It's an incredible thing, being in a relationship with someone - and I don't just mean your partner. I'm also referring to your relationships with your parents, your friends, your siblings, your co-workers, your neighbors, YOURSELF...
This past week got a little prickly between my husband and I. My best friend of 14 and a half years was grinding my gears, and frankly, I was grinding on his. What were we bickering about? Honestly? Anything and everything - From "I wish you would respect me more in this area" to "Why would you say that? I'm just trying to help." And you know what? Both of those sentences came out of BOTH of our mouths, so this article is judgement-free.
What has been insightful for me to reflect on, is the fact that we as humans are truly in constant evolution. Effortlessly flowing and evolving, continually creating a new reality for ourselves without thinking about it. In the same way that Thought is transitory and constantly flowing (when we allow it), the way our heart beats without us telling it to or our lungs expand and contract without our direction, there is evolution happening within us on a spiritual level - moment by moment - without our effort. We don't have to think to ourselves "I need to change and evolve," it just happens. And when we allow the flow to happen, we naturally auto-correct to our default setting of peace, love and clarity and our reality unfolds for us without us even thinking about it. We are so One with our wisdom that we flow in the greater wisdom of life. In relationship to Mike and I, we attempt to function from this place by choice because we trust our wisdom and our communication with each other, but what woke us up to a new reality was the fact that the flow all of a sudden had a bunch of rocks and boulders getting in the way. It's as if we held a mirror up to each other and said "Look! You're different!" This is where the insight hit me with a big A-HA!
We are so used to believing that on a subconscious level (or for some, even the conscious level) that people don't change, including ourselves. That there are concrete truths about who we are that won't ever shift. But here's the thing, it's not that people don't change, it's our thinking about those people that doesn't change (!!) It's not that I can't change, it's the thinking about those concrete truths about myself that doesn't change (!!) What we believe to be their behaviors, their beliefs, their being (or our behaviors, our beliefs or our being), is rock solid in our brain and any experience that pulls the curtain to any kind of deviation from what we think we know about that person or ourselves, must be circumstantial.
Need me to repeat those truth bombs?!
It's not that people don't change, it's our thinking about people that doesn't change.
It's not that I can't change, it's the thinking about those concrete truths about myself that doesn't change.
For example, in the little spats that Mike and I were getting into, we were reading each other through the lens of our beliefs that we already knew what the other person would normally react like. And by the way, we make a concerted effort to truly approach each other with new eyes and ears, all the time. But on a subconscious level, what was making us constantly lock up, was an expectation of each other that couldn't be met because neither of us are the same person we were two minutes ago. It was the ultimate wake up call to recognize that we are truly, unequivocally, evolving all the time; And in order to stay in flow with the relationship, whether it be with yourself or another human being, you must show up as if you are learning more new information about that person (or yourself), in that moment. Staying curious (flowing) as opposed to assuming (concrete). If our thoughts are constantly flowing, therefore our feelings are constantly flowing with them, of course we are inevitably going to experience a different self or different person in a relationship, depending on where our thoughts are.
Another layer to this, that I'm sure you can relate to, is seeing someone you haven't seen in quite a while. We often say, "Wow, they sure are different. They must be super happy at their job or (the opposite) miserable in their relationship." We blame their being different on their outside circumstances OR the fact that we haven't seen them in a long time (again, another outside circumstance), but 1) we aren't threatened by it and 2) that eludes that the person hasn't changed, just their circumstances have. Should we see someone on a day-to-day basis and we experience them being very different we either again, blame it on outside circumstances such as work stress, OR we take it personally and try to find a reason as to why they would be different with us. Can you guess where this scenario normally leads? You got it - assumption and miscommunication up the yin yang. Again, if we were to come from the knowing that we are ALL evolving from moment to moment, and additionally, became curious about where the other persons mind is at within these experiences that throw you (as well as where YOUR mind is at while in the experience), I can guarantee you that you will be saving yourself some grief.
All in all, it always comes back to a simple way of being. Do less, DO nothing. Stop overthinking, stop trying to find evidence as to why someone is being different or you are feeling different. If you think about it, isn't your instinct when someone is different with you, to ask why? It's the first thing that pops into your head! "Why did she say that?" or "Why would he do that?" Guess what? That's your wisdom. We've just trained ourselves to not ask because we're scared of the response. But the reality is, when we follow our wisdom and ask with an open heart and mind - that's the moment of growth, of learning more about the other person, of learning more about yourself and most importantly, it's an opportunity for deep connection. It will more than likely feel like a leap of faith at first, and that takes bravery. But with time it will be second nature to you, and your relationship to yourself and others will thrive more than you can ever imagine.
Here's to all of our bravery, dear friend~
See you next week,