No matter our upbringing, religion, lifestyle, morals or creed, when we fall in love we do so not only with our hearts, but with our spirits too. There is a reason why we call our significant others soul mates. That’s because we love with something more than our bodies or minds.
It cannot be explained or described. Some people believe that love is purely chemical, and yes, romance does change our bodies and brains, but not even science can dispute the fact that love changes us.
Sometimes love changes us for the better, but unfortunately, sometimes it changes us for the worse. We become so afraid of losing that special someone that we become jealous, controlling, clingy, grumpy, paranoid or impatient.
It’s not news that every relationship has its troubles and that the stress of these hurdles can transform us into miserable, short-tempered people. And sometimes we’re just not nice to each other for whatever reason and we push each other away with our bad attitudes and so-called incompatibility.
But love is also the one thing in this world that might just be unbreakable. Maintaining a relationship can be trying at times, but if we learn a few basic skills and transform our spirits in the simplest of ways, we can not only strengthen our relationships, but reignite the sparks, too. We can practice meditation for the sake of our relationship because it . . .
1. Makes us more considerate
Meditation, especially mindfulness and gratitude, makes us more aware of the consequences of our actions and speech, which prevents us from invoking harm and negativity on others. When you meditate frequently, you begin to see life as sacred and realise that it is not our place to be cruel to others. There are times we hurt someone we love and wish we could take it back. Meditation gives us the foresight to not say or do things we will regret. This will make our relationship so much more pleasant.
2. Betters communication
Of course, it does. Think about it. If meditation makes us more considerate of our actions, it also teaches us how to best respond when faced with trials. Rather than lashing out, or giving the silent treatment on our partner, meditation can guide us in responding with care (or at the very least, caution). Just think of how many arguments will be avoided when good communication replaces raw emotional response.
3. Teaches us patience
Meditation makes us more understanding, that much has been established. But it also teaches us patience. We lose our tempers when we can’t control our emotions. Meditation balances us and centres us, and removes the likelihood of behaving rashly because our emotions take over. By meditating we begin to understand our feelings and so we are able to discern which are negative and unnecessary. Then they will cease to have a hold over us. This will clear our mind, and make us calmer, less quick to anger and more patient.
4. Replaces bad hormones with good ones
Proven in studies undertaken by both neurologists and psychologists, meditation makes us happy. The reasons for this is that it relieves stress, so our body won’t produce (as much) cortisol – the stress chemical. Even better, since it calms us, it replaces that cortisol with pleasant hormones like dopamine (the happy hormone) and melatonin (the sleep hormone). If we are well rested and on a natural high we will be so much easier to get along with and our relationship will have a pleasant boost!
5. Dampens our Egos
Many of our emotional problems are self-inflicted because we can be very arrogant creatures. Stubbornness is the main reason why we argue. We’d rather be right than sorry, or forgiving, or kind. It’s a very negative trait, that most us have experienced. Furthermore, being angry gives us a rush, so even though we mean what we say and do when we say and do it, when we come down from the thrill of it, we usually feel embarrassed or ashamed by our behaviour.
Since meditation fills our brains with calm hormones and makes us more considerate, this won’t be as much of a problem. But it goes further too! Meditation teaches us to see ourselves exactly as we are. We disconnect from our Egos and our sense of self-importance. This is a very important quality in any relationship. When we stop being selfish, we become blessed.
Whether we choose to meditate for and by our self, or with our special someone, there are many variations of meditation available to try. Here are a few ideas:
Mindfulness meditation can be practiced anytime, anywhere because it is the experience of being fully aware (to the best of our ability) of what is happening to and around us. We ignore a lot of information throughout the day but mindfulness teaches us to pay attention.
For example, we can eat for the sake of not being hungry, or we can experience eating by paying attention to the sights, smells, sounds, flavours and feelings that overcome us while we have your meal.
This exercise, when practiced often, teaches us to be more considerate and to contemplate our choices before we commit to the consequences of them. It’s a great choice for couples, because we will see our partner in a different (brighter and more loving) light.
Although concentration meditation has many similar benefits to Mindfulness, it is different in the sense that with concentration we focus (or meditate) on a single feeling, idea or object at a time. This practice is fantastic for overcoming obstacles as it gives us clarity and allows us to gain a new perspective on our situations and ourselves. It’s not only good for banishing negativity, however. It can be used to manifest positivity and to empower ourselves too!
You know the phrase, “Don’t sweat the small stuff”? If Transcendental Meditation could be broken down to its simplest form that would be its motto. Transcendental Meditation is a very intimate practice that trains us to not focus on every little thing, or even one thing, but rather to acknowledge every thought and feeling we experience, yet to not succumb to any of them. It teaches focus, by teaching how to not focus and is a powerful meditation when it comes to emotional control.
Although not considered meditation (and if it was it would fall into the mindfulness category). gratitude deserves a spotlight. Studies have proven that being thankful makes us happier, kinder, more optimistic people. And frankly, there can never be enough of it in this world. Making an effort to be grateful for our relationship, and going out of our way to let our partner know that we appreciate them will strengthen our bonds in ways not many other practices can.
We don’t have to break a sweat. Tranquil exercises that place emphasis on meditation, for example, Yoga, Tai Chi or even Navatantra (tantric sex, for the more open-minded) are excellent ways for us and our partner to bond and share positive experiences not only emotionally and spiritually, but physically, too. In the case of the two formers, they are beautiful ways to meditate and tone our body and mind simultaneously. As for the latter, it’s been said that it creates intense sexual and spiritual experiences that are well worth trying at least once.
Have it your way
The best part about meditating is that we can do so at our own pace. If the intensity of certain meditations frightens us, we can be sure to can start slowly, or settle for something that is relaxed or tranquil.
Although it is recommended for partners to meditate together for extra clarity and to remain on the same page, no one is under any obligation to share our meditations with them if it is not mutually agreed upon. That said, it is strongly recommended to try sharing this experience. We not only grow into better, calmer people, but we will do so together and that will strengthen and intensify the bond we already have.
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Author: Paul and Layne Cutright
Layne and Paul Cutright coach couples in the art of soulful relating. They can help you tap into your spiritual nature that opens a latent intelligence in your heart. An intelligence that guides you in healing any wounds that prevent you from opening to a new and beautiful experience of intimate love. Then new capacities will be yours to transform ignorance into knowledge, difficulties into life affirming wisdom and emotional turmoil into greater aliveness. If you choose to work with them you will gain new skills and practices that can safeguard your relationship from failure. Relationship wisdom is the best kind marriage insurance. You can find them on the web at www.paulandlayne.com.