Behavioral scientists tell us relationships are the backbone of happiness, and I want to be as happy as I was during those long ago lazy days of summer. Here are some tips to help you nourish the relationships in your life, and increase your happiness as well.
1. Stay in touch with those you love. When we lead busy lives, it’s way too easy to let important people slip through the cracks. Although I much prefer to reconnect with others on the phone, the time for conversations are too few and far in between. A quick email or postcard just to say, “Hello, I’m thinking of you” can make all the difference.
2. Delegate one night or weekend morning a month to reconnect. Knowing you’ve set a specific time to make some calls, or meet someone special for breakfast or dinner, will assure you do get quality time with those you care about.
3. Shut off your digital devices when you are with others. Technology is great and allows us to be accessible 24/7. However, when we let our calls, text and email messages to pull our attention away from those we are with, we send the message, “Our time together is not important.”
4. Listen more than you talk. Don’t interrupt. Practice the art of active listening to send the message, “I care about you and what you say.” Stay quiet and attentive, and try to turn off the little voice in your head that is thinking about what you want to say next.