Beyond FearThere are many reasons why personal change is difficult. However, when it comes to making your marriage or other relationships better, false starts and superficial gestures will not get it done! The foundation of relationship success is built on the commitment of the people involved to consistent positive effort –that takes individual character!

Regardless of which one of you is responsible for a particular issue, ultimately both of you must be willing to look at yourselves honestly and own your contribution to the problems you share.

If you remain defensive and inaccessible, your relationship is not going to improve. Continuing to blame, resent or avoid the other will get you absolutely nowhere. Negativity is a mental dis-ease. Obsessing about who’s wrong, leaves your focus 180 degrees off the mark!

The only thing you get to change is you! While you’re waiting for the other to make the first move, which often turns into a mutual stand off, neither of you is doing anything about your contribution to the status quo. One of you must begin making some efforts toward resolution or tomorrow is going to be exactly like today.

Ask yourself, “What is going on inside of me that is not OK? That’s where your attention needs to be. When there’s clear evidence that you care enough about your relationship to do all you can to take care of it by identifying what you are responsible for and owning that, then your partner may begin to respond in kind.

If you’re waiting for this to be easy, don’t hold your breath. Neither of you feels safe and you’re already suffering, aren’t you? So begin now to do all you can to make things better! If you don’t, a significant amount of your pain will continue to be self-inflicted. Take a deep breath, reach way down for courage and step beyond your fear of disappointment. Progress only becomes possible when at least one of you is treating the other with respect and appreciation.

Override your tendency to avoid difficult relationship moments. Step beyond your procrastination and truly show up for your significant other, eager to understand what they’re feeling! Don’t fix them – listen! If you have hurt them, apologize. Do that and open the door to new possibilities. Whether or not your effort is reciprocated, every time you act in this way, you win by honoring yourself!

“To Love Is To Give!!!”

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Jeff Levine

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