Strong social relationships are a key component of successful living. It can sometimes be difficult for us to develop and nurture relationships though in today’s world where many people feel polarized by divergent viewpoints. Clear, compassionate communication is needed to break down the “us versus them” mentality.
Each of us is responsible for what we choose to believe, and how we convey these beliefs to the world. If you have the have the desire to break down barriers and bring people together, the best way to achieve this is by making an effort to develop a greater understanding of similarities we have with other people – even those who have very different lifestyles than our own – and by committing to practice mutual respect for our differences.
At Acacia Creek, a Masterpiece Living Certified Center for Successful Aging, and retirement community, we believe socializing is an important part of all wellness categories – intellectual, social, physical, and purposeful. If you’d like to improve communications in your life, here are some tips to help you get started:
- Receive what others say without judgment. If you don’t understand the other person’s point of view, ask clarifying questions.
- Acknowledge the validity of the other person’s experience. Everyone wants to be heard. Don’t be dismissive of others’ experiences, even if you don’t think you would react the way that they have.
- Recognize your own emotional triggers. Make an effort to be open-minded when these topics arrive. Make a special effort to make conversations around your emotional triggers inviting and productive.
- Create a sense of safety among your peers. Acknowledge what they share with you and allow them to express their experience. Pause before offering your own thoughts and feelings and make an effort to do so without trying to persuade them or claiming your own opinion as “right.”
Remember: The only person you can change is yourself. Bringing people together starts with each of us, one communication at a time.
Acacia Creek Retirement Community inspires residents to live an active, meaningful life. Our mission as a senior community is to enrich the independence, well-being, and security of our residents through exceptional services and care based on Masonic values.
To learn more about Acacia Creek or our senior housing opportunities, contact us at www.acaciacreek.org/contact