Get out of Relationship Hell!©
By Fay Niewiadomski, Founder and CEO of ICTN
Why is it that as soon as the world RELATIONSHIP comes up, our thoughts move outward and our eyes begin to scan the environment for the OTHER PERSON in the RELATIONSHIP. Isn’t it strange that the relationship with ourselves doesn’t seem to come to mind? And yet, that all-important relationship with ourselves is the one that defines every other relationship!
What are the elements that make up the relationship with ourselves? Part of it is our FANTASY- SELF, an idealized version of ourselves – the self we would really like to be. It includes our deepest desires and aspirations and the heroic figures we dream of becoming.
Then there is the DON’T-BE-STUPID-SELF. This is the one that says, who are you kidding? You are none of those things and you will never become any of them. Be realistic! Here is where we allow everyone – except ourselves, to decide who we really are. Here is where we live in the past with all the misconceptions, disempowering beliefs, and childish conclusions we collected along the journey of life. This collection of ‘realistic’ beliefs about ourselves comes from the judgemental things said to us with authority, intensity and emotion by parents, siblings, teachers, peers, employers and anyone whom we felt ‘knew us better’.
These thoughts are like a huge heap of things stuffed into the back-closet of our mind. Some valuable, some junk, some dangerous and some indelible. Now this collection of beliefs / ’truths’ doesn’t just sit passively in our mind. They make-up our ‘identity’ and dictate what we believe we are able and unable do. As a result, these ‘truths’ define the boundaries of our potential and likability. Based on the percentage of positive to negative beliefs / ‘truths’ we accepted about ourselves, we place a value on what we are really worth. We either like, dislike or are ambivalent about who we believe we really are.
The degree to which we like ourselves determines the size and type of ENGINE we drive on our life journey. The more we like ourselves the bigger, stronger and more sophisticated are our ENGINES and we fuel these engines with positive self-worth or self-esteem. On the other hand, the more we dislike ourselves, the smaller, weaker and more primitive are our engines and the there isn’t much fuel for these engines because we don’t often feel good about ourselves.
The interesting thing about this is that our relationships with other people are a projection of our relationship with ourselves. What this means is that if we like ourselves, we believe that others like us. However, if we dislike ourselves, we find it hard to believe that we are likable. Therefore our interpretation of the meaning of other people’s behaviors towards us is filtered through our beliefs about our DON’T-BE-STUPID-SELF and is processed by our ENGINE type. If their words and actions match our idea of who we are. We tend to assume they are right and this affects whether we get more fuel or less fuel into our ENGINES.
The good news is that you DON’T HAVE TO ACCEPT any of the beliefs about yourself that you have stored in that back closet. You can do a deep cleaning of all the stuff in that closet by emptying it out and examining each item in there and deciding which is valuable and empowering to keep and which to discard because as unhelpful and disempowering.
The quality of our relationship with others is determined by the quality of relationship we have with ourselves.
Fix the relationship you have with yourself in order to fix your relationship with others.
Our Group Coaching session “Get out of Relationship Hell” is designed to help you examine your relationships and start the journey of making them better.
© Fay Niewiadomski, 01/25/2019