In my free video training, Should I Stay or Should I Go, I give you a checklist of red and green flags to help you self-assess your relationships.
It includes a list of behaviors that threaten the safety and health of your relationships, as well as a list of behaviors that truly support intimacy, belonging, and connection. Check it out here if you haven’t watched it yet.
At the heart of it all, there is only one red flag that really matters, and it lies in your answer to these two questions:
- Can you have an honest, loving, and respectful conversation with this person about anything, no matter what the content is?
- Are you both equally committed to personal insights, personal growth, and to each showing up differently as a result of this conversation?
If yes, congratulations! You’re in a safe, secure, growth-enhancing relationship that is likely to meet many of your needs for belonging, intimacy, and connection.
If no, ugh, I’m sorry. You’re in a distressing relationship where you’re engaging more through your defenses and self-protectiveness than through your heart, joy, or vulnerability.
It’s that simple.
So, what do you do if you’re not in the kind of relationship that you long for?
Start with yourself.
Remember: inside change for outside impact.
Putting aside all temptation you may feel to analyze and understand the other person, and ask yourself some deeper questions:
- Boundaries for safety: What boundaries do I need to set for my own well-being that I’ve been afraid to set? How can I increase my courage and boundary-setting skills? Let’s trust ourselves to keep ourselves as safe as possible, and stop exposing ourselves to unnecessary harm.
- Emotional alchemy: What feelings am I avoiding feeling or trying to manage in someone else? How can I lean into a wider range or emotional experiences without shying away from them? Let’s develop our collective capacity to be both exquisitely attuned to emotions but not enslaved by or controlled by seeking or avoiding any particular emotion. Once we’re able to feel our widest range of feelings without becoming reactive, we connect and empathize more deeply with ourselves and others.
- Personal integrity: What’s my personal vision for my relationships? How am I bringing the very qualities and responses that I am hoping to get from others? Once we stop trying to change, fix, and control other people, we personally become safer people to be around. Once we reclaim our attention and energy to change ourselves (instead of others) we begin to live from more inner peace, equanimity, and joy.
This summer, our Gold membership community is going to dive into the internal capacity-building needed to bridge differences and create connections with other people.
If you’ve been wanting to check out my Gold membership program, try us out for three months this summer as we deepen our exploration of nonviolent and compassion-based approaches to moving beyond us vs. them consciousness in our world today.
For a limited time, May 24-31, you can sign up for three months of Gold membership at a special discount for new Gold members. Look for my weekly email newsletter next Tuesday, May 24 to grab this fantastic offer.
Want to go deeper in this work?
Here are a few of my programs that might be of interest to you:
Conversations from the Heart, a free Q&A learning call on Wednesdays at 10am CT.
Gold Membership, a deep dive into personal growth with a dedicated community.
Private Sessions, one-on-one guidance and coaching for your specific life situations.
Oh Yvette, so very true!! And, as is often the case with siblings, even if you have faced your own pain, they may not have faced theirs… So if there are “certain” topics they refuse to discuss, don’t give up… keep following Yvette’s incredible training in verbal strategies for, in my case, creating safety between my sister and myself, so that more safety is created, and they can feel a bit more of their own pain and grief. At some point, they will no longer be so afraid to have those conversations which were previously steered clear of. How do I know? For over a year I have used Yvette’s beautiful scripts and yes… it’s been life giving to my relationship with my sister. Thank you Yvette for being so smart, skilled, and kind!!!