LIVING THE SOULFUL LIFE
From Here to Maturity...
By Scott Kalechstein
Relationship Stage One .... Attraction — I’ve goten into Harvard! I’ve been accepted! I’m on the top of the world! (and I blame my partner for my joy...)
Relationship Stage Two ... Friction — Classes begin, homework is assigned, egos bump heads... (and I blame my partner for my pain...)
Relationship Stage Three ... Mature Love — Egos have been
sandpapered smooth enough to begin to give our unique partnership
gifts to the world. (and I blame God for our joy!)Relationship Myths (Romantic Balloons And Bubbles That Must Be
Busted For Class To Proceed)
1. I can get all my needs met by one person...the right person will do that for me.
2. The right person will make me happy.
3. Having a partner will make my life easier.
4. The ease and high of the honeymoon stage should last forever and if it doesn’t this person must not be the ‘one’ for me.
5. Being in a relationship will increase my self-esteem and add meaning to my life.
6. Being in a relationship will put an end to my loneliness, issues of rejection and feeling abandoned.
Healing Path Of Relationships
Unavoidable Relationship Facts:
1. Love flushes up anything unlike itself for the purpose of healing and release. Trust the colonic... A relationship will make the unconscious conscious so you can see (and smell) your crap and choose out of it.
2. Your partner will tend to treat you the way you treat yourself. That’s a big ‘ouch’ for most of us and a big motivator to make loving and accepting yourself a top priority. James Taylor wrote “You’ve been better to me than I’ve been to myself.” That’s a honeymoon stage fairy tale. In reality, your partner is your mirror, not your savior.
3. Conflicts will arise. Prepare for them. Expecting this is wise, not cynical. If you keep your feet on the ground, then relationship won’t bring you to your knees. Have tools to use and agreements in place for when buttons get pushed. Relationship will flush out issues of abandonment and entrapment, encouraging you to stop abandoning yourself, prompting you to drop your masks and outdated survival strategies, and assisting you to learn the delicate dance between autonomy and intimacy, taking care of yourself and caring for someone else.
4. A conscious relationship is a spiritual path. The purpose of a spiritual path is to disillusion you (remove you from illusions). Embrace that and you grow into mature love. Resist that and you suffer deeply. Eckart Tolle reminds us that “The purpose of relationships is not to make you happy. It is to wake you up.”
RELATIONSHIP GROWTH IN FOUR CHAPTERS
Chapter 1 — You attract re-enactments of your childhood wounding...i.e., an unavailable alcoholic, a controlling mother, etc. You wonder why life is doing this to you. Where are all the available men? Where are all the good women? When will I be loved?
Chapter 2 — You continue to attract replicas of your history but you are starting to respond in other ways besides victimhood. You recognize that the universe is out to heal you by helping to bring your unresolved feelings to the surface for resolution, and to give you the opportunity to complete with your past by learning to respond differently. i.e., instead of silently trembling in the dark or acting out in punitive ways (childhood responses), the adult learns to speak up directly and set boundaries, or even to say no and walk away.
Chapter 3 — You attract someone who is mostly different from your past but has the potential to act the part if driven in that direction. They become an occasional replica of your history, giving you plenty of practice in responding in other ways besides the limited choices available in childhood.
Chapter 4 — Eventually... you attract someone who is not like your controlling mother or your absent father and you occasionally project your childhood story onto them and work through the feelings without full-blown suffering and constant drama. What’s relationship about then? It is about giving and receiving love, celebrating life together, and serving the earth with your feet on the ground.
The Gift Of Grief: Fully mourn-ing what you didn’t get in childhood moves you through the chapters and prepares you to be an adult who can bring realistic expectations to a relationship.
The Gift Of Relationship: It will bring you face to face with your unresolved childhood pain until your grief work is completed.
Stages of Need Fulfillment
1. You try to get your needs met unconsciously, using strategies absorbed from your ancestors and cultural programming i.e., blaming, seducing, manipulating, and guilt-tripping others into giving to you.
2. You practice choosing adult strategies to get your needs met i.e., asking directly for what you want without demanding it. Also, you are willing to meet your own needs or get them met elsewhere when your partner isn’t available. A child has limited choices, an adult always has plenty.
Some Things To Do While You Are Single
1. Come to terms with the possibility that you may never have a partner and live life as if it’s your complete responsibility to live out your dreams and make yourself happy. Practice the most difficult Yoga posture of all: Standing on your own two feet!
2. Spend time upgrading your relationship with yourself, replacing the inner critic self-talk with a gentle, nurturing, loving inner parent.
3. Immerse yourself in the study of communication skills, like Marshall Rosenberg’s Non-Violent Communication. When a relationship comes along and conflicts inevitably arise, you’ll need them.
4. Make loving yourself and giving your gifts your most important areas of focus. When you get into a relationship and you make it through the honeymoon stage, these will remain the two most important ingredients for both your personal happiness and having a non-codependent, healthy relationship...LOVING YOURSELF AND GIVING YOUR GIFTS!
5. Get to know yourself, what you stand for and what you won’t stand for. Learn when to stand firm, and when to be flexible. You’ll need it in life, especially in an intimate relationship.
6. Walk the path of being single with your head held high. You are learning lessons of self-determination, where you get to determine how you want to live, who you want to include in your life, and what you want to accomplish on this earth. You don’t have the excuse to blame anything on anyone else. You get to fully accept the responsibility for your state in life. Being single is a sacred and valid spiritual path. Walk it with self-respect and dignity.
Scott Kalechstein is an inspirational speaker, modern day troubadour and leader of work-shops in the United States, Canada, Egypt and Germany. He can be reached at (415) 721-2954, firstname.lastname@example.org or at http://www.scottsongs.com
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