Many people think that good communication is THE most important relationship skill, and of course it IS very important, but without Connection, a couple whose marriage is in difficulty, will fail to communicate, irrespective of how sincere, or articulate they may be.
Loss of connection
It is the loss of connection with each other which often leads to the difficulties in the first place and then results in people feeling lonely and isolated, and this can trigger unconscious memories of earlier times when they felt that way. This compounds the current difficulties. If you are disconnected, everything seems worse and your solutions will probably fail.
The power of connection
When you are connected you can communicate regardless of the words or language you use; it is like you have an invisible lifeline of affection and value for each other. It is essential that this is in place and that you commit to keeping this in place at all times, even when you feel angry with each other.
Park the problems and reconnect
So, anytime you experience problems in your marriage, make a conscious agreement to set the problems aside; reconnect by engaging in some mutual expressions of appreciation and spending downtime as a couple, away from house, home, children and family. Make a conscious decision to put your marriage first and to be emotionally honest with each other. Not only will this help you to reconnect, it will stabilise the situation too.
During this fragile period, it is helpful to have conversations about what is important to each of you. This is not about trying to manipulate your partner to do what you want, but for you to understand each other more fully. For example you may value Freedom and your partner may value Family and this may mean a clash of values sometimes. It doesn’t mean either of you are right or wrong, it just means you have to learn to accommodate each others core values.
One of the reasons my marriage to Alan works so well is that he accommodates my core values of learning and personal development and I accommodate his core value of what it means to him to be a man. We both share the value of adventure.
Part of what helps couples remain connected is to at least annually review and share their core values and needs with each other, and how well the relationship accommodates and meets them. Most people have their car serviced or MOTd every year.
It is a wise couple who sets a date for a Relationship Review.
Grace Chatting, located in Plymouth, UK, is a Transformation and Relationship coach, writer, and workshop facilitator. She is also a Family Mediator and Psychotherapist. Her passion is empowerment arising from personal growth, integrity and authenticity.
Grace can be reached on (44) 07816491165 if you wish to arrange a consultation