When confronted with a marital crisis, your knee jerk reaction is to focus “out there” to stop the crisis.
An almost obsessive like focus on your spouse or partner during a marital crisis I find extremely common, at least when the crisis first erupts.
Your world is thrown into chaos. Your future suddenly is marked by uncertainty and fear.
You may want assurance from your spouse that this is not as bad as it seems. You need to hear from him/her that your world will indeed be ok.
You need to hear that you are still cared about, considered and yes, loved.
You wonder what s/he is thinking. Where did this come from? You need information. You need data. You want to know what in the world is going on. What moved him/her to this crazy like behavior? After all, YOUR life is on the line.
And so, your eyes, your words, your thoughts, day and night focus and wonder about him/her.
And you play the game internally and also with him/her; If only you would _________________ then I would __________________. And your spouse/partner replies; Well, If only you would _______________ then I would _______________.
You may explore what “out there” caused the problem. You begin to work diligently at “fixing the problem.”
Is it a sex problem?
Is it a money problem?
Is it a work problem?
Is it a children problem?
Is it a friend/family problem?
Is it a health problem?
Is it a time problem?
You search for any inkling of what problem “out there” needs to be fixed to short circuit the crisis.
You are taught to “fix” a problem that exists in your world, so you rack your brain attempting to create solutions to your problem.
You eventually will discover that attempts to “fix the problem” are met with resistance at best and sabotage at worst.
Your crisis is fueled not by a problem “out there” that needs to be fixed but an inner emptiness or chaos that cries for relief.
The next step of external focus is to seek help; to look in your world for something or someone who can “make” you – and your spouse or partner – better again.
And you think about:
• Get into marriage counseling
• Find a good couples’ therapist
• Attend a weekend marital retreat or conference
• Read a self help book on rebuilding a marriage
• Plan a romantic getaway
• Do a Google search for marriage help
• Talk to your pastor, priest or rabbi
• Start dating each other again
• Spend time talking about your feelings
Now, some of these approaches will be helpful. You will feel better. The stress and strain will most likely diminish.
Although these rebuilding strategies are commonly espoused, they are temporary fixes at best.
Most fail to address the underlying process of building a marriage or relationship of deep emotional investment. As well, they often fail to get at the core issues that are vital to a healthy long-term relationship.
Creating a lasting and mutually satisfying emotional connection that you can trust and know will endure the test of time only occurs once the marital process is embraced and core issues are addressed.
Summary: No one “out there,” no therapist, no retreat, nothing “out there” will give you what you ultimately want – peace, fulfillment and passion.
Once you shift your focal point from what outside you can “make you better” to “what am I experiencing now?” your healing and change accelerates.
You begin to ask: What triggers do I respond most intently to? Where is my pain? What is my pain trying to say to me? What do I truly want? What are MY standards? What do I value? What do I TRULY want to convey to my spouse or partner about ME? What is MY position in this marital crisis?
Please know that you are taught, it’s deeply embedded within you, that your crisis can be treated by something “out there.”
Treat yourself with leniency and respect as you shift your focal point from “out there,” to your experience.
My personal one-on-one coaching is often a gentle and caring reminder that you can make that shift.
And, that in making that sift you find the intensity of the crisis diminishing and personally you find everything you truly desire, and more!
For more information on coaching check out: www.break-free-from-the-affair.com/coach.htm