When we are confronted with something we don’t like in a relationship, e.g. criticism, lack of appreciation or some type of abuse, our usual reaction is to try changing the other person’s behavior. We rarely think of changing something within ourselves. Why would we? The other person is doing something wrong, not us, right?
In order to have the other person change their behavior, we use all kinds of “tools,” such as discussion, silence, flatter, humor, fights, seduction (sex), “poor me”, and more often than not, also physical or psychological threats. The result? Power struggles, which always drain the energy from the people involved, and rarely solve the underlying issue. On the contrary, these (unconscious) dynamics and reflexes make it only more difficult to build harmonious relationships with others.
For me it became increasingly frustrating that I wasn’t able to deal with my relationship issues more effectively. How many times I had fights with my wife or the bosses I worked for I can’t remember, but it never solved anything. And somewhere, deep inside me, I intuitively knew there should be another, more positive way, to handle these issues, but I could never figure out how exactly.
Do you recognize this? Do you have the same experiences and frustrations when it comes to your relationships?
For me this all changed when I got a different, more spiritual, understanding of what relationships are about and how you can solve your issues without the need for emotional manipulation and abuse, because let’s be honest, that’s what we normally use.
A spiritual perspective on relationships
Contrary to what most people (are taught to) believe, relationships do not exist to fulfill your needs and desires, or make you “whole” in case of romantic relationships. No, through mirroring, relationships are providing you with wonderful and sometimes painful opportunities to learn more about yourself in order to grow and expand your consciousness. Relationships are in essence about self discovery.
In this humorous discussion, Abraham explains how people that irritate you the most are actually your best “co-creators” and teachers.
How do you feel about this way of looking at relationships? Quite different from what you are used to, isn’t it?
Which brings me back to the subject of this post…
Accepting others as they are
With this new understanding of relationships and the process of mirroring, you will find that it is much more easy to accept others as they are. After all, they are not doing things to you; no, they help you evolve by making you consciously aware of the beliefs, fears or other issues that no longer serve you.
BTW, have you ever wondered how it is possible that two people have a different experience of the same person? It is because they see different aspects of themselves reflected in the mirror. For example: when you lack self confidence your boss may push your buttons by constantly criticizing you, while the same boss is very nice to your colleagues who don’t doubt themselves. If you want this situation to change, criticizing your boss for being mean and unfair won’t help (and if you leave you may very well end up with a new boss doing the very same thing!). What will help and change things is addressing your own lack of self confidence.
It is what Bashar emphasizes all the time: if you look in the mirror and you want your reflection to smile, the only way to achieve it is to start smiling yourself first! Believe me, this really works, also with relationships, and you can actually test it! Go shopping and enter one shop with a big smile on your face and another with a grim look and see how the shop assistants react to you. It’s funny and quite revealing!
Addressing your own issues
Whatever issue is reflected back to you through your relationships, and there can be many, thank your “co-creators” and start to focus on healing yourself, and release the beliefs or fears that are holding you back and keep you from aligning with your true and magnificent Self.
- If other people don’t accept you, start accepting yourself first;
- If people abuse you, stop abusing yourself and others;
- If fears are triggered within you, acknowledge and release those fears; and
- If your beliefs are being challenged, review if these beliefs are still valid for you.
I know, this is easier said than done, but if I was able to do it, why not you…?!
Something important to understand here is that as long as you resist working on your own issues and expansion, you will experience an increasing pressure, through your relationship “mirrors,” to the point that it becomes unbearable and you see no other option than to let go. So, why not start today?! 🙂
Finally, it is normal, especially in the beginning, that you still feel hurt by some people, even with this new understanding of relationships. In that regard, I highly recommend that you watch this video clip with Drs. Ron and Mary Hulnick of the Santa Monica University for Spiritual Psychology, in which they explain in a very gentle and practical way how self love and self forgiveness will help you dissolve this hurt.
Please feel free to share your comments and observations.