Relationships Are Your History

Relationship with oneselfDid you know that the quality of your Relationships determines the quality of your Life? This statement caught my attention as I started noticing how my mood changed depending on interactions with others. For example: have you been in a conversation where people are complaining about the traffic, the country condition, politics and so on? how did you feel after hearing all that? Maybe frustrated, anxious, sad, or any other not so great feeling. On the other hand, have you experienced an environment full of laughs and support charging you with positivism? Do you feel happy and energized? If so, this is my point on the importance of the daily relationships we engage on.

If the quality of our Relationships determines the quality of our lives, today I want to focus on three areas to manage key relationships: 1) the relationship with oneself, 2) relationships with others and 3) one's inherited emotional DNA and its impact on one's relationships.

relationship with oneself is often forgotten due to the external focus that our western culture has. It is not surprising that many self-development / self-care practices such as yoga, meditation and others now are igniting more curiosity and gaining many followers. I have found myself deeply involved with travel and work, jeopardizing my time for personal activities and care. Little by little I stop exercising, my food choices become less healthful, sleep hours are reduced, and soon my personal interests become secondary. But is not only work that impinges on our time for self-care. I often hear busy parents taking care of their kids, businessmen and women obsessed with the success of their endeavors; ending each day exhausted with little or no energy for themselves. Postponing taking care of every relationship, even with ourselves, results in a loss. Have you noticed that some people are physically present, but their eyes show low or no energy; and what you find is a blank stare? Personally, I have been there. In this state I felt disconnected and lacking purpose. It is not a comfortable or productive place to be in, as nothing makes sense. Now, I notice this in other people. It is as if their soul has left their body. One must avoid getting there, and this is why dedicating time to care for oneself is crucial. Make a plan to ensure it happens. Find positive activities you enjoy and reserve time for them; some examples are running, watching movies, walking, cooking, etc. It is fundamental that you engage in activities that nurture and connect you with what you are passionate about, and with what brings you delight. Research shows that people that take care of themselves are happier, more fulfilled, and less likely to suffer from depression. Think about a pet or a plant of yours… do you make the time daily to ensure their well-being and development. If this is a task you won’t postpone; what is your reason to delay taking care of yourself? Ask a friend, your kids or spouse to call to your attention when you show low energy and a blank stare. Take care of the relationship with yourself.

Now, how about our relationships with others? Jeff Olson, author of the Slight Edge, writes that you are the average of the five closest people in your life. If that is true, stop a minute and reflect on who are these people. Are they positive? Do they engage or support your interests and life plans? After spending time with them do you feel better or worse? These are the questions that I ask myself to ensure that my relationships with others are conscious and align to my life interests. It is an act of self-care that undoubtedly impacts my quality of life. This realization has helped me to choose better and have a deeper awareness of what I need in my personal and professional life. To give you an example, one of my friends is an Ironwoman that has motivated me to get up early and go to the gym at 5 am… something that seemed burdensome and impossible before, now excites me and as if by magic, I now work out regularly. Every step forward now becomes an opportunity to build upon, checking where and when I find myself with people or in situations that are not be nurturing to me.

Relationship DNAWith all this awareness and understanding, I often wondered why I slip back into not taking care of myself and associating with toxic people that do not support my personal development. On my search for answers, it was even more surprising to find that so many people share this pattern with me. I came to understand that we are the product of our known experiences and the emotions we inherit from our family / ancestors. And, that when I find myself stuck or repeating a pattern, others in my family are often struggling with it as well. Situations, challenges and successes travel through our family DNA. The way we relate to others and ourselves is no exception. For example, just like my mom, I have struggled with maintaining a healthy weight and making time to exercise and take care of myself. And, just like my dad, I make work an unbalanced priority. Family Constellations, also known as Systems Dynamics, has showed me that link over and over. If you read my previous article about the subject, you may remember it explaining that families transmit information among its members and throughout generations verbally, in written matter and biologically through DNA. Systems Dynamics helps you explore and understand the Emotional DNA you have inherited from your family. This inheritance shapes many factors of your unconscious personal and professional life. It shows you how previous generations color how you experience life and influences the decisions you make. By exploring previous generations with a “Systemic Lens” you can understand the impact of multigenerational decisions or events and begin to take action. If you find yourself stuck on a pattern; consider experiencing this technique to make the unconscious patterns conscious to empower yourself. If the quality of your Relationships determines the quality of your life, does it not make sense to better understand how our inherited emotional DNA impacts our relationships with others and ourselves?

Come and join us on the February 15-17 Relationships DNA workshop in San Diego, California... Make this an opportunity to enhance or begin writing your plan for self-care, develop awareness about you and those around you, and discover hidden patterns to help you improve your relationships.

Maritza G. Aulestia de Faria, Systemic Co-Facilitator & Coach
With 20 years of international corporate experience, Maritza combines her business knowledge and organizational development skills to assist leaders to develop themselves and their teams to achieve consistently high performance. Her work focuses on developing strategies that foster a work culture that unleashes employees’ passion to fulfill their potential in work and life.  She has combined strategic and technical Human Resources practices with multi-dimensional approaches to examine problems, identify patterns and test possibilities that lead to new directions and career paths. Maritza has continued her personal and professional growth through extensive training in Coaching, System Dynamics and Body & Brain Yoga practices. These disciplines combine to give an integrated perspective and expertise that apply innovative coaching techniques in a safe environment to accelerate self-understanding and effectiveness. She and her clients provide a living testimony of sustained development and powerful transformation.