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Create Mutuality Rather Than Keeping Score

Article •  3 - 5 minutes
Beginner Skill Level
Article
3 - 5 minutes

Where do you feel desperation, resentment, anger about your partner's choices? What do you want to demand of them? Rather than looking for what they're suppose to do, look for your feelings and needs, how would you would respond if you trusted your needs could be met without your partner, and what you choose to do given what your partner offers and does not offer.


How To Listen and Find Aliveness in Containment

Article •  5-9 minutes
Intermediate Skill Level
Article
5-9 minutes

Physical distancing is opportunity to creatively to meet your needs in new ways. In this containment, with very few cues from others and the environment you now have a rare opportunity with less external distraction to rethink what's truly supportive -- and make significant changes to the less noticable habits of mind, standards and "should's". Applying questions and noticing certain symptoms can support. Read on for more.


Inner Conflict and Agreements with Yourself

Article •  4 - 6 minutes
Intermediate Skill Level
Article
4 - 6 minutes

There are three things you can do to sort inner conflict and make doable, sustainable agreements with yourself. This capacity can build trust with yourself to follow through, and to develop diverse and creative solutions -- thereby increasing confidence and ease.


Exercise For Saying "No" And Staying Connected

Practice Exercise •  1 - 2 minutes
Beginner Skill Level
Practice Exercise
1 - 2 minutes

Ever have a hard time saying "no" to someone, or feel obligated to say yes? Here's an exercise that can help you notice where you are placing yourself as someone who "has to" say yes; the needs in the other person making the request; what you want to say "yes" to (regarding your needs and theirs) by saying "no"; what prevents you from saying "yes"; plus your request and how you might express it.


Working With Our Mixed “Yes”

Practice Exercise •  1-2 minutes
Beginner Skill Level
Practice Exercise
1-2 minutes

For this exercise choose a situation in which you have said a “yes” to someone‛s request but you didn't experience your “yes” as given freely or joyfully. Then explore judgements, feelings, needs, and alternate strategies that come up in relation to your “yes”, your “no”, and in relation to what the other person might be experiencing.


Changing A One-Way Caretaking Relationship

Practice Exercise •  5 - 8 minutes
Beginner Skill Level
Practice Exercise
5 - 8 minutes

Notice situations where you're attending to another and giving up on your needs with resentment or a sense of submitting. You can also watch for “shoulds,” obligation, and black-and-white thinking around the support you offer. Is there a sense that if you don't carry out a particular action something bad will happen? If so, identify the needs at hand and brainstorm a variety of strategies to meet them.


Finding Freedom In Marriage

Practice Exercise •  4 - 6 minutes
Intermediate Skill Level
Practice Exercise
4 - 6 minutes

Marriage can be seen as a limit on freedom. Ideas of compromise collude with this view. Instead, notice when your "yes" to your partner is laden with obligation, duty, guilt, fear, or an attempt to win love or approval, and how it's not a truly free "yes". True freedom is different from compulsion, and doesn't conflict with other needs. When have you experienced true freedom? What conditions support your access to freedom?


Find Space Between Needs And Strategies

Practice Exercise •  4-6 minutes
Intermediate Skill Level
Practice Exercise
4-6 minutes

Confidence, flexibility, creativity and equanimity may become more possible when you would like someone to meet a particular need, can trust that you can meet that need with someone else, and can accept a “no” to your requests. You can allow grief or disappointment to arise, and naturally turn towards a relationship in which those needs can be met. In some cases this may lead to the dissolution of a partnership or friendship.


Motivation Through Joy

Trainer Tip •  1-2 minutes
Introductory Skill Level
Trainer Tip
1-2 minutes

Pay attention to when you're motivated by guilt, duty, obligation, shame, and worry. How do you feel? Does it bring up resentment, rebellion, submission, reactivity or resistance? When you're motivated by joy notice how that feels, and how others respond. Read on for a related story.


Liberating Ourselves from Our “Shoulds”

Trainer Tip •  1 - 2 minutes
Introductory Skill Level
Trainer Tip
1 - 2 minutes

Trainer tip: When you tell yourself that you have to do something, you're more likely to disconnect yourself from the needs you’re trying to meet, and also diminish the joy in your life. Instead, experiment with translating your “shoulds” and “have tos” into the need you are trying to meet.


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