Relationship Expert Van Moody Offers Dating Advice to Scandal’s Olivia Pope

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Relationship Expert Van Moody Offers Dating Advice to Scandal’s Olivia Pope

By Van Moody

View More: http://eqsphotography.pass.us/pas-high-resolutionThursday’s winter finale of ABC’s hit drama Scandal promises “things will never be the same,” with another addictive episode with a near-lethal dose of murder, passion, intrigue, deceit, betrayal and retaliation. The show has received critical acclaim for its ripped-from-the-headlines storylines, fast-paced dialogue and dizzying interpersonal dynamics. It has earned its “crazytwistygood” hashtag. For 2-1/2 seasons, week after week, show creator Shonda Rhimes unravels tightly-woven tales that have viewers on the edge of their seats and set Twitter feeds ablaze. The cast even joins live chats with viewers on both the East and West coasts. It is a loyal, sacred relationship that provokes critical commentary on the tension between passion and principles, and the ways in which we lobby for, leverage and lose power in our own relationships.

Olivia Pope’s on-again off-again relationship with the very-married President Fitzgerald Grant has triggered debates about the relationship issues that many people face in their personal lives. Despite her keen sense of political strategy and cunning “sixth sense” about her clients’ guilt or innocence, she is the poster child for toxic relationships: clandestine trysts with both President Grant and Jake Ballard; dysfunctional Sunday dinners with her Dad (the head of the secret counterterrorism unit B613); and her cool, calculating exchanges with her Mom (a suspected terrorist), all while leading a team of miscreant Gladiators on their own self-styled crusades for justice.

While we all want to enjoy rewarding connections with others, it becomes essential to evaluate your relationships intelligently: What makes a great relationship? How do you keep a relationship great? What are the warning signs of trouble? While it’s so very easy to blame the other person in a distressed relationship, it’s far more effective to consider and assess the situation objectively and build your Relational IQ.

While I don’t suggest or propose to solve all of her problems, let’s look at the major signs that The People Factor cover mediunsuggest it is time for you to end a toxic relationship. It might be a good time to end a relationship when someone can’t:

  • Accept a change of status in status of your personal or professional life
  • Accept that you’re ready to move on – without them
  • Accept that you do not believe the myth you’ve created about your future

Because there are no neutral relationships – they either move you forward or hold you back – here are some principles to consider – based on my new book The People Factor – that I suggest Olivia Pope, our fictional fixer and so many other women and men tethered to sticky situations should do right now:

  • Be clear about her own life’s journey and what you want in your relationship(s)
  • Don’t get caught up in the blame game
  • Be clear about your goals – personally and professionally
  • Be brutally honest
  • Be open to reconciliation, while not putting yourself or the other person in a holding pattern
  • Recognize that the most valuable people in your life may not be the most visible

Relationships are an art, and most of us lack the skill and mastery to help break—or all together avoid—destructive patterns, disrespect, and deception. Far too many people also lack the ability to have productive connections with others—those that help you achieve goals, sharpen your mind, and generally uplift and enrich your life. Only by cultivating your Relational IQ –knowing which is which and how to turn the tide on those that are negative – can you then take the appropriate action. Not to be taken lightly, these actions and decisions can make the difference between a great, happy life, and one that is riddled with disappointment, failure and regret.

Field expert Van Moody is the author of The People Factor (an upcoming release by publisher Thomas Nelson) and a motivational speaker who advises on matters related to relationships as they pertain to friends, family, significant others and the workplace. He is a “People Scholar” who helps others build their “Relational IQ” to achieve success at home, in their social circles, and in business. He may be reached online at www.vanmoody.com.


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