Are you setting yourself up for your Best Year Yet? I want to help, this is what we’ll do…
First though, I’d like to point something out. I’m sure you’ve noticed that even though we specialize in working with couples, that my writing focuses on bringing out your Best Self to play… I cover this from a lot of different angles bringing it back around to the context of the relationship… The reason for this is that we have a tendency to get in our own way, and then are not able to show up with our Best Self to our Relationship… The focus is on taking charge of ourselves to create the relationship and life we desire. This personal development is hugely important if we are to have our Best Life.
So, for the next several weeks to ease us right into the New Year, I’ll be covering very specific Relationship Success topics with the usual personal angle and flair. The idea is to prime the pump if you may to setup your relationship for its next level of awesomeness in the New Year. Eh?
The topics will flow from our Successful Couple Strategy™:
Element1 – Context & Mindset
Element2 – Communication & Alignment
Element3 – Clarity & Dynamics
Element4 – Connection & Intimacy
Element5 – Collaboration & Partnership
Today’s topic – Feeling Stuck. Feeling Stuck is a very common feeling for couples. Partners feel stuck in a variety of ways. Here are some popular ones:
- Not moving to the next level of commitment – moving in together, getting engaged, getting married
- Not feeling close – feeling like ships passing in the night, disinterest from the other, not being a priority
- Not feeling supported – having different preferences for leisure, in-laws issues, conflicting parenting styles, financial management concerns, general disapproval
- Not progressing in life – having children, getting the first home or moving out of a starter home, having better jobs or positions, increasing business revenue or impact
- Not feeling great in the relationship – experiencing a general sense of dissatisfaction, boredom, apathy, unhappiness
Feeling Stuck is par for the course in relationship at some point or another in its lifespan. Being in a successful relationship is one of the most challenging undertakings in life, with successful parenting being a close second… It is bound to have difficulties, challenges, and ups-and-downs. It is not easy to create a Radiant Joint Life where there is just the right balance of coupling and individualism, and of merging of two lives…
The fact that Feeling Stuck is normal at some point in our relationship doesn’t make it any easier. And, the fact that it’s normal doesn’t mean that we grin and bear it and wait for it to pass. We have to be intentional about addressing it properly or it can end up having severe consequences on the relationship and our life.
Of course, it would be even better to be preventative and hardly at all if ever have to experience this. But usually we learn how to be preventative of future stuckness by going through this at least once… It’s not something we usually start with, “Hm, let me make sure I don’t Feel Stuck at any point in the relationship”…
So, if you are Feeling Stuck, don’t worry you are not alone and know that you can change this. Sometimes when the feeling strikes it feels so numbing, uncomfortable, devastating, hopeless and such that the only way to alleviate the feeling is to get the heck out. But, don’t be rash in making this decision. Stuckness doesn’t have to be pervasive. You can get beyond it and create the relationship you desire… Only you can decide if it’s worth the investment.
It takes commitment to weather the storm, to hang in there, to address the uncomfortableness, to make changes. This is definitely not for the faint of heart. It takes courage to have faith and stay committed when faced with what seem indicators to the contrary. Others in your life might question your sanity. You might question your sanity. But, it’s during this hesitation and ambivalence that we need to let go of ego and soften our heart…
It’s during our ambivalence that we are the most vulnerable and make rash decisions. I hear often that people wish they would have tried harder or differently to save a prior marriage or relationship.
Note, this is trickier to do when there are severe issues in the relationship – affairs, addictions, mental illness, or others. It doesn’t mean it can’t be done but be prepared for an intense ride. In this platform, I’m not talking to these situations for they require a little more TLC.
It’s during the ambivalence that we have to put our Feeling Stuck into proper Context and not lose sight of the forest for the tree… It is during this time that we have to Transcend our noise, our nitpicking, our stubborn position, our judgement and criticism, our arrogance and high-horse, and such. It is during this time that we get in touch with what is important to us, why we are in this in the first place, who we actually are and the possibilities, who are partner actually is and the possibilities, the potential…
This is not so easy to do, but boy is it empowering if you are able to get out of your own way and see… For this becomes your Why, the inspiration, the driver, and the strength. This is what’s needed to stay the course. This is how it’s easier to stay committed…
From a committed place you have strength to do what it takes to create change. A key approach is to deconstruct the stories and scripts you have running through your mind, and see how you are cocreating the Stuckness… It is imperative that you take full ownership of your side in it. This is the only place you have control and power. When you exercise your agency, you can create change…
ASSIGNMENT: Make a date with yourself to have an empowering sit down. Create a time free of distractions that is cozy, soothing and restorative.
During this time, explore the story of your relationship. Look at it from every single angle. The only caveat is that you look at it as to how you’ve been in it, from inception until now…
What have been your strengths, your contributions, and your gifts?
What have been your weaknesses, defenses, and erosions? It’s ok to see how your partner might have induced these from you… But it’s NOT ok to blame your partner for the state of things, or for how you chose to react and be… All of that is ultimately on you!
Take full ownership for your side of things… This is where the Transformation starts…
Once you get a taste for how liberating and empowering this is, you’ll feel like a new person. This is how the Stuckness starts to breakdown… This is where the juice is! This is a worthy undertaking for from here anything is possible… Milk this feeling and keep coming back to it. Carry it into the New Year and beyond.
Stay tuned for next week’s issue on a Communication topic…
Complete the Assignment, and share your takeaway, insights, and results with a note in the Comments box at the end! I’d love to hear how you are using this content.
Copyright (c) 2019 Emma K. Viglucci. All rights reserved.
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Emma K. Viglucci, LMFT is the Founder and Director of Metropolitan Marriage & Family Therapy, PLLC, a private practice that specializes in working with couples, she is the creator of the MetroRelationship™ philosophy and a variety of Successful Couple™ content that assist couples succeed at their relationship and their life. Stay Connected™ with Emma and receive weekly Connection Notes in your inbox with Personal Growth and Relationship Enrichment insights and strategies, visit: www.metrorelationship.com.