The other day, my husband and I were out for a drive and I noticed that some of the trees were already starting to change colors. I guess as an occupational hazard of being a relationship expert, not only did I marvel at the beauty of the colors, I also started to ponder about all the different lessons that Mother Nature has to offer about love and the survival of our personal relationships. As it turns out, there's a lot we can learn about love from the natural world.
1. Just as the leaves change colors, so does a relationship. It's essential that we be able to embrace and adjust to these changes rather than insist our partner continue to be who he or she was when we first met.
2. Trees grow in the direction of sunlight, or to that which is positive. Our partners will also do best when we appreciate and praise them, allowing them to bask in the sunlight that we provide. Studies have shown that one of the best things you can offer your mate is encouraging him or her to bring out their fullest potential.
3. There are many challenges that Mother Nature presents in the way of hurricanes, blizzards, tornadoes and other natural disasters. These are not predictable and often very scary. When these situations occur, they're overwhelming. However, they can be overcome through a sense of working together and hope. In the life of a couple, there will be unpredictable challenges as well; by working through them as a partnership, you will be able to handle them with far greater ease and see them as opportunities to bring the two of you closer.
4. In most locations, the seasons change. For many, winter feels dark and negative. When it ends, there is a a season of renewal: spring. All relationships will go through cycles as well. However, most couples don't know or acknowledge this, and when the darkness or hard times come, they often think the relationship should end. It's important to know that these cycles are a normal part of any relationship, and not look at them through a fatalistic lens.
5. During a storm, the trees that survive are the ones that are able to bend and move with the wind. So it is with an individual or a couple. Though you can't control circumstances, it's important to be able to flow with them.
6. The ocean has both high and low tides. So do we. Naturally, who we are as individuals will have an impact on our relationships. And just like the water, our "tides" change. It's important not to get too caught up in any one aspect of it.
7. Studies have shown that people who live in areas where there's better climate and more sun are more positive. Additionally, for some, during the time where days are shorter (when there is less sun), they suffer from seasonal affective disorder. Clearly, we feel better around positive energy. This is true in our relationships as well. Studies show that partners can read one another's energy from as much as 20 feet away from each other.
8. If you go into a wildlife preserve, you will see a variety of different trees and vegetation. They are all different, and yet they live harmoniously in this environment. Couples do not have to be the same people, or even agree on everything, to do have a successful relationship. They do, however, have to learn to respect one another and share one another's space.
9. In order for anything in nature to survive, it must be tended to with sunlight and water. If a relationship is to thrive it, too, must receive care. For just as something in the environment will whither if not taken care of, so will your relationship. However, given the right nourishment, it will flourish!
It's wonderful to get back to nature for your own sense of inner peace. Now you can also use some pointers from Mother Nature to help realize how to empower your relationship!
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