Most of our posts focus on executive coaching and workplace issues; but sometimes the most pressing concerns are life issues rather than work issues. Our featured member Grace Gedeon’s focus is on life coaching and she has recently written this insightful article on conscious relationships and personal growth.
“There’s a term I love to use called ‘nominative determinism’ which literally means name-driven outcome. Carl Jung put forward the idea that people are drawn to professions that fit their names. I also believe that the names we use to classify things, can be indicators of the essence of those things that we are naming. For example, what does the word relationship tell us about relationships? If we break that word down into two words: relation – ship, we can devise a metaphor that can be useful in guiding us towards a better understanding of relationships.
Let’s take a closer look at this…
A ship is a type of vehicle or vessel that takes people from one place to another across water.
Could a relation-ship, be seen as a vessel, designed to take you and your significant other across the vast waters of your subconscious mind towards a new and wonderful destination of growth and transformation? This journey will likely involve travelling, at times, through storm and at times through magical beauty, depending on how you steer the ship and conquer the elements.
Let’s continue with this metaphor a little further.
What’s The Difference Between A Conscious And Unconscious Relationship?
A conscious relationship is one where the ship’s captain is awake, alert, engaged and capable of observing and navigating the deep unfathomable waters/emotions/subconscious terrains with mastery. There is no denial, avoidance, slacking off or ignorance.
An unconscious relationship by contrast, is like the Titanic – it looks amazing but doesn’t make the distance – it sinks. Why? Well, according to one theory, the sinking of the Titanic was attributed to a phenomenon known as thermal inversion that caused the light to refract in unusual ways. This distorted the size and distance of objects and created a false horizon. The mirage between the false horizon and the real one prevented the lookout from seeing the iceberg until it was only a mile away.
Aren’t human relationships much the same in that, to the extent that you disown or reject parts of yourself, you are basically operating your relationship through a series of mirages. You`ve now got your own version of thermal inversion! You can’t see clearly because your world is one of the projections of your subconscious issues onto those you are in relationship with and your own mirage now consists of mechanisms of avoidance, denial and deflection. Everything appears distorted, and before you know it, you hit an iceberg and your relationship is damaged or destroyed and it goes down.
Ways To Avoid Disaster
- Play it safe. This would mean never venture out so that you avoid stormy waters or iceberg territory. OR
- Take stock and ensure you understand how to be awake and alert and keep your relationship conscious.
To stay conscious, you must:
- Engage in self- reflection to ensure that your childhood issues and past hurts do not become destructive projections on to your partner but instead opportunities for healing and connection with them.
- Chose partners well and leave soul destroying relationships in the most loving way possible.
- Look at your relationships the way A Course in Miracles describes them: as assignments – part of a vast plan for your enlightenment, the blueprint by which each individual soul is led to greater awareness and expanded love.
What Are Relationships Here To Teach Us?
Our relationships with others mirror the relationship we have with ourselves. Conflict with others mirrors the conflict we have between the persona we show to the world and our shadow self. So, the people who have the most teach us are often the ones who reflect to us the limits to our own capacity to love, those who consciously or unconsciously challenge that which we fear and are ashamed of within us.
In a conscious relationship, you and your partner learn how to move towards the goal of wholeness by fostering each other’s psycho-spiritual growth. You accept each other’s humanness and support each other’s growth towards wholeness.
In an unconscious relationship, there is no fostering of mutual growth. You and your partner are seeing mirages because you are unaware and resisting or denying the universal will for your mutual soul growth. You are stuck on the level of projection; your learning is limited.
Unconscious relationships often end over the obvious while being completely oblivious to the deeper lesson that the relationship was designed to help you learn. If you haven’t learnt the lesson intended by that relationship assignment, you won’t evolve to a higher vibrational relationship – perhaps you’ll create a different one but it won’t be a higher one.
I hope this helps you understand the importance of staying conscious and conscientious in the pursuit of a deep and profound relationship that expands your heart and consciousness. There is work involved. These relationships, by their very nature, take you on a journey, they are not the destination, but rather the vessel that you can embark with another, to travel to a place of higher consciousness and expanded love, through the way you relate. What is required of you is that you stay true, not to the pursuit of power within the relationship, but rather to a deep desire for your mutual soul growth.”