An enlightening introduction to conscious partnership
Chris and I read this book last summer. The science and exercises worked like a charm. We came to understand each other at a whole new level, crafted our mutual relationship vision, and brought the daily practices to our lives.
Here are some of my high-level takeaways:
- People everywhere seek lasting love.
- When love flounders, people experience extreme heartache.
If you become conscious of and begin to regulate the unconscious old brain intrusions from your childhood, you and your partner would be less reactive and have fewer arguments.
old brain = brain stem (the “reptilian” brain) + limbic system (memory & emotions)
new brain = cerebral cortex (logical)
Neuroplasticity = every interaction with the outside world rewires our brain
We are compelled by an unwritten agenda and hope our partner could satisfy our childhood wounds. Compassion for each other’s past is a prerequisite to receiving the love you want.
As we grow up, these wounds are manifested as unmet needs. If we don’t heal those wounds, we are likely to recreate the same painful situations in marriage and continue the “legacy of wounding.”
Most people are attracted to people who have many of the same negative and positive traits as their parents (aka the people most responsible for your survival).
The traits that matched up the most closely were the negative traits because the old brain was trying to return you to the scene of your childhood so you could get back to your unfinished business.
If you want to know what kind of people they are married to, just imagine their opposite.
Romantic love is a creation of the unconscious mind, a re-experiencing of the joyful connecting experienced in childhood in the present.
We feel a comfortable resonance as if we had known each other for years.
In those moments, we let go of our lifelong self-absorption and become curious about the reality of another human being.
- Finish your childhood business.
- See your partner as just another human being.
- Clearly and kindly communicate your needs and desires.
- Be intentional in interactions.
- Value your partner’s needs and wishes.
- Keep the relationship safe.
- Find new ways to satisfy your own needs and desires.
- Curious about the differences.
- Become aware of your drive for love and energy.
- Accept the difficulty of creating a lasting love relationship (which requires commitment, discipline, and courage to change).
Till Death Do Us Part
Why should couples honor their vows?
It’s because “fidelity and commitment create a zone of safety that allows couples to resolve their long-standing issues and become joyfully alive and connecting.”
If you are interested in applying the exercises to your relationship, you can get a kindle copy here.
Have a great day 🙂