Hey everyone, happy Tuesday, and welcome back to the podcast where we are exploring some of the benefits that I shared due to establishing a six-second kiss habit back two episodes ago, episode 35, Six-Second Kiss Paralysis. In that episode, we talked about how to go from being paralyzed when thinking about one six-second kiss, much less establishing it as a daily routine, to taking action on something you want to do in your marriage. Last week we talked about Love Maps: Getting To Know Spouse and what I think I forgot to mention in that episode is how the six-second kiss can build the knowing of your partner, so I’ll share that here and now. Think about it, when we share a six-second kiss, we have time to explore our kissing style, how we want to kiss, and different ways to kiss. While you are exploring what is happening for you, you can also tune into how your spouse kisses and responds to your kissing experimentation. It helps bring meaning and understanding to the action instead of the simple peck, which doesn’t give you time to be present. Once you get into the six-second kiss routine, you will find much more presence during even a simple one peck while appreciating the longer version. Now that I have that covered, let’s dig into the steps of how to self-soothe to a happier marriage.
Today, we will define self-soothing, why it is so important in your marriage but even more so, for yourself, and then I’m going to talk about ways to self-soothe and how the six-second kiss can be self-soothing.
What is self-soothing?
Self-soothing is a way to bring ourselves to feelings of betterment to move forward from any negativity or pain. It is a way to help you know that “everything is going to be ok.” It is learning how to regulate your emotions, which you can find more about in Episode 35, where I talk about Emotional Regulation In Your Marriage, and an exercise to distract or ground yourself when you feel negative emotions onboarding. I do want to pause here to talk about how self-soothing is often first recognizing where you are going emotionally and with that awareness being able to judge what actions you need to take that would best serve you. With practice, you will be able to tell whether the situation is “light” enough for you to stay in the circumstance and self-soothe or whether it might be quite possible that the circumstance is too “heavy” for you to self-soothe at the moment and throw up a time out signal.
Now that you know what self-soothing is notice how often you might soothe someone else; we do it with babies and children when we think they are afraid of something. I find myself doing it all of the time with Aurora, our new puppy; while I am trying to get her comfortable going on walks in the neighborhood, I’m constantly telling her, “everything is ok.”
As you begin to learn how to self-soothe, it may start with the awareness after the circumstance and process what happened so you can start doing things differently. As you practice, you will be able to see the circumstance on a scale of 1-10 in your ability to self-soothe at the moment, which will help you to understand when you need to create a boundary for yourself and bow out of what is happening so you can evaluate and take care of your mental health.
This self-soothing helps us regulate our emotions by bringing some relief, like stepping out of the fire and into a cool misty day, and when we’re able to do this, we can better assess what is going on for us. We can look at what was said, what we said, how they reacted, or how we reacted and have a clearer perspective of what is actually happening after we step away from an emotional battle.
How self-soothing builds a stronger marriage
In our marriages, there are so many things that could create tension for us; it could be our schedules packed with activities and commitments, a lack of connection and communication, it could be lack of passion and love, or even something as simple as a look or reaction that sets us off. Self-soothing helps us step out of being stuck in the middle of an emotional storm, pointing our fingers at our spouse, and showing up in a way that feels awful. Self-soothing helps us pause when we need to keep pushing our point, wanting our partner to step down and examine what is really going on for us. Self-soothing turns us inward to reflect on what we are making this circumstance while checking how we want to show up intentionally. In our marriages, self-examination and self-reflection seem difficult and painful because we think our partners should understand and show us love, and this, my friends, is the point. We have been relying on them to do this for us, leaving us powerless to create that feeling for ourselves, and a disconnected feeling in your marriage is the perfect conduit to turning inward and learning the process of showing up for ourselves through our own care and love and understanding of self.
Self-soothing helps us see how to make ourselves feel better whether we are in a frictional state with our partner in a face-to-face confrontation or when we are plain feeling down. This helps our marriage because we can process through our own pain and then come together with our partners to share. When we’ve processed through our pain ourselves, we don’t need our partners to fix us, make us feel better, or agree with us; we can be there to love them and, in turn, let them love us in their own way.
I love self-soothing because it helps bring us closer to our partner without actually opening ourselves up too much to someone else, which is important for most of my clients. In AwakenYou, we do so much work with our relationship with ourselves before we start taking too many actions with our partner because these self actions often feel so much safer than opening ourselves up to possible rejection. Even though we learn in the program that no one can reject you unless you are first rejecting yourself, it often takes time to resonate. That is why self-soothing is one of the more accessible ways to start rebuilding the marital foundation.
As in everything we do here in AwakenYou, learning how to calm your nervous system and working through the issue that is creating friction is a process of self-growth, and not every strategy will work in each situation. This is why I share so many tools, and as you use the tools, you get better at handling them and knowing which one might best work for each situation; this is what keeps you engaged, inspired, and connected in the relationship. Remember that avoiding a situation by pretending it didn’t happen or pushing it away is NOT self-soothing; it is a form of resistance that erases self-growth and moves the relationship backward.
Ways to self-soothe and how the six-second kiss can be self-soothing
- When it comes to conflict it’s important to step back and get a different perspective. When you’re unable to regulate your emotions your best option in the heat of the moment is to have taken care of yourself beforehand by coming up with a signal to pause. It could be a time-out signal, a hands in the air, a phrase, maybe something funny to break the tension a bit, maybe have a conversation with your partner, not during a conflict, and come up with a joint signal together. Maybe even a six-second kiss! Then have a plan for both of you to take time to self-soothe and then you can together decide if and when you want to revisit what originally created the conflict.
- When you are able to break away take time to first center yourself by focusing on your breath. Don’t know how to do that? Go to Insight timer and search “breath”. Then take time to process your emotions by listening to Episode 23: How To Process Emotions and then write about what is going on for you. When you write make sure you are focusing on yourself not on your partner.
- Start creating a safe place in your mind, a place where you feel safe, calm and open-minded. It may be somewhere out in nature, a comfortable spot from sometime in your life or a made up location that you imagine to be safe. Envision yourself in this place and how you feel when you are there, what does the air smell like, what noises do you hear, what does it look like, how does the air feel on your skin. Think of these things to help you get out of your logical thinking mind and as thoughts seep through notice them and let them float on through.
- Go for a walk or a run and use your senses. Tune into what you see, what you hear, your feet landing on the ground, your breath, the smells, the sun or rain on your face and let yourself soften. When you notice ruminating thoughts let them go and refocus on the beauty around you.
- Place both hands on your heart to calm yourself and activate the feeling of self-love.
- Journal, write it all out and then finish the statement: “I am…”
- Listen to some calming music, again, Insight timer is a great resource.
The six-second kiss might not be something you implement in a time of conflict, but when you are implementing it into your daily routine, you establish new habits that help you feel good and bring you together with your spouse. It is you telling yourself that everything will be ok and that you can do things that scare you and that you have the power to bring the love you long for back into your marriage.
If you are interested in doing the work of re-building your marital relationship, then I want to encourage you to join my six-week marital magic course that is starting November 13th, through this Friday, November 5th, the price is only $159, and it goes up to $999 at midnight. Go to my website to get details and get yourself registered. Join a small group of people who struggle with some of the same things you struggle within your marriage, find support and a whole lot of encouragement as I share steps to create the relationship that you love, and start believing that you have the power to turn around how you feel about your marriage.
I am a life coach who works with individuals to break down relationship barriers by awakening their true selves. My process isn’t about changing your partner; it’s about discovering who you are so that you can AwakenYou in your marriage. If you’re ready to take your life and your love relationship to the next level, then schedule your program inquiry call today and let’s decide together if this is your next step to creating the life you’ve been dreaming of.