Valentine’s Day is officially here– how we are already in the middle of February, I have absolutely no idea, but here we are. And instead of sharing some super sappy post, (I know, totally not normal for the day), I was really excited about sharing the list of “Ten Characteristics of a Conscious Partnership” from the book I’m reading this month. (I’m sharing a book each month in my email list so if you aren’t a part of that VIP crowd, then you totally should be > click here< 😉).
Getting the Love You Want by Harville Hendrix has been an intense read, but in a good way. It’s challenged me to think a little bit more about my relationship, how and why I act within it, and so many other things that are reshaping my mindset. I’m not completely finished with it yet, but it’s definitely on my list of book recommendations!
One of the things that I keep coming back to is the list of “ten characteristics of a conscious partnership”. And since it is Valentine’s Day, I figured it was the perfect thing to share. But before we dive into the list, you kind of need to know that a conscious partnership is a relationship that “fosters maximum psychological and spiritual growth”.
Okay, now I can share with you Hendrix’s Ten Characteristics of a Conscious Partnership
- You realize that your love relationship has a hidden purpose – the healing of childhood wounds.
- You create a more accurate image of your partner. You see your partner not as your savior but as another wounded human being, struggling to be healed.
- You take responsibility for communicating your needs and desires to your partner. In an unconscious partnership, you cling to the childhood belief that your partner automatically intuits your needs. In a conscious partnership, you accept the fact that, in order to understand each other, you have to develop clear channels of communication.
- You become more intentional in your interactions. In an unconscious partnership, you tend to react without thinking… in a conscious partnership, you train yourself to behave in a more constructive manner.
- You learn to value your partner’s needs and wishes as highly as you value your own. In an unconscious partnership, you assume that your partner’s role in life is to take care of your needs magically. In a conscious partnership, you let go of this narcissistic view and divert more and more of your energy to meeting your partner’s needs.
- You embrace the dark side of your personality. In a conscious partnership, you openly acknowledge the fact that you, like everyone else, have negative traits. As you accept responsibility for this dark side of your nature, you lessen your tendency to project your negative traits onto your mate, which creates a less hostile environment.
- You learn new techniques to satisfy your basic needs and desires. During the power struggle, you cajole, harangue, and blame in an attempt to coerce your partner to meet your needs. When you move beyond this stage, you realize that your partner can indeed be a resource for you—once you abandon your self-defeating tactics.
- You search within yourself for the strengths and abilities you are lacking. One reason you were attracted to your partner is that he or she had strengths and abilities that you lacked. Therefore, being with your partner gave you an illusory sense of wholeness. In a conscious partnership, you learn that the only way you can truly recapture a sense of oneness is to develop the hidden traits within yourself.
- You become more aware of your drive to be loving and whole and united with the universe. As a part of your God-given nature, you have the ability to love unconditionally and to experience unity with the world around you. Social conditioning and imperfect parenting made you lose touch with these qualities. In a conscious partnership, you begin to rediscover your original nature.
- You accept the difficulty of creating a lasting love relationship. In an unconscious partnership, you believe that the way to have a good relationship is to pick the right partner. In a conscious partnership you realize you have to be the right partner. As you gain a more realistic view, you realize that a good relationship requires commitment, discipline, and the courage to grow and change; creating a fulfilling love relationship is hard work.
I shared on an Instagram post that I’m realizing “happy endings” truly only happen on the big screens, and that’s because the credits roll right after. There is no need for the hard work that is necessary to stay – not just married – but happily married.
Understanding that you have faults just as much as your partner does and making the conscious effort to feed your marriage instead of starving it takes more effort than what some people are willing to give.
So this Valentine’s Day, I guess I just wanted to challenge you to not just get caught up in the pomp and circumstance of the holiday, but get intentional about your relationship, and the power you have to change things that need to be changed. Because ultimately, the person you choose to love for a lifetime is worthy of more than just one day.