4 simple steps to a happy relationship
Is your relationship on track? Most relationships go off track within a few years. Here is the indomitable practice of all the practices in the world that will not only help you but, when you practice it, will set your relationship on track right now.
What creates troubled relationships?
Most relationships go off track because of one single reason. Expectations. We all showcase our best side before we commit to a relationship. Once the relationship has consummated into a marriage, we let the worst side of us out. But the woman we are married to wants to continue seeing the best side of us. So, there is expectation.
Likewise, we expect our wives to accept our worst side too. Not fair!
This attachment to your perception of the person that you created in the mind is the root cause all the problem. Yes! Its the attachment to your perception.
What is Attachment?
Attachment is very powerful and at the same time, very dangerous for those who are affected by it. However, most people think attachment and love are the same thing.
When you meet someone, there is only love. This is the principle of the Universe that plays itself out. Unconscious and unaware that sharing love increases love in you, you share this love with the person you meet. As interactions become more frequent, you begin to feel that you like the person. You feel you want to meet this person more often than others. Attachment happens.
Whether your relationship is with your mother, father, brother, sister, friend, partner, spouse, or anyone else, attachment happens to all. There is no difference.
What is the difference between Attachment and love?
Let me narrate a story so you know what is love and attachment. I ask you to read this story. Many of you share this story. This is your story in a way.
Prem and Pagal met in a gathering. They began to like each other and met more often. Although they had their own set of friends, they still took time out to meet each other at least once a week. They enjoyed life. They also enjoyed each other’s company. They were in love.
As time passed, they became closer. Love grew between them. They both noticed it. They now spent less time with their own friends and spent more time meeting each other. Each felt that separation from the other was unimaginable. They formed a bond. Everyone in the vicinity felt they made such a lovely couple.
One day, Prem suggested to Pagal; I am beginning to wonder, why not we take our relationship to the next level? Can we get engaged?
Pagal was waiting to hear this. So, Pagal readily agreed and said; Yes! I think the time is right for me too. Prem and Pagal found a suitable date and they both get engaged. Engagement gave them the license to travel together to different places and spend more time together. They were liking their company even more than before. They felt that they were made for each other. So, they decided to take it to the next level and soon, got married.
Everything was fine between them. They were the best match in the eyes of the people. Prem and Pagal liked the fact that people were talking about their relationship.
Relationships can go off track
As time passed, Prem and Pagal both grew in their lives and their experiences shaped their attitude. Prem and Pagal both were now busy working professionals.
Pagal would pickup Prem on the way back home most days. Similarly, Prem would pick up Pagal on the other days.
Soon, Prem and Pagal had a family. Their wide eyed wonder Maya was born. Prem and Pagal both took turns to raise Maya. In addition to their work pressure, they now had to divide their time between work pressure and taking care of Maya. In other words, pressure was building up in the air.
Time flew, Maya turned two and Maya’s demands grew. Prem tolerated the pressure from work and Maya’s demands in addition to Pagal’s absence. It was more evident when Prem felt Pagal’s presence was required the most. However, Pagal pitched in to whatever extend possible but time just seemed insufficient.
Pressures built up and perceptions formed. Prem and Pagal began pointing out to each other; You are not giving enough time to Maya or to me. Their justifications would turn to arguments at times. The arguments would dig into each others’ behaviour, temperament and lack of empathy towards the other.
When you tolerate an emotion, it creates a physical symptom
One day, Prem had a severe migraine. The pain was so severe. Prem decided to drive down to the hospital from work. Doctors examined Prem thoroughly. They gave Prem medication to control the migraine. When Prem felt better, the doctor who was treating Prem told; I suggest you see a psychiatrist.
Prem visited the Psychiatrist, the meeting went on for about an hour. The doctor asked, are you married? Prem said; Yes! Then the doctor asked, Where is your spouse? That is when Prem realised that, the distance between them had grown. They had taken each other for granted. They were living together but not loving towards each other. Familiarity of each other’s presence had created an attachment that brought more discomfort and distance than acceptance and togetherness.
Our lives have become like that of Prem and Pagal. Attachment causes us to judge the people we associate our lives with. And we seldom do anything to improve our lives. We continue to complain and find excuses.
The 4 simple steps to a happy relationship?
These are some of the realisations I have had in my life that have enriched me. I am sharing them with you.
- Whatever my partner says is their perception and it is okay for my partner to share it. I have nothing to do with my partner’s perception.
This above sentence is not an affirmation. It must be memorised for you to remember at the knick of time. Practice makes a habit happen.
- When my partner is expressing angrily or with sadness, she’s emptying all that discomfort causing thoughts, feelings and emotions from within her. I do not need to stand there as a bin to collect all that. I can instead observe and stop myself from interfering in her self cleansing process. I can sit beside her and wait for her to be done.
If you can keep this point in your awareness, you can actually avoid all battles at home and maintain harmony and peace. Partners usually fall from being a witness to feeling a victim. They then quickly react and a fight results.
- When you have done something wrong and your wife is blasting her head off… Don’t say sorry. This is the worst mistake to make. Instead tell her; You are right. I was a jerk. I want to change. I want to be a better person.
Remember, women have an elephant’s memory. Elephants have a memory that can make them recollect an 80 year old memory. So, don’t take chances.
4. Build Awareness in your relationship
The indomitable figure of 8 is the only practice I know of which can bring in your awareness instantly into any relationship you are living through at this moment. The relationship can be personal or professional.
Imagine, think or visualise (which ever possible) that you are in the bottom circle. Can you see the arrow directionally anticlockwise? While you are in communication with your partner, visualise your partner in the upper circle. You can run your finger from the centre point between the two circles, clockwise around your partner and anticlockwise around yourself forming a figure of 8. Practice it for 2 minutes at a time. You will see how it will stop judgment, attachment and expectation instantly.
Continue to practice it regularly and you will see how you become a master of self restraint.
It is unfortunate that we are not taught about the differences between love and attachment by our parents. These are the lessons we need to learn so we can truly live love filled lives.
We will continue with more on relationships in the coming articles.
— Mahesh Krishnamurthy