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Recently, on the recommendation of some dear family members, I gave the app Headspace a try. Designed to provide accessible meditation for all occasions, the app guides you through your practice of mindfulness on the assumption that meditation can reduce stress.

I’ve found meditating first thing in the morning SO helpful to get centered as I begin my day, and equally helpful at night to help me get a good night’s rest! The science behind it isn’t wrong: Meditation is an incredible tool for reducing stress. And you know who benefits from reduced stress? You do — and so does every single person you come in contact with.

When you care for yourself, you care for everyone around you. When you reduce your own stress, your interactions with others become that much more of a blessing — and exponentially so with your partner. Maybe this is what Jesus meant when he said love your neighbor as yourself. That statement blatantly assumes and implies that you actually do love yourself, and so if you’re going to care for others you must obviously practice self-care as well!

The more I practice this, the clearer this idea becomes to me: Giving yourself permission to take care of yourself is the beginning of the path to a life that is life-giving, not life-sucking! Be a blessing to your partner and your family: Love yourself well. Meditation, to the busy soul (as I often am), can seem pointless. But I’ve found, after actually practicing it with care, that it’s benefits grow every day.

Give it a try, and let me know if you notice a difference in your relationship! I know I have.