When we are unsure about a relationship we can tend to have a habit of distancing ourselves. It’s quite normal to want to protect ourselves from the possibilities of hurt or rejection so we start to put up barriers and in some cases prepare for the worst.
This can happen with both our relationship with self and with others… but it’s for this purpose easier to understand using an ‘others’ example.
I often see clients who are unsure about the relationship they are in. Perhaps they are questioning whether it’s right for them, perhaps they feel they might not want to in it anymore.
Our brain is a wonderful thing and easily switches to noticing what we are most concerned with.., so when we start to be in this mindset off it goes and searches out lots of lovely evidence to back up our exploration which in this case is evidence about how the relationship might not be working.
The more this happens the more they distance themselves form the other person and see al the reasons why they should not be together. And they talk about what they might do and how they don’t know what to do and it feels complex and overwhelming.
… and at this point I say – Stop … take a breath …
And then I say something unexpected – ‘you need to be in this relationship before you can make that decision.’. and they say – ‘what do you mean in the relationship? ‘ .. I am in the relationship ‘... and I say – ‘no currently you have one leg out of the relationship already and are focusing on what might happen next’… and you are potentially not allowing any interaction or communication or potential to happen or be seen.
So let’s stop … take breath…
Firstly, are we talking about being unsure or have you decided you no longer want to be in the partnership ?
Because this is different and it’s a different conversation.
When you are unsure my view is you need to get back into the relationship – you need to get reconnected – you need remember why you got in it and what it meant to you and to the other person.
You need to be 100% in the relationship in vested… to see if the relationship is still meeting each other needs ( now I always caveat here that I am not talking about a toxic or abusive relationship p- that is again a whole different discussion - but I am talking about a healthy boundaries relationship that is just not feeling it anymore.)
Only at this point can you start to see how the land lies ... sometimes it reignites what was lost and sometimes it confirms your doubts but either way you can say you came to the decision knowing you explored it fully.
In the next blog in this series we look at how you need to be in the relationship with self and what prevent you from stepping into that space.
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