enter at the bottom of the pyramid as “acquaintances.”
- It takes at least 1.5 – 2 years for a person to “earn” their way up to the safe person category.
- Only marry or become closest friends with a safe person. When we marry or become closest friends with only safe people, we have the highest chances of success in that relationship. And that’s what we all want.
Desperate people do desperate things. They make fast decisions, act impulsively and believe fantasies. Someone said, “If it’s too good to be true, then it’s probably not true.” Many people who call New Life Radio are desperate. Half of them are desperate to find a mate and get married. The other half is desperately seeking a way out of a marriage that they detest.
Desperate people are gullible people. Slow down, trust in God’s time table and use some healthy relationship savvy to assess people. Say no to people who are second best, and be willing to wait for what is best. Character assessment takes time. Character is proven and exposed when a person faces stress, pressure, pain, disappointment, frustration, failure, successes and triumphs.
Gullibility also renders us susceptible to being deceived and taken advantage of. Never trust a person just because of their position or stature. In the last thirty seven years, I’ve seen pastors, teachers, counselors, coaches, therapists, psychologists, Craig’s list people, E-Harmony dates, lawyers, law enforcement, doctors, and Christian school leaders all fail miserably and do unimaginable thing. Yes, the safety pyramid needs to be applied to all people.
EXPECTATIONS TOO HIGH:
Safe people will fail you because they are sinners too. Safe people are not perfect. Don’t expect them to be. You should expect however that a safe person will be one who has good resolution skills, has restoration as a goal and has healthy dialogue as their main goal. A healthy person will always have honor, honesty, truth and grace very high on their hierarchy of values. They will easily tolerate confrontation and be able to process difficult thoughts and emotions with you. Along with love and bonding, a healthy fear and respect will naturally develop in the relationship which will breed deep levels of security.
FAILURE TO RISK:
You have to take risks in order to meet safe people. Kay and I strive to meet new people every month. Two weeks ago we attended a 5 hour salsa class with a bunch of people whom we had never met. I had to risk being seen and exposed for what I am…a poor white guy who can’t move his hips. If you never circulate or get into new groups of people, or explore new interests your social life will remain stagnant. As Dr. Henry Cloud says, “If you don’t venture out, the only people who will come to you are Jehovah Witnesses and the Fed-Ex driver.
How about you? Your ability to risk being known for who you really are will allow you engage in the process of discovering and cultivating safe relationships. It’s kind of like a roller coaster, it’s kind of scary yet it’s worth it in the long run. To not risk is to hold yourself in a prison of fear that will keep you stuck in relationships that go nowhere.
Take risk yet be safe. Use the rules of the pyramid.
Thanks for listening!
Thanks and blessings,
Milan & Kay
Next week:A new topic by Kay.