LOVE TIP – Saturday April 23rd, 2012 


There’s a very popular belief: if your relationship is not working leave it! Yet, guess what♥ Leaving your partner is generally not going to change you or your relationships. Why♥ “Wherever you go, there you are!!” When you leave a relationship you take YOU with you!

Says Dr Harville Hendrix in his book Keeping the Love You Find:

“This is a revolutionary view of relationships: rather than leaving relationships to find yourself, you find yourself through itbeing the right partner is more important than picking the right partner.”   

So what does this mean and how do I become “the right partner”Good questions. You might be thinking; why do I have to look to the other person for how to be me♥ Why do I have to be the right partner for them! A deeper question is – How do I become “the right person” or how do I want to be living my life

Among the qualities rated highly in relationships are being kind, loving, respectful, compassionate, nurturing, responsible, and protective…… What qualities are important for you♥ This is in regards to both how you act and how you value others behaving♥ Do you act towards others according to your own Core Values♥……… Do others [mainly partners and/or children and people you are in close contact with] say to you – “You’re always noticing what I am doing wrong or what is wrong with me and you criticize and complain and nag!”

Our brains are continuously, unconsciously scanning for what is “wrong” with others. What it is that we don’t like. And this scanning isn’t just towards partners but with ALL our
relationships. It’s as though we look at others with a magnifying glass, looking for every little fault and we are usually unaware we are doing it.  

Perception is basically an interpretation. We interpret what we see through our own filter/LENS.

Yet people believe what they perceive/see/hear/feel is actually what is out there in the world!  

Scientific research on the brain shows that the neural pathways (which are at the basis of our behaviour) are formed in relation to the people who are significant to us as we are growing up. Caretakers are crucial in shaping the child’s developing self-image and world-image.

From earliest childhood, our brains are formed and wired according to what is in the environment around us. Whatever is repeated and modelled to us becomes our perception of who we are and what we can expect from the world.

In some families the tactics are pretty blatant: threats, punishment, rigid rules, screaming, yelling…….and the like…. For the most part how we learn what is expected of us is far subtler. We mimic and copy. We learn by osmosis. We see what the people around us do over and over, what gets applauded, what elicits criticism; who is liked and who is disliked and why; what is noticed and what gets no attention. We develop behaviours that help us to fit in and get acceptance and approval.

Whatever is fired over and over gets wired! ALL we experience is our own point of view…. The world is what we expect it to be!!!

So here’s an example – imagine being in a social setting and no-one comes and talks to you. You could look around the room through the point of view/LENS of:

a) “These people don’t like me and they are ignoring and rejecting me……” OR

b) “There are many potential new friends here and these people are shy and uncomfortable to come forward.”

Immediately notice the experience you create inside yourself following whichever perspective you use which is simply your own thinking…..which comes from the LENS which you experience reality through…. Our conditioning (wiring) controls our daily stream of unconscious emotions which controls our thoughts which then directs and turns into our behaviours. 

Bringing it back to relationships, what were the models of LOVE that you were exposed to and influenced byQuoting Drs. Patricia Love and Steven Stosny, citing neuroscience research in their book Why Women Talk and Men Walk:

“Once an association is made, it increases the probability that you will make that same association and decreases the probability you will see it any other way. When you are wired to see negative, you will see negative!” 

It is important to not underestimate how strong these associations are. Hard to do when our points of view that get us the behaviours we don’t want are largely unconscious.

Would you like to become aware of your own unconscious bias♥ The ANSWER is in ‘the other’. Look to what you react to in them. Says Dr Hendrix: 

“The degree of emotional reaction to a trait in someone else is the degree to which
that trait exists in you, whether the trait is viewed as negative or positive.’

Exercise: Pay attention to what you criticize and judge. Notice who pushes your buttons and triggers you and what is it that they do that irritates and frustrates you. It could be partners, ex-partners, friends, children, at work, or anyone who bugs you. Get curious! Also pay attention to who you put on a pedestal and what it is you idealize in them.

MIRRORING PRACTICE: Share about what this post brings up for you with someone and have them ♥MIRROR you for a minimum of 5 minutes and then swap, or write about it in your journal.

Whatever we “despise or idealize” we need to reclaim as parts of ourselves that we have cut off and projected onto the other.  We trade our magnifying glass for a mirror! How we process to reclaim these parts of our self is another post….another time……….

Our relationships are our most profound pathway to growth and healing and becoming fully ourselves. Leaving our relationships in frustration, anger, resentment, hurt or pain usually is a formula for the same issues and problems to come up again elsewhere….. Important information everyone needs to know!

Enjoy your uncovering and reclaiming………

Much LOVE and Blessings, Susie

NOTE: For more discussion on Why Women Talk and Men Walk by Drs. Patricia Love and Steven Stosny check out this post:  ways for men and women to ♥connect with each other.