For any relationship to grow and flourish, it is essential that both parties treasure regular communication. Otherwise, the chances the relationship will survive are slim. Ongoing communication, on the other hand, provides the opportunity for the relationship to deepen and expand, allowing the people involved to experience great joy and pleasure.

Clutter has become an epidemic in our society. Most people find their homes filled to capacity with their possessions, and they may have even more in storage. As a result, people spend much of their time cleaning, sorting, fixing, and replacing their possessions. They may even wonder where it all came from.

Even the best of friends have disagreements. At times, these disagreements can cause a rift so severe that it threatens to destroy the relationship. If you are experiencing problems in one of your relationships, taking these measures can give your friendship the best chance of survival.

We all get angry from time to time. Sometimes our anger is sparked by legitimate reasons such as a great injustice. Other times, our anger may be a response to more trivial matters. Either way, it is essential that we learn to control our anger and express it in appropriate ways.

We all experience valleys in life—days or seasons when everything seems to be conspiring against us. You might be going about your day when, suddenly, an unexpected phone call, text, or email throws your world into turmoil. Perhaps you receive some devastating news from your doctor or find out your job is being terminated. Maybe you learn of the loss of a loved one. Whatever the circumstances, what do you do when difficult days abound?

Dishonesty may be common but it is not desirable. Even those who are guilty of it recognize that dishonesty is not the best policy. When asked, they would tell you that they would prefer to be known as a person of honesty and integrity.

In Women Under Construction, I discuss the dangers and realities of the storms of life. Storms can fill your life with stress, distractions, disappointments, temptations, and heartache. In order to survive these storms, consider practicing the discipline of silence.

Most of us are willing to extend forgiveness to a person who has offended us, especially if that person has come to us personally and accepted responsibility. It is not always as easy, though, when we are the ones in the wrong. Extending forgiveness can gracious; seeking forgiveness can be humbling.

Perhaps the greatest enemy of any relationship is bitterness. Within a family, the problem of bitterness becomes even more magnified. If it is not addressed appropriately and quickly, it can lead to the utter destruction of the family relationships.

How discerning are you when it comes to truth? Are you careful about what you allow to influence you and your thinking? Or do you embrace anything and everything, regardless of its worth?