A healthy relationship requires two people that are first and foremost committed to the health and well being of themselves. If one person solely commits to another person without first making clear commitments of their own then it is like planting two vines together in the same pot. One will eventually overwhelm and stifle the growth of the other and either the bond will never form or if it does it will be very short lived.

If both people in the relationship keep the priority of committing first to their own spiritual, emotional, and physical health and well-being, then it’s like planting two vines in separate pots with separate soil and intertwining them together as they grow stronger and taller individually. When both root systems have more room to grow independently, they grow more vigorously. This hardy independence is what enables them to bond together and create a durable union as they continue to grow. Stronger and healthier commitments as individuals lead to stronger and healthier relationships overall.

Unfortunately the word “commitment” tends to be overused and misunderstood in our society. Couples often say that they are “committed” to one another without really having any idea what that means. For some people the word commitment means a promise to stay together. For others it means a promise to be monogamous. Of course these are important elements in a relationship but they are not everything. It’s important to raise our expectations when it comes to what we desire and deserve in all of our relationships because there are plenty of people who have successfully fulfilled a commitment to stay together but their level of happiness remains almost non-existent.

Happiness in relationships comes from establishing personal commitments and sticking with those commitments through thick and thin. Too often the moment that a romantic possibility crosses our pathway we completely attach ourselves to the other person’s root system and totally forget about our own. Then when things don’t work out we have to completely replant ourselves back in the soil and begin our personal growth all over again. The key is to maintain our own root system throughout the duration of any and all relationships. Not only will this help to build a stronger relationship but if things do come to an end, we will be stronger and healthier because we didn’t ever stop attending to the growth of our own roots.

I know for me personally my commitment to spiritual growth always takes precedent over any relationship. As a spiritual being I’m committed daily to my own personal growth and healing. I’m committed to being totally honest with myself and so I need my relationship to be a safe place where I can be open and vulnerable anytime an emotion crops up that reveals a piece of me that needs love and healing.

Within my relationship my partner and I are committed to being totally honest with one another. We are committed to communicating, processing, and exposing emotions as they arise so that there is nothing that goes unsaid and nothing that gets repressed. We are committed to exposing the ego and its illusory stories as they crop up so that we can detach from the stories and get to the heart of any problem. So we do have many couple commitments with one another but the reason that any of those commitments work is because they are built upon the strong foundation of our individual commitments.

First we need to grow our roots in separate soil until we are whole, hearty, healthy, and growing veraciously on our own. We need to commit first to our own soil, or our own soul, then when we find that other beautiful vine that we want to intertwine our life with we can create a relationship where we can continue growing together instead of one where we eventually fall apart.

To hear Rev. Marcy Ellen talk more about the topic of commitment tune into her new radio show at www.blogtalkradio.com/simpleloveadvice 

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Comment by Trevor Taylor on March 7, 2014 at 11:41am

Rev. Marcy Ellen, thank you - recommending to the publishers for inclusion in one of the forthcoming multi media editions

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