Should You Fix Your Dysfunctional Relationship Or Run Like Hell?

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by Melody Fletcher on September 18, 2012

 

Derrek asks, “Some people genuinely love each other despite going bat-sh*t crazy on each other each and every day. It’s weird, but it’s not unheard of. In fact it’s fairly common. And I think it starts to kick-in once a couple has been together for several years (married or otherwise), meaning it was not always a bad relationship, it just slowly got there. I think what I really want to know is can a person be strong enough to change his / her vibrations while still IN the relationship in order to manifest a very real change? And if it’s possible, how is it done?”

I’ve written about similar topics before. In The Anatomy Of An Abusive Relationship, I explored what an abusive relationship is and advised that if you find yourself in one, the best course of action is generally to get out and then work on your vibration (of course, you have to shift considerably just to get out).

In Dear LOA: Is My Urge to Leave My Boyfriend Intuition or Fear?, I explored what to do if you’re feeling an urge to leave, but aren’t sure if it’s resistance or your intuition niggling at you that it’s time to go. That post, however, deals more with subtle discord and situations where there’s really nothing too volatile going on and where you don’t have any obvious reason to leave, but are thinking about it anyway.

But what if you have tons of reasons to leave? What if there are screaming fights, and throwing of things, loads of drama, hot, hot makeup sex, and enormous ups and downs? What if you find yourself in a totally dysfunctional relationship with someone you love? Do you run like hell, or can the relationship be saved?

Dysfunctional isn’t necessarily a bad thing

There are a lot of people out there who would tell you to get the hell out of a dysfunctional relationship. I’m not one of them. Why not? Because, if you attracted that dysfunction for a reason (and you did), and you don’t clean that shit up, then you’re going to take your messed up butt with you into the next relationship and recreate it all over again. Just running away doesn’t solve much. Mind you, if there is abuse, if you are being beaten into the ground, either literally or figuratively, I would always advise that you leave ASAP. But for the sake of this post, I’m not talking about an abusive relationship. I’m talking about when there’s drama coming from both sides.

If you get too dysfunctional people together, they may actually be perfect for each other, at least in that moment. They will both be mirroring their volatile energy back to each other. If that’s where your vibration is at, some totally Zen person isn’t going to be a match to you at all. They won’t have it in them to mirror your daddy issues right back at you until you finally figure out that you might want to do something about them. In that sense, a dysfunctional relationship can be incredibly helpful and perfect.

The key to “fixing” a relationship is to change your vibration. That much is clear. But, can you do that while in a volatile situation that’s triggering you heavily on an ongoing basis? How can you learn to see the other person in a different light when they are literally screaming in your face?

It’s not easy

The easier route is definitely to get out and then work on your vibration. But what if you don’t want to do that? What if you love this drama queen, and the idea of leaving is far more painful than the idea of staying, even if nothing changes? Is it possible for you to change your vibration while in the midst of all that turmoil? Yes, it is possible. But it’s not easy.

Every relationship can potentially be fixed

I’m a big believer in the idea that pretty much any relationship can be fixed. That means, that pretty much any relationship can be brought into alignment – where both parties can communicate authentically and get what they want. Will that always lead to them staying together? No. But an authentic split is not nearly as painful or volatile as a dysfunctional one.

The question for me is not whether or not a relationship can be fixed, but rather, is it worth the effort to you? If bringing your relationship into alignment will require MASSIVE shifts on your part, you may decide that it’s too much work and that you’d rather get out and try to shift incrementally, without having someone constantly slap you in the face with your resistance. Leaving is a totally valid choice, and so is staying. And no one but you can make that decision for you.

Should you stay or go?

For me, it comes down to a set of basic questions:

Are you happy? This may seem like a simple question, but it really isn’t. A lot of people have never asked themselves that. Many are afraid to, because they don’t want to hear the answer. But if you’re not happy, it does you no good to deny it and pretend that you are. It also doesn’t automatically mean that you have to leave. Again, I do believe relationships can be fixed.

What hurts more – the idea of leaving, or the idea of staying, even if nothing changes? Of course, I’m not saying that you can’t change anything, but in that moment, you want to figure out where your motivation is at. If the thought of leaving feels like a huge relief, you may have already made the decision to leave, but you’re just waiting for permission to do so.  You may not think you can leave, because of children, or vows, or you don’t want to disappoint your dead grandmother. I’ll have to address those beliefs in another post, but for now, if leaving feels like heaven to you, then your work would be in making peace with the beliefs that make that seems impossible, rather than trying to fix the relationship. Your motivation to fix it is no longer sufficient.

But, if the idea of leaving your partner (not the kids, etc., your partner) is too painful to consider right now, then you may well have the motivation to resolve your issues.

Are you willing and able to give your partner a fair chance? Do you actually believe that it’s possible for them to change? This is an important one, because if you can’t even imagine the possibility that the other person might have it in them to act differently, if you’ve gotten to the point where you no longer believe that they can be reasonable or kind or care about your feelings, then you have no chance of shifting your vibration regarding this specific person. It would be best to back off, leave, and work on relationships in general. You cannot create what you cannot imagine. And so, if you can’t even conceive of the idea that they might be able to mirror a different vibration back to you, then you can’t line up with it. Note, that you don’t have to know HOW your partner might change, you just have to believe that they could.

Are you willing to give up the idea of asking them to change so that you can feel better, and do the work on yourself? You have to at least be willing to believe in this theoretically, even if you’re not sure how to translate it practically. If you don’t own your own emotions, if you’re not willing to take your partner out of the equation when it comes to how you feel, then you won’t be successful with this work. You’re going to have to be willing to give up the idea that “if they would only do this or that, everything would be fine”, and take a look at how and why you are manifesting these experiences. This can be a hard pill to swallow and you may not be willing to do that. In that case, it’d be better for you to get out.

If, after all of these questions, you’ve determined that you are, in fact, willing to save the relationship, then you have a chance. If not, it’s time to start packing. Although, you’ll now have a different perspective on why you’re leaving, which should make it easier (not easy, just easier).

Get some space

If you decide not to leave, you’re still going to need to “get away” from the other person to some extent. This means, you’re going to have to create a safe place for yourself, take some time every day and do this inner work. You can do this in your head, or you can actually create a physical space that’s yours. Depending on how much work you’re willing to do, I’d say, put aside a minimum of 15 minutes and a maximum of 1 hour a day. Try to find some time when you won’t be interrupted. This isn’t something you can do on the side, while you’re multi tasking. If you want to save your volatile relationship, you’re going to have to be willing to do the work. If you’re not willing, that’s ok. Just be honest with yourself.

Get a journal

I know of no better way to help you focus, other than getting professional help, like a therapist or coach, than journaling. Writing something down makes it more tangible. Often, simply putting something down on paper allows you to get a different view of it. You can spot patterns more easily when you have a written record of your thoughts and feelings, you can let go of anger and resentment, and you can figure out what it is that you really want. And just to be clear, I’m not talking about any “Dear Diary, today I ate a chicken salad for lunch” kind of journaling. I’m talking about deliberately shifting your thoughts through writing.

Work through what bothers you, but start easy

We have this tendency, when we want to fix something that’s broken, to start in the area that bothers us the most. But that’s really the hard way to go about it. It’s much easier to build up some momentum using easier triggers and then hit the big ones when you’re more stable. You wouldn’t take on a black belt Kung Fu master your first day of class. You’d practice, gain strength and technique, and spar with opponents that were easier to beat. And, over time, you’d reach the level where you could spar with the black belt without getting your ass handed to you. This is like that.

Taking on the biggest issue you have before you’ve gotten some practice under your belt, will leave you feeling like you just got pretzeled by a Karate champ. And then, you’ll most likely decide that it must be your fault, making you feel even worse. When all that really happened is that your inexperienced and impatient mouth wrote a check that your butt couldn’t cash.

So, you start with issues and events that bother you, but only a bit. The stuff that you keep wanting to dismiss as not important (you know, because if only that one thingy would change, everything would be ok). Start with that stuff.

Shifting your beliefs using Triggering Events

This is the phase that a lot of people get stuck on. I’ll do my best to explain it here, but it’s hard to truly get this unless you’ve experienced it. To make this more practical, I’m going to add an example in [brackets].

Pick an incident that bothered you, and ask yourself WHY.

[Example: My husband walked out in the middle of an argument, and it made me want to kill him. I totally broke down and lost it.]

Why did this incident bother you? What emotions came up for you?

                [Example: Intense anger, which I know comes from powerlessness. So, I guess I felt totally powerless.]

Why did you feel those particular emotions? What was it that they said that truly set you off? Remember that none of your reasons have to make sense.

[Example: I was ok until he walked out. That set me off. ]

Why did what they said, or did, or didn’t do, cause you to bust out the crazy eyes? What did that particular detail bring up for you? What did you think about yourself in that moment?

[Example: I felt like I wasn't worth fighting for. Like he was giving up on me.]

What other incidents in your life can you think of that feel like that? Have you ever had this reaction before? If you can focus on the feeling of the incident, memories that feel just like that will come up.

[Example: Oh man, the first thing that comes up is the memory of my dad leaving us. He walked out and abandoned my mom and us. This feels just like that.]

What thought, premise or belief do those memories have in common? What did this and the other incidents cause you think about yourself? What are you really reacting to? Is this thought true? Do you want to believe this thought?

[Example: Both times a man I loved walked out. It made me feel like I didn't matter, like I wasn't loved. Like I wasn't good enough to be loved. No, I don't want to believe that, at all. And no, it's not true. My husband does love me.]

What thought do you want to believe instead? This is where you reach for a better feeling perspective. Take your time with this, it can be hard to find at first.

[Example: I want to believe that my husband loves me that and he wants to make this work; that he thinks I'm important enough to fight for. I want to believe that I'm important to him.]

Now that you know what the actual thought is that you’re reacting to, is it possible for you to see how your perception of the original incident may have been false? Is there another way to look at what happened? You’re not letting anyone off the hook here, you’re merely disarming the trigger. So, you don’t want to say “well, I guess he didn’t mean to beat me.” It’ll be more like -

[Example: When my husband walked out of the argument, I reacted to the memory of my dad walking out on us. My husband wasn't doing that, he was just getting some space. He wasn't abandoning me. I assumed that he wasn't going to come back, but honestly, that's not true at all.]

The conversation

And only now that you’ve obtained this clarity, would you go and have a chat with your partner about what happened. By knowing why you suddenly turned into a screeching ninja, you can explain what you were really afraid of to your partner. This is a very different way to have a conversation. You are no longer accusing or asking them to make you feel better. You are telling them what you were feeling and why. And from that point of view, the original argument may come into very different focus.

Rinse and repeat

Continue to dissect incident after incident, and shift them as you go. If you start with the easier ones, you’ll be able to build enough momentum to finally go after the big, hairy issues. Notice, though, that none of these “easier” ones are actually that trivial. A simple argument can trigger deep fears that have been with you for decades. So, even the easy ones may actually help you to shift the core of what’s really wrong. Don’t underestimate the power of doing this kind of work. Over time, you’ll gain a completely different understanding of yourself, what you want and what you need. You’ll be able to communicate more authentically. You won’t get as defensive. You’ll own your emotions instead of making your partner responsible for them. And, you’ll start to line up with what you actually want, as your own vibration begins to match it.

You may notice that none of these steps involve you getting your partner to change. They (your partner) will, but as a result of this work, not in order to facilitate it. In other words, when you feel better, they’ll mirror that back to you and act in ways that make it easy for you to feel better. They will not change the way they act so that you can feel better, while you’re still in a bad feeling vibration. No one, no matter how much they love you, can defy your vibration. Ever.

I’ll share more techniques in the future that will help you bring a relationship back into line, but this is the most powerful one I know. It requires you to really get to know yourself, to own your emotions and to dissect what it is that you want. Other techniques will merely build on this foundation of self-awareness.

Again, this isn’t easy, but it’s totally doable, if you’re willing to do the work. If not, you have your answer, too.

Want more?

Check out Coaching Call #13, which includes an actual example of releasing beliefs using triggering events. In this call, the client realizes a powerful shift by dissecting and reframing an incident with her sister.

Work with me personally to identify your beliefs quickly and easily. Check out my coaching packages here.

{ 44 comments }

KOKO September 18, 2012 at 14:26

You always need to be growing and so do all your relationships . . . Keep in mind, the person you attracted in the past is “NOT” the same person today . . . But . . Neither are you . . . In my coaching that is where I start . . . If you love someone, you MUST love them enough to let them go and find their own happiness . . . It is easy to attract people (and lovers) into our lives . . But . . Unless we really know who/what we want we may get Ms/Mr. Wrong . . Just because you attracted them . . Does NOT mean they are “THE” right people to have in our life . . . You have to zoom in on what you are looking for in that other person . . and revisit that list often . . . .

Melody Fletcher September 18, 2012 at 16:02

Hey Koko,

I couldn’t agree with you more. We have to focus on what we want, detach from the outcome and get out of the way. But, it’s also helpful to figure out where we are essentially sabotaging what we want, and shift those limiting beliefs. This is one technique that helps us to do that. :)

Thanks for adding your wonderful advice here.

Huge hugs!
Melody
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Kat September 18, 2012 at 16:22

Hey Melody,

Thank you for this post. It applies to other types of relationships as well, not just romantic ones. It all takes practice, though.

Once one starts practicing what you write, how long do you think one can see changes? Does it all depend on how focused we are on it? I know it is all relative and you can’t really put a time period on it, but just wondering your input on how long it may take to begin seeing the changes you want. It all depends on the beliefs you have to shift as well.

It may seem counter to “reality” that we need to work on ourselves (not others) to make our life as we want it, but that really is the core of it all.

Melody Fletcher September 19, 2012 at 19:05

Hey Kat,

You can see results very, very quickly. Basically, as soon as you make the shift, the next time you see the person, you could notice a change. It’s that fast. But you’re right, the actual time frame depends on each individual situation.

I used this technique over and over to change the relationship I had with one family member. I didn’t see him more than once a year (not even that) and so it was a bit like night and day. He’s been totally replaced with a different version of himself. I’d made a lot of changes before seeing him again.

But when you go one change at a time and you see that person every day, it’s more subtle. But no less powerful. :)

Huge hugs!
Melody
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Jason "J-Ryze" Fonceca September 18, 2012 at 19:09

It’s been awhile since I wrote one of these but…

“Fantastic post. I love it. Totally agree, and it needed to be said.”

That is all :)
Jason “J-Ryze” Fonceca invites you to read..This Post Is The Best Gift You’ll Get TodayMy Profile

Melody Fletcher September 19, 2012 at 19:06

This may possibly be the shortest reply J-Ryze has ever written, lol.

Glad you agree my homie.

Puppy hugs!

Melody
Melody Fletcher invites you to read..Emergency LOA: What To Do When The Sh*t Is Hitting The FanMy Profile

Jason "J-Ryze" Fonceca September 20, 2012 at 02:04

Its true!!!

(this was shorter lol)

Nay September 18, 2012 at 22:30

Wow Melody,

If this post isn’t a manifestation, I don’t know what is!

I just spent the night wrestling with an issue until 4 AM, going over and over it in my head. It was like I just couldn’t shut my brain off once it latched onto it. I still haven’t figured out what my specific issue is, but I’m working on it.

In brief, my husband likes the house much cooler than I do. And this can be winter or summer, cause in summer, the AC is set where he’s comfortable. And last night the doors to outside were open until we went to bed, to let in the fresh cooler fall weather! This of course ensured that the bedroom was cold, so by the time I got into bed, I was freezing.

So I’m laying in bed, feet, butt and nose freezing, and trying to warm up by moving around carefully without shaking the bed so I don’t wake him up. ‘Cause I’m accomodating like that. ;) And this has been the norm for our whole marriage. The house temperature is usually set by my husband. And I’ve just let it be and tried to adjust around it.

So I’m laying there, and BAM! The annoyance came on full force. Why does the house have to be cold…How is it my husband only has to set the thermometer and he’s good, while I have to adapt and adjust…Why am I the one who has to add layers, wear shoes and socks, put a heater in the area I am spending time in, wear fingerless gloves, and often get up and find a blanket to wrap around myself just to stay warm…Why am I suffering in my own damned house…And why I have I let this go on for so long?

And I wrestled with it for hours. Round and round in my head. It’s not like I can’t do it…it doesn’t kill me…I can add layers, while he can only get naked…it’s not like I’ve ever forced the issue, so why is it bothering me now…but why should I be the one to suffer…how about he deals with what I find comfortable, and adapt around that…he can wear less clothes…he can step outside and cool down…he can sweat and be uncomfortable in the bed because he’s too hot…he can sweat in the car instead of me pulling a cover over me.

Then the LOA talk. ‘Now Nay, you know this isn’t about him, this is about you. Why have you let it go on…why do you just keep adapting…he doesn’t have to change for you…you have to figure out why this is bothering you…you need to do something about it without going crazy…but how do I fix this without expecting him to change, because for me to be warm without always adjusting, the heater must go up, which will make him uncomfortable…blah, blah, blah.’

Quick disclaimer: I am not a screetching women’s libber, but I have no doubts that I am equal to my male counter parts, considering I worked a job with 90% males and I can only remember 1 guy ever even sounding like I shouldn’t be there. Most of the guys were great! Just sayin’!

Anyway, a little voice in my head finally became audible, and it was saying, ‘The mother is the one who ensures everyone else is taken care of, and comfortable. What the mom needs is taken care of after everyone else is good.’ What the HELLl? But damned if it isn’t right there in my head. Not sure how I feel about that, but there it is. Yet at the same time, I am also saying, why should his comfort be more important then mine? And then on the other hand, why should my comfort be more important than his? Right back to mom must take care of others first… So viscious circle repeating…endlessly…annoyingly.

So what did I do this morning? I told my husband that from now on the temperature is set to my comfort level. And I said it very nicely, thank you very much. He did react with the over the top, ‘No way! I’ll die!’ But he ‘was’ being fecetious. So I told him, I’ve dealt with being uncomfortable and adjusting around his comfort for 20 years, it’s his turn. He laughed and told me I sounded like I was 80 years old. But he didn’t argue. Hmmm.

Maybe I shifted something more than I realized during my endless night of self talk? Or could he just be placating me, but not planning on changing a thing? Either way, I wasn’t pissed off in the morning, despite lack of sleep. And I also know that I will be adjusting the temperature to add to my comfort.

I will be going over this post’s questions, and seeing what else pops up on my radar. Cause it can’t hurt

So Meldoy, do you think if I changed my vibration enough, my husband would suddenly find the desire to be warmer and up the thermometer? Or is that still looking at him changing? Cause I don’t see me raising my vibration making me warmer all the sudden, (unless I’m really vibrating ;) ) without adjusting the thermometer.

And again, thanks for your perfect timing and subject matter!

Nay September 19, 2012 at 04:29

Holy Contradictory Conundrum Batman!

So, I did the question and answer from this post on my little issue, because it really is a small simple one. And with deep thought and much analyzing, OMG! I have some contradictory, confused F*(&#$-up beliefs! How do we twist ourselves up soooo much, without realizing it? And I am now seeing just how huge a part this belief is playing in almost all of my drama! So on with the epic…

I, in my infinite wisdom, do not think that I am important/worthy enough to ask for and get what I want, especially if I think that it interferes with what someone else wants, because what others want and need comes before me. And at the same time I resent feeling that way, because I should be able to get what I want too, but that’s just selfish!

To add to this, when I finally do decide there’s something that I want, and have been debating with myself over whether I deserve it or not:
1) I feel guilty to some degree, especially if it may effect someone else.
2) Because I have finally built up the balls to say I want it, I am ready to fight for it straight up. And if anyone tries to question or stop me from trying to get what I want, out comes crazy eyed screeching ninja bitch, because I expect to have to fight to get what I want.
3) Which cues the guilt again because I am so mean and selfish. Sigh…

So in many instances, I give in, roll over, don’t even ask for what I want, am afraid to ask someone to even contemplate my wishes, don’t want to fight with them, or I go the crazy route. And then I resent that rolling over, because I want what I want, and damn it, others should feel like I do, and understand that sometimes they should give up what they want for me, like I do for them. Oh and did I say I’m pretty sure I want them to read my mind too, so I don’t have to ask or fight with them so they see it my way? Yeah, I make sense like that!

I know I have done this routine for much of my life, and wondered why often. And after much thought, I have an idea it may be tied to my brother, whom, I am told, from the time I was a baby, often told me I was ugly, stupid and stinky, and to get a way from him. And then, as I grew and we played together, I was informed in one way or another that when I wanted something other than what he wanted I was again, stupid. So it was do it his way, or suffer the consequences. You know, punched, poked, tackled to the ground and pummeled, put in the dreaded choke hold until panic set in, or tickled until I peed myself. The stuff so many older siblings do to their younger siblings when they can get away with it. ;)

I well remember how much I hated losing, having to do things his way, yet wanting to make him happy, because when he was happy, he wasn’t making me miserable and, he was my best bud when he wasn’t being a jerky older brother! And yes, when I tried to stand up for myself, I usually lost, unless I got the first shot in. (Trust me, I was no angel! :P ) I’m sure there could be other things that added to these wacky beliefs, because it’s not like I’m the only child who has ever been tortured by an older sibling. Maybe I was just very impressionable or sensitive, so took much of what he did and said to heart. And maybe this isn’t even why I have these beliefs, but it would make sense this where they came from. Who knows.

That said, it’s not that I don’t get ‘anything’ I want, because I do, and am well aware of it. But when I question my worth in getting it, or how it will effect others…then the trouble starts. Funny how LOA works that way. When I doubt my self worth, I find the world and those in it reflecting that back at me, showing me that I’m not worthy of getting what I want.

How could I not know I felt that way all this time?! And I thought I was pretty clear on the fact that I am more than worthy just as I am. Now I just have to figure out how to turn these crazy beliefs around!

Yes, this process works amazingly well. Thank you, thank you, thank you Melody!

Melody Fletcher September 19, 2012 at 19:16

Hey Nay,

Congratulations on figuring it out! You know, you can see this as a self worth issue, but I agree with Tony – it’s not always getting triggered. I’d diffuse this a bit and say it’s a communication issue. You don’t know how to ask for what you want in a way that lets you get it (or that you can believe that you’ll get it) and so you don’t. Then, it builds and you get all resentful until you can’t take it any more and the ninja bitch comes out. :P

But if you stopped assuming that people will always say no and just ask them nicely, feeling totally entitled to do so, you might be very surprised by what you could accomplish and how much drama you’d save yourself.

I’m pretty sure you read this post when it came out, but you might see it in another light now: http://www.deliberateblog.com/2011/11/02/quiet-strength-how-to-stand-up-for-yourself-without-being-a-bitch/

Huge hugs!
Melody
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Nay September 20, 2012 at 00:09

Hi Melody,

Well, funny enough I’ve never read that particular post. Wonder how I missed it? And yea, it’s pretty much on the money. It had parts that are exactly like me. I am so not good at confrontation, and yes always expect the worst.

Now this thermostat thing. It was/is more about how annoyed I suddenly felt about it, and really wondering why I don’t just turn up the heat instead of making a big hairy deal about it? Would I rather be angry at my husband because I’m cold and he always sets the thermostat lower than I like? It doesn’t make sense to me, yet I won’t just walk over and turn it up!

I mean, I imagined just walking up and turning up the thermostat. And what the hell! I mean, stomach balling up tight, heart starting to pound, head feeling tight like I was contemplating something horrendous. It makes no sense!!!! How could something that simple be so inflaming to me? Will my husband beat me and terrorize me if I change it? Not even close!

So what is wrong with me? I don’t have to ask to do this. I can just turn up the thermostat. So what makes me hesitate in fear? Why do I even feel like I have to justify myself at all? Like Tony said, is it more that I think I will be the better person if I am suffering instead of just doing what I want? I’m not allowed to just do what I want? I have to prove my worth or something. I have to get my husband to do it, acknowledge I am right and worthy, and only then I will feel authorized to be warm in my own house?

And of course I feel the annoyance of wondering what beliefs I have about just doing what I want and the possible outcomes. Do I feel pathetic? Umm YES! (Just as an aside, I am feeling sorry for myself today so excuse the whine. Just venting.)

So this is the circular thinking that has brought me to this website. Letting the frustration of not understanding how I can be that pathetic drag me down. And knowing it is my beliefs that are the cause of it is so helpful. Ok, they are, but I can still be annoyed since I can only blame myself. But figuring them out, and maybe, accepting some of the crazy things I believe, are both a little difficult too.

So how about I do a ladder on this and get rid of my pissy mood? As you said diffuse the ‘I’m not worthy’ up to ‘Fear of confrontation’ and then move up from there.

Thanks Melody!!!

Melody Fletcher September 20, 2012 at 22:51

Hey Nay,

You’re not pathetic. No one’s beliefs make any sense. If they did, they’d be much easier to find.

You clearly think you need permission to change the thermostat and you resent it at the same time. Perhaps you got punished at some point for doing something you thought was perfectly reasonable…

You could try this: Think about walking up and changing the thermostat. Feel that feeling for a minute or so. Now, let your mind drift back and look for the earliest memory that comes up that matches that feeling (it will match). That may shed some light on how this belief was formed.

Huge hugs!
Melody
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Nay September 20, 2012 at 23:15

Hi Melody,

I’ll be quick here. I’m much better today, really! ‘)

I have just realized something that makes me laugh. I am often more upset about me having an issue over something than I am about the issue itself! This may be what has caused more problems for me than any real problem I may think I have! I always think/thought, ‘I should just be happier. Things shouldn’t bother me.’ When I did get ‘bothered’ I would get so caught up in that, I would just spiral down.

I can see it in this whole post! Is that great or what?! Between you and Tony, I have had a lot of epiphanies. Right here! A big thanks to Tony too, cause his input was sooo important too. (I hope he’s a he… :o ) )

Have I said thank you enough? No, you need a few more! So thank you, thank you, thank you!

tony September 19, 2012 at 06:21

I’ll try to be very polite since I know Melody wants her friends to be treated with hugs and extra care like babies and I respect that :) . I suppose some straight questions could help. Be prepared though, the answers may shock you.

Are you sure you can handle the truth? Do you think you can read the answers (which you already know by the way) without having to hate yourself and then put the blame on someone else? Do you think that this LOA stuff is just a fancy trick to make others get in your head, acknowledge you’re right and then do so because it’s right?

Cruel or not, the real problem is not the temperature nor your husband. If that was the case, you would have bought an extra blanket or had a divorce. But it’s not that. You want Justice. You think it’s ok to suffer (until you’ve had enough) and your pain will go away if your important one treats you like an equal-take you more seriously and prove it by letting things go your way once in a while. The problem is your issue with freedom. You like being a victim. Don’t be happy though because you are not the good and righteous person you suppose you are. You don’t really think you have the power, you don’t trust that power is good, you’re just checking if he is willing to grant you a favour just to prove he respects you. Guess what.. do you really believe you deserve respect? Is it necessary to find reasons why?

tony September 19, 2012 at 06:54

Nay, in your second post you say you figured out that “you think you are not important/worthy enough to ask for and get what you want, especially if you think that it interferes with what someone else wants, because what others want and need comes before you”.
Is that true? Does it apply to everyone? If I come to you and ask you politely to give me the key of your house and your car and all your money in the bank, because I’m very poor and broke and my momy is sick and I have a child I can’t even buy a bottle of milk, my family will starve to death, oh my God I need heeelp, shall you give that to me Pleeeeaaase?
Let’s get serious. It’s the people you connect with you have problems to deal. If I come to your door I’m pretty sure I can make you cry but I wouldn’t bet you ‘d give me your house and all your belongings. If you weren’t worthy enough to ask for and get what you want you couldn’t even go shopping. But I bet you find it difficult when the nice and polite guy at the shop starts being curious and wants to know details about your life.

Nay September 19, 2012 at 07:52

Tony,

You are sooo right! I am definitely guilty of playing the poor me/victim! To paraphrase Abraham, ‘..We so want to blame others for the way they act/treat us…’

And yeah, your wording is perfect! I wanted justice and respect. Acknowledgement from my husband that I am important/worthy. ‘Why can’t my husband actually try to accommodate me. Why can’t he show me that much respect? Why is it ‘I’ have to adjust and he doesn’t. POOR ME!’ And I can hear it so clearly now, even if it is almost embarrassing to see myself in such a way.

But I also knew last night that it was me causing this. It’s my vibration that needs to be fixed. Not my husband!!! But I couldn’t put my finger on what belief, or what I was feeling (besides abused ;) ) that was causing this.

But I am getting better at it. I may not like how much I can play the victim, but I’m beginning to see it. It’s those pesky beliefs that I don’t even realize I have that I am starting to dig up and realize are there. I do know it is ALL ME! Talk about a bitter pill to swallow! :) But I’ll get over it ’cause I want to get to the point where I know, without any doubts, without any justification from outside myself, that I am worthy. Period!

And as to your second post, yeah, I know it doesn’t apply all the time/always. And yes, it is usually with family and/or close friends, not strangers. Which is a big help in working on that belief. If I don’t feel that way as often around strangers, then why do I feel that way with family? The belief really doesn’t make sense when I look at it that way.

Do I always feel sorry for myself? Nah. This blog is just where I put some of the things I am working through. And my first post was an issue I just experienced, then the second was me showing how I figured out what I was doing. As you said, I was feeling sorry for myself, wanting to feel worthy through somebody elses actions.

The frustrating part is that I can’t figure it out and just get rid of it instantly. :( Understanding something, and then knowing it doesn’t always happen as fast as I want. But yes, my goal is to not feel sorry for myself.

Thanks Tony!

Tony September 19, 2012 at 17:29

The belief doesn’t make sense because it’s something new to your way of thinking and seems strange. You are used to thinking that what works and makes your life easier is not a possibility when it comes to your life and you shouldn’t be happy with results because you somehow played against the rules of righteous suffering. According to some precious people of yours, life and knowing yourself should be difficult as if it was so easy everyone would do it. But because difficult is only a word and takes many interpretations (from a range of a little tiring to almost impossible) you have to become blind not to see the answer which was sometimes obvious. You trained well and now do the same. The bad thing (if you really want to continue seeing bad things) is that when you were younger you somehow felt it’s a trap, perhaps you felt invincible that time. You eagerly followed the rules because it was more rewarding pretending the good child and now that it’s not fun anymore because you have responsibilities as an adult and you get the respect of a good child you finally noticed something goes wrong. That’s a huge start and congrats to you-truly and sincerely.
What about respect? What about justice? Who needs respect? Do you really need the respect of a gorilla or a lion if they are behind the bars of a cage? My dear, your problem is that you live in a world you perceive as dangerous – and as a matter of fact it can be (but the good thing is it’s up to you to decide which part you enjoy most) – and you have wiped out the possibility of you being also bad because it’s not right, you must be judged and punished without mercy. You are not fully convinced that you can survive in this potential jungle as a sheep between potential wolves who have no remorse of being so, who look at you like you are an alien when you try to prove them wrong, you couldn’t do the same when you fell into the trap and you just complain “why this can be turned into a jungle and why I am not allowed to be the tiger?- I don’t want to be the sheep always, it’s not fair! I want to bite too, they have to see what it feels like, I want justice, I’m the good sheep and I demand the respect, I feel sorry for you wolves but you ‘ll see, I can become a wolf and a more powerful one, i’ll teach you a gooood lesson, WHAT? I have to be a wolf…?bad,bad, let’s get out of here, I hope my master didn’t hear me.”

Nay September 20, 2012 at 01:10

Hey Tony,

Ok, this post was a bit confusing for me, but I think I got most of it.

I do want to be the ‘good girl’, and the idea of standing up for myself, or just doing what I want, makes me feel bad. So it’s always a fight inside. In order to be good, I go the righteous suffering/poor me/victim route. But to get what I want, I believe I have to fight, which makes me bad. So I’ve established the world as a dangerous place where I have to fight for what I want, and can only get approval and respect from outside of myself , and only when I am good.

And yes, I know, difficult is just a word with different interpretations. And I also understand that I determine the difficulty. But that doesn’t change much. Not yet anyway! Obviously, I’ve set up rules for living that put me at odds with myself. And I often don’t even know I have these rules. Then when I do figure out they are there, changing them is very rarely a fast and easy process.

I would love to decide to change these beliefs RIGHT NOW, and watch it happen. Tada! But it hasn’t worked yet. So I’ll just keep plodding through my difficult interpretation of life, trying to figure out how to change these very limiting beliefs that are driving me very crazy!

tony September 20, 2012 at 02:28

dear Nay,
I’m sorry for the pressure (I’m not really but I’m trying to speak your language) but this struggle could eventually be your last one. As long as you express yourself you unconsciously give clues of what’s really going on in your head.

there are many of us who have experienced this stage and I can tell you this is definitely not a problem. It is something that bothers you now because you see it as a problem. It’s a problem because you see it as a problem because we are supposed to see that as a problem. It’s like you being an actor, you are on the scene and you realize that somehow you memorized the wrong script. You could have fun but you just see your world falling apart if you mess up.

You say you’d love to change these beliefs right now. I believe you. Do you see a limiting belief that you want but CAN’T change? Some people who seem cool guys behind a screen tell you that you Think you can’t , it’s your fault, you are willing to see the light, they give you hope but you actually wonder HOW? Hey guys, you’re right but I can’t do that. That’s too …unrealistic, right?

You just need some time to accept some new “truths” and you need that time based on your current thinking. If your thinking was “what is he talking about? why does he even mention that? off course I can instantly change” then time should not be an issue. But since you consider change as almost impossible practically even if it sounds good in theory then you need time to relax and accept. How much? That depends on you, so try to eliminate your limiting belief that you are not good enough for pretty anything that has to do with you experiencing some positive outcomes.

Don’t try to think positive, if it’s natural for you, you don’t even have to think about it. It should be your only state of thinking. Have you tried pretending that everything goes your way even when reality seems far away from your thoughts and without you taking pleasure confirming that you are wrong?

tony September 20, 2012 at 02:55

Do you want to try a crazy approach? Be warned: It’s the approach of a fool.
Next time you see something go a little wrong, smile. You don’t have to mean it the first time. Just do this little crazy thing even if that wasn’t an option before. When you realize that things are going exactly the opposite of what you’d like (for things of minor importance just like the temperature stuff), don’t try to talk or do anything. Let chaos unfold with you powerless and just look and listen. Cry if you want. Pay attention to your belly, if you feel yourself tensed like you are ready to complain, run or hit something just don’t do anything. Let yourself lose and loose. Experience defeat and see what happens

Nay September 20, 2012 at 05:06

Hi Tony,

No, I’m here to get pressure! I’m here to change. And I try to take all the input I can handle, even when I get pissy and feel sorry for myself. Like you said, that’s why I put my stuff out here!

And I do know I am improving. I’m in the state of up and down in this process. I am finally seeing that I can change, and am making progress, but do know that this progress won’t be instant because I am still following my old paradigms. I still have a life time of habits to change.

And I do consider a lot of my beliefs habits. I’ve believed and lived some things without thought or question even though they didn’t do anything for me. And I was constantly trying to figure out why I was unhappy, and trying self help techniques, one after another, incesantly. And they just didn’t seem to work. So yes, there is a lot of doubt that I can change easily.

But what I am learning here, with Melody and LOA, is the first time something has worked and I can actually change my state and feel better. If not on command, then with some thinking and using the processes. Does everything she says work for me? No. But some do, and I can definitely live with that. It only takes one. ;)

Yes I still see my ‘problems’ as problems, but am seeing that little light of understanding that they are clues for me to use and appreciate. And I am able to like and agree with the theory that because I think something is a problem, it is. This has always made sense to me, but at the same time, I am not at a point where I can ‘think’ myself out of that way of thinking.

Do I want this change to happen instantly? Oh hell yes! I’m impatient like that. So yes, I have to be realistic about where I am at and not beat myself up when it doesn’t happen like that. I know I have limiting beliefs. If I didn’t I wouldn’t have been so unhappy for so long. :) Am I always sad and down and pouty, like I sound on this blog? No, thank God. But I do go up and down way more than I want, and am soooo done with it.

And you said it better than I could think it! I need time to accept some new truths before I can reach for a new belief. I am slowly but surely experiencing positive changes. And sometimes when I experience that slowness, and those times when I get caught up in my ‘problems’, I get really pissed off and frustrated…at myself. Not helpful, I know. But I do it. And usually when I vent a little, I feel better.

I do see a light, and am extremely impatient to get to it, even knowing that I need time to get there. I’m workin’ it, always. Knowing that there is a better way, and experinecing how it feels when you do it right is awesome! But when you fall back into the old patterns after this experience, it hurts a LOT more! That’s why I’m cranky, and probably why I am having more ‘problems’. I’ve experienced a shift, and so when things aren’t right, maybe I’m more aware of them?

And I’ll try your suggestion. I’m good at smiling! :) Now the letting go and experience defeat? Just let go and lose? Uh, might not be as easy, but I will try. Because yes, I am always fighting it. I have no desire to be defeated. Maybe if I quit fighting, some of the pressure will ease? What a concept!

Thank you so much for your input, even when I’m having a pity party!

tony September 20, 2012 at 16:16

I think you are ready to make one important shift. It’s not the situtation that has to be dealt with (identified as problem) that makes you feel bad, it’s the consequences. You must look totally focused and agitated (like something terrible is about to happen if things don’t get fixed diligently) to make sure that everyone is convinced (including you) that you gave 110% but in case of failure that was beyond of your powers and it was not your fault. Imagine your disappointment if you try doing something with a smile, totally relaxed and happy, and it turns out to be a failure. Where would you hide?

There are five simple questions that can help you think and guide you from this moment to the next moment, with five simple answers:
Who?Where?When?Why?How?
You, Here, Now, To feel way you like, the way you feel comfortable and accept as possible even if it doesn’t make sense for everyone.
All the rest is fear and guilt, based on who owns your life and what you accept at your deepest level as good or bad that deserves punishment.

Jennifer September 19, 2012 at 16:34

Nay,
Reading your example of is really helpful and enlightening. Thank you for putting yourself out there and sharing!!

Nay September 19, 2012 at 21:58

Hi Jennifer,

Glad to hear it, ’cause sometimes, I feel like an idiot when I re-read my input. Yeah I know, fear of judgement. But to see myself whining, bitching, being all angsty isn’t pretty. But then, these are the things I want to fix, and this is the blog where I’m finding I get the most done in that endevour. Hence, my worst shines through! Eww.

So I’ll go work on my fear of judgement and be very happy that someone finds what I blather on about, useful! And maybe one day I’ll even figure out how to be succinct! ;)

Thanks!

DawnStar September 18, 2012 at 23:13

This is a great article Melody. If people really take the time to understand what you’re saying they will see that the only relationship that really matters, the only relationship any of us needs to focus on, enrich, nourish and prioritise, is our relationship with ourself.

We’re always looking outside of ourself for love, understanding, protection, cherishing, importance, attention. We think that if only we had that amazing, special someone who made us the centre of their universe then our lives would be perfect and everything else would fall into place. But it’s not true.

When we’re seeking those things it’s our own love we are desperate for. We need to adore ourselves the same way we ‘think’ we want a lover to adore us. We need to make ourselves the centre of our universe. We need to make ourselves Number One.

I’ve recently been contemplating writing a book based around the poems, cards and texts that my partner and I wrote to each other in the first few years of our relationship. Yes, we copied all the texts down, don’t ask me why. People would be astounded at these soul-speakings. The passion, the desire, the love, the anger, the adversity, the extremity. On the face of it, they read like a Greek epic, like one of the great love-stories of all time. But to be honest when I read them now, I can see how desperate I was for my own acceptance, for my own love, for my own recognition of my validity and self-worth, for my gripping, grasping need for me to see myself for Who I Really Was.

All the words I wrote for him, as if my heart were as big as the world and beating to sustain it all, were words I wrote for me. They described how I wanted to feel about myself.

When we can learn to direct our love inwards, we take the pressure off of everyone else in our lives to be what we want for ourselves and to just be who they are. We can love others unconditionally only when we have learned to love ourselves that way. Only when there is no one more important to you than you, can you allow others to truly take their own authentically important place in your life.

This is what Melody explains above. It’s all about you.

Namaste :]

Jennifer September 19, 2012 at 16:33

I love this DawnStar!

Melody Fletcher September 19, 2012 at 19:18

Wow Dawn Star! That’s beautiful. And yes!!!! Do the book! It’ll be epic, especially if you add explanations from your now perspective to them.

Thanks for adding your own explanation here.

Huge hugs!!!
Melody
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Nay September 23, 2012 at 05:28

So perfect Dawnstar! I have no doubt your book would give people such an insight towards loving themselves. Write it!

Pat September 18, 2012 at 23:30

Really good points given Melody. Enjoyed this post. Could have especially used it last week when my husband and I had ‘one of the decades’ arguments. As I read through I will go back over the incident and use your techniques. I think it will help with whatever triggers may remain.

We’ve been married almost 46 years this December and I’ve always remembered when a wife recalled when she and her husband (married 60 or 70 years) were asked “What has kept you together for so long?” by Dr Phil. She said, (paraphrased) “We never fell out of love at the same.”

I wrote a story on my site about my husband and I called “Young Love to Old Love” (I can send you the link if you’re interested). Having only known each other for 6 months before we got married, there’s some humor now as I look back on our ‘wedding’.
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Melody Fletcher September 19, 2012 at 19:20

Hey Pat,

Yes! Link to it here so others can read it too. It sounds beautiful.

You know, you can’t really use this in the middle of an argument. Well, you can, but it’s really, really hard. It works best once you’ve calmed down and aren’t being triggered anymore. So now is the perfect time to rework that argument. :)

Huge hugs!

Melody
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Pat September 19, 2012 at 22:46

Thanks Melody – I wrote down your techniques and will take some time reflecting on how they fit in my situation. I think I can get some good (ah ha) stuff out of it.

Here’s the link to my story I told you about “Young Love to Old Love”
http://plaintalkandordinarywisdom.com/?p=432
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Claire September 19, 2012 at 02:15

Melody

I love the pic. It is great fun!

Melody Fletcher September 19, 2012 at 19:20

Thanks Claire! :)

Huge hugs,

Melody
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Paige | simple mindfulness September 19, 2012 at 02:54

I completely agree with everything you’ve written here. Years ago when my husband and I were having some serious issues, I started seeing a therapist. We actually went to the first session together as couples therapy but that ended when he basically told the therapist to “fix her” (meaning me).

I wanted to feel better so I kept seeing the therapist and told my husband that I was putting our relationship on hold for an indefinite time while I worked on myself (something I wanted to do). The more I focused on myself and feeling better, the more my husband “magically” changed into the person I wanted him to be. I didn’t understand it at the time but found it truly amazing.

Yes, this process really works – if you are serious about changing yourself. This reminded me that I need to tweak a few things by following the questions again. Can’t ever be too happy!

Thanks so much for this Melody! You rock!!

Huge Hugs!!

Melody Fletcher September 19, 2012 at 19:22

Yay Paige!

I love it! “Fix her!” But that’s the attitude most people have. If only my partner would do this or that, everything would be ok.

When, really, the change in perception that needs to happen is always within us.

Thanks for adding your own story here!

Huge hugs!
Melody
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Christina September 19, 2012 at 05:44

Yes, absolutely relationships can be fixed. I prefer to use the word healed.

In my case, it took a divorce. An actual sign-the-papers-and-moved-out-divorce. I changed back to my maiden name and everything.

I tried to change his mind at first, I admit it. I was hurt and struggling with a lot of self-esteem issues. But it finally got to the point where I was tired of the drama. I was home alone in the house since our son spent the summer with his grandparents. I set the temperature of the house where I wanted it (I’m another always cold person). I ate what I wanted when I wanted it. I slept diagonal on the bed. I bought new sheets and a comforter, thankful that the one I’d hated for years was gone. I enjoyed the peace. I enjoyed the space.

We never really stopped talking, but I did change how I responded to him. I didn’t answer every phone call or text immediately. I didn’t tell him where I was or what I was doing. I didn’t do any of this to be deceptive to him or trick him in any way. I just realized that I’d always been right there, at home, waiting, and I wasn’t going to do that anymore. I didn’t HAVE to do that anymore. It was freeing.

I started learning about myself. I starting liking myself. Getting a divorce was one of my biggest fears and there I was in the middle of it. But I was doing okay. It didn’t kill me, although at first I felt like it was. I read a lot of books. I wrote affirmations down on index cards and had them stuck all over the place. I listened to positive music. I began to have hope for the future and knew without a doubt that I would be okay. With or without him, I would be okay. I didn’t know how, but it was enough.

Eventually we were able to talk without the drama. While painful, the time spent apart was the best thing for both of us. We married at 18 the first time, full of hopes and dreams and stars in our eyes. Getting remarried at 40 after everything that had happened was so much better. We have such a beautiful marriage now. Relationships can definitely be healed, but sometimes you have to get to that place where you have to let the person go, even when it hurts so much your heart feels like it will explode. Only when such a drastic change is made can order come from the chaos.
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Melody Fletcher September 19, 2012 at 19:25

Wow Christina! What a wonderful story! Thank you so much for sharing it. I love how you manifested a different husband from the same man. Yay! I really enjoyed this.

Huge happy shiny puppy hugs!
Melody
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Liz September 28, 2013 at 20:12

Wow….what a beautiful story that is….!

I had hopes to have the same story and saw how my relationship improved after our divorce. The first 4 months he was helping me with everything, we had dinners together, respect was back etc etc. Then, suddenly, he distanced himself because he felt his life was on hold. Now my ex husband has a new girlfriend, is spending the weekends with her doing everything he would not do with me ( really, it was almost impossible to get him from the couch.)
I experience everything as manifestations, so we’ll see how it goes in the future.
Letting go, letting god.

Jt Clough | Maui Dog Remedies September 19, 2012 at 07:22

Wow. This one was helpful. I’ve been on my own for about 4 weeks now. Lots of things to think about it in this article. Are you happy? That one I spent time realizing I was not happy for quite some time before the move to Maui on my own.

It’s time for me to get over standing up and saying what I want and that is to be happy, and it might just have to be by myself while I work on my own stuff, never mind what he did, spent, acted like, treated me anymore..

Mahalo.

Melody Fletcher September 19, 2012 at 19:27

Hey Jt,

yeah, it’s hard to let them off the hook, especially after years of blaming them. But it can be done. Be easy on yourself and don’t expect to shift all of this overnight. It’s ok to take your time. The goal is not to finish, but to feel better. So don’t make yourself worse in the process of feeling better, he, he.

This is such and exiting time in your life! You are finally figuring out how to honor yourself and be truly authentic. And being in Hawaii will really support you in that! :)

Huge happy shiny puppy hugs,
Melody

Joshua Tilghman September 20, 2012 at 03:26

Meoldy,

As always, your posts are so insightful. Relationships are a very tricky business. I have personally learned many times before that instead of looking for an out when things get tough, we can choose to grow consciously. This is how my wife and I managed to stay together and we now have a truly happy marriage. But as you say, it’s very hard sometimes.

Thanks for another great post.
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Melody Fletcher September 20, 2012 at 22:52

Hey Joshua,

Great story! Thanks for sharing and I’m glad you and your wife made it work. It can be tough, but it can also be worth it. But of course, the judge of that has to be each person for themselves…

Huge hugs!
Melody
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Marissa January 2, 2013 at 07:10

Hi Melody!
I am very new to the LOA but ever since I found your blog I keep “bumping” into posts that one way or another relate to something in my life without even looking for them (Hope that makes sense!). And this post is no exception!
I am re-entering a relationship with a man I have known for 5 years. We love each other, no doubt about that. We just have not found a way to make it work. I know understand how vibrations and their differences can pull people apart; and that is what has happen to us in the past. Either his vibration was getting higher and mine was trying to pull him down or vice versa.
All of my girlfriends tell me that is crazy to even contemplate the idea of getting back together with him, but after reading your post and meditating a LOT I know it is not the worst idea in the Universe! There is hope!
I am willing to do the work and make the best of it. And maybe it won’t work out, but I’ll definitely be in a better place emotionally =)

Melody Fletcher January 6, 2013 at 01:03

Hey Marissa,

As long as you keep an open mind and don’t NEED this man to come back so you can be happy (basically, be happy either way, i.e. focus on happiness first), it’s well worth a shot! :)

Huge hugs,

Melody
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