I just finished my summer course at Pitt on Human Relations. This class, which I have been teaching for the past 15 years, is focused on the importance of human relationships and how we can work to build better connections with people in our lives.
For this class I use Stephen Covey's book, "The 8th Habit," which explores relationships from a number of angles. One of the perspectives that Covey writes about is the notion of "Deposits and Withdrawals" with the connections we have. He shares that relationships are strengthened by deposits, and weakened by withdrawals, much like our bank accounts. This perspective sharpens the understanding of relationships.
Think about it....when you do something extra, or follow-up on a promise you are depositing in to that friendship. Conversely, when you break a promise, or put out demands, you are actually making a withdrawal in that connection. When the withdrawals supersede the deposits, the relationship is put at risk.
So where are you on this issue. Are you assuring that your relationships have more deposits than withdrawals. If not, you have some important social capital work to do!