When we hear the word relationship; we often think of a connection. A way in which two or more persons or things have an effect, or impact on each other.
A Google search will show you that relationships are believed to help us reduce stress, lower blood pressure, and encourage healthy behaviors; as close partners encourage each other to exercise, eat healthily, and follow up with medical challenges. Bottom line: relationships help us live longer, and happier lives…sometimes, and other times …it gets complicated.
Well, if you have been paying attention to any social media, you know what happens on the other side of paradise: suspicion, hurt, chaos, separation, divorce, etc. As I said: it gets complicated!
Relationship foundations: Trust, commitment, and vulnerability are considered the pillars of an ideal relationship.
Almost all romantic relationships begin as a beautiful, fun, exciting meeting of the souls, and end up with separation. And both, or at least one of the partners asking: what happened? where did those amazing feelings go to?
– What happened? The couple lost sight of why they got together.
– Where did all those amazing feelings go to? The good news is that those amazing feelings are always available to us, they are in the background, behind all those negative, repetitive thoughts and feelings that have flooded our daily thinking.
-Hint: If your goal is to love and enjoy each other’s company; remember to stay calm, quietly listen (not to the stories in your head), and stay close to the other.
Really? Well, there is an invisible relationship between you and “your” thinking, and that “internal relationship” dramatically affects all other relationships.
Our relationships with others are a reflection of our relationship to ourselves (our thinking about ourselves), and our relationship to life itself (our thinking about life in general, including how we think about our significant other).
Have you noticed how every situation in life; offers us an opportunity to choose what we focus on?
Every situation is an opportunity to slow down and examine our relationship to that moment, and to examine our relationship to our thinking = the ideas crossing our mind at the moment.
Often, the challenge in front of us is the way to insight, the way to understanding our capacity to be present; regardless of the situation, and to show up as love, and curious.
When we stop listening to what is going on between our ears and truly listen to the other person as we did when we first met them, when we listen to understand their pain, somehow the mental image we have of them in our head changes. Then, we can see, and relate to the actual person in front of us.
Remember, we humans have high and low moods. Everybody expresses low moods in different ways, we all show up differently, but the common denominator of low mood is the feeling of insecurity. When you or your mate is in a low mood, you are not dealing with the person you fell in love with, you are dealing with a person who is intoxicated, or is under the influence of very strong natural chemicals caused by a flood of automatic negative, repetitive thinking. Does it make sense to get into an argument with an intoxicated person? or would it be wiser to wait until they sober up, return to center, and see what happens?
Besides the physical attraction, why did you get together? Some people say: to start a family, to learn about this possible life partner, to get to know this person that attracts me so much; and also finds me attractive, and to experience love, acceptance, to enjoy each there’s company.
Hint: don’t lose sight of why you got together
Don’t lose focus
Don’t be distracted
Don’t lose sight of your goal: “to experience, love = acceptance, and to enjoy each other’s company.”
How we relate to others is the direct result of we relate to the ideas (beliefs) we hold about our self-worth, and how we relate to the personal opinions we hold of others.
In psychology, we talk about transferences and projections. It is said that we either transfer or redirect strong feelings we have toward significant figures from childhood onto others (Transference), or that we unconsciously project, externalize difficult feelings emotions which we can’t see, or can’t accept on ourselves, and put them onto others (Projections).
That is true, our thinking is dynamic: it is always either transferring, projecting, or making-up new stories that bring up new feelings.
Our relationship to what is going on between our ears affects all our perceptions, all our expectations, and all our reactions. Do you want to have a better relationship with someone? Start by understanding your relationship to your own thinking process.
Some things to consider as you start this process:
- There is an invisible energy, a life force behind all things in life. That which animates your body, it animates your mental process, that which animates nature: call it what you may
- Thoughts-feelings (ideas-sensations) appear and disappear on their own, they are constant changes, as soon as a new thought-feeling appears, everything changes.
- Life appears; as it is perceived at the moment, and then we have a new thought-feeling experience, and everything changes. All is well, we are resilient, we are designed to bounce back.
- Listen to the other (take a break from listening to your own thinking), you can’t listen to two conversations at the same time. When your internal voice is on, find a way to acknowledge it, and go back to focusing on understanding your partner’s point of view.
- Remember: Trust, commitment, and vulnerability will support your relationship.
Are you having a relationship with your actual mate? or are you having an intimate relationship with the “temporary version your thinking has made-up” of your mate?
When we have a better relationship with our thinking, everything changes. We get clear, and sometimes we decide to change and end the relationship in a clean, good way. We can even be good friends and wish them well.
In this world, everything changes, this moment too shall pass… and we’ll be OK, we are resilient, we are designed to bounce back.
As soon as we have a deeper understanding, a new thought-feeling appears; and our perceptions, expectations, and reactions change. From that confident place, we can show up as love and curious, open to all the natural bumps that relationships bring to our life experience. Never a dull moment… oh well, that is life!
Until next time,
J Enrique Roman