When it comes to the quality of your romantic relationship, have you ever noticed that it affects ALL areas of your life…your job, your health, your relationships with others?
When your relationship is ‘good’, life in general feels better and more peaceful. And when it’s ‘bad’, everyday life feels harder and more stressful.
In other words, your relationship is either contributing to the quality of your life or it’s interfering with the quality of your life.
Thankfully, there are actions you can take to help you weather the storm of these emotional ups and downs, and feel grounded in the midst of chaos.
This Too Shall Pass
No matter the current state of your relationship, it’s helpful to remember that this too shall pass. But wait a second…if it’s good, you may not want it to pass, right? None of us does. And yet that’s part of life’s cycles.
There are good times, bad times and in between times…and they will ALL pass sooner or later, just like the seasons of nature.
Trying to cling to the good times and make them last forever may seem normal, but a relationship needs ups and downs in order to grow. And it needs to grow in order to thrive long term.
Coming up with quick fixes for problems during the bad times, or rushing to call it quits, may seem like a good strategy, but it takes patience and compassion to heal relationship pain and whatever caused it in the first place. What remains unresolved will show up again, whether it’s in this relationship or a future one.
Either way, whether you’re in the up, the down, the ebb or the flow, remembering that this too shall pass, and being thankful for your current situation, will serve you well.
Being Thankful Even When It Sucks!
Gratitude comes easily when you’re feeling good about your partner and your relationship, but what about when times are tough? Can you be grateful then?
The answer is yes. You can always be grateful, but it’s a choice and one that’s decided by you and only you.
When you’re upset with your partner, you can easily decide to stay mad and start naming all of the things that are wrong with him or her. And you may even feel better after blowing off some steam by blaming them for your anger. But guess what? This too shall pass.
When it’s all said and done, bitching about your partner will not change anything for the better. It will only fan the flames of your story that you have a right to be mad. And it might make the situation even worse.
You may have every right to be upset, but is that the story you want to keep telling yourself? By all means, allow yourself to feel your anger…but then move on to writing a new story for yourself.
Perhaps the arguments with your partner are helping you learn how to deal with conflict in a new way…in a way that’s in integrity with who you want to be. That can be a new chapter in your life, and that’s something to be grateful for.
When I was married, I felt entitled to be a bitch. I thought name-calling, the silent treatment and the blame game were all part of ‘normal’ relationship struggles. But I never wanted to be bitchy…it never felt good.
Thank God I finally learned that there are different ways of handling conflict, and I chose to view our relationship in a new way. I can now see that the countless arguments I had with my then husband gave me countless opportunities to show up as the person I wanted to be.
I am forever grateful for that experience because the quality of my life now is far better than it used to be. Yes, I had to do the work to get here, but it wouldn’t have happened without that ‘bad’ relationship.
It Only Takes One Moment to Start
If being grateful for the things that piss you off is a new concept for you, start with the idea of needing only one moment to make a difference.
The next time your partner says or does something that feels upsetting, if your normal reaction is to get defensive or shut down, try catching yourself. Then step back, take a deep breath and say to yourself “I get to choose how I respond to this, and I am grateful for this opportunity”.
The Difference Between Reacting and Responding
Understanding the difference between a reaction and a response is key. When you react, you’re defaulting to an automatic way of handling things when you feel triggered, which strips you of your power. It feels as if you have no control over the matter…”I can’t help it – he made me feel this way.”
When you respond, it draws your awareness to the fact that you have a choice about how to handle it, which gives you your power back. You feel more in control of what’s happening…”What he did feels hurtful, but I don’t have to make it worse by hurting him or myself even more.”
These are the opportunities you have to change for the better and become the person you really want to be. Becoming the person you really want to be helps you have the healthy relationship you desire.
If you’re in a relationship in which you’re trying to decide whether to stay and make it work, or gracefully let it go, either way, working on yourself and the way you handle conflict will help you move forward in your life.
Trump Helped Me Become a Better Person
Even if you don’t live in the United States, I’m sure you’re aware of the ridiculousness (I love that word!) of our upcoming presidential election. I’m not going to get into details about the absurdity of it all, but I will share how it ties into this message.
When I hear some of the things that come out of Donald Trump’s mouth, I am SO tempted to get angry and react in a less than loving way. But when I catch myself tensing up, I do my best to stop this reaction and choose love instead.
This not only reminds me that I still have triggers that I need to work on, but it also empowers me every time I choose love over anger. I am choosing to be the person I want to be, and people like Donald Trump are helping me.
An Attitude of Gratitude
As New York Times bestselling author Bruce Wilkinson said: “A moment of gratitude makes a difference in your attitude.”
As we move into this holiday season, choose your attitude wisely and it will serve you well! It only takes a moment of gratitude to start shifting your perspective, and you’ll feel better about contributing to the quality of your life, rather than detracting from it.
Stay tuned for more mindful messages. Giving you helpful tips and exercises to improve the quality of your life and relationships!
With love and support,
Healthy Relationship Coach
P.S. Life is too short to be unhappy or unsure about your relationship. Get the support you need today by scheduling your free Relationship Breakthrough Session. Let’s get you feeling confident, clear and joyful once again!