Couples Counseling Articles

curiosity

Intimacy = Into Me See

Blame seems awfully common these days.

It’s largely encouraged, easy to do and rarely reflected upon.

Blame reflects judgement tinged with anger. And we react instinctively.

Especially when we hear people (particularly our partner) speak their thoughts… which can land on us feeling like blame.

Without understanding the person’s intention or the motivation behind their words, we know very little about what’s going on.

We fall into the trap of reacting to what we believe to be true rather than what’s real.

Things rarely turn out well and we think:

  • He’s unreasonable.
  • She’s relentless..
  • I’m unlovable..
  • S/He’s a bully.

And the list goes on….

Another thing we might do is go on the offensive…. instantly compiling a list of all the situations we imagine connected to this moment.

Then we point them out one by one…

  • Do you remember when…?
  • Here’s what you’re probably thinking.
  • This is what you really mean.
  • You don’t feel that way at all.
  • What you should feel is…
  • And, if you loved me you would…

Inevitably, when one person starts spouting off, the other person throws up a barrier and can no longer hear what’s being said.

We’ve created a terrible mess!

The only way out is to listen with a sense of openness, interest, and curiosity.

Because in truth, we don’t know what exists in another person’s heart or what’s happening in their head. We think we do. But we don’t.

Intimacy and communication live between us. Literally.

Both people need to be fully present to what’s happening.

That’s what makes communication so challenging.

We can start by taking things slowly…moment by moment…with a dash of patience, self reflection and curiosity….keeping this translation in mind:

Intimacy = Into Me See

Relationship Tools May Seem Important

Relationship tools seem important….

Yet, the essence of relating lies in non-judgmental curiosity.

This is a new idea for most of us and it’s simple but not easy.

It points to heart-centered listening.

When we learn to practice this approach with a heart-centered attitude, our relationship takes care of itself.

This clear concept can be written down in a few sentences and covers a lifetime.

It’s the seed for empathy, compassion and connection.

Relating is not so much about using tools to figure things out, rather it’s in how you approach the relationship itself.

When you show up curious and willing to observe with an open mind, things start to shift.

You show up moment by moment ensuring that you are not trying to change or control anyone or anything.

A little clumsy at first, you start to refine your approach and your attitude.

You withhold judgment and criticism (even the kind you consider constructive).

You observe yourself and stay present.

There will be challenges every day and some days will be easier than others.

You will have disagreeable conversations and have to work through them.

But over time, relating to your partner with curiosity becomes the new normal.

Together you explore, create new experiences, get comfortable and your relationship starts to change.