We are not meant to keep accounts with others, to fill ourselves with blame about where they failed to meet our demands. Nor are we created to carry around with us the cruel and careless remarks of others, and this includes our regrets for where we may have done the same. We can learn to exchange this nature of resentment, that lives to revisit disappointments, with a new and higher understanding that can no more feel punished by the sleeping actions of others than does a mountain feel pain in the midst of a thunder storm.
If . . . you’re too “quick on the draw” when your partner does something to displease you, and you’d like to stop punishing them for what – as often as not – is likely your mistaken perception of their actions . . .
Then . . .the following prescription may be “bitter” at first, but try it and see if it doesn’t help empower you to detect and then drop these kinds of negative reactions: The next time you get ready to let some sarcastic or unkind remark fly out of your mouth – taste it, yourself... before you dish it out.
If . . . in rocky moments with your partner, one of you always brings up something the other did in days past to “prove” that they were wrong then, so now they have to be wrong again! . . .
Then . . . here’s a helpful hint provided for us by English author T.H. White: “Let us now start fresh without remembrance, rather than live forward and backward at the same time. We cannot build the future by avenging the past.”
Wishing to bring an end to some painful pattern with our partner by identifying with the “remembrance” of all of the reasons they are at fault is like hoping to escape the wrath of a storm by walking out into it. Before any unwanted pattern can come to an end, one of the parties in it has to see, and then give up, the parts of them helping to weave it...again.
If . . . you fear that if you don't stand up for your rights in the midst of a fight, your partner will see this as a sign of weakness and start walking all over you, and yet, after an argument – even one you win – you feel like you've been trampled by a stampede of wild beasts . . .
Then . . . remember Aesop's fable about a bull and a lion getting ready to fight with one another over who will drink from a small pool of water they both want to possess. Above them, in a tree, sits a smiling vulture, excited to watch them go into mortal combat. It knows that whichever one wins, “dinner” will soon be served!
The meaning of this story is, stay out of any war between opposing forces, as all you can do is become a casualty of their unconscious combat. Call upon your higher awareness of the unconscious “lion and bull” in you to help you stay out of their struggle.
As you learn to observe these negative states, sacrificing the parts of you that tend to identify with them, not only will you rise above their conflict, but your struggle to do so will also give your partner the opportunity they need to see, and then let go of their part in any such confrontation.
Adapted from Relationship Magic: Waking Up Together by Guy Finley.
©2018 Guy Finley
Used by permission from Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.
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