Is it easy to talk to your partner? Do you feel safe
in doing so? Do you feel that they will really listen to
you, your concerns, your feelings? Will your vulnerability
be honored? Do they stick with a difficult conversation
and not dismiss you when they get uncomfortable?
Since communication goes both ways, let’s reverse this.
Are you easy to talk with? Do you allow your partner to have
beliefs and thoughts that differ from yours? Are you patient
when listening or do you try to speed up the conversation and
think ahead to what you want to say?
It’s always much harder when we ask ourselves these questions,
because it asks us to look at our own imperfections.
And I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not always the best listener
with my husband, Steve. Maybe it’s because we have a tendency
to take for granted the people we love the most.
And our partner, because they are around a lot, has a way of
pushing our buttons and mirroring our own personality
Pause for a moment. What is one thing that your partner does
to make you bristle with anger or frustration?
Steve doesn’t like it when I jump to conclusions about something
or don’t let him finish speaking, and he especially despises it when
I give him unsolicited health advice and take over-responsibility
What does this reflect about ME? I can be over-powering at times
and think that I “know best.” This shows up in arrogance and
immature entitlement that people or events should be a certain way.
So why am I on this topic of communication? Because it has
such a big impact on our committed relationships, all relationships
for that matter.
If we don’t make it a priority to figure out how to respectfully
convey our needs/desires to our partner, we may be able to hold
our marriage together (even for a long time), but the result will
feel like we’re “white knuckling” it. It will feel forced, and resentment
will build up, possibly leading to divorce.
So what can you do about this? It helps to give yourself permission
to be vulnerable. It may be hard to this before your partner does it
if you think that YOU have to do all the changing or that they don’t
deserve your trust.
Unless there is emotional, mental or physical abuse from your
partner, I have found that you will get the best long-term result
of intimacy and connection if you approach this with a mindset of
“I’m half of this relationship and so therefore I’m responsible
for 1/2 of the results to date.”
What does vulnerability look like? Humbly looking within and
admitting that you have a part in this. Your beliefs have collided
Vulnerability would mean that you share something with them
that scares you; it probably reveals something you’re ashamed
about and want to hide. And when you can muster the courage
to do this, it invites connection.
In March 2020, Steve and I began keeping a daily practice of
journaling our feelings for 5 minutes and then tapping using
emotional freedom technique to relieve the emotional tension.
We share these journals with each other about every other day
when we sit in our infrared sauna together. There are days
when I write unflattering things about Steve (and he does the
same about me) because we’ve upset each other.
One of the rules is that when the other is reading their journal,
we are to just listen, not chime in with our feedback. This helps
us feel like we have a safe space to vent. PLUS, we get to hear
what’s really going on for our partner.
I would definitely say it’s made us much better communicators
and as a result much closer. What can you do to improve the
intimacy and connection with your partner? The options are endless.
Sometimes, there are no more options and we arrive at the
conclusion that both of us, and our children, would be better
off if we divorced.
If that’s you or you know a woman like that, consider attending
an upcoming online workshop on 10/5/21 that will be very inter-
active, Confidently Navigate Divorce and Keep Your Kids out of the
Unlike the last retreat, this will be less structured as far as teaching
content, and more time will be spent listening to your specific
situation and then helping you shift your inner state or energy
so that you’re more empowered to make clear decisions and craft
a bright, hopeful next chapter for you and your kids.
If you have any questions and would like to talk to me beforehand,
let me know by replying to this email.
To Your Empowerment,