Relationships are important to all of us, and most of us wish to develop the best of which we are capable. We strive to make deeper connections, to facilitate good communication, and to resolve issues that crop up in our interactions. So we seek out counseling in order to be heard and to be better understood. We devise ways to bring attention to the things we feel we are lacking. We may lay blame and hurl accusations. We see all our troubles externalized. Most of our focus and efforts tend to be directed outwards, towards the other person and how it seems they are treating us, how they are causing us to feel, and the things that they are doing (or not doing, as the case may be) that we perceive to be the problem.
Yet the most commonly overlooked element is our own effectiveness within the relationship. How are WE doing? What is OUR part in the situation? What are WE contributing (or not) to the obstacles that stand in the way of the harmony which we are seeking? In all too many instances, since we are so concerned with what the other person is doing, we miss entirely those things for which WE may be responsible. And if we miss this part of the equation, we are not going to formulate a workable solution.
It is a well-known fact that we simply do not have control over how someone else may choose to behave. We can try all we like to change another person, but in the end that person will be and do exactly as they please, regardless of how much energy we put into showing them how wrong they actually are. It's not up to us to try to change others. But we absolutely hold the power in our hands to seek those things within that may need amending, and to enact those changes for the better. Whenever we seek to remedy any ailing relationship, looking to ourselves is the first place we should consider, because our inner world is truly the only one we have the power to change. And through that change, lies our ultimate power to affect the world around us. Yes, even most especially our most intimate relationships. The outer world is, after all, merely a reflection of our own inner state of being.
It actually begins with our relationships with ourselves. If we are not on good terms with ourselves, we cannot ever hope to be on good terms with others. It is through our inner goodwill that we foster goodwill in our exchanges. It is through knowing how to be with ourselves that we learn how to be with others. If we are not comfortable in our own skin, we will make others uncomfortable to be around us, even if that discomfort is on a subliminal level that is often difficult to discern - which, in itself, also makes the matter a difficult one with which to deal, unless we begin to recognize the roles we play.
It is vitally important that we tend to our own state of being. When we own our relationships with ourselves, and when we take the time to nurture, correct, and develop the person we wish to be, we become the positive force that we must, if we wish to have excellent relationships. It is, in fact, the ONLY way we can have them. Every relationship begins with us. And when we actively pursue our own well- being, there will never be any confusion as to the source of our issues. It is also important to recognize that it is an ever-ongoing process. We must continually check in on ourselves, to be sure that we are not dropping the ball on our inner health. Just like we should not miss meals or forego sleep or miss any other aspect of physical self-care, we should not allow ourselves to forget about our own mental, emotional and energetic requirements, as well.
For many of us, our relationships with ourselves will be the most difficult we ever encounter. It is not generally the norm in our world today to grow up focusing on our own inner state of well-being, and so we end up becoming the missing denominator in our relationship equations. We are often the last consideration for ourselves and, thus, the last realization of cause in any given problem in our lives. In some respects, this is likely also a self-protective mechanism. If we can lay the responsibility at someone else's feet, then we believe that gets us off the hook. But in reality, that only deepens the hook that is pierced into our own hearts. We must return to our own needs for inner healing and development, which in turn will then radiate from within us into our outer environment, giving power and substance to the changes we that truly wish to experience.
About the Author
Born a natural writer, Holly's mom used to tell people that she came out of the womb with a pencil in her hand. Her goal in writing is to offer deeper observances about her everyday experiences, in order to assist others as they traverse the path of life's journey. Find Holly Austin Grimes on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Quirinvox