Thrive Relationship Coaching

Getting Unstuck

Posted on: December 8, 2010

Someone asked me recently about how to get unstuck when you and your partner are becoming increasingly nasty with each other despite “trying to get unstuck”.   My first suggestion…consider getting some professional help and support for your difficulties.  Sometimes in the midst of overwhelming challenges, it is difficult to see what the next healing step might be.

When you are stuck in a destructive pattern of argument with your partner, you might feel angry, sad, defensive, righteous, stubborn or scared.  Or all of this.   You can be so caught in the quicksand of your familiar arguing habits that there are no jungle vines that you can see to pull yourself out to freedom.  Here are a few helpful ingredients to getting unstuck:

1.  THE WILLINGNESS TO GIVE UP BEING RIGHT – you have to be more committed to creating a conscious, loving relationship than to being right.  And say so.  And sincerely value your relationship more than your ego values being right.

2. THE WILLINGNESS TO BE OPEN TO LEARNING (WILLINGNESS TO GIVE UP BEING DEFENSIVE) – We are constantly getting feedback but when we are defensive, we are not using feedback as an opportunity to learn something about ourselves.  When you genuinely appreciate feedback and what you can learn from it, you will cease to be stuck.

3.THE WILLINGNESS TO BE PLAYFUL – Notice how serious everything feels in the midst of an argument.  Shift from the stuck position of blaming your spouse to the creative position of magnifying your words and body language with such great exaggeration until you have to laugh at your own ridiculousness.

4.THE WILLINGNESS TO GIVE UP BLAMING AND CRITICIZING –  Stop yourself when you want to blame.  Instead claim responsibility for your part in whatever you were going to blame about.  You can also get unstuck quickly when you find something to sincerely appreciate about your partner.

5.THE WILLINGNESS TO TAKE RADICAL RESPONSIBILITY – no matter what the issue is, be willing to take responsibility for your contribution in creating it.  “I wonder how I have contributed to this situation?”

Notice the word WILLINGNESS begins each of these ingredients.  In actuality, willingness itself IS the KEY ingredient to shifting from drowning in sticky muck to setting yourself free.  The choice is yours.


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