How To Manage Stress In Relationships

We all have stress but there are certain things we can do to alleviate stress without causing long term damage.

Although it’s a controversial subject, it is widely known that stress can actually be harmful to relationships. But it’s also a fact that certain behaviors can significantly reduce stress and that they’re also associated with less stress and better relationship outcomes. To be a successful and long term relationship, you want a healthy dose of stability, love and trust — but you don’t want those things to be the only thing you’re focused on. You need to find an edge — and that’s what this session tackles: how to manage your stress levels for the best relationship outcome.

We start every episode with a powerful quote from the Buddha: “The four foundations of mindfulness are the four factors of enlightenment.” They are, in short, 4 things you can do immediately to boost your overall sense of well-being and mental health and have a significant impact on your relationships. In this session we dive into each one in detail along with some strategies you can use to put them on your to-do list now.

The first foundation of mindfulness involves your attention. We can get distracted easily, but by paying attention to the small task at hand, like paying attention to your breathing during meditation or paying attention to the feeling of the sand on your skin when you touch your nose, you’ll be able to make small, intentional changes to your behavior. You won’t get the big long term change, but at the very least, you’ll be able to reduce or eliminate your stress right away.

The second foundation is mindfulness of breathing. Just like mindfulness of your breathing is important for your life, it’s also important for your relationship. In this meditation session, we take a look at how we can bring our mindfulness of breathing to our relationships.

The third foundation is mindfulness of body sensations. Our bodies are natural machines. We need to stay in touch with our body, and if we’re not mindful of the small things that affect our relationships, our stress hormones may be going into overdrive. If you have anxiety or depression, you may be feeling the need to control your emotional state and control your body. But you certainly don’t need to manipulate your body in an unhealthy way to experience connection and peace. We look at ways to learn new skills to enhance a healthy relationship with your own body.

The fourth foundation is mindfulness of the breath. Like your body, your mental state changes depending on how you interact with the world. You need to be mindful and aware of every interaction you have, not just what you perceive by feeling, but everything that happens around you. This meditation on the breath is part of a series of mindfulness classes offered by Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn at the Mind Center of San Diego. This is an easy to listen to 10 minute meditation that provides great feedback on how much you’re paying attention and how well you’re processing what you’re feeling.

What’s the Big Focus? What is your problem? Can you look it through and solve it with the insights and techniques presented in this course? You can use them to take a break from what’s currently stressing you out…to create a healthy, balanced, and less stressed state of mind when you next return to it…or to get a new perspective on what’s in your life…all from the comfort of your own home.