Take a breath, take a moment.
Contemplate your most joyous, loving relationships, the people who form your inner circle.
Rather than reflecting on these people, consider yourself.
What qualities and behaviors do you bring to your loving relationships?
You might come up with qualities like: grace, joy, open-heartedness, trust, integrity,
In loving relationships, we bring our best self to the fore, and meet and match the other person’s best self. These relationships are gorgeous, glorious, affirming and validating. Even when there are challenges, or moments of disagreement and discord, we can approach these relationships knowing that the air will clear, and we’ll be back in harmonious flow. Our behaviors mirror our awareness that our investment in and the value of the relationship is very high.
Now, consider one or two challenging relationships. Perhaps a family member or a colleague, a neighbor or a former friend.
Again, instead of thinking about the other person or people, reflect on yourself.
What qualities and behaviors do you bring to these relationships? You might come up with behaviors like: distrust, anger, anxiety, aggression, wariness, hostility
In difficult relationships, we may not be able to locate our best self, or even our most current self. Often our difficult relationships remind us of other times, places and people, and we bring our old self’s behaviors to our experiences. If we’re not in current time when we interact with people we find difficult, we’re not likely to shift our behaviors or the relationship to level ground.
It’s easy to focus on the other person
How easy is it to focus on the other person and his or her behaviors? Too easy. If he or she would just…calm down, not be so antagonistic, be honest, own their part, stop judging, criticizing, belittling. As I often say to clients and students when they’re unhappy that they’re still stuck in the same place, ‘how’s that workin’ for ya?’ And we have a good laugh.
One of the interesting things about relationships (and really, most of life), is that we have no control at all over how the other person chooses to behave, relate, show up, interact. No control.
Control lies with you. You’ve got the power to evolve your part of the equation.
Another interesting thing to do in your relationships is to consciously observe yourself, your behaviors, reactions and responses to the other person’s tone, choices, assumptions, judgments and projections.
Observing and identifying your reactions and behaviors in relationship helps you intentionally clear and evolve your energy.
When you enroll in a difficult experience with a challenging person, you activate an energetic pattern and set of behaviors that opposes the other person’s energetic pattern and behaviors. When energy is in opposition, the only way out is through. That’s akin to hand-to-hand combat. It’s you or him. Someone’s gotta give.
Reactive energetic patterns shift you out of present-moment awareness; you lose the ability to choose a nuanced response.
These energetic patterns usually formulated during an earlier time in your life, when it was important to behave defensively and to hold your ground. The energy of the person (or people) you defended against becomes the psychic mask that gets imprinted onto the people who you find difficult in current time.
When the energies are triggered, the pattern activates and becomes your behavioral blueprint.
Every last bit of this is within your control.
You can train yourself to:
Identify your ‘adversary’
Name your triggers & behaviors
Clear and release their energy
In present-moment awareness, you choose genuine behaviors and responses that alter and resolve relationship dynamics.
You’re likely ready to create some new dynamics in your relationships. Perhaps you’ve even got a relationship or two that you could visualize coming to conclusion, letting go. Imagine moving out of oppositional energy to find new and different ways of engaging and interacting.
If you’d like to do some intentional clearing and release work to evolve some of your relationships, I’ve created a 90-minute, live, online course where I’ll share an energy protocol, in a nugget called, Calming Difficult Relationships — Doing your part to diffuse, let go, level up.
Register now. Class is September 26. Details are below.