Dealing with crisis in relationships
What can cause crisis to one person may not be so drastic to another. Whatever it is, (betrayal, lie, break up, lack of communication, etc.) it is very likely that the first reaction is usually a strong, unpleasant emotion, rather difficult to deal with.
There are plenty of advices, methods that suppose to help, however none of them may work if this strong emotional state won’t be acknowledged first.
After all what use can someone make from a suggestion to meditate when peace is the last thing to be felt? So what’s the point of any great methods if you hardly can focus on anything?
Addressing the intense emotions would be the first step to even start dealing with the real situation. Here again, what helps one may not be suitable for another.
Knowing that much about your Self would be crucial to start coping instead of completely loosing the sense of sanity. Instead of going fully in the panic you could ask: what helped me in the past in the moments of such intense feelings? What did I do first? What I was naturally drawn to do it? This last question lets you also realize were you going in the mode of self destruction or trial to cope the best you could. For example if you realize you had a suicidal thoughts in the past, then calling a friend may be the best thing to do. What worked for you? Was it a call, being alone, having a company, drink, party, sleeping pill, a walk, going out?
Although coping doesn’t solve anything, it seems to be first rescue remedy to allow you to even think logically whether the situation is a real threat or is just an anxiety as a result of a trauma from the past.
Only then you can start to think of the best way to solve or be in the present moment. Here I introduce some of the methods combining some of the spiritual approaches with psychological ones. They still may have no use to somebody who was never prepared to act under critical circumstances. Following the metaphor of martial arts, a warrior practises the art before meeting an enemy. It is kind of insane to get into the fight unprepared and trying to apply a theory that was perhaps only one time heard or read. Still it happens all the time. People are getting into relationships thinking it will all work somehow. Love as a tool to “win” is never enough, just as much a sword has no use without skilled practitioner and crisis is most likely to happen. So why not be prepared?
Let’s see if some of the methods suit you and ever helped you in the past.
Not giving attention to it. According to some spiritual teachers unwelcome guest will dissolve if you don’t give him attention. It is more less the same as deactivating by activating something else. Itcomes from the belief that manifestation follows the point of attraction. So switching, changing attention toward something you want shall help.How it works? Instead of thinking of what is causing you a pain, you must intensely think of what inspires you or what you are thankful for. That sounds pretty challenging, so it is often advised to go general and to keep on finding better and better thought until you feel what you want to think. Example of going general will be: things may turn out very well soon.
Some Eastern believers claim that not responding negatively to what is happening is dissolving bad “karma” understood as a negative effect. This reflects the belief that what you give you get back. So whatever you are offering emotionally to what situation is you create more of it. The idea is to respond with the best possible feeling, going neutral or developing by some kind of spiritual practise as meditation, breathing methods, affirmations “don’t mind” attitude. Perhaps it seems a bit too drastic to offer loving feelings when you were betrayed or your trust was abused. However spiritual teachers deal with that by challenging your thought process, asking: is it possible that the real essence of you may be hurt? They say that offering a different vibration, in other words feeling to what is happening may even change the situation. If you can do that, things suppose to change, they are convinced. If you cannot do it, nothing will change. It looks like is it all about conscious pretending that all is great when you don’t feel like it is. According to another pretty biological low the strongest wins. So the stronger voice in your head will win. Will you talk out the negative one or will you let it win?
Acceptance is probably one of the most overused, misunderstood words. However this is what some teachers suggest: “Accept and it will disappear. You never were sick, poor, betrayed, etc. You are only dreaming about it and as with all dreams, you can stop any time you want. Dream is a barely illusion, so don’t take it so seriously. Slow down the picture. As if in the cinema look at the projector that sends light to the screen making a movie look so real.”
There are all kinds of psychological methods designed to assist in a crisis situations. Psychotherapy or if you are lucky enough having a deep conversation with a conscious enough friend may allow for a shift in a consciousness and therefore for finding the right solution, gain more objectivity and change your perspective. If you are skilled enough you can lead yourself alone through the right questions that suppose to help in gaining a better approach.
Asking yourself proper questions such as:
- What has to happen to change the situation for the better? Some of the therapies are concentrating on creating a better experience whether in your own head or in reality. Since the brain doesn’t really differentiate between what is real, what is not, it is possible to rewire neurons connection by practise to have a better feeling, therefore a better experience. (Please read more about research of dr Joe Dispenza.) So what kind of experience would you like to have instead? How would you feel? What would you think? How would you act, walk, talk? What would you see?
- What desire is behind this feeling? Discovering what you luck, miss, expect, need leads toward solution and helps you learn more about yourself. Behind feeling rejected is often need for being loved, appreciated.
- What best can you create from this? What best can you do in this situation?
- Who would you like to be or become in this situation?
Changing roles or shape-shifting can be one of the most powerful and fast tool to learn, transform and understand what is really going on. It requires a study a role of somebody else, to such details as if you are an actor preparing to play it. So you need to really put yourself in someone else’s shoes, act, talk, look as this person and try to feel it deep or long enough until you can make it up how you feel, think as this person, where are you drawn to, what you are afraid of, etc. What is happening here is you are at least temporary changing the role from being a victim of somebody into being someone causing that. From that position you can perhaps absorb the quality of strength oppressor seem to posses. Then you can try to bring this quality, for example: strength, dignity or respect into your life. Eventually you will change the role from feeling a victim of the situation into feeling respected, or any way you need to in the situation. This concept is present in process oriented psychology and shamanic work of indigenous people.
Sense of humour, therapy by laughter. Not taking it all so seriously may help to gain a proper distance to what is happening.
What is the worse thing that can happen to you in a relationship? How do you respond? What worked for you? I am looking forward to hearing your story.