So, you’ve grown weary of fighting with your ex-husband or your great uncle. You’ve heard that the best way to turn an enemy into an ally is to wish them well and you want to give it a try. You can fix broken relationships with positive thinking, but it’s not easy when your main emotion toward them is negativity.
Thoughts are powerful things. And if you are unconsciously holding negative thoughts, anger, resentment or even unconscious wishes for revenge against the person you are supposedly loving or forgiving, it will backfire. Don’t worry! It just takes some practice sending loving kindness to people you’re really mad at to turn things around.
Here are some tips and exercises to clear your mind and heart for sending good vibes to those you care about without your family’s emotional vortex sucking you in and draining your energy.
1. Think Loving Thoughts About the Person You Resent
Make a mental checklist of all the positive feelings you have for this person. After all, you came into the relationship with the best expectations until a negative experience muddied your idyllic view.
Remember why you want things to be good again between the two of you then think only loving thoughts toward them. The more you go down your list of positives in your mind, the easier it will become to mean it when you say it.
Begin by listing all the good feelings you want to experience for yourself&endash;feeling loved, appreciated, included&endash; then replace yourself with the image of this person and imagine them receiving all the wonderful things in life you just asked to have for yourself. Slowly but surely the clouds of anger and negativity will dissipate.
If you set aside even a moment each day to think loving thoughts about someone you resent, wishing them good fortune and happiness, you will chip away the wall between you. If you are at in impossible impasse with someone you used to love, use this affirmation daily.
“Dear Energy Source/Creator/Universe, please send loving light, success, great health and happiness to [name of relative] today.”
That’s it. All you have to do is say those words out loud every day then go on with your own life.
At first it may feel awkward or insincere. You may even feel vulnerable. And, depending on how long standing the conflict is, it may take weeks, months, or even years, but eventually you will notice your energy shifting. Try it and see what happens!
2. Be Honest About Your Motives
The best way to avoid having hopes dashed and expectations not met is to not put them on your agenda in the first place.
If you want to get in touch with a former relationship, for example, think about what’s really behind your desire. If you are hoping they will apologize first, or give something back that they took from you—money, furniture, reputation—or invite you to their holiday party this year, you are setting up the potential for more conflict.
“I want the promise of peace and love to motivate me. Today, I will measure every word and action according my highest values.”
It can be difficult to discern your true motives but it’s worth the discomfort to take a good, hard look at yourself before you take action. Only when you act or give without any expectation except to feel good about the situation and restore peace to your heart will you be free of your resentment.
3. Give Gratitude
Fill your heart with gratitude
and it will return threefold goes the saying.
When you feel good, others receive that energy and want to return it to you, even if they are unaware of it. That’s just the nature of energy.
Whenever you find yourself feeling stressed, resentful, or angry with a person, write down a list of ten things you are grateful for in your own life. Then write down ten things you are grateful for about the person you are having conflict with.
This will steer your mind away from negativity and expand your happy, loving energy, toward yourself and the other person. When writing your list, hold the person’s image in your heart and state their name.
“I am grateful for my relationships and for the lessons of the heart that [name of relative] brings to my life.”
This will focus your thoughts and concentrate the energy, making your affirmation more potent.
4. Detach From the Outcome
We all have the ability to manage expectations, change our state of mind, and ultimately be happy regardless of how things turn out. If you keep in mind that all roads lead back to oneself, then no experience is wasted. Detach from the outcome yet be open to miracles.
Go into your relationship with good intentions but don’t rehearse, strategize or make demands. This, of course, is easier said than done. Try this affirmation in preparation for your next difficult conversation:
“I open my ears and my heart, listening for the truth behind the words. Then I shall respond in kind.”
Close your eyes and place your hands over your heart when you recite this affirmation.
Post these affirmations where you can read them everyday. They can be handy tools for de-stressing when strong emotions start to overtake your peace of mind. Most of all, keep practicing! Over time you may realize real and lasting change in all of your important relationships.