Friday, September 23, 2011

Relationships and Mindfulness

As I write this,
and as you read this,
we are either mindful
or not.

Aware can be all sorts of things,
but it seems to need to be at least in part
grounded in the physical reality,
like our breathing, or our arms and legs,
or light coming in our eyes right now.

The good old here and now.

and if we aren't mindful,
then we are on some sort of automatic,
which even Thich Nhat Hahn admitted was hard when writing.

And he's not in relationship.

So, we meet someone.
And they are groovy
and they think we are groovy
and sex is good
and we like a bunch of things in common,
so whoopie,
life is solved.

Feels like that for awhile,
except that once we start to spend enough time
someone is going to fall away from the "perfect" projection
and fall back into normal jerky selfish scared angry whatever.

You know, the stuff happens.

So one person has stress and reacts,
and then the options are:

one or both people realize things are off and become mindful

neither become mindful which means you
by definition
are on automatic (which sounds nicer than mindless,
but that is the opposite of mindful isn't it)

Anyway two people on automatic have to fall
back on what their parents taught mainly
and then any other training
or habits they've developed/ gotten away with
over the years

So we have the couple:
people fallen into not so great patterns
and various automatic responses.

Which means: if you and your partner had perfect unconditionally loving
who dealt with stress with love and listening and humor,
then you can fall back on some pretty high grade
automatic behavior

without such parents,
things more or less have to disintegrate

or the couple has to get more and more busy
and distant
and businesslike
to stay out of the trouble zone

or the "trouble" can be held inside
and gnashed away at as
it eats somebody's guts out
(and chances are the inner gnashing
if used by one or both,
was a pattern they picked up)

without the mindfulness
to feel what we are feeling
as in us
and the mindfulness to stay
present to the other
and to our words as we "deal"
with a situation,
we are bound to either avoid
or conflict

and what to do about all this?

one is to agree,
in calmer moments,
what the default agreed upon
pattern will be when conflict happens:

say, doing the work of Byron Katie

or listening to each other without interruption
of five minutes at a time

or stopping the talk and touching for awhile

or arguing in gibberish

or non violent communication

or taking a walk and calming down

or writing up gratitude lists

or prefacing each statement with:
I know anything that bothers you
is in me too


well, the world is full of things to do besides the usual painful ones

it's kind of amazing
we take so little advantage of them

oh, well.

See: My Joy of Divorce website, five month course page
if you are by chance interested in a group from yourself
or your friends that could lead out of a LOT of suffering

No comments: