Time and time again, we attempt to crack the code in dealing with our relationships – not only romantically, but also with friends and family.
It takes a lot of effort to maintain and work our connections. Oftentimes, we exhaust our time and energy to save or improve these relationships in our lives. When in fact, we can learn and start small habits today to strengthen our relationships, whether it be with your S.O., family, or friends.
The quality of our relationships affects many aspects of our lives such as our energy, health, and lifestyle. Light a sage to help make way for clarity and practice mindfulness as we bring you some worthwhile ways to spend your energy on improving relationships with your loved ones this year.
This may look like a rough and negative start. Still, an essential ingredient to healthy relationships that is often overlooked is boundaries. Having a safe space where your no's are respected is important.
Many of us find it difficult to say no in our relationships, which may be due to a variety of reasons, with the root being the avid desire to please others or the people we cherish. We feel scared to say no because of how these people may react or think of us. We fear that they may become angry, think less of us, or disconnect from us.
We sometimes think that saying yes makes us a better friend, someone they can count on. But all this creates are blurred lines and obscure boundaries that may cause us to lose all our energy or snap one day. Maybe we think that saying yes all the time gives the people around us and ourselves validation of the strength of our relationship. Perhaps it provides us with an affirmation of our self-worth.
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Indeed, our support, kindness, and attentiveness to the needs and wants of our loved ones are commendable. But this should not be at the expense of our energy and sense of self. Having better relationships entails choosing people in our life who know and respect our boundaries. As they learn and appreciate our boundaries, we also understand and respect theirs.
Be there for their losses, but celebrate their wins more
Most of us know how to be there for our loved ones when they're going through difficult times. But what is often overlooked that may actually be a better telling of a healthy relationship is how they take your wins. It is much easier to empathize with other people when they are going through suffering or dark times in their life.
We are used to being there for our loved ones in need. But what is a genuinely commendable show of love and friendship is how we celebrate their accomplishments, their wins. This is also a great way to bring more positive energy in our life as celebrating not only your accomplishments but also the wins of others add to the happiness we experience in our daily lives.
It goes without saying that we should feel comfortable discussing any issues in our relationships, from stress to health or financial concerns. But we should also feel comfortable discussing our breakthroughs, accomplishments, and achievements without fear of our loved ones thinking or feeling that we're showing off.
It's truly a gift to find and be with people you can be happy with, without feeling like you're bragging, people who are happy or happier for your wins. Envy destroys a lot of friendships and reveals insincere ones. Jealousy and insecurities must be dealt with immediately so they will not disrupt the relationship. We must realize that we aren't competing with each other. Instead, we are here to see and make each other grow. After all, our only competition is our past selves.
Words of Affirmation
We all need encouragement from time to time, especially from our loved ones as many things in life keep us from our goals and dreams. We must encourage our loved ones to do what they want to do. Be there to cheer them on as long as it makes them happy. We must be the friend that we want others to be for us. Someone sincere, kind, fair, and supportive.
Being a good friend or partner increases our chances of having better relationships. In addition, having people in our lives who appreciate us and the things we do help us conserve our energies. The same way as having people who always point out our mistakes and shortcomings may drain our energy, and keep us from living to our full potential.
Proper communication is the key
Sometimes because of how familiar we may think we are with our loved ones, we like to believe that we can read their minds to some extent. But the general truth is we will never know what our loved ones or anyone else is thinking, or what their intentions are. Guessing and giving negative connotations to their actions may possibly strain our relationships.
Instead, we should ask the right questions, which may pivot us into a better relationship with them. Assuming things about what the other person is thinking may possibly create conflict. At the same time, mindful and loving questions offer solutions and strengthen relationships.
Listening carefully and responding mindfully are ingredients for good communication. We must pay close attention to what our loved ones are saying. Make them know and feel that you are attentive to their concerns. Then, ask additional questions.
Although words can be helpful. Body language is also a vital indicator that you are paying attention. On the other hand, Responding mindfully entails thinking before speaking, especially when in dispute with a loved one. Taking a moment to think about what we're going to say before saying it can save us from hurt feelings and broken hearts.
Conserve your energy for better relationships
No matter how hard we try to make some relationships work, there are times when it still seems fruitless, and it does not mean that we did not try hard enough. Maybe the call is coming from the other side.
In the book "Being Comfortable Without Effort'' by Soohyun Kim. One of the most memorable passages was, "A relationship sustained by one-sided effort will soon collapse, mutual efforts create strong relationships."
Once you know you've given your best in a relationship, but your energy is not reciprocated. Maybe it's time to withdraw that energy and divert it to relationships that do matter more and make you grow. Perhaps it's time to focus on one of the most important relationships in your life, your relationship with yourself.
As a guide and reminder for yourself, our energy bracelets can help you to enhance your energies and be mindful of directing them effectively.
Remember that you deserve the same love and energy that you give. Not all relationships may work, sometimes stepping back means reminding ourselves that we also need to give ourselves more time, energy, and love. Sometimes it is necessary, so we can calm down and evaluate what is truly important for you. And sometimes, we may find that what is important maybe, letting go.
We all have limited energy, time, and resources, and we should use them meaningfully. Giving all our energy without it being reciprocated with even the bare minimum will sooner or later cause us to feel burnt out. Step back, let go, direct your time and energy to the people and aspects of our lives that are worthwhile. And that's when we truly begin to grow and improve our relationships.
Our relationships are genuinely significant as it affects our energy, happiness, health, and many more aspects of our life. Thus improving our relationships can also show improvements in these many aspects. It is crucial to invest and focus our energy on fostering healthy relationships and living a positive life.
Surrounding ourselves with amazing people who bring us happiness and good vibes strengthens our will to live, be happy, and reach our aspirations. Of course, relationships grow and change as people do overtime. We must learn to live with this fact and continue living. Walking with those who stay beside us and giving space to those who somehow fell behind. We will never know. Maybe we may meet again in another chapter of our lives and form a lasting and healthy relationship because now, we are ready.