Being successful in relationships requires hard work. Whether it is a romantic relationship, one with a friend, or your family, there are ways to make them better. Here are some of the ways you can improve relationships with mindfulness.
Before you can use mindfulness to improve relationships, you should understand what mindfulness means. In short, mindfulness is a state of being fully aware of the present moment and what you’re doing. It is being about being able to focus on the person or people you’re with despite what is going on around you or the turmoil you’re experiencing.
Although a state of mindfulness is usually instinctual, people can cultivate it, so they become better at concentrating on what or who they are with at any time. Meditating is the most common way to improve mindfulness, but it’s important to meditate while being active. You can meditate while you’re sitting, walking, standing, or moving, such as when you’re practicing yoga or playing sports.
Benefits of being Mindful
Along with being present in the moment, which can help improve relationships, being mindful has several health benefits as well.
An important benefit of using mindful techniques is their ability to reduce stress. There have been several studies on mindfulness and how well it helps people cope with stress. One study found it helped to reduce stress by teaching people how to control their emotions, which led to better moods and being better at handling stress.
Mindfulness can help people achieve a state of relaxation through meditation or other activities, and doing so can produce results like:
- Higher brain function.
- Lower blood pressure.
- Being more aware and focused.
- Clearer thinking and perception.
- Lower anxiety levels.
- Feeling more connected.
These benefits are easy to achieve by doing something as simple as closing your eyes and remaining quiet for a few minutes.
Reduces Symptoms of Depression
Having the ability to regulate emotions can also help people reduce symptoms of depression, anxiety, and stress. By reducing these symptoms, people could also use mindfulness to improve relationships because stress can cause people to be argumentative and critical of others, especially friends or family members.
Mindfulness techniques can help give people the tools to recognize negative emotions, accept their existence, and learn to stop and take a step back from those emotions. The ability to control the negative emotions can help to reduce symptoms of depression, including suicidal thoughts.
Improves Overall Health
Along with improving mental health in most people, mindfulness techniques can help improve your overall health. A study found that practicing mindfulness can impact behaviors related to health, such as:
- Getting regular check-ups.
- Getting more exercise.
- Reduce smoking.
- Limiting alcohol consumption.
- Wearing seatbelts.
It also helps to lower blood pressure, improve cardiovascular health, and overweight people who practiced mindfulness had better success with losing weight because they were more aware of their attitudes and eating behaviors. They also helped to reduce their depression and anxiety.
Mindfulness not only improves the mental and physical health of adults, but it can also do so in adolescents and children as well. There are several more benefits to practicing mindfulness, but these are three of the most common ones.
Ways to Improve Relationships with Mindfulness
There are several ways that mindfulness can help people improve their friendships, business relationships, and their relationships with their family. Some of the ways to improve relationships are by being present in the moment and focusing on the person you’re with instead of thinking about work, financial problems, or daydreaming about your next vacation.
There are many things you can do to improve relationships with mindfulness, such as practicing:
- Deep Listening
- Mindful Speech
- Writing Meditation
- Mindfulness Meditation
Most people do not listen to others when talking to them. Instead, they may be thinking of others things, such as how to respond to what is being said. However, by paying more attention to what is being said when another person is talking, whether it is a lover, child, or boss, it can improve relationships.
Deep listening, which is sometimes referred to as active listening, can make people feel valued when they realize others are paying attention to what they are saying. Taking the time to concentrate on what someone is saying is a sign of respect, caring, and the speaker will appreciate the attention. Being a good listener can go far in helping to improve relationships and heal any divisions there are between people.
The practice of deep listening involves paying close attention to what someone is saying by looking into their eyes as they speak. Also, try to keep your mind in the moment by not letting it wander by concentrating on what is being said. If you do miss that was said, speak up and ask for them to repeat it. It may seem embarrassing, but it shows sincere interest in the conversation.
Try to limit the distractions around by ignoring your phone, turning off the television or music, and keep your eyes on the other person instead of people watching if you’re in a public place. Taking these actions will make the person with you feel like you care about and value your relationship with them and what they say.
Sometimes when people are in relationships with others, disagreements can become heated, and words are said that are not meant and that people regret. Unfortunately, these words can hurt others and cause rifts in relationships. However, by learning ways to control what you say, to speak mindfully, you can avoid saying things that hurt those with whom you’re in relationships.
A good way to practice mindful speech is to pause before you react and address what someone has said to you. It allows you to carefully choose your words so that what you are thinking can be conveyed in a calm, respectful, and compassionate manner. It also allows you to control the tone of your voice, so you don’t sound angry or judgmental.
In some situations, the best way to respond to your spouse or co-worker is to remain silent. As your mother or grandmother may have said over and over again, ‘if you cannot say something nice, don’t say anything at all.’ While that may not work in every situation, there are times when not saying anything is the correct response.
Another way you can learn how to improve your relationship with mindfulness is to practice writing meditations. People often have difficulty in relationships with friends, family, or a romantic interest because of their attitudes towards them. Most people are more concerned about their needs instead of the needs of those around them.
Their attitude can lead to confrontations because they perceive others as a threat to them, whether they are aware of it or not. People may perceive they are being kept from obtaining or keeping the things that make them feel happy or that they value. However, you can transform those feelings by writing meditations.
Writing loving, kind meditations involves writing down positive affirmations by hand for five to 10 minutes a day. Although it seems too simple, and something only you will benefit from, within a week you may notice your attitude towards others has shifted. You will start to treat others with more compassion and understanding, which can help to improve your relationships.
When you are more aware of how your thoughts and actions affect your relationships, then you will be able to experience relationship improvement with mindfulness. Practicing techniques like mindful meditation can help people better understand relationships, but also the insecurities that negatively affect them.
The practice of this technique is not difficult, and anyone of any age can do it. Start by finding a quiet place where you won’t be disturbed for a few minutes. It could be in the bathtub, in your bedroom, or in the living room before your family gets up in the morning.
Sit in a comfortable chair with your feet flat on the floor, with your hands in a comfortable position, such as in your lap, and with a straight posture. Close your eyes and concentrate on breathing in and out. When your mind starts to wander, try to bring it back to your breathing and, in a few minutes, your mind should settle and allow you to concentrate on breathing.
If you’re new to meditation, start with short 10 to 15-minute sessions every day or every other day. After you have some experience with meditation, you can increase your sessions to 20 minutes if you wish. This technique can help steady your emotions and help you avoid knee-jerk reactions that can damage your relationships.
These mindfulness techniques can teach you to regulate your emotions, so you don’t react badly during disagreements with others, and they allow you to focus on the feelings of those with whom you have relationships. It will help you understand how they feel and develop empathy for others, which can help you improve relationships with mindfulness.