Relationships are my specialty. I get to watch them as they fall apart in order to fall back into place in my office. I have a very high success rate but it’s not necessarily about me. It is about the couples who come to the understanding that relationships, any relationships, are about sacred contracts and how we deal with them. The people who heal and hold it all together are the ones that know every response they have is about them personally and solely, their integrity, level of honesty and presence. No matter how many tools couples may accumulate, without understanding that simple principle, relationships don’t work. Relationships are a sacred trust. So, one could say that without an element of spirituality in our relationships, they are not complete.
Spirituality doesn’t necessarily mean religion, dogma or doctrine although those things may serve us on our path to getting to true consciousness. Spirituality, I think we can all agree, means having integrity. A spiritual person may be one who simply loves the earth and is dedicated to caring for her. It may be someone who has an uncommon love for mankind or an intention to deliberately live life in a conscious way. In relationships, being spiritual means being real and truthful. It means being present and committed to mutually agreed upon stated contacts and agreements. It means having compassion and a sense of the sacred about this person who has committed to you.
We are often act cavalier about each other’s feelings. We say things that are meant to intentionally hurt. We do things that are intentionally meant to cause mistrust and uncertainty. We talk about each other to other people not caring about the impact it has on the perception of the person listening. We break confidences. We break contracts. We break hearts. We lose a sense of civility. We act in ways that display total disregard for the tenderness of the spirit inside our beloved. And, all of that is about us…not the other person.
Partners who are willing to take personal responsibility for every response they have in a relationship find relationships to be the greatest soul school on the planet. It tests our integrity, our compassion, our honesty and our level of presence. When partners take ownership of their own feelings and responses, the real work of relationship begins and the result is profound growth and deeper intimacy. Partners need to lay their problems out on the table and talk openly about why they respond in certain ways to circumstances and issues. They need to identify and articulate the emotions behind these behaviors in order to understand and change them. Very often this understanding alone creates healing and stops the cycle of abusive behavior. Very few people want to be deliberately hurtful. Most of the time the behaviors that create separation originate out of fear and a lack of faith in ourselves.
When we are able to communicate openly about issues, partners are able to create new solutions. The most important element to creating this kind of deeper dialog is trust. These conversations must be dealt with honorably and not discussed outside the relationship unless with a professional or by mutual agreement.
In my books Break Up or Break Through (for non-traditional relationships) and The Trouble with Marriage (for traditional relationships) it became clear as I interviewed couples that the basic principles of successful relationships were simple. Be honest. Stay present. Act out of love. With these three principles any issues about money, sex or life challenges were easily resolved.
The greatest gift you can give your partner and your relationship is to understand the sacred value of both and to treat your partner and the relationship as a gift that deserves open on-going communication. Couples who commit even one hour week to just listening to their partner and understanding how their partner feels found their relationships deepened and grew. In today’s society with all the pressures of success, this kind of commitment seldom happens unless it is actually booked in the day planner and treated and a sacred trust and priority. Couples need to understand that they are not responsible for each other’s feeling, nor do they have to fix these feelings or provide solutions. The finest gift one can give is to simply listen and understand how your partner’s truth is true for him or her. You can download a communication exercise off my site http://www.In-Two-One.com if you do not have one of the books and begin this process today. After 25 years of practice, I can honestly say the couples who do this stay together and resolve their issues and the ones who never find time are often back in my office rehashing the same problems.
Do yourself a favor and bring the element of sacred connection back to your relationship though ethical communication. The gifts you will receive are amazing.
© Dr. Dina Bachelor Evan 2013