Sometimes when life gives you a challenge, looking outside of your peers is the best way to find answers. The natural world around you may well give you insight into your own life. Here are a few of the lessons you can learn when you watch other members of the animal kingdom.

Treat Others With Compassion

Elephants create strong family bonds, but also are there to support the offspring of other elephants. A friend will accompany a baby elephant to a bathing hole while the mother is eating. The baby elephant grows up in an environment of compassion for all members of the group. If compassion is one of the primary feelings you have in any relationship, the bonds you develop with people will be stronger and more satisfying.

Have Patience With Others

The animal world doesn’t push each other to follow a schedule. Everything happens when it’s suppose to and no animal is forced to do something before they are ready. Robin babies leave the nest when they are ready. They learn the mechanics of flight from their parents but don’t take wing until their body is ready for the movement. Be patient with your partner or spouse and let them live their life at the pace that works for them.

Live in the Moment

This is a cliche phrase for humans but one that animals take to heart. If your cats are concerned about their future, they don’t show it. When they want to eat, nap or play, they do it. Worrying about a future that will likely change before that time arrives wastes valuable moments that could be lived right now. Spend more time in the moments with those in your relationships instead of thinking about what may happen in the future.

Respect Experience

Many animals view their elders with respect. A wolf pack relies on the experience of the older wolves for everything from hunting strategies to finding shelter from bad weather. Don’t hesitate to approach the people in your relationships to ask for advice on challenging matters. You will gain some valuable insight and your friends will feel honored that you respected them enough to ask.

Practice Listening

Most animals spend time listening to their environment before reacting to it. There is a kind of shallow listening where you hear something and make a snap judgment and then react. Deep listening requires concentration and careful assessment. When a jaguar hears a noise, they stop and listen for a long time to determine if the sound is that of an injured animal or from a healthy animal that could cause them harm. Practice deep listening to the people in your relationships. You may discover that your friend or partner doesn’t really need advice from you. They just need you to listen to them.