Relationship Buffering

🎧 Prefer to listen to the audio version? Click here!

This week I want you to look at all of your past love relationships to see if you can find a common thread. Is your common thread that they start out high energy, highly pleasurable, high doses and quantities of dopamine shots? Many relationships start out this way, similar to the effects we get from food, alcohol, drugs, spending money; you get a relationship love hit and it feels so good you keep going back for more. Eventually, your relationship can’t sustain that type of energy and when those dopamine hits start to fade away it’s like an addict who can’t get their fix, they start looking for something new to create that same feeling.

Maybe you’ve been in and out of so many relationships you’ve decided to settle, but your brain still wants that rush of pleasure so you start looking for the fix elsewhere. You start avoiding the relationship that you want more from, the one you’re unwilling to give in. Working on love feels uncomfortable and awkward while your partner seems unwilling to do any work to make it better so, why bother?

Upon reflection, many of my clients also see this pattern in other areas of their life besides in their love life. They find themselves seeking the high of feeling better through other external actions like eating, binging, over-drinking, spending money on temporary feel-goods, pornography, other relationships, exercise, body improvements, anything that makes them feel better temporarily while avoiding the root of their problem. Chasing but never finding lasting fulfillment.

Today we’re going to take a look inside the life of one of my clients, for the sake of anonymity I’ll name her Michelle.

Michelle grew up with what she called a tattered relationship with both of her parents. Michelle was full of resentment stemming primarily from the thought that she didn’t receive the love and nurturing she needed, especially as a child.

Michelle constantly sought love outside of herself, including getting involved in relationships where she did things that were not her typical modes of operation, actions against her integrity, in an effort to fit in and please. In an effort to feel the love in reciprocation of her acts.

When Michelle looked back over her life, in particular at her love relationships, she discovered that she was always seeking some sort of high out of her relationships, she was addicted to the feeling she got at the onset. Michelle thought this was what love was. Eventually, the relationship would fall into a pattern of her not feeling the love; she’d get bored and blame it on her partner.

Michelle’s typical response would be to end the relationship so that her partner couldn’t hurt her by leaving her and move on, looking for someone else, someone more exciting. Michelle also noticed several other similar behaviors that created responses she could control – drug use, overeating, binging with over-exercising mixed in, over-drinking, spending money on things that provided a temporary good feeling.

Michelle decided she was tired of where her life was going. She felt stuck in a cycle, knowing that there had to be something better than what she was experiencing. Stuck in her current relationship, she decided to do something different. She decided to start figuring out the root of her problem and see if she could resurrect her love relationship with the person she was with.

To begin Michelle started working on herself, this included work around healing her past and reconciling what was happening in her addictive behavior characteristics. She wanted to figure out how to feel good on her own, end her self destructive behavior, stop escaping and start feeling it all instead of resisting.

She told her current partner that she was beginning a journey of self-discovery, of sorting out issues that she had been long repressing and pretending weren’t a big deal. She told him that she loved him and was committed to their relationship but wanted some time to create a relationship she had been neglecting her whole life – the one with herself.

As Michelle did this work she began seeing her life through new lenses. She started creating relationships out of existing relationships that she now fully enjoys just as they are. Re-writing her past into a beautiful story of strength and power has helped her more clearly see her life purpose. She sees that the joy she had been seeking outside of herself was always there for her to access, planted inside of her and now she is on the journey of nurturing it into life. Through all of this work Michelle has been doing, her relationship with her partner is blooming again, daily doing the work of creating a love relationship where love sticks around.

🎧 Audio version of blog here!

πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“

Are you struggling in your love relationship? I would love to help you fall back in love with the one you love. My Awaken(TheTrue)You program is for strong women like you, and a few pretty cool guys, who want to stop hurting in their most intimate relationship. Together we work from the inside out, meaning I teach you how to have a healthy, loving relationship with yourself so you can show up and simply love your partner. Let’s reignite your love relationship today, book your consultation call today!

I’d love to offer a free call for you to work out whether or not my program and life-changing promise is a fit for you. Either book your call now or send me an email with your availability, your future life is waiting for you.

Know someone hurting in their relationships? If you think they might benefit from hearing this message please share this article with them. You might be the one who leads them to their best life.

Don’t forget to join my mailing list where I send out weekly tips on how to start building love and confidence within yourself and never miss another post, get yourself signed up for my newsletter!

AwakenYou, Before And After

🎧 Prefer to listen to the audio version? Click here!

One of my favorite morning routines in the summer is taking my dog for a walk. I love watching the scene of our consistent morning path transform as we emerge from winter into spring, summer, fall, and back again. There is a spot on our walk where dozens of baby thorn sprouts have grown into a massive thorn thicket, heights of which surpass mine. Every day as we pass this mature thorn thicket I think about the pain that would be inflicted upon oneself if traveling by on a bicycle that jumps off course into this mass of prickers, I know, tragic. One day as I approached the thicket I saw something that captured my attention and drew me in. A beautiful dragonfly amidst the thorns. Her contentment sent my mind a-wandering. A wandering about life before, during, and after its awakening.

A fun side note about what I found as I wandered and wondered about the dragonfly amidst the thorns: a band called The Thorns who have recorded a song called Dragonfly, what?! Go take a listen, after reading this of course.

Life before AwakenYou

Most of us feel at the effect of our world. We have an inner desire to do more, to be more, to move out of the thorn bush that keeps pricking and piercing us. We get mad at the thorns, we blame them for where we are and why we keep getting stuck in the same crummy situations.

Relationship after relationship in the bliss of what is, yet held back from what could be. We push, or get pushed, into the prickers and then bounced into bliss, thinking this will be the time things change. It will be better this time around, I’ll remember the beauty amidst the thorns.

Eventually, the game gets old, we realize we are powerless to change on our own. We’re over the struggle and have seen evidence that others have found something better, something different. We used to think it was just perfect matches, matches that weren’t meant for our life, two dragonflies who have figured out how to maneuver the thorns.

Wait, we remember someone talking about changing their life and how that changed their relationship with their partner. They heard this odd story about creating the love life of their dreams without the other partner’s willing participation. Who was that? Where did she see that?

The thought slips away and life returns back to the same old same old, but then she sees a post, reads an email, searches for help, and her mind delivers a message.

During

She had tried couples counseling, individual counseling, and made some strides toward freedom but she kept getting drawn into the same old same old. She asked herself if there was really any hope, was she destined to live a sad life? She wanted and thirsted for something different, she wanted to break this cycle. She didn’t want to move somewhere else because she had done that enough with the same results. Then she remembered that life coach who had talked about something different, she was ready.

After

Transformed. Everything transformed. No longer was the mass of thorns a threat but a beautiful retreat that had her back. She saw every thorn in her life and what she had made it mean.

Unworthy, unlovable, unsatisfied, shameful, guilty, unsuccessful, dirty, ordinary, cold, weak.

She realized she had been living a life of lies, that the true story of the thorns was beautifully different.

Worthy, lovable, satisfied, willing, honest, successful, brand new, unique, beautiful, warm, loving, tough, smart.

Now seeing the beauty and purpose in the thorns of her life, she was able to sit proudly amidst the thorns knowing they couldn’t hurt her, only she had the power to do that. She knew her power wasn’t in escaping the thorns but loving them for what they were, always knowing the way out but no longer seeing the need.

When you look at the dragonfly amidst the thorns, what do you see? I see the beautiful mystery of nature and ask myself what it is teaching me. Is the dragonfly crazy or is it smart? It all depends on your perspective, that perspective will determine the outcome in your life. We can always change our surroundings but until we see our surroundings for what they really are; until we can love and appreciate them, new surroundings will eventually be like the dragonfly at the effect of the thorns instead of in the presence and protection of the thorns.

🎧 Audio version of blog here!

πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“

Are you struggling in your love relationship? I would love to help you fall back in love with the one you love. My Awaken(TheTrue)You program is for strong women like you, and a few pretty cool guys, who want to stop hurting in their most intimate relationship. Together we work from the inside out, meaning I teach you how to have a healthy, loving relationship with yourself so you can show up and simply love your partner. Let’s reignite your love relationship today, book your consultation call today!

I’d love to offer a free call for you to work out whether or not my program and life-changing promise is a fit for you. Either book your call now or send me an email with your availability, your future life is waiting for you.

Know someone hurting in their relationships? If you think they might benefit from hearing this message please share this article with them. You might be the one who leads them to their best life.

Don’t forget to join my mailing list where I send out weekly tips on how to start building love and confidence within yourself and never miss another post, get yourself signed up for my newsletter!

Minding Your Own Business

🎧 Prefer to listen to the audio version? Click here!

I have found myself getting in the most trouble relationally when I’m in other people’s business, and it happens way more often than I care to admit. My mind loves to make up stories about what they are doing and why they are doing it, which often turns me into one defensive bugger, capiche? If you do, then welcome because that’s what I’m digging into today.

If you have ever made up stories about what our partner is doing, why they are doing it, and how they should be doing it differently instead of minding our own business, then read on my lovely! Today I share why we do this, how it is limiting us, as well as our relationship, and how we can start letting go of being in everyone else’s business.

How we get into other people’s business.

I’m going to get started by sharing some examples as well as what you might be making their words or actions mean. These may, or may not, be examples out of my own self-coaching journals πŸ˜‰.

  1. You are quietly doing your morning self-coaching, and hubby comes up and asks if you’d like to eat breakfast outside.
  2. You’re preoccupied with things that went on during your workday, and your partner says, “You seem a bit bugged.”
  3. He’s sitting on the couch watching his favorite sports team when there is obviously work to be done.
  4. She pours herself a drink before your quiet time together.
  5. Your co-worker asked you to call a customer back to answer their questions.
  6. Your bestie didn’t send you happy birthday wishes on your birthday.
  7. Your neighbor didn’t wave at you as you drove by and waved at them.

Believe it or not, these are all neutral circumstances that could be happening in your life or mine; what we commonly do is attach meaning to these neutral circumstances. As an exercise, I’d love for you to come up with some of your neutral circumstances that happened in your day today or yesterday.

What are you making their words or actions mean?

I have been asked this question so many times by coaches that I now understand what to look for when asked. The first few times I was asked this question I was a bit confused as are my clients when I first ask it of them. The question seems a bit tricky, like “What do you mean what am I making it mean?” All this question is asking is that you uncover the story you are making up in your mind about the circumstances. Let’s look at some possibilities around the above examples.

  1. You make it mean that he is suggesting you stop doing what you are doing and get making breakfast. Rude.
  2. You make it mean that he thinks you’re mad at him for something. He’s so selfish!
  3. You make it mean that he isn’t interested in helping out with household chores.
  4. You make it mean that she needs alcohol to be able to enjoy time with you.
  5. You make it mean that this task is below her, that your time isn’t valuable.
  6. You make it mean that they aren’t a very good friend.
  7. You make it mean that they don’t like you.

Granted, you might not believe that you are making up a story, you may 100% believe that your story is true but how then is that story you’re telling serving you? How is that story making you feel? How is your story making you show up? My guess; probably not the way you want to show up as a partner, a friend, a co-worker, a neighbor. What are you thinking?

Why?

Next, I want you to ask yourself this question; I want you to ask yourself this: why are you choosing the story you are telling yourself? This is another question that results in funny facial expressions, you know the one, the “What are you talking about?” look. It’s ok; I remember that look, the one that says, “Come on, you know why I’m thinking that!” Often, we have ideas of how other people should show up in our lives; we have manuals for them. We want them to do things the way we think they should so that we can feel better. If they did something different, what we wanted and expected them to do, it would give us validation. There we are again, wanting someone else to validate us.

Here’s the complex observation I have made in my own life though, when they show up differently, I often STILL think they should be doing it differently! So confusing, do you agree? So what can we do to feel better?

Mind your own business.

Capiche? Keep your thoughts focused on you because we have no idea what is going on in the other person’s model. We have no idea why they are doing what they are doing; in fact, we could come up with some reason that are opposite of what we are making it mean!

Spending our time and energy trying to change other people so we can feel better is something we spend way too much time on. Time we could be spending enjoying our self-coaching, grateful our partners care about how we’re doing and relaxing after work. We could make pouring a drink mean a desire to drink. We could make our coworker’s request mean that we’re really good at customer service. We could make it mean that our bestie just forgot and be the one to reach out to share your love. We could make our neighbors’ actions mean nothing about us and everything about what is going on for them in their life.

Minding our own business and sorting out what is going on inside of us is some of the best work we will ever do, it allows us to show up as our authentic selves while allowing others to do the same. Minding our own business will enable us to be who we are while letting others be who they are and loving them for all of it. I’d love for you to get curious about how you might be meddling in other people’s business by asking yourself these questions, letting go of what you’re making things mean and working on just being the person you want to be. I’d love to hear your thoughts as you implement this work and as always, let me know what you’re struggling with!

🎧 Audio version of blog here!

πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“

Are you struggling in your love relationship? I would love to help you fall back in love with the one you love. My Awaken(TheTrue)You program is for strong women like you, and a few pretty cool guys, who want to stop hurting in their most intimate relationship. Together we work from the inside out, meaning I teach you how to have a healthy, loving relationship with yourself so you can show up and simply love your partner. Let’s reignite your love relationship today, book your consultation call today!

I’d love to offer a free call for you to work out whether or not my program and life-changing promise is a fit for you. Either book your call now or send me an email with your availability, your future life is waiting for you.

Know someone hurting in their relationships? If you think they might benefit from hearing this message please share this article with them. You might be the one who leads them to their best life.

Don’t forget to join my mailing list where I send out weekly tips on how to start building love and confidence within yourself and never miss another post, get yourself signed up for my newsletter!

Other People’s Opinions

🎧 Prefer to listen to the audio version? Click here!

Today I want to talk about the upside of exploring and being open to other people’s opinions. I’d like to have some fun with how being curious about what other people think might help us to create deeper connections with others while expanding and enriching our own opinions.

As I was thinking about what I wanted to talk about around the topic of other people’s opinions I decided to search “opinions” on my podcast app. This search came up with all sorts of interesting podcasts, three that had the exact same title I had come up with when I wrote down the idea for this post. After listening to a couple of these podcasts, I’d like to clarify that today’s message won’t be about how other people’s opinions of us don’t matter. It won’t be about how we get to choose who we want to be. It won’t be about how I highly encourage everyone to drop all of their concerns about what others think of them and to fully live their life out loud and real. While I am in love with that version of other people’s opinions, I talk about it often and will most certainly visit it again, that’s not where we will be going in this post.

Being open to someone else’s opinion even when you might not agree with them.

I’d like to use a recent example from one of my teachers, Gay Hendricks. As I went through one of his courses, I discovered that he is no longer a Christian and he briefly explains why. As a Christian myself, I felt a bit of resistance when his belief came up because I had been deeply enjoying the course and his concepts. I felt a tug of fear that his beliefs might convince me of his argument against Christianity and at the same time, I questioned whether I would be able to fully embrace the full course if I disagreed with his opinion. I felt this resistance and allowed myself to open up to what he had to say, to listen with an open mind and to question it all. I questioned his belief, as well as mine, then I allowed myself to watch what happened. As time passed I was able to continue to visit both perspectives and it opened me up to something truly beautiful. God used Gay’s words to enrich my current life, to deepen my connection with Jesus, and to set my mission on fire.

Had I chosen to close my mind to Gay’s teaching strictly because of his religious beliefs, I would have not only missed a deepening of my own faith but also would have lost an incredible learning experience from his course. I bought his course to deepen my relationship with myself, shutting my mind to him because of his opinion would have shut my mind to learning. Being open to his opinion not only taught me so much about how to better love myself, but it also deepened my relationship with my God and my experience of this life.

Being honest

Many of us are people pleasers, attempting to make other people happy so they will like us. What that means for us is that we might lie about what we believe or about our indifference, in an attempt to make others feel good and like us. We might agree when we don’t agree or we might pretend to know something when we don’t. We conform. I want to highly encourage you to be honest with yourself and others. If you don’t know what they are talking about, be curious, ask questions, be ok with not knowing, and wanting to understand. If you have your own opinion share it honestly, open up the conversation to curiosity, see what you might learn from each other. Don’t be afraid of weakening your current opinion, continual exploration will better solidify your current belief or educate you into a belief that feels right for you, which may, or may not be similar to your surrounding peoples’.

Learn

Being open to other people’s opinions allows you to connect with others in a deeper way, you get to talk about things that matter instead of boring things that really don’t matter.

Being open to other people’s opinions allows you to broaden your mind, to think things that you might not have thought about had you not opened yourself up to the conversation.

Being open to other people’s opinions allows you to come up with some of your own new opinions by taking what you already know, or didn’t know, combining it with someone else’s perspective and coming up with your own unique twist on it all. It will prompt you to schedule time to self educate on the subject to help reinforce, or change, your current opinion.

Today I want to challenge you to get uncomfortable in a conversation and of course since we are working on that love relationship, why not start with them? How might you be just agreeing with them instead of being curious about expressing your own belief? What might they think of you if you actually started speaking from your heart, with your own mind? Maybe that’s what you’re worried about, that they might not like you now, and what if they don’t? That my friend is the topic of discussion for the other article about other people’s opinions!

How can you question from a place of curiosity instead of defensiveness?

Can you simply ask why when they present something that makes you wonder?

I want to encourage you to learn something new about your partner, in the process you might also learn something about you.

🎧 Audio version of blog here!

πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“

Are you struggling in your love relationship? I would love to help you fall back in love with the one you love. My Awaken(TheTrue)You program is for strong women like you, and a few pretty cool guys, who want to stop hurting in their most intimate relationship. Together we work from the inside out, meaning I teach you how to have a healthy, loving relationship with yourself so you can show up and simply love your partner. Let’s reignite your love relationship today, book your consultation call today!

I’d love to offer a free call for you to work out whether or not my program and life-changing promise is a fit for you. Either book your call now or send me an email with your availability, your future life is waiting for you.

Know someone hurting in their relationships? If you think they might benefit from hearing this message please share this article with them. You might be the one who leads them to their best life.

Don’t forget to join my mailing list where I send out weekly tips on how to start building love and confidence within yourself and never miss another post, get yourself signed up for my newsletter!

Actions Speak Loudly

🎧 Prefer to listen to the audio version? Click here!

Welcome to part five of my seven-part series, where I am dissecting the tool that changed my life, the self-coaching thought model. The self-coaching model is also the very first tool I teach my new clients. The purpose of the thought model is to help you see and feel the life you are currently creating for yourself and to decide if you like it. The model contains five elements that I break down in this series, and at the end of the series, I will teach you how to put the pieces together so you can start using it in your own life. At the end of this post, I share a worksheet that will help you start filling in the first four pieces of the model as you work through your thought downloads, and this week’s action piece.

If you are just joining the series here I want to highly suggest you go back four weeks to my Brain Flossing post and read forward, doing the work included in each step. We started in that original post talking about the process of doing a thought download where I included a Thought Download worksheet to help you get started. Next, we talked about the difference between facts, or circumstances, in our lives and the thoughts we are having about those circumstances. I added in a post after that to help create your partner love list by discussing negative versus positive thinking and how to change negative thought patterns. Last week we talked in-depth about feelings, what creates them, and what they have to do with today’s topic, actions.

What is an action?

An action is the fact or process of doing something, typically to achieve an aim.

That definition comes straight out of the Google dictionary and I find it quite interesting that it states that an action is typically to achieve an aim, a goal. Contrary to that though, we often take actions that do not lead to the goal we intended, it doesn’t keep us “on aim”. Actions are things we do or don’t do, including inaction. Actions can be something we can see outside of us like giving our spouse a kiss. They can also be internal, as in ruminating over the story we are creating in our mind about last night’s discussion with your partner.

Why do we take the specific actions we take?

We take action based on how we are feeling.

Feeling work is some of the best work you can do in the five elements of the model because feelings are signals and we can feel their vibration in our bodies. Go back to last week’s post for more detailed information about how to discover your emotions. If you think you don’t feel emotions then think again. If you think you don’t feel emotions, you have most likely been practicing repressing emotion. Repressing emotion, or holding it in, is something we do in an effort to protect ourselves from getting hurt, to make ourselves look strong, to hide. Once you start allowing yourself to actually feel the feelings you will learn to love what emotions tell you. Emotions tell us something is happening. When we feel sad we want to be able to feel sad and explore what is happening for us, feeling our emotions is what actually allows those emotions to dissipate or soften. We can know that the emotion we are currently feeling is coming from something we are thinking about. What are we thinking? What is the fact or circumstance that I’m thinking about?

How to take different action.

Learning how to take different actions will require us to learn the first three elements of the model. Because feelings drive how we show up in our lives we want to understand what we are feeling and thinking about the circumstance we are acting in. Once we really understand these three things and how they are impacting the actions we are taking we can start looking at how to take actions we want to take.

  1. We could look at actions we want to be taking and find some emotions that could drive those desired actions.
  2. Once we have a few emotions to play with we can start coming up with some thoughts that will generate the desired feelings.
  3. We can also look at how we are feeling and decide how we want to feel and ask what we might need to think to feel this emotion.
  4. Then you want to start playing with different combinations and see if they work.

Some thoughts we won’t believe, that’s ok, ask yourself to try a different thought. Maybe the emotion you’re wanting to generate is one you can’t get to right now, try a different emotion that will start moving you in the right direction. The important thing is to start finding something that feels real for you and simply starts moving you in the direction you want to go.

Let’s look at a few examples.

Let’s say you are currently taking a few of these actions around the circumstance of your husband sitting on the couch watching football after dinner:

  • Blaming your husband for how you’re feeling
  • Complaining that he isn’t doing enough around the house
  • Not talking to him
  • Stomping around the house
  • Sarcastically asking him to do things
  • Find more things to do to look busy
  • Don’t relax
  • Make tasks more important than enjoying husband
  • Wanting to change him
  • Overeat
  • Judging him
  • Don’t think of ways to connect

The feeling driving these actions might be disappointed, resentment, self-pity. Maybe you’re thinking something like “He never helps out around the house.” “He doesn’t help me.” “He is lazy.” “My dad does such a better job.”

You could think of different actions you want to take or different thoughts you want to think or the feeling you might want to feel. For this example, let’s just look at feeling compassion or mindful or peaceful or content. What might you need to think to feel any of these emotions? Maybe:

  • “I love getting my house in order before I go to bed.” could make you feel peaceful.
  • “My husband deserves some time to chill.” could make you feel compassionate.
  • “I’m looking forward to my time to sit and chill too.” might make you feel motivated.
  • “I wonder if he might be interested in helping me out.” could make you feel curious.

All of these thoughts and feelings will drive different actions like:

  • Enjoying doing what you want to do
  • Allowing your husband to do what he wants to do
  • Kindly asking if he could help but not make it mean anything if he doesn’t
  • Planning downtime with husband
  • Planning tasks and getting them done within the allotted time
  • Plan ways to connect while doing tasks
  • Remembering why you like getting things done
  • Don’t judge him

As you learn these steps, it will start to become clear to you that it is 100% possible to be in control of how your future dream can become your reality. You are always in control of the results in your life and what you make those results mean. Practice this work, and if you have any questions, please get in touch with me, I’ll help you work through your obstacles. Let’s create the change you want in your love relationship starting today.

Oh, that worksheet I told you about: Model Practice Page

🎧 Audio version of blog here!

πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“

MyΒ Awaken(TheTrue)YouΒ program is for women who want to stop hurting in their most intimate relationship. I show you how to stop settling and bring back the love, connection, and excitement you crave. Let’s reignite your love relationship today!

I’d love to offer a free call for you to work out whether or not my program and life-changing promise is a fit for you. Either book your call now or send me an email with your availability, your future life is waiting for you.

Please share this message with anyone who you know who might benefit from hearing this message. Don’t forget to join my mailing list where I send out weekly tips on how to start building love and confidence within yourself.

If you’d like to get more empowering emails delivered straight to you and never miss another post please get yourself signed up for my newsletter!

Practicing Vulnerability

Vulnerability is a moment in time when you let your walls down. It’s exposing our raw, unprotected self for others to see, leaving us open for critique, judgment and emotional harm. I’ve often compared it to standing out in the middle of the street bare naked. Sounds painful but I’ve learned that it doesn’t have to be and I’ve learned that it can be painful but that it’s only temporary and always worth it.

The truth is, I’m not really interested in standing naked in the middle of the street. I don’t see the value, but when I see I’m not taking action on something that will move me forward I seem to visualize this scenario. Then I like to think about the result I would have I took this action I’m dreading. This allows me to embrace that feeling, remind myself that a feeling never killed anyone, remind myself of how awesome it will feel having the result and I dive in, head first. Sometimes the result is different than I anticipated but I always grow from the experience because it opens doors that I wouldn’t have known were there if I stayed stuck in fear.

Unwillingness to open up and expose your inner self – your true self – you in your full truth – is what keeps our marriages from connecting on a deep level.

As humans, we have an innate desire for connection, we are biologically wired for it. According to vulnerability expert, Brene Brown, it’s why we are here, it gives us purpose and adds meaning to our lives.

When we expose our fragile, tender inner selves, expose our hurts, our physical and emotional soft spots, it feels uncomfortable and dangerous. It’s even possible that we’ve experimented with being open and honest about ourselves but were completely unprepared for how another person might react. We possibly made their reaction mean something about who we are as a human thus making us less willing to do it again. This is where shame comes in. Shame really comes from the fear of being disconnected, that if we expose our inner self people might think we are somehow less than, flawed, unworthy of connection. When we build up our self confidence and practice vulnerability we get to let go of shame, knowing that connection is created from within ourselves, nothing outside of us creates our connection with someone else.

Vulnerability includes not pretending, not attempting to manipulate how someone views us. There is no game playing, no trying to be better than, no falseness. When we are most vulnerable we are at our most raw, true selves – no lying, no pretending, no faking, no game playing, manipulating or one upping.

So exactly how do we start becoming vulnerable, maybe even for the very first time? Maybe after trying but deciding it was too painful, deciding what someone else did in response to our vulnerability was painful enough that we’ll never open up again. What I want to do today is help you understand that the process of you opening up is all about you and your growth. I want to help teach you that someone else’s response to your vulnerability is their business and has absolutely nothing to do with you and your value.

Let’s look at five steps you can take to become more vulnerable so that you can open up to creating a more deep and intimate marriage:

Learn how to feel an emotion.

The process is simple yet deliberate, and often abstract for the beginner but one of the best things I have learned how to do in order to get out of a negative thought space. You have to take the time to do the work of allowing the emotion to run its course. You have to pause and be willing to feel the emotion you are experiencing so you can start recognizing it when it comes again.

A feeling is just a vibration in your body, a chemical response to something you are thinking. That’s all. I have taught here that all thoughts are optional so when you recognize the feeling or vibration in your body, you can then start searching for the thought causing it. You might think that their reaction means you’re unworthy, which could create a feeling of shame. When you recognize that it’s an optional thought you can start to explore the thought that their reaction has nothing to do with you and everything to do with them.

Build up your self confidence.

Self confidence is something you build by doing things that feel uncomfortable and not attaching any meaning about yourself to the outcome. It’s being willing to experience any emotion while moving forward with your relationship goals.

It’s different from confidence in that confidence is developed when you repeat something over and over. You become good at the thing because of the number of times you’ve taken action and now have confidence in being able to take the action again. Self confidence is doing something without knowing how and being willing to fail.

Self confidence is when you have your own back. You know you can do something and the result has nothing to do with who you are as a human being. Embarrassment, humiliation, rejection are all just temporary emotions that you feel, move through and move on, learning in the process.

Practice small steps of vulnerability.

Begin practicing with close friends, people who are open and vulnerable with you, and start small. Plan ahead of time what you will share and how you might comfortably weave it into the conversation. It might be as simple as being open and honest instead of embellishing or glamorizing your stories. Think about it like a dare to yourself, imagine feeling self confident, taking the action of opening up and not making the other person’s words or reactions not mean anything about you as a person. What if they never wanted to talk to you again? Would you make that mean that you’re unlovable? Remember, self confidence says you are fully lovable and worthy, no matter what another person thinks or does.

Maybe it’s even as simple as making a decision about date night. Maybe you always let him make the final decision because you’re afraid to commit to what you want to do. This small step of vulnerability would look like you deciding on purpose and sticking to it. What might you make it mean if he says he doesn’t like your idea? Watch what happens for you, maybe you give in and just do what he wants, telling yourself the story that you don’t really care anyway. Be curious. Be honest. Be you.

Let people be who they are.

Other people rejecting you or shaming you by trying to make you feel less connected, doesn’t change your worthiness. Learning how to feel what happens inside of you when people reject you takes lots of practice but it’s a skill that will build your armor of protection. This armor of protection is not to keep people from seeing in, from seeing your truth, it’s your self confidence shield that keeps you being all in on you.

The other view I’d like you to contemplate is who is shaming who? Are you making their response mean that they are telling you your opinion doesn’t matter? What if they are just being truthful, expressing their opinion and you’re just making it mean something different. This is where flavor and spice come into our relationships. If you’re always doing what others want to do then you’re not bringing your own flavor into the mix. I call that unfair to your relationship and to you! I say shake yourself all over and see what new recipe you come up with, who knows, your partner might even like this new flavor!

Find an accountability partner, a mentor or hire a professional.

Someone who’s done their own work of building their self confidence. Someone who has put themselves out into the world to help others can be a beautiful way to begin opening up with zero judgement. They’re all in on you and helping you become your true authentic self because they’ve done the work themselves and know the freedom that comes from it.

Hiding your true authentic self keeps us from blooming into our most beautifully created self. It limits us. Today you can shed that shell and start growing into someone who is solid in who she is and willing to put it out there, willing to shake her spice all over the world. This is the person your husband married, he married you and when he sees the raw, true you, he’s going to fall even deeper in love. He’s going to want more of your favorite dish served up on a daily menu plan!

Once you start exposing your inner spice, that’s when you open up to the love relationship of your dreams. Give this work a try and let me know how it goes, let me know what you’re struggling with so you can come closer to Awakening(YourTrue)You. If you think working together might be the next step you’d like to take, let’s talk about it. Scheduling a consult call will help you really decide if working with a coach is in your future and if it’s not, that’s ok because the conversation will be fun!

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My Awaken(TheTrue)You program is for women who want to stop hurting in their most intimate relationship. I show you how to stop settling and bring back the love, connection and excitement you crave. Let’s re-ignite your love relationship today!

I’d love to offer a free call for you to work out whether or not my program and life changing promise is a fit for you. Either book your call now or send me an email with your availability, your future life is waiting for you.

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