10 Things that get in the way of Relationship and Connection
Being heard and accepted is a deep need in all humans.
Providing that space for another through attentive listening can be very satisfying and fulfilling, and is necessary for both our intimate and professional relationships. The flow of sharing and listening within a relationship leads to meaningful depth.
We sometimes ignore or don’t realize that our hidden defences and subtle body language curtail communication and connection, negatively impacting our relationships, so we’ve designed this week’s exercise to help you discover if your defences get in the way of your relationships.
This exercise is for you if you are caught in a pattern of communication that is not fulfilling or failing to foster your relationships. It could be that you find yourself in this pattern with your spouse, sibling, child, boss, or client. Regardless of who you want to improve communication with, this exercise can help you to identify and become aware of your communication patterns.
This Week’s Training Exercise
Take a moment to read each question, one at a time, and write some examples and notes so that you can become aware of your communication patterns.
The top ten indications of when your defences are getting in the way:
1. Do you quickly categorize people you meet or see? Or do you come to quick judgments about situations and events (even on the news)?
2. Do you tend to be focused on either differences or similarities of opinion?
3. Are you not always aware, or aware too late, of when emotions (yours or the other person’s) have permeated the communication process?
4. Do you feel the need to express your opinion(s) forcefully? Or, do you express your opinion(s) with hesitation, wondering how they will be accepted by the other(s)?
5. Do you tend to interrupt the other person because you feel you know the point they are trying to make, and want to save time? Do you often feel that others are interrupting you?
6. Are you waiting for the other person to finish so that you can speak, and not really aware of your own inner tension that makes you be like that?
7. Do you tend to be focused on your point, or what your preoccupations, opinions or contributions are, so that you don’t really allow much silence?
8. Do you have to consciously stop yourself from wanting to speak, so that there can be some silence?
9. Do you find that you are easily distracted from the conversation? Find it difficult to focus on the flow and the process of exchange.
10. Are you able to hold a diversity of perspectives simultaneously or just focus on one? Do you feel impatient to find THE right answer?
Our defences are very subtle and may even be working under the guise of being an effective communicator. Revisit your notes whenever you come across an experience of communication that is not satisfying or fulfilling and look for new insights. Is there a defence that has been hidden until now? Your first step is to uncover obstacles to true listening. Improved communication will become more apparent as you work with your insights from your answers from the questions above or in the experience of staying aware in communication with others.
We’ve explored these obstacles to listening with hundreds of people, and we discovered that it is not about trying to change or fix your own behavior patterns. It is about observing a deeper dimension within yourself to discover their roots, and allowing those insights to change you.
Here is the Most Effective Practice to transform how you relate
If you listened to the audio free training on the Inner Critic Blog article, then you will have already identified the source of your defence mechanisms: the Inner Critic. To really uproot these defences you need to address the voice of the inner critic through the dialogue process explained in that article. What is also essential is addressing the energetic component of the inner critic using the audio of the meditation provided. You will be amazed at the difference in the quality of your relationships when you do these exercises.
To achieve even faster results, it really helps to have one or two sessions with an experienced practitioner, such as any of our MICH graduates. To find out more go to our Ego Alchemy site or choose a time for a free personal Q&A session to see what we can do for you
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