Despite how important relationships are, we often take them for granted or are at a loss for practical ways to really nurture them effectively. This is especially applicable to our personal (even more specifically, our romantic) long-term relationships. Covid has added an extra layer of stress to many relationships, so it is more important than ever that we take Key Steps to nurture our relationships. To do this, we are using the word RELATIONSHIPS as an acronym and have already covered RE’ = be REAL and add EXCITEMENT. This week we will take the next steps to ‘be the difference that makes the difference.’

  1. L = LAUGH together. Laughter really is the best medicine. Take time to play and have fun together. Dare to be silly. Research shows that not only will it strengthen your relationship, but it will improve your health. There are several health benefits of laughter, such as lower blood pressure, reduced stress hormone levels, improved cardiac health, boosted T-cells, endorphin release and an overall sense of wellbeing. Even just smiling regularly can increase your lifespan. We are fortunate to have Mila who brings daily laughter and fun. In the absence of a toddler, what can you do to increase your fun quota and laugh together? Many of us have a long weekend coming up so it could present a good opportunity to factor in fun and even lead to special opportunities to acknowledge and…


  1. A = APPRECIATE the special people in your life. Never take your partner, colleagues and loved ones in general for granted. It can be as simple as saying, “thank you!” on a regular basis. Find special ways to show people that you appreciate them. It can be a handwritten card, a note in a lunch box, a thoughtful gesture (maybe unexpected flowers, offering to take the kids to school or making a romantic dinner), a meaningful touch or embrace.ALWAYS remember special occasions and make a point of spending quality time together. It could also be helpful to find out your partner’s love language and appreciate them the way they most enjoy being appreciated. Some people prefer words of affirmation (like me – I’d rather have a handwritten note over any gift), while others feel loved by acts of service, quality time, gifts and/or physical touch. You can determine your love language here. Remember that it is ideal to show appreciation in multiple ways as many of us have multiple love languages and genuine unexpected appreciation goes a long way to nurturing relationships.

Now ask yourself, “What are you going to do this week to bring about opportunities to laugh together and appreciate each other?” It’s often the little things that make the biggest difference. Remember that this is true of both your relationships at home and at work. Take just one or two small Key Steps and you can…

‘be the difference that makes the difference’?

Thank you for allowing us to support you to increase your skills, gain practical tools, unleash your potential, and work and live differently. It is an honour to be part of your journey.
We work extensively with individuals and teams to support them to have crucial conversations, manage conflict and build relationships to create collaborative, high-performing teams. Here are some ways we do this:

  1. Key Steps to Create Collaborative High-Performing Teams.
    When delivered to intact teams, this workshop has a very powerful teambuilding effect. Teams have a safe space to learn together and an opportunity to work through obstacles and create “one team” in the process.The question is, “How do we create these teams?” The short answer, “You build them one step at a time.” In essence, allow us to work with you and support you to take Key Steps and build “one-team” that can really… ‘be the difference that makes the difference.’
  2. Key Steps to Assertive Communication and Conflict Management.
    The quality of our relationships is directly linked to our ability to communicate effectively, assert ourselves appropriately, solve problems and manage conflict. This interactive 2-day programme is the first step to understanding and applying the principles of emotionally intelligent communication and enhancing both your verbal and non-verbal acuity for maximum impact. You will learn how to assert yourself and communicate appropriately in business and personal situations. Combined with practical strategies to manage conflict, build relationships and influence with integrity, you will walk away empowered with Key Steps to…‘be the difference that makes the difference.’
  3. Key Steps to Performance Management and Coaching.
    Sadly, research shows that work teams fail 60% of the time. Why? Because of silo mentality, ineffective leadership and misaligned priorities. To succeed through ever changing and challenging times, new skills are required and high-performing collaborative teams are essential. More than ever before, teams need to be working towards a common vision, supported with aligned goals and emotionally intelligent behaviours. 
  4. Key Steps Executive Coaching with NLP.
    Sharon adopts a unique coaching approach that includes Neuro-Linguistic Programming techniques to accelerate professional and personal development. Again, take a look at our programme outline to hear directly from our clients about their experience.

Contact Collette ( to discuss how we can support you. It would be a pleasure to work with you!

‘be the difference that makes the difference.
  1. Namaste,


NOTE: The information in my blog may be freely shared and re-used in any online or offline publication, provided it is accompanied by the following credit line: This was written by Dr Sharon King Gabrielides, and originally appeared in her free weekly  ‘Key Steps Food for Thought Blog’ available on the Key Steps website.

Dr Sharon King Gabrielides

About Dr Sharon King Gabrielides

Sharon is a dynamic facilitator, speaker and executive coach with over 25 years’ experience in leadership development and organisational transformation. Her PhD thesis contributed a framework for holistic and sustainable leadership development that was published by Rutgers University in the USA. She is faculty of numerous business schools and highly sought-after by leading corporates because she works hand-in-hand with them to create sustainable results and long-term success. In 2020, Sharon was inducted into the Educators Hall of Fame, which is a lifetime achievement award, recognising excellence and her contribution to the field.

Sharon is one of only three women in South Africa to have achieved the title of Certified Speaking Professional (CSP) – the Oscar of the speaking industry. She is also a COMENSA Master Practitioner (CMP), a qualified Modern Classroom Certified Trainer (MCCT™) and an accredited Global Virtual Speaker. Sharon is also a registered Education, Training and Development Practitioner (ETDP), holds an Honours degree in Psychology and practices as an NLP master practitioner.

Most important to Sharon is that she has become known for her genuinely caring manner, practical and transformational approach, and for providing valuable tools and that allow people to take Key Steps to really… ‘be the difference that makes the difference.’