M. Alda Gomez Otero
5 tips on how to improve your close relationships
As human beings we all need relationships. Over the centuries, we have survived because of our capacity to be social and able to help one another. We would not be human if we did not have a longing to be in relationship. But when relationships get closer, we may struggle as we see our buttons being pushed and our anger come to the fore. Here are some simple tips to improve your close relationships:
1. Accept that conflict will be a part of your relationship
We are all different and misunderstandings will occur, but conflicts in your relationship are an opportunity for you to get to know yourself and each other better.
2. Be open to get to know your loved one
We often take each other for granted. We think the other person thinks like we do. We believe that what is obvious to us must be obvious to them too. But it might not be true. Take the time to get to know your loved ones. They may not be like you. If you know them better, you will understand their intentions and will stop taking their actions personally.
3. Accept and love your close one’s difference
Your partner, your mum, your step-dad, your daughter, etc. do not intend to hurt you when they do what they do. They are doing what they do and not what you expect because they are not you. They are different. They are not trying to get at you. They are doing their best. As you are getting to know them better, learn to accept and love their ways.
4. Be open to get to know yourself
If a conflict arises and you get angry or hurt, try not to overreact. Withdraw yourself from the situation and get some time to think about what it is that hurt you so much. Could it be that you thought that you were being rejected, unloved, disrespected, etc.? Is it possible that your close one did not intend to reject you, that they love you and respect you, but you misread, misunderstood, or constructed an irrational belief or truth about what happened? Get to know yourself. If you know what hurts you, you can tell your loved ones. If you know the root of your discomfort, you will understand that life can hurt you, but you can help yourself feel better.
5. Accept and love who you are
You may hate the fact that you are argumentative, or too passive, a doormat or a bully, or a victim or other parts of you. Be open to accept and love all your different parts, even when they may be contradictory: loving and hateful. When you accept all your parts, something changes inside you, and love replaces conflict and misunderstandings inside and out.