Over the last twenty years that I’ve been working with couples, I keep hearing, “I love my boyfriend (or girlfriend or wife or husband or …) to death and I want a better relationship, help us!”
First of all, that “I love them to death” statement always makes the hairs rise on the back of my neck. Our words are quite powerful and often our minds take them literally. I would much prefer that someone love me “to life” personally! That would begin the process of a better relationship.
Second, I ask couples, “What are you willing to commit to, in order to have a better relationship, to actually have the relationship of your dreams?” The answer is usually “Whatever it takes!”
In my experience (and I don’t mean to be cynical), this usually means, “whatever it takes, as long as I don’t have to be uncomfortable or take any actions that I don’t want to take.”
Relationships are challenging. They bring up all of our unresolved issues, all of our triggers, and all of our childhood wounds. And that is a GOOD thing, as all of this surfaces so that we can resolve our issues and heal our wounds!
Relationships offer us an incredible opportunity for healing of ourselves and for our partner. And yet, the adolescent fantasy that it “should” always feel good and always be “warm and fuzzy” is not realistic. And when it becomes challenging and we’re not sure what to do, we are often quick to label the relationship as “bad” or “wrong” and we leave it. And then we find another person to love and start a new relationship and repeat the pattern.
A better relationship is defined in my opinion as a willingness to examine my own issues and how they intertwine with my partner’s issues. I’ve written about this before (click here to learn more about Imago: How We Choose Our Partner). A better relationship is defined by the ability to delay gratification in the short term to have deeper connection and happiness in the long term.
A better relationship is defined by the willingness to communicate when it’s not comfortable and when you know that neither of you will enjoy the process in the moment, yet it still needs to be done. A better relationship is a commitment to working through whatever needs to be worked through and the willingness to discover/find/create the tools needed to make this happen.
These are the people that I choose to work with in my relationship coaching practice. If they are single, I help them to heal their past heartbreak and relationship “failures” and understand their relationship patterns. In this way, they can literally have a “fresh start” and create a better relationship with themselves and attract a similarly committed partner to create a better relationship with as well.
The same holds for the couples that I work with. They are committed and motivated to create a better relationship. They take the tools I teach them and run with them. They carry out the assignments I give them and want more! These are the couples that create more romance, more intimacy and more passion in their relationships. It is a pleasure to work with them and share in their growth.
What I definitely have learned over the years is that 100% of the couples and singles that I work with that AREN’T committed to the process and DON’T use the tools I teach them, DON’T get the results they want and DON’T create a better relationship. I have learned to ask them this question before we even begin our work together, so that I can save them and myself time and energy better spent on other endeavors.
The question then, is WHO do you want to be in your life and in your relationship? And, what are you TRULY willing to commit to, in order to have it? If you believe that you have that motivation and that commitment, CONGRATULATIONS!
And if you believe that I can help support you in your journey towards a better relationship, I want to extend a special offer to you, to have a complimentary Relationship Coaching Strategy Session with me via Skype or telephone. Please click here to schedule the session, if what I’ve written makes sense to you and you are ready for RESULTS!
Thank you so much,
Dr. Adam Sheck