“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did,
but people will never forget how you made them feel “
Having healthy relationships is extremely important to our health and happiness. So, what does it mean to have a healthy relationship, and where do you begin? Start with the idea that you are a spiritual being HAVING a human experience.
If you doubt this is true, think about it. Every time you inhale, you are breathing spiritual energy or life force into your human experience. This energy animates you, beats your heart, and digests your food, among thousands of other systems programmed within you.
The physical part of yourself (“being human”) and your nonphysical self, (your “spirit” or “soul”) is the first relationship to nurture. It’s all an inside job! Being human is a mystery and often presents a bumpy ride. It’s up to us to navigate it with as much ease and grace as possible. When you are heart-driven, you are in alignment, and feel a sense of well-being.
Conversely when you’re out of sorts, it’s because your focus is more on the physical aspect of existence, and that creates an imbalance. Being conscious of placing equal attention to the human part of you, and the spiritual part of you, is the beginning of a lifelong healthy love affair. You owe your soul energy a great deal, otherwise you wouldn’t be here.
Is your ego running the show?
You are more than likely letting your head/ego run the show. This is a good indicator that your heart and head are not in alignment. You’re making the physical more real, while disregarding your spiritual nature. When you engage and let your negative thoughts go on “automatic”, you find yourself critical, judgmental, and unkind (to yourself and others).
Looking at your life from the soul’s perspective helps you to navigate the human part that’s the bumpy ride. Just imagine before you were born YOU. Your soul was excited to have a human experience through YOU. After all, in a formless form, who knows if the soul can experience human traits, like emotions? When you are human, you get to experience all kinds of emotions and have all kinds of experiences, temporarily.
Furthermore, when you are heart and soul driven, you are feel healthier, happier, more relaxed, less judgmental, and more loving (and it’s a lot more fun!). In addition, you feel centered, living from the inside-out. You are more apt to take responsibility for your thoughts, the beliefs you hold, how you behave, and who you become.
Equally important, love becomes your lens and guiding light that determines the quality of all your relationships, allowing yourself and others to BE human without judgment, stepping back and accepting each other from a human-to-human viewpoint, not from the roles you play in life.
Human beings were not meant to be islands unto themselves. Humans need to connect with other human beings to feel a sense of belonging. As humans, we need to know we can rely on someone when we need help. We need to let others know we are there for them too. Having healthy relationships is crucial to your sense of well-being.
Becoming a friend for life.
Achieving a heightened level of awareness of these characteristics, you are a perfect candidate to become, what I call, a “friend for life”, able to have the healthiest, most yummy-delicious relationships you have ever experienced with yourself and others. These can be both personal and professional.
Being a friend for life, means both people are genuinely interested in each other’s lives. They agree to forgive human frailties, flaws, and mistakes, with a sense of ease and grace, understanding we all come from a greater universal realm, wanting the same things.
In addition, when you come from your heart and soul for the highest and greatest good, you can “hold the space” for each other to BE human, allowing whatever you are experiencing to be okay, without criticizing, scolding, or judging. Your intention is to uplift and not tear down.
Since you are both human and spiritual, you can nurture this internal relationship with the highest regard, and a lot of delicious and delightful humor thrown in. You can’t take yourself so seriously that you strip the very joy out of living. So, this internal relationship, is the most important. And there are ways to build on this with others.
When you are out of alignment with your heart/soul self, you begin to live from the outside-in. You become a victim of circumstances. Then you adopt words that were thrown your way or limiting beliefs that were given to you growing up. You place more importance on the physical realm and dismiss your spiritual realm. That’s not healthy.
Do you want more joy, love and happiness?
Being human from the soul’s perspective helps you to stay in harmony with our own sense of soul-self, and guess what happens? There is more relaxation, joy and love. You are kinder, more thoughtful, and have more fun. By giving yourself permission to really ENJOY the hell out of life you get to savor every moment you experience! Do you believe that we sometimes even “have to” give ourselves permission that it’s okay to have joy, to be happy?
When you have a greater outlook on life, you meet other like-minded, like-hearted, and like-souled people who care about the same things. They also love to explore the nonphysical world, the mysterious unknown, the vast space of “nothing”, where we are all connected (and where we will all end up one day, after this body goes), so we might as well enjoy this journey being human.
Instead of crucifying each other for mistakes, as a friend for life, you talk about it, and process it so you can become better human beings. You certainly are happier, especially because you are focusing on the JOY part of life.
To me the healthiest relationships are when you come from the heart and not the ego. The ego mind wants to be right so much of the time and doesn’t give a hoot about love. Only pride and anger, which puffs up a human like a gorilla pounding on its chest. This makes those people feel “all that”, and maybe even “better” than someone else. Putting others down or being sarcastic becomes a way of being, and that’s no fun at all. Have you ever heard anyone say, “That’s just the way I am.”?
Ever had a Relationship With a Narcissist?
The unfortunate result is that pride and anger become more important than love. Pride can’t be shared, and anger becomes about false force and power, and those kinds of relationships are one-sided, and stops love in its tracks. Have you ever had a relationship with a narcissist whose whole life centers around themselves? They don’t really care what you think and dismiss you half the time. That’s no fun at all, and that is not a healthy relationship!
When someone is already open and they want to dive into themselves and look at their part in what they bring to the table of life, I’m in 100%. I have learned that some people just don’t want to open, and because of this, there is nowhere to go.
I feel so blessed that all my friends for life are open hearted, and interested in growing along side of me, as we journey this life together through the vast unknown, allowing our spirit to guide the way.
In addition, I have a great symbol for wanting to open someone’s heart. It’s a can opener. That’s right. A can opener was designed to open a can, right? Well, if you can’t get the can opened, it becomes jagged and sharp. Sometimes we even give up opening the can because we don’t want to get cut. I’ve given up my can opener for good, and vowed never to pry someone’s heart open if they don’t want it open and it feels so good to have that symbol.
How do you treat yourself?
Equally important is how you treat yourself. Let me ask you a question. Have you ever said anything unkind to and about yourself? Of course, you have. So have I, and I would venture to guess that most people on this planet have said unkind things to and about themselves.
Sometimes when I hear one of my friends putting themselves down, I say, “Please don’t talk to or about my friend like that.” They often wonder who I’m talking about, and when I say, “YOU”, they laugh, but they get the point.
Furthermore, we all do it. We say harsh things to and about ourselves more than we ever would to a friend. Then, it becomes “normal” to do it to others and talk “at” them, instead of with them. A habit is then created, and you find yourself in a relationship riddled with criticizism, judgment, scolding, and “should-ing” each other all over the place. This is another kind of relationship that is not healthy.
I grew up in a family where we were taught to cut each other off at the knees, so it’s a familiar pattern that I spent many years of working on myself to break. I’m happy to report that those patterns have dissipated, and I no longer look for something to criticize in others. I feel free from this pattern and am so very grateful.
Be kind and enjoy yourself
We are not very kind to ourselves, let’s admit it. Hell, we don’t even let ourselves REALLY enjoy ourselves when we are REALLY enjoying ourselves! That’s just crazy!
Let’s summarize what we have discovered. First, healthy relationships are crucial to living a healthy life. Secondly, because we are not meant to be islands unto ourselves, we need each other in this life. Thirdly, paying attention to creating healthy relationships with care is part of the journey.
Furthermore, you can strengthen your internal relationships by paying attention to your own soul’s whispers for guidance, focusing on living from the inside-out. You can strengthen your external relationships by being more conscious of what you bring into your experiences. When you are more kind, loving and thoughtful, you feel better and so do others.
You can enrich your life by reaching out and telling your friends and family how much you love them, taking the initiative to get together, even if it’s going on a walk. You can enhance healthy relationships by saying hi to strangers in a line or volunteering in your community, doing something you care about, and finding other like-minded people who care about the same things.
Have a healthy relationship with yourself and others
Everything you do in life impacts your life experiences. It’s not what you do, it’s how you do what you do. Be conscious of having a healthy relationship with yourself and others. You just never know the impact you have or the scope of your influence you make on others. Accept and understand that your attitude and choices affect others, so it’s up to you to conduct yourself with a sense of grace. When you are friendly, helpful, and responsive, you will create an atmosphere around you that is both uplifting and inspiring.
Be respectful. Be loving. Feel appreciation for your life and share it with others. Smile often, for love is free, and is the gift that keeps on giving. Small gestures of kindness go a long way and promote healthy relationships.
Find your circle of friends for life and nurture the hell out of them. Be conscious of what you project into the world. Treat other people with a sense of importance. Be genuinely interested. Share your happiness and passion for life with others. You just never know whose life you are affecting. Bring these thoughts with you into your everyday life, as a natural way of being.
Let yourself have this amazing love affair between your human (physical self) and your soul (spiritual self). Never take that relationship for granted. Show appreciation for yourself, your talents, your gifts, your abilities and, always, always, always, come from LOVE.
Having healthy relationships leads to happiness and happiness helps us live longer, happier, healthier, and more joyful lives. Build those warm connections. What else more important is there to “do”?
It’s your life. Enjoy the journey. And remember to bring love into everything you do.
To listen to Shelley’s latest podcast on relationships go to Big Blend Radio.