Appreciation is a powerful feeling that can be used to override a whole host of negative emotions in just a few moments. Negative emotions come from framing an event, person, or situation in a negative light. When we perceive something negatively, it will often affect us emotionally- especially if we are attached to the person, situation, or event. A simple way to reset and re-frame our perception is to practice appreciation. This simple practice can help us in many different aspects of our lives, but today we will talk about how appreciation can reset and almost instantly fix most relationship problems.
Let us imagine that your partner is constantly leaving a small mess after their breakfast each morning. We have tried talking to them about the issue, yet the issue still hasn’t resolved. Every morning you wake up resentful, and seeing a small amount of clutter each morning is enough to make you incredibly bitter towards this person you love. You feel that they are disrespecting you personally and you feel hurt that they don’t care enough about you to just pick up their mess each morning. Simply put, over time this small pile of clutter each morning has caused a HUGE rift in your relationship. Imagine a situation like this as two tectonic plates pushing against each other…neither of you is planning to budge: your partner has a deeply ingrained habit of leaving the mess, and you aren’t going to stop being angry until the clutter stops. What happens eventually when two plates push against each other with enough force? An earthquake, and many times devastation will follow.
If the issue that is at hand is important enough that it cannot be reconciled: if one partner wants children and another doesn’t, then this can often be an issue worth ending a relationship for.
Consider this person you love, who has been there for you through good and bad times, has been faithful to you, has many times made you laugh and feel strong positive emotions, and now, this person has become a source of endless frustration because of your inability to allow a pile of clutter to be just a sign of their bad habit instead of a declaration of war against you.
Let’s imagine the same situation but this time with one major difference: you decide to practice appreciation. So your partner leaves you a little mess every single morning, you tried talking to them, and you tried letting them know how much it bothers you, but its still been going strong for several weeks. This time instead of focusing on the mess each morning and allowing it to fuel resentment within you, you decide to think of all the things that this person does and has done for you that have been positive. You decide to imagine a day where they don’t come home from work because they die in a car crash or because they decided to leave you…is that a world you could live in, how would you feel if you never saw this person you love again after today? This quick and simple re-frame should have you feeling pretty guilty that you ever made the mess into an issue at all.
We can focus on a small issue and turn it into a line drawn in the sand, that sits there, as we dare our partner to cross it, or we can choose to love them, appreciate the blessings they bring into our life each day, and allow our love and appreciation for all the things that they do for us every day to keep us in a positive mental state.
It is really easy to let go of almost any issue when you imagine the person that you love never coming home again, or if you imagine the police calling you and telling you that this person has just died in a car crash. If you ever reach a point where the idea of this person not coming home to you doesn’t illicit serious feelings of sadness and grief, then you probably have some very serious and very deep relationship issues: at this point your relationship may be beyond saving at all.
Practice appreciation for all things in your life, because almost all of us have a lot to be grateful for. The person we complain about the most, most likely means very much to us, otherwise such small issues wouldn’t matter that much to us. They say you only appreciate things when they are gone, but make a habit of appreciating the ones you love each and every day: andyour whole life can change when you choose to view your full abundance of blessings.