8 Traits of Healthy Relationships

From the desk of Michele Foster – 

 8 Traits of Healthy Relationships

Let’s start with kindness. How kind should you be? As kind as you possibly can. Who should you be kind to? To everyone, you come in contact with. From taxi drivers to hotel clerks to servers, to store clerks, to people on the street, in your office and at home. Be kind to everyone.

A kind word goes a long way. Perhaps somebody is having a bad day and you don’t know it. He or she is really feeling down and you offer a kind word. Maybe it’s just a friendly, “Hello, how are you today?” Maybe it’s just taking a minute or two to listen to what somebody has to say. But your few moments of attention could turn somebody’s day around. You might make them feel more worthwhile and important.

Be generous with your kindness. It will go a long way. People will remember, whether you know them or not. If you’re in a crowded restaurant and you’re especially nice to the waiter, he’ll remember you next time you come in and give you even better service.

When you give kindness, it’s not gone. It’s invested. It will come back to you two, five, 10, 100 times. Kindness is important in every aspect of your life, especially in building good relationships with others.

The next relationship-building essential is sensitivity. Allow yourself to be touched by the experience of others. Understand the plight of others. Open up your heart, mind and attention to the needs of others. Whether they’re people you work with or people you live with, you need to put yourself in other people’s shoes. Try to find out, if you can, what’s going on in their hearts.

Related: How to Be More Empathetic in Conversations

If there’s a problem, you’ve got to be sensitive enough to ask some questions. One question might do it. Sometimes, however, you won’t even get through to the root of the problem until you’ve asked two or three questions.

People often won’t reveal the problem on the first question. You say, “How are you today? How are things?” He or she answers, “Well, everything’s OK.” You can tell by the way they say this that everything is not OK. Most of us don’t want to come right out and say what the real problem is, unless two criteria are met.

  1. We need to feel as though we’re talking to someone we can trust.
  2. We need to believe we’re talking to someone who really cares.

So it might just take a second, third or fourth question before the trust builds. Once the person finally understands that you do care, they’ll be willing to tell you what’s really going on. You’ll hear what’s really on their mind.

Asking questions up front can save so much time. Have you ever talked for an hour and then asked a question? You probably found out that you just wasted the previous hour. Learn to ask questions that will build the trust and communication between you and those you work with. Build trust and communication, and you’ll also build loyalty.

Related: 9 Traits of Trustworthy People

If you don’t know the other person very well, you will obviously need a longer questioning process. You need to take the time to find out what he’s all about. You must be sensitive to where he or she came from, what he or she has been through, and the tragedies in his or her life. If you really want to have an effect on people, start with where they are coming from. If they’re hurting, try to understand their pain. If somebody’s in trouble, you’ve got to start with the trouble.

Learn to express, not impress. If you want to touch somebody, express sincerity from the heart. When you try to impress, you build a gulf. By expressing, you build a bridge. People want to be able to relate their thoughts and philosophies and experiences to someone who will say, “Me, too. I know what you mean.” They don’t want your reaction to be, “So what?”

If you’re meeting someone for the first time, and you’re simply getting acquainted, here’s where you start: Find something you have in common. Find something you can both identify with.

When you’re talking with somebody who’s been stricken in the heart and you’ve had the same experience, you can talk about being stricken in the heart. Your words will mean something. They will have substance. They will have depth. If you start there, building the bridge with kindness and sensitivity, you have identification. You have the basis for a strong and fruitful relationship. And everyone will benefit.

Related: The 4 Building Blocks of Good Communication

Adapted from Leading an Inspired Life

This post originally appeared on SUCCESS.com.

To Your Health & Success.

Michele Foster
Health & Wellness Ambassador

Energy, Endurance, Empowerment

Like so many women all over the world, I spent a great portion of my life feeling lonely.

One day I decided that I had been feeling sorry for myself long enough. I made a decision to get my life on track and spend the rest of my days empowering women and men to victory in their lives through their physical and financial health.

I am now paying it forward – If you would like this book as my gift to you, please contact me and it will be sent to with love through Amazon Prime! You will pay nothing at all.

To Your Health & Success.

Michele Foster
Health & Wellness Ambassador
847.323.2419

How Nightly Routines and Relaxation Techniques Can Improve the Quality of Your Child’s Sleep

Unlike adults, children don’t always appreciate the benefits of a good night’s sleep. While parents look forward to slipping under the covers at the end of a long day, kids find plenty of creative excuses to delay bedtime. Unfortunately, bedtime delays can decrease the quality and duration of your child’s sleep and affect his or her behavior and performance at school. Following a few of these suggestions can help you ensure that your child gets enough rest at night.

Pay Attention to Sleep Recommendations

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends the following daily sleep totals for kids:

  • 4 to 12 Months. 12 to 16 hours
  • 1 to 2 Years. 11 to 14 hours
  • 3 to 5 Years. 10 to 13 hours
  • 6 to 12 Years. Nine to 12 hours
  • 13 to 18 Years. Eight to 10 hours

Even slight sleep deficits can affect your child’s grades. A Savvy Sleeper survey revealed that high schoolers who got 8.1 hours of sleep received mostly As, while their peers who only slept for 7.3 hours got Cs.

Control the Environment

Sleep environment plays a crucial role in sleep quality. Your child may have difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep if he or she doesn’t have a dark, quiet place to sleep. The National Sleep Foundation reports that the 60 to 67 degrees Fahrenheit is the optimum temperature for quality sleep.

It can be difficult to sleep if your blanket is scratchy or your bed is too small. Kids can outgrow cribs or toddler beds quickly. Make sure your child’s bed is at least a foot longer than his or her height. Soft bedding and a supportive pillow (if your child is 2 or older) will help keep your child comfortable during the night.

Ban Digital Devices and TV Before Bed

Blue light from smartphones, laptops, tablets, and TVs can interfere with your child’s ability to fall asleep and stay asleep. Ask your kids to turn off devices at least an hour before bed to prevent sleep quality problems.

Set a Bedtime

Kids are more likely to get the recommended amount of sleep when parents set and enforce bedtimes, according to a Canadian study. In fact, both kids and parents benefit when they go to bed and wake up at the same time every day. Ideally, sleep and wake up times should be approximately the same whether it’s a weekend or weekday.

Limit Caffeine

Chances are you would have trouble falling and staying asleep if you downed a big cup of coffee in the evening. Kids may have just as much difficulty if they drink caffeinated drinks in the hours before bedtime. Water or milk are better, healthier options.

Embrace Routine

Routines help your child wind down at the end of the day and set the stage for sleep. For younger children, the bedtime routine may include a bath and story, while older kids may enjoy board games, free play or reading a favorite book 30 to 60 minutes before turning the lights out. Starting routines early may even help prevent bedtime struggles as your child grows older.

Help Your Kids Relax

Stress doesn’t only affect adults. Worries about grades, friends or the monster under the bed can trigger stress and anxiety that make it hard for children and adolescents to fall asleep. Teaching your child meditation, calming yoga poses or progressive relaxation techniques can help them learn to relax at bedtime. Progressive relaxation involves tensing then relaxing muscle groups, starting with the lower part of the body first.

Does your child have sleep issues? We’ll find the source of the problem and offer suggestions and treatments designed to improve sleep quality. Contact us to schedule an appointment.

Sources:

National Sleep Foundation: Find Out What the Ideal Thermostat Setting Is to Help You Snooze Longer

https://www.sleep.org/articles/temperature-for-sleep/

BMC Public Health: Do Parents’ Support Behaviours Predict Whether or Not Their Children Get Sufficient Sleep? A Cross-Sectional Study

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5442855/

National Sleep Foundation: Children and Sleep

https://www.sleepfoundation.org/articles/children-and-sleep

Healthy Children: Healthy Sleep Habits

https://www.healthychildren.org/English/healthy-living/sleep/Pages/Healthy-Sleep-Habits-HTo YOurow-Many-Hours-Does-Your-Child-Need.aspx

Savvy Sleeper: Costing Kids Sleep, 7/7/19

https://www.savvysleeper.org/costing-kids-sleep/

Are you Living Your Ideal Life?

What IF? Imagine a Business (Part Time) or Full Time where by redirecting your spending – Is your cost of doing business?

Meaning – no additional money needed other than money you already spend in this area of your life.

You move product in “personal consumption” you don’t sell product?

The model is a network of consumers who are invested in these products for life and We (You) are the customer and the coach.

Believing in Yourself is the Most Powerful Tool you need

This is a Democracy in its finest form – Team Business

Listen to my story about this Lifestyle –

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