” Admit Your Role In A Failed Relationship ” Without Blaming …

James R. Eads http:/www.tuttartpitturasculturapoesiamusica.com;

”Blaming and shaming are like a cancer in a relationship. If they are allowed to live and spread, the entire relationship can slowly wither away and die.”

When it comes to placing blame in a relationship, it’s almost always easier to see the faults in our partner than in ourselves. One of the problems with couples pointing fingers is that usually both parties are right, and both are wrong. Every person is full of flaws and certain ways that we attempt to defend ourselves that push us away from other people. These self-protective defenses come out even stronger when we get close to someone, and old feelings start to get triggered in us in ways we don’t necessarily expect and aren’t entirely conscious of.

The many ways we get hurt throughout our lives help shape our defenses. Negative past experiences, particularly those from our childhood, leave us on guard as adults. Our defenses may warn us not to trust or open ourselves up to someone else. Or they may tell us to cling on for dear life, because we may be abandoned at any minute. The key to thriving in a relationship is getting to know and challenge our own defenses. Instead of focusing all our attention on our partner’s flaws, it’s important to look at our own limitations. How am I reacting to my partner? Am I misperceiving him/her through the filter of my “critical inner voice?” Am I projecting negative characteristics of my early caretakers onto him/her?

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In improving any relationship, the focus should always be on empowering yourself. You can only change your part in the equation, but that gives you a lot of power. So what can you do to take charge and change the behaviors that are holding you back from getting closer? How can you take actions that will sustain passion, love, and respect in your relationship?

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Don’t build a case :-When a conflict arises, it’s easy to fuel the fire with all kinds of proof of our partner’s character flaws. One morning of forgetting to take out the trash can build into a full-blown criminal case proving our partner guilty of insufferable laziness. We may start cataloging every incident in which he or she forgot to do this or that. Case-building is a huge problem in any relationship. Once we start to see our partner a certain way, we often start perceiving (or misperceiving) their actions through a negative filter. We may start interpreting innocent comments as critical or casual behaviors as rejecting. In these cases, we can either feed our feelings of blame or try to keep a more balanced perspective about what’s going on. Again, we should try to recognize if and when we might be projecting onto our partner or acting on harmful, yet familiar patterns from our past.

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Drop It :-Once the blame starts going back and forth and escalating out of control, it becomes almost impossible to resolve who did what or who’s at fault. The truth is, there is never a winner in these arguments. “You may win the battle, but you will lose the war.” Keep perspective on what’s important. If your goal is really to be close again, then sometimes it’s worth just dropping the past, putting down your guard, and simply being nice to each other. Unilateral disarmament can be a first step to getting back the easy and loving flow of feelings between you and your partner. This is different from glossing over or denying your problems. It’s a matter of dropping your own reactive defenses and stopping the blame game. Ultimately, you will be able to have an honest, adult discussion, where you are open to giving and receiving feedback from a compassionate and calm place.

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Calm yourself down :-Relationships trigger us in ways we rarely expect. Many things can set us off, especially when defenses are at work. A partner’s bad mood or withholding attitude can throw us back into a primal state, particularly when it reminds us of painful dynamics from our past. Though, in the moment, our instinct may be to fight fire with fire, this clearly won’t resolve the problem. When we feel triggered, we should focus on relaxing before reacting. We can better manage our partner’s temper by calming ourselves down first, then approaching them. Issues will always arise between two, independent-minded people, and it’s easy to get critical of someone who we know well enough to witness their weaknesses. When trouble starts brewing, expect the rush of critical thoughts to come into your head, roaring through like a passing train. Then, know that you can decide whether or not to jump on the train.

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Reflect on your patterns :-Once we’ve calmed down and stepped away from a heated situation with our partner, we can start to reflect. When we get triggered, it’s important to take notice of the moment and ask why. Does my reaction seem like an overreaction? Could it have anything to do with my past? Look for the thing you hate the most that your partner does and ask yourself what you do right before that.

We can think about what sets us off and what patterns are at play in our relationships. In doing so, we can accept that every couple is just two people with two sovereign minds and two stories that made us who we are today. We can have respect for those differences and compassion when confronting each other’s defenses.

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Have compassion :-As we start to identify our defenses as well as those of our partner, we get to know them better and to understand why they are the way they are. When we understand the reasons why we both get triggered, we have more compassion for ourselves and our partner. We can further foster compassion by always aiming to see the scenario from our partner’s eyes and understand how they view the situation. We can adopt an empathetic perspective toward what they perceived, even if they weren’t entirely accurate in their perceptions. As an exercise, when our partner tells us how they feel, we should try to play back what they communicate to us to show that we understand how they’re feeling and to see if we have it right. If we can align our state with theirs, we are essentially on the same team sharing the same goal of getting closer in the end.

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Be open to feedback :-As we start a dialogue, it’s essential that we are open to what our partner has to say. Feedback is not something dangerous that we ought to avoid. As an adult, we cannot be crushed or devastated by feedback. Rather, it can be a gift that challenges us to live honestly and that opens us up to the possibility for real change. Don’t be defensive when your partner gives you feedback. Look for the kernel of truth in what they’re saying, as it can benefit you far more than arguing every detail.

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Communicate what you felt:- Once we are calm and we’ve given our partner the chance to express their perceptions, we can explain how we felt without placing blame or feeling victimized. We can offer feedback ourselves in a way that is direct, yet compassionate. It’s important to communicate how we feel in our interactions without acting like we are being wronged. We should avoid using victimized language or making generalized statements. For example, rather than saying, “You made me feel terrible when you forgot to call me. What were you even doing? You ruined my whole night. You always disappoint me,” you could say, “I noticed that I started feeling insecure when you didn’t call me. I think I tend to use those situations to feel bad about myself. I’d like to work on feeling more secure in myself. And it would mean something to me for you to make an effort to stay in touch.”

Once we start to see patterns in ourselves, we can challenge ourselves to act in ways we respect and repair when we make a mistake. When we act out based on our defenses, we should apologize directly to our partner. When we stop placing blame, we shift our focus inward. We can start to differentiate from destructive behaviors we’ve adopted by identifying them, understanding where they come from, and acting differently in the situation. By laying down our arms and taking power over ourselves, we give our relationship its best chance of remaining equal, passionate, and fulfilling.

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”We Are Losing Our Humanity”

”Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them, humanity cannot survive. ”

Dalai Lama

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Here’s something I’m noticing in alarming frequency: there’s a lot of blame happening, especially and overwhelmingly on the internet. And the blame I’m seeing is this pointing-of-fingers on who is ruining our humanity, which honestly seems like a tall order to throw onto ANYONE. I’m not really talking about politics or social justice issues or anything that high level, although that is certainly part of the finger-pointing.

I’m talking about blame in terms of the substance of culture, the quality of our celebrity idols, and ultimately the decline of kind acts and compassionate people. Almost every day I see an update where a person posts something redeeming about humanity and captions it by saying it has “restored their faith in humanity.”

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This is wildly condescending. And unproductive. To shift blame to others and to belabor the “downfall of humanity” by way of any number of things misses a crucial part of this picture: that you are human, too. And we are all responsible for the shape of our planet and the state of our world. To point fingers and blame others is to rid yourself of responsibility.

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And, truly, this is an epidemic: that people believe it is other people’s responsibility to prove to them that humanity is good while never taking a look in the mirror to determine if they are being that proof to someone else today. If you are tired of meaningless celebrity culture, stop consuming it. If you are tired of art that is void of quality, start making the damn art you want to see in the world. If you walk around believing that the way it is is the way it will always be, then you’ve already lost the game. If you are exhausted by irredeemable people, be redeeming to someone else today.

It is not someone else’s responsibility to give you permission to be a kind, compassionate, and loving person today, right now, or ever.

Change starts in you — and if all you do is spend your time focusing on what everyone else is doing wrong, you are contributing to the problem. Just because someone is rude to you doesn’t give you permission to pay that unkindness forward. Just because everyone else — in your eyes — is vapid or vain or devoid of substance doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t stand tall in your own substance, that you shouldn’t think long and hard about how you can shift something, anything in this world so that it better reflects what kind of place you want to live in.

 

Whether we want to believe it or not, we are part of this whole system, each one of us. To blame is to ultimately usurp your own power to make a change, to have an impact, and to create even a tiny revolution of your own doing. By letting other people dictate who you are or what you are capable of is to give them more power than they already have. Take it back and take your back the responsibility of creating a better world for yourself and for generations to come. The more of us who feel infinitely and intimately responsible for what progress humanity makes, the better off we will all be.

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If you’ve lost faith in humanity, others have, and that means even more so that we need to make compassion, kindness, and love the priority in every interaction. It starts with you. It always has.

Stop giving other people your power. Rein it back in. And ultimately, be the damn change