My latest read, The DNA of Relationships by Gary Smalley is turning out to be very insightful. As I write, I am only 40% or so through the book.
One of the main points he makes is no one can make you happy…only you can control you. You cannot control anyone else. As soon as you attempt to control others, you lose all your power. You have the power over yourself only.
He also talks about the fear dance we all do; we do it in every relationship. It is how we react to conflict. We usually react the same way (we always handle conflict in the same way) every time we deal with conflict. Which means, we must ask ourselves if that works for us (oh, that’s Dr. Phil: “How’s that workin’ for you?”). If we want to see change in our relationships, we must change how we are relating; how we react to situations.
I was reading tonight about walls people erect and creating safety in relationships. One example that was used was a couple who had a conflict over money and trust. The husband had a secret stash of money and when the wife found out about it, she lost trust in her husband in the area of finances because he had been keeping secrets from her. His response was to bully and tell her she just had to trust him. She built a wall to protect herself from the hurt she felt as a result of his hiding money. A mentor of theirs advised them that the husband must allow her have her wall that the wall was valid and he (the husband) must create a place of safety in the relationship before expecting his wife to tear down her wall.
I found this extremely interesting. Because people always talk about “walls” as being negative. How many times have you heard or even been advised yourself that you have to tear down walls?
What really needs to happen for walls to be torn down, is places, even relationships of safety must be established.
Maybe there is someone in your life who you think has walls. How can you make your relationship “safe” for that person? (I don’t know yet…that’s next in the book. I’ll keep you posted).
I am thinking this would be a great book to have a “book study” on or maybe a book club. Anyone want to join me?