Wow. This is a tough one for me. It’s a challenge, and also very relevant to my current experience. Those are the exact reasons I decided to tackle this subject. If and when we realize there is another way to handle conflicts and we work to master this approach; it has the power to change our relationships and ourselves as well.
Let’s rewind back to about 5 or 6 years ago. I was sharing some struggles with my best friend. She looked me in the eyes and said, “You are being a victim”. I trusted her and knew she said it out of love, but I was floored. I didn’t think I was. I thought I was somewhat self aware. I had worked through some things. But she was right. As I pondered this over the next few days, I saw the evidence of it. I was feeling trapped and helpless in certain areas. I didn’t know how to help myself, or how to express what I needed to others. I didn’t feel supported. I often felt alone.
Why am I talking about being a victim when it comes to disagreements with others? I came to realize the only way I could be present for others and truly support them, was if I learned how to support and be present for myself. All the answers and ways to do this came to me through my meditation practice. As I meditated over the next few years; I learned to hear what I needed, I learned how to express myself to others, I learned how to support myself, I learned how to set boundaries. This all came from quieting my mind, breathing and honing my connection to my true self.
As I leaned more and saw what I wanted and needed, I realized it was important to me to be listened to, and have my thoughts and feelings validated. My husband and I started working on ways to ensure we could do this for each other. As we were working on this, I came across a video from Kyle Cease which I've posted below. He shared about being a space for others. He likened it to “being a tree”. The timing for my husband and I was perfect. Because of the place I was in (just emerging from my victimhood), my husband got to be the “tree” first. This meant he was working to be a space for me to share my hurts and fears and worries. This was challenging for me, but even moreso for him. It’s very hard to be a space if the other person is criticizing or having a disagreement with you. It was rough at first for sure. But we worked through the growing pains and stopped some unhealthy patterns of communication.
Over the months we have progressed to a place where he is now asking me to be the space. It is much harder to be the tree, than the other way around. I am working on it. I have promised him to do my best. Even just me being open to this and saying I will try, has shifted us into a new place.
Everyone wants to be loved, heard, accepted, and validated. If we meditate and quiet our minds and breathe, we will learn how to move into a place where we can be that space of acceptance for ourselves and others. I created my “Movement and Meditation with Emilie” class for this very reason. My class helps facilitate a connection of mind, breath and body in the present moment. Consider joining us on Saturday mornings. I also will be posting audio meditations and videos on my website to provide support and guidance in your journey.
If we decide it’s better to feel good and love others than be “right”, we will be able to heal almost every relationship we have.
with love & belief- emilie