I will admit, there is much about Buddhism I don’t know of or understand.
I do know, however, that if you were to truly embrace certain aspects of Buddhism, your relationship will thank you for it.
I had another topic scheduled for this week on the blog, but I came across this 3-minute video from Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday and I thought this was more important, as it captures the essence of Emotionally Focused Therapy and what My Best Relationship is all about helping couples do.
The video I will be sharing features Oprah talking with one of my favorite teachers, Thich Nhat Hanh, who is a prolific Buddhist monk who has helped many, including me, learn about mindfulness and its importance for our general well being and certainly for that of our relationships.
What does it mean to be mindful?
Mindfulness is a special kind of attentive awareness – particularly in the present moment. To be mindfully aware is to embrace a certain kind of curiosity and acceptance about your experience. If you are in a terrible mood or feel grief stricken, you can be mindful of that by accepting and being curious about that experience.
By being mindful, you get to experience your emotions, thoughts and worries in a different kind of way. You kind of sit afar from them and watch them, almost as if they were a brook trickling along, and you might not be as consumed or controlled by them as you otherwise would be.
Being mindful can feel liberating. Further, all kinds of research is now being published about how mindfulness training helps people with common problems like depression and anxiety.
Above all, when you are being mindful, you are being truly present in the moment.
What does this have to do with my relationship?
In Thich Nhat Hanh’s words, “When you love someone, the best thing you can offer is your presence.”
Being mindful is about being present. Relationships break down when people cannot be present for each other.
So much of our lives are spent running away from the present. It’s no wonder why the divorce rate is so high – we are all so very divorced from our own experiences, it becomes impossible for us to be there for our partners.
I am no guru on mindfulness and can often lose touch with myself and the present moment. I, perhaps like you, easily get sucked into iPhone zone and lose touch with all things around me. Doing therapy helps me stay connected and helps me stay mindful, but I am no pro, and do not claim to be some kind of zen master, by all means.
But I know that mindfulness helps me with everything when I embrace it, including my relationship.
So without further ado, let me share Thich Nhat Hanh’s amazingly simple 4 Mantras that I hope you can apply to your relationship today. Please click on the link below to watch the video and let me know your thoughts.
Oprah and Thich Nhat Hanh – 4 Mantras
That was pretty good, don’t you think?
For more great Thich Nhat Hanh stuff that’s easily accessible and will help you be more mindful, check out one of my favorite books by him, Peace is Every Step.
Cheers to your best most mindful relationship,