Jon's Blog

9 November 2013

Are You Really Relating to Each Other?

Posted by Jon Treanor

Are you really relating to each other?

We all make mistakes; we are after all only having a human experience. Our thoughts, words, and actions can cause harm to ourselves and those around us often without our realising it. Often, when we inadvertently hurt others or are unintentionally hurt by them, our pride rarely allows us to reconcile or renew our damaged relationship. Without reconciliation, we cannot deepen our understanding of ourselves or others and we can cause more issues.

We seem to make or have time to go to work, concerts, cinema, shopping, and sport we crowd our lives with doing stuff, we often go onto auto pilot. We rarely find the time to focus on our important relationships with the people who are closest to us, our family members, friends, and even colleagues.

It is definitely worth introducing and making time for each other if you are in a close relationship for example. The practice of reconciliation has been proven; a weekly practice together can significantly bring a relationship closer and enrich it on a deeper level. Practiced between two people for example this has a profound and deepening effect on the relationship. It’s about taking time out, perhaps agreeing to a ‘date night’ if you are a couple maybe once each week, making time for each other alternating who chooses which activity. However the emphasis should be on communicating with each other, being open and honest. Take time to sit down together, as one partner speaks, the other partner really listens without interrupting, allowing the other to speak openly and honestly, you then take it in turn.

It can help name the points of the conversation and the points you wish to get across, give them headings for example; sharing appreciation of the other, expressing regret, and expressing hurt and difficulties. In sharing appreciation we learn to recognise and acknowledge the positive attributes of the other person. Every one of us has both good points and points that can be irritating. When we express our appreciation for the other person's positive qualities, we give them the opportunity to recognise the positive qualities in us. For example, perhaps one of our children is kind and hardworking; they study well and often help us out around the house. But once in a while they behave badly or make a mistake, and we correct them strongly right away. Yet we often fail to tell them how much we appreciate them, when we correct or discipline our children, they only hear our criticism and blame. It is in situations like this that the relationship with our kids can deteriorate as can their behaviour. How do we improve the situation? Well first off we practice sharing our appreciation. If they are doing well in school, we compliment them if they are good at sport we acknowledge this, the key is to challenge the behaviour and not the person. We can also take the opportunity to share with the other person our regrets for the things we have done or said that might have caused them to feel bad. This requires humility and the willingness to let go of our own thoughts and feelings, to reach out, to build the relationship bridge.

We should express our own hurt mindfully more often without blaming or criticising. If we blame and condemn the other person, they will shut down and will not want to hear us, the relationship suffers. We have to ask the other person to help us to understand why they have spoken the way they have and to tell them how we feel. By doing this regularly and mindfully we can prevent small misunderstandings from accumulating or escalating into bigger issues and rows. We are consciously cultivating our awareness and appreciation for the positive qualities our loved ones bring to our life. With understanding, with listening and with love, all things become possible.

If you would like to know more about mindfulness or reconciliation practice then please contact Jon Treanor on by emailing or calling +44 (0)7787 513205.

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