Have you ever had the experience of someone's eyes lighting up when they see you?
You didn't do anything - weren't being particularly wonderful or entertaining - you just showed up and they were delighted?
When you have a real connection with someone - genuine attunement - delight is the natural result.
And here's something I think is important about this:
Delight is a basic need. As human beings, we need to feel delighted in.
Without it, something within us shuts down. We lose a sense of meaning. Life feels dull and we feel alone. It's that important.
And like all things atunement related... delight breeds delight! It's contagious.
Cultivating your capacity for delight is possible and well... delightful!
Here's an example of a practice for cultivating delight in relationships:
This is one I practiced for many years with my children but it can be done in any kind of relationship.
When my kids we little, there was always so much to attend to... diapers, meals, picking up toys endlessly, laundry endlessly...
So I took time each day to pause. To stop doing anything - and just sit quietly and watch them... take them in.
I would try to do this so they didn't notice me and would just continue playing or whatever they were doing. I didn't want them to entertain me... it's like I wanted to catch them just being themselves.
And there would inevitably be some little unexplainable moment - they would do some little thing or interact with each other in a particular way... and my heart would swell...with delight!
These moments of delight kept me nourished during this time when my children needed so much from me. These moments of delight cut through the sleep deprivation and my anxiety about whether or not everyone was going to be ok.
So we come back to the practice of attunement... pause and...
First Presence - come back to yourself.
Then Contact - really take the other in.
Then Reflection - let yourself be affected by the other...
Then Respond - see what comes to you in the moment...
Then see if Delight arises...
Delight can't be forced or coerced. It can't be manufactured. If we give it room with this kind of practice - it comes on it's own!