Close high-quality relationships are linked to strong mental and physical well-being. Flexibility skills can enhance these relationships.
Researchers conducted a meta-analysis on 174 papers with a total of 43,952 participants that examined flexibility in family and romantic relationships. The research found the following flexibility skills improve relationships:
- Acceptance of Experiences, no matter how challenging;
- Mindful Focus on the present moment;
- Cognitive Diffusion, gently experiencing thoughts and feelings without clinging to them;
- A Broad Perspective, even during tough times;
- Connection to Values, no matter how chaotic or stressful the daily experience; and
- Committed Action, resilient pursuit of goals, despite setbacks and difficulties.
Research revealed that flexibility skills reduce stress and conflict and improve satisfaction and solidity.
Takeaway: Take stock of your capacity for flexibility and strive to improve these important relationship-building skills.
Source Jennifer S. Daks and Ronald D. Rogge, Examining the Correlates of Psychological Flexibility in Romantic Relationship and Family Dynamics: A Meta-analysis, 18 Journal of Contextual Behavioral Science 214, Oct. 2020, Examining the correlates of psychological flexibility in romantic relationship and family dynamics: A meta-analysis – ScienceDirect.