Do you remember the last moment you felt completely connected to yourself, what you believe in, your values and ethics? How connected are you to your partner or spouse, your...
Do you remember the last moment you felt completely connected to yourself, what you believe in, your values and ethics? How connected are you to your partner or spouse, your best friend, or even life? I know, we were disconnected before, but this pandemic has really made that disconnect, not only more painful, but also more obvious.
Whether we had it and lost it, or never had it, I think we are many of us are longing for a it today. Even the men and women who protect themselves from feeling anything deeply, if they were willing to admit it, are also longing for intimacy, tenderness and closeness. We feel bereft of it and this pandemic brutally added to the longing. I believe these moments of pain, crisis and suffering are really holy moments teaching us something about ourselves.
This round may be teaching us how critical our connections to each other are and, how vital they are to our health, individually and as a nation. We are disconnected by gender, race, party, by spiritual beliefs and the list goes on. Instead of celebrating the array of beautiful differences and encouraging and empowering them with civility and love, we demonize each other, even become violent and are pressured to take sides.
Why? The basic issues of staying closed or protected emotionally is a fear of being found not right and pressured to change, not good enough, being abandoned again, rejected or deemed unlovable.
The greatest teachers are in the center of fear and resistance. If you do not let them in, they will always knock again.I believe most of us don’t live in relationships with friends or partners, which are truly deep and meaningful. Let’s look at why we resist this and, maybe we’ll find there is even more to this lack of tenderness in our lives. I think there are those of us that feel if we open up, become vulnerable and tender, we will fall apart with the grief and sadness that we’re holding inside. This era has not been easy and if you frost it with the fear of being vulnerable, it’s a hard bite to swallow. But why? The basic issues of staying closed or protected emotionally is a fear of being found not right and pressured to change, not good enough, being abandoned again, rejected or deemed unlovable.
I believe most of us don’t live in relationships with friends or partners, which are truly deep and meaningful. Most of us were never taught how to create deep or meaningful, so we say “We’re fine, just doing life” and silently, we hope the boat doesn’t rock. We stay away from issues that hurt or upset us because we don’t feel as if we have the tools to navigate through them. However, that is exactly what we have been doing for the past many years…staying silent and where has that gotten us, other than lonelier?
I call these big or little wake up bumps, holy moments, or teachable moments, so let’s understand this one is just making us aware of this lack of connection and intimacy so we will authentically start creating them. So let’s talk about how.
The first step is stop and ask yourself how connected you are to yourself. Have you identified your fears, concerns or past pain that might keep you from want to be open to difference or possibly change and connection? While doing so, you need to remind yourself that feelings are not facts, they are just feelings and they cannot kill us or make us crazy. They just keep coming up, asking to be healed and they don’t do that until your spirit knows you are strong enough to deal with them. Believe or not you will live through hearing some differences in each other.
Then, you want to ask yourself what it is that scares you most about deeper connections. Most of the time they are not about the person we want to connect with, they are usually about some event in our childhood that is unresolved. If you need some help, find a therapist, counselor or sponsor who has some experience with processing trauma and feelings.
And finally make an appointment with the person with whom you want to connect more deeply, or start with someone else you trust to practice. You can download “The Communication Exercise” on my website under the tools link and begin creating communication that is safe and open. And, it would be helpful to watch the free videos on communication and boundaries so you can avoid the pitfalls of speaking over each other interrupting, name calling or any of the other habits we have learned that make us fearful about the process.
Let’s start with the unique thought that we can safely listen and learn. Isn’t that what we teach our kids? Try it. There are great gifts waiting for you.
Dr. Evan is a marriage, family, child therapist and consciousness counselor. She has presented nationwide seminars and workshops, written several books and created meditation CDs for couples, individual and mental health professionals. She has also won national acclaim as a human rights advocate. Visit drdinaevan.com or call 602-571-8228.