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Life is about relationships. Not only the relationships you have with your partner, family, friends, and co-workers. It’s also the relationship that you have with nature, your own body, your life’s work, and most importantly with yourself.
The quality of these relationships reflects the quality of your communication. When you elevate your communication you create conditions that improve and enrich every relationship in your life.
Just like an acorn requires the proper conditions – sunlight, soil, water, and nutrients – to realize its potential and grow into a mighty oak tree, similarly, our relationships will realize their potential as we cultivate welcoming environments that nurture their evolution. We accomplish this with love and conscious communication.
Each encounter that we have is spirit meeting spirit. In Sanskrit, the term Namaste describes a soulful recognition between two people. It's a salutation that is often accompanied by a gracious bow with hands pressed together facing upward in front of the heart. This greeting closely translates to: the spirit in me honors the spirit in you.
When you say Namaste, you affirm your individuality while recognizing the unity flowing through all relationships.
Here are 8 ways to inspire healthy relationships:
1. Treat yourself with kindness.
To enjoy genuine love and freedom in a relationship it is vital to live in your center and honor yourself. Be present to the miracle that is you. Be aware of your language. Speak kindly to yourself, and in an inspiring way. When you are happy within yourself, you will make wise choices – in thought, word and action. And from this place of wholeness cultivating healthy relationships becomes a natural action.
2. Honor the other person.
Before you can connect with someone, it is essential to honor that person’s map of the world. This does not mean you agree with their philosophies or point of view. Honoring someone creates the space that allows you to more easily enter their map, see things from their perspective, and gather important information so that you may communicate in an effective way. This supports you in orchestrating win-win agreements.
3. Observe your emotions without judgment.
Notice the vibe that you are bringing into your relationship. If you find yourself feeling emotions like anger, sadness, guilt or fear, acknowledge them with curiosity.
You can say: I am feeling ______________.
Do not resist, instead ask, what is this emotion revealing to me?
View these emotions as signals to either elevate your perception, or communicate your desires more clearly. This approach opens lines of communication because you are not making another person responsible for your feelings.
4. Before you say anything, ask yourself: what do I want to achieve?
Before communicating, inhale a breath, and center your physiology. Ask yourself, what is most important in this conversation right now? What do I desire to achieve? Then see yourself, in your mind’s eye, communicating with purpose, poise, and precision.
Relinquish feelings of entitlement, and refrain from making demands because it can create resistance. Instead make a polite request. Be gracious and specific in asking for what you want.
For example, if you want to spend more quality time with a loved one, ask them to join you for a walk in the park, a special dinner, or some other adventure.
5. Listen wholeheartedly.
When communicating with someone, bring your attention to the present moment, while simultaneously expanding your vision into the periphery. Ask purposeful questions in a caring tone; then listen intently.
Once the person responds, rather than assuming you know what they mean, inquire a little deeper. You can ask, how so? Or, how do you mean? Allow them to share their experience without interruption. As they do, notice the subtleties in their body language and facial expressions. This allows you to more easily understand the essence of what is most important to them.
6. Be flexible in order to achieve the highest good.
It's important to be clear on what you intend to experience in a relationship, without being attached to how it will show up. Flexibility is power! Being flexible means you are receptive to the ever-changing environment, and you are ready to navigate any challenge to achieve the highest good. When you are fluid, like water, there is not one terrain through which you cannot successfully traverse.
7. Use inclusive words.
Your communication has the power to separate or unify. Unconsciously using words like – I, me, my, you, yours – can create a sense of disconnect. If your intent is to join with another for the purpose of realizing individual goals or a shared vision, then choose words that evoke cooperation and unity, such as: we, us, ours, and together.
8. Take a pause when the interaction gets tough.
If you ever react passionately in an interaction, realize that your reaction may not have anything to do with the person whom you are communicating with. It is possible that something you saw, heard, or felt could have triggered an old memory or wound from the past.
So if you ever find yourself giving away your power in a conversation by defending, criticizing, complaining, blaming, or trying to be right, then it’s time to pause. In this pausing, insights will be revealed. This heightened awareness allows you to learn, let go of past grievances, and connect with each person in a fresh, new way.