Nurture the Bonds that Matter Most
A bond is something that ties or fastens things together. A bond is also a pledge, vow, oath, guarantee, assurance; agreement and contract.
We move in bonds ALL the time, knowingly and unknowingly. Bonds are the unseen interconnections that form all of our relationships. The form of our relationships may change; there will be development and devolvement, periods of intimacy and times of challenges, birth and death, yet the bonds remain constant throughout our lifetime and beyond.
Here are some examples of bonds that may be overlooked:
- When you owe money or are owed money you create a bond that can often feel like bondage. Therefore it’s recommended to avoid debt and lending money.
- You might have bonds with your animal friends, this requires care and delicacy due to the dependency of domesticated animals on humans.
- If you brush up against a stranger on the street there is a bond. Are strangers your friends or enemies?
- A connection on the freeway is a bond. Road rage is as a common reaction when a driver cuts you off in traffic and speaks to a strong connection.
Responding to the small everyday connections from openness of heart is true to your nature and hence nurturing to all bonds.
Beware of venting personal afflictions, like rage, onto the bonds between you and others. Beware of complaining or over-explaining. You are not nurturing the bonds when you indulge negative emotions. The consequences of abusing your bonds are real!
Bonds can be nurtured even in the absence of physical proximity to another. For instance if you’re missing a loved one who may have passed or even if they are only absent for a short time, instead of focusing on the absence of the relationship, notice how the relationship is alive in your heart. You can nurture the bond by warmly having the connection with the absent person within your heart. When we rest in the bond, we are free of clinging and grasping for a particular form within the relationship, we can move as love without conditions.
Although family bonds may be some of the strongest in our lives, the bond between Lovers can be the most intimate.
There are endless studies of how the infant – caregiver bond is powerful and influential, and often mirrored in adulthood. When a bond is nurtured with trust, love and care, there is a sense of security carried throughout life: children as well as adults tend to be more confident, have a stronger sense of themselves and have a sense of trust in the world. As adults when we trust the universe we experience flexibility in the flow or our being, we meet the ups and downs of life with equanimity and skill.
It takes a great deal of awareness to see the depth of familial ties and the vicissitudes on adult relationships. When familial bonds are held tightly with emotional reactivity such as guilt, shame and fear of abandonment, adult-children might choose to cling to their biological family instead of moving forward in the intimacy with a partner.
Another way we avoid the intimacy of our bonds is by making material things and locations matter more than then they actually do; and making what matters most, your relationship, matter less. This confusion is a source of feeling disconnected.
The relationship with our partner or spouse is by far the most significant bond for the development of intimacy. The bond between husband and wife deserves the same kind of nurture that is given from a well-adjusted mother to her infant. The way a mother listens to her newborn’s needs can be equally practiced with your partner. Listen and respond when your partner is upset or excited as opposed to reacting with harshness or suspicion. Care for your relationship with warm cuddles and snuggles as you would a newborn baby. Neglecting the bond of your most precious relationship by excessive partying with friends, over-working, making biological families too important, harboring bitterness, punishment mentality, and/or indulging resentment of any kind stifles the evolution of a relationship.
Enjoy the opportunity to create a loving bond with your partner; be involved and stay involved with each other. Exalt, uplift, elevate, inspire, excite, stimulate, enliven, exhilarate and see the glory and goodness in each others hearts. Nurture the bond of your most important relationship. The quality of this kind of investment in your primary relationship will benefit you and your beloved for lifetimes.