Stepping Into Your Power
“All significant breakthroughs are break-“withs” old ways of thinking.” — Thomas Kuhn
Stepping into your power
Changes in #relationships can happen when we become more of ourselves. These can be times where we step more fully into personal truth, power, and development. We learn something new and carry it forward. It is a gift to be able to practice intentional work over a lifetime. It takes #courage: to stay present and decide how I want to be, respond and act. We are meant to grow and change cradle to grave. Yet, growth and change can be an uncomfortable place to be in a relationship.
Out of the Box
There was a great illustration of this concept at a workshop I attended at Enlighted Way: New Day. Cella Janisch-Hartline described our comfort zone as a box. Where we feel the most comfortable is inside the middle of the box, staying where it is known. We’ve done it before. When we move toward the edges of our comfort zone and even OUT of the box, we can experience the most fear because it is new. Yet, the most growth happens outside of the comfort zone/box that we put ourselves in. Learning, practice, and emergence all happen in the space beyond the edges of what we know.
Why is it that when our partner grows and changes, we want to stuff them back into the box we’ve known them as? Because that is where we are comfortable! Human nature is drawn to known, familiar, and comfortable places and experiences. Relationships are easy in times of understanding. We think we know our partner and then something brand new has arrived. It is common to resist the unknown. Is there an easier way to travel this journey? Yes! It’s helpful to know a little more.
History Repeats Itself: Know Old Contracts
We’ve always done what we’ve always done until we learn a new way. Our childhoods are unique with the messages we carry from this time. We bear the messages we were taught about ourselves. I’m good at… You really shine when you… But these ingrained messages can also diminish our power and make us feel small. I’m bad at… I’m fearful of… You shouldn’t… These are old contracts that we carry around. What old contracts can you think of? How does that contract influence your life? Is it time to shred the contracts that don’t serve us?
What to do with an old Contract
It’s your choice. Knowing the old contract is the first #awareness. “I am likeable when I play small” or “My voice does not matter.” What you do with old contracts is your choice. One option can be to shred it and build a new one. Shredding a contract is deciding the contract has expired. When that thought comes up, it no longer is an agreement you need to hold.
Step two is being open to a different contract to replace the expired. “I like myself first and play bigger.” Or “My truth and voice matter.” Shredding the old contract happens when the chosen statement replaces a taught false belief.
What’s mine? There is a responsibility to tending to your own work and kindly and compassionately communicating your needs. This intentionality can look like a mantra. “I honor myself by responding with compassion.” Not only do I get to choose what changes I want, I may choose the way in which I grow. It can be tempting to flip to irritation when a loved one does not see us with a lens that we want to be viewed out of. Old lenses and old contracts feel like being put back into the comfort box. This is a great time to design an alliance with your loved ones so everyone is able to talk about change. What IS yours is loving and compassionate communication. Need help with this? Book a session.
Nice to Meet You Where You Are
Introducing your partner to new realizations is honoring the journey of change. A safe way to do that is to set aside uninterrupted time. Next, design the conversation you want to have.
What space are we creating together in this conversation? (Easy, open, non-judgemental)
How do I want to be listened to? (Listen until my words are done. Listen with silence. Listen with response.)
What do I hope to get out of this conversation? (I want to tell you how I’ve been growing and changing)
How do we want to be if it feels difficult? (I want us to take a break and continue at a set future time)
What will make me flourish? (If I see you delight in me. If I can say all my words in a space of non-judgement)
Coaching Corner: A Gift for You and Your Partner
What does encouragement look like?
What words describe how you want to feel together?
What support can you ask for?
Are there any habits that are expired? Any old contracts that are not up for renewal?
What do you want to celebrate and continue in your relationship?