Strengthening Our Most Important Relationships Energizes Us
Having strong relationships leads to a happier life, and here’s why.
By: Beatriz Iglesias Garcia
Life is all about people; it’s not what you do, but who you do it with. Focusing on the quality of our interactions and connections, rather than the quantity, allows us to truly feel connected and make the most of our relationships. Focusing on the quantity can leave us drained, leaving only enough time to enjoy the superficial parts of a relationship. With time, we tend to forget to care for and pay attention to long-standing relationships. It is important to strengthen our most significant relationships since their positive impact on our energy levels is key to our well-being. Here are some of the benefits of having strong relationships:
Emotional Support: Strong relationships provide us with sources of emotional support. When we have people we can confide in, we feel less stressed and anxious. This emotional support can boost our mood and energy, making us feel more resilient in the face of life’s challenges. It is important to often check in with those around us to maintain this emotional support. Genuinely asking, “How are you?” at the beginning of most conversations always helps.
Sense of Belonging: Meaningful relationships provide us with a sense of belonging and connectedness that allow us to thrive. Knowing that we are loved, valued, and accepted by those close to us can boost our self-esteem. In turn, this can provide us with the emotional energy needed to tackle daily tasks and pursue our goals.
Motivation and Inspiration: Loved ones motivate and inspire us. Seeing the people we care about pursuing their goals and dreams can encourage us to do the same. This shared enthusiasm energizes us and drives us to achieve our aspirations.
So, we can conclude that connection and energy are highly correlated. The more truly connected we are, the more energized we feel. So, how can we start being more connected? The following practices are two powerful ways to start strengthening your relationships:
1. Make mindful listening your default.
We’re all pretty good at guessing whether someone is actually listening to us. When someone’s full attention is on us rather than their own thoughts, we feel like we matter. This kind of interaction energizes both the speaker and the listener. That’s because when we channel our attention to a single point of focus, we’re unlocking our flow state, or a positive psychology term that describes being in a mental state of complete focus on an activity. This is the ultimate energy booster! If we make this our intention before a hangout, our experiences grow richer, and we can learn from every interaction and feel much happier in the end. If you want others to listen to you, the first step is to start listening to yourself.
2. Be more intentional about what you’re doing
Instead of going out to dinner on a Friday night, why don’t you consider what you and the other person have in common? Is it a shared love for fitness or community?
When you share a mutual core value, the connection between two people strengthens.
Giving time and energy to something that achieves a higher purpose makes the experience immensely gratifying.
Try these practices to start maximizing your relationships. You’ll see how much better you and those around you will feel!