Harmony is when currents come together in synchronicity and togetherness.
This is oneness.
Which is why harmony is such an important part of music. And why you can hear when something is not harmonious.
It just doesn’t sound right.
Our feelings are similar in this way.
When you don’t feel harmonious in a relationship, it’s because your energy is not synced well with the other person. Or sometimes you’re not in harmony with a group of people.
Look across the landscape of your community and you’ll find people that you are in harmony with, who share your passions, values, interests, and beliefs.
It’s easy to find people we’re not in harmony with
Discord, disagreements, resentment, bitterness, strife.
It’s pretty prevalent across society. Any era of history has plenty of people living in the same geographic space who are disharmonious.
And the default mode people take to bring harmony is to try and make others agree with them, believing that viewpoints are what make for unity.
That’s not true.
The truth is, harmony works and feels best when different and unique perspectives come together. There’s a fluidity that happens that’s truly powerful. And beautiful. It changes the landscape and creates a current of energy that can move mountains.
What’s the key to harmony?
There’s a reason there are rests in music. There’s a reason why a drummer is keeping essentially 3 parts of the same rhythm going at the same time. It’s in the in-between beat where we can pause to hear what’s really profound.
The accents that emerge to create beautiful music that’s beyond the same-old thing. And in these spaces, the response creates a magical moment we can repeat over and over.
If you are in a conversation with two friends, who gets to talk first?
Think about that.
When your friend Alice opens up telling you all about what a great day she’s had, do you cut her off at her third word so as to talk about a crazy experience you had at the grocery store?
Not if you want to show Alice that you respect her. If you’re not aware and conscious that talking on top of someone can change how they engage with you, you might not catch this.
This is why being conscious of the in-between portion of the beat in our conversations and interactions is so important.
If all three of you start talking at the same time, who stops and who carries on? Is it a waiting/shouting game you play to see who will stop so one of you gets to take the stage and have the attention?
This might sound silly, but I’ve watched people in small groups do this over and over again. Adults at networking events do this and it’s kind of amusing. And also sad. Because you show your lack of relational understanding when you talk on top of someone without giving them the space to be heard and understood.
Harmony isn’t just about being in the same key musically. It’s about coalescing yourself with the flow of the relationship. Acquiescing to be in unity with the people you are connected to.
In our closest, most intimate relationship this dynamic is of extreme importance. The Love you share with your significant other deserves your conscious focus on respect, connection, and harmony.
What happens when one of you wants something the other doesn’t, or doesn’t want it at the same time?
Intimacy is a common example of this
If you want intimacy and your partner doesn’t, at least not in that exact moment, what do you do? Do you complain about how you don’t get enough and use that to justify other behaviors? Do you talk about how stressful your work is and all the stuff you’ve gone through that day so you can get their pity and get what you want? Or do you demand that they not withhold from you because you’re supposed to be one together?
Or do you retreat inside yourself and not say anything, because being told “no” means rejection and you don’t know how to handle that? So you suppress your feelings, tell yourself you never get what you want, and disengage for the rest of the time you’re together.
None of these responses produces the result you want. It’s a way to sow discord in the relationship, create added tension, stress, frustration, and problems.
Harmony is the product of peace flowing in the current of the beat, in a syncopation of the dynamic in the connection. In relationships, it’s about respecting the other person as you respect yourself.
It’s empathetic in movement. Put yourself in the shoes of your partner. What have they experienced today that would make them not want to be intimate right now?
You can’t know how to answer that question until you listen.
Listen to the in-between beat. Pause. Look into their eyes and be fully present with them.
Show them that they’re such an important person in your world and that they have your undivided attention.
Give them your whole heart, your whole presence. And meet them with all your Love in this place.
Love is understanding
In his book True Love: A Practice For Awakening The Heart, Thich Nhat Hahn says,
Understanding is the essence of Love. If you cannot understand, you cannot Love.
To understand, you must look within. Look within yourself and look within the other person. This requires listening deeply, intently, and with genuine care.
It’s a removal of focusing only on yourself and what you want at the moment. It creates this kind of connection because empathy is the key to understanding the nature of Love.
To do this, you must truly listen. In the listening, you find the beat of their essence, the true sound of the Love that is their voice. You find the movement. And you can join in harmoniously with your partner to understand their rhythm and melody and the notes of their heart.
This is how you create space for people to meet them where they are. This is the practice of getting on the same page so that you’re reading the same lines and understanding each other’s flow.
When you pause to listen, magic happens. Connection happens. Syncopation occurs.
Harmony is made here
If you listen to your partner to hear her say how she’s feeling in the moment, you understand that right now isn’t the time. But that time will happen soon enough. Because she wants you too, and she misses the intimacy you both have longed for.
Life is busy and there’s a ton of stuff to try and keep up with. But if you’ll spend some time with her at this moment to connect emotionally and intellectually, sparkles of fairy-tale magic and wild passion will ensue in your physical connection.
All it takes is your presence. Your focus. Your commitment to listening so you can understand.
It’s in this kind of harmony where you experience real, true love
This also requires that you give yourself this same kind of attention. Actually, you have to be first with yourself in this practice before you can fully give it to someone else. Especially to the person you Love with your whole heart.
It’s from the practice of daily self-Love where you are able to sit in the uncomfortable and difficult spaces. Where you listen to your body, your heart, and your soul to understand yourself more. And embrace yourself. When you can embrace your own discomfort, and send Love to yourself, you are powerful beyond description.
You are your own beta test with Love. As you grow Love deep inside yourself and let go of your pain, you practice the art of creating a safe space. In this space, you can be open with your feelings and allow what is unpleasant to be without trying to force anything. There’s gentleness here. As well as kindness and patience.
From this place, you know how to create a safe space for others to be vulnerable with you in their pain. Which creates understanding and harmony between you both.
Create this kind of harmony in yourself and your relationships
Curious about how to apply this principle of Being First to your life and relationships? Set up a free coaching session with me to learn practical tools to make this kind of connection happen.
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