I personally know how to do relationships really badly. Because of that, I had to look at this area really dynamically to see what else is possible. I have looked and looked and looked at what creates a great relationship, and I must tell you it’s not at all what I thought it would be.
What I have found is that most of us start divorcing ourselves to be in a relationship; and in that choice, we start to end the relationship before it even begins. Instead of becoming more of ourselves as we are in relationships, we separate from ourselves and dissociate from the things and people we enjoy. We end up divorcing parts and pieces of us, in order to care for someone else.
Divorcing ourselves in a relationship can be subtle and often starts with little sacrifices we make and dismiss because they seem trivial. For example, you like to go jogging. Your partner does not. So instead of jogging, you spend that time with your partner to show them that you really care. “I love you so much that I would give up this thing that is valuable to me so I can be with you.” This is just one of the ways you divorce you to create a relationship. What if something totally different is possible? What if you could be in a relationship and not have to divorce any part of yourself or separate from yourself or anyone else in any way?
Here are three tips to begin the process of having all of you and a great relationship:
1. Do what you love.
The world is asking for you to show up with all of you—all of the beauty, brilliance, and greatness that you are. When you cut off pieces of you to fit into a relationship, everyone misses out on the amazing gift of you. What would your relationship be like if you brought all of you into it? When we choose to do the things that are fun for us, when we choose to connect with the people that value us, when we choose what works for us, our relationship can continue to grow and expand into something greater.
2. Start a gratitude journal.
What we acknowledge grows bigger. When you start to focus on the things that you are grateful for, more of those things show up, so start practicing gratitude for you. Gratitude for you is one of the greatest ways to have and be all of you. When you are grateful for you, you are not judging you. Every day write down two to three things that you are grateful for about yourself. You are a gift and a contribution to the planet. Time to acknowledge it.
3. Undefine relationship
How many of the thoughts, feelings, and conclusions that you have about relationships are actually yours? How much have you based your beliefs on relationship from what others say is true? Societies, cultures, families, and religious institutions have all influenced the common points of view about relationships. Would you be willing to undefine everything you have decided about relationships? How?
There is a very simple tool that I refer to as “interesting point of view,” and when you use it for every point of view that you have, you can change things. Here’s how it works: When you notice a point of view about relationships, such as “relationships are hard work” or “being in a relationship means you need to give yourself up,” try saying to yourself: That is an interesting point of view I have.
This allows you to acknowledge that you have a limiting belief. It is there, and you are in allowance of it. By repeating this phrase, you will notice you start to feel lighter. It is a way to reframe the brain on the point of view you have taken and make it simply “interesting” rather than significant. What happens when you use this tool is that your points of view become simply interesting rather than real and true. And when they are interesting, they are easier to let go of.
When you choose to have and be all of you, your caring for others actually increases, and your relationship becomes even greater.
P.S. For the full article in Mind Body Green, please visit here.
P.S.S. And for even more information about Divorceless Relationships, check out this book that is filled with even more content.