**Don't miss your chance to chat with Amy on the YourTango Facebook page this Thursday, October 27th at 2pm ET. Find out more about the event and RSVP here!**
I've been coaching people through relationship pain for several years now. I'm good at what I do. I've helped hundreds of people — maybe more — overcome obstacles that get in the way of easy, satisfying, mutual relationships.
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Does that mean I've always had an easy time in relationships? Just the opposite, actually. What helps me help others is having been there myself. Finding my way out of Relationship Hell with help from my own coaches, mentors and spiritual teachers is the way I'm able to pay it forward today.
Does it mean my current relationships are perfect? Not even close. Although I admit to being insanely happy in my marriage, I come up against relationship snags just like everyone else. It's just that I'm committed to working through them using the tools and perspectives I teach. Or at least doing my best to try. Is something wrong with your relationship? Or is it just you?
There are 4 big ideas I've found to be most helpful in my own and my clients' relationships. These are the biggest insights I’ve discovered; the game-changing “a-ha's,” if you will. Here they are:
- Stop Repeating the Same Relationship Patterns
We all fall into patterns — those pesky habits we think were over until bam! — you find yourself right back in them. You're attracted to the same emotionally closed-off guy over and over; your relationships all begin or end with the same dramatic scene; or you and your partner have the exact same "discussion" (i.e., argument) every single night. Whatever the flavor of your personal patterns, you don't have to keep being a victim of them.
End your pattern by becoming aware. Uber aware. Know what triggers your pattern (e.g., what tips off that nightly conversation) so you can stop the cycle before it starts running without your permission. Then decide how you want to act instead. What's your ideal state if your pattern didn't exist? Consciously replace your patterned response with an action that matches how you want things to look.
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For example, if you find yourself always wanting to end relationships at the one month mark because they're getting boring, make a commitment to take the next relationship to at least the 6 week mark. It will feel totally foreign, because it is. Your ego will try to convince you to end it sooner — don't listen. You can handle a little discomfort in the name of growth.
2. Know What You Want so You Can Have It