…commit from the heart
Commitment can be said to be one of the 3 pillars of a healthy, intimate relationship (the others being compatibility and chemistry). Without commitment, there can be little overall trust. However, commitment from the level of ego – for one’s personal material gain – will not work because it will be conditional on your partner fulfilling your material criteria e.g. being able to contribute a certain amount of material wealth to the relationship. Ideally, commitment from the heart involves being willing to discuss all matters of value to either or both partners, and coming to an agreement that meets the needs of both. It’s the commitment to being willing that is the part that I’d like to stress with this principle. Success is the aspiration rather than a guarantee!
…speak your truth
Especially important in terms of feelings and needs. This involves profound honesty with ourselves first and foremost. In order to communicate consciously and compassionately, we will need to be able to express what our needs and feelings are in any given situation. It’s about honouring that it is our responsibility and nobody else’s how we feel and how our needs are met.
…do what makes you come alive (even if it appears on the surface that it can’t possibly work, even if you can’t at first see how to make it work – just do it)
Some people call this their purpose or mission in life, some simply express this as the issues that they feel passionately about. If we don’t feel personally fulfilled in ourselves, we really won’t be fully available to our partner.
…take responsibility for your own wellbeing – mind, body and soul.
When one or both partners neglect their wellbeing in any way, it undermines the relationship as a whole. Personal wellbeing is a basic human need that we all have. So, to overlook our responsibilities to this part of ourselves is another way in which we fail to take responsibility for our own needs. By doing this, we set ourselves up for developing some kind of unconscious dependency on our partner.
…do what’s right for you (it’ll automatically/naturally be what’s right for everyone else too – including your partner.)
This principle might be called ‘make yourself happy first’. One of the most damaging emotions that can be present in any relationship is resentment. I tend to view resentment as being like a incubating virus. It can lurk unseen for days, weeks or even years, with the carrier either none the wiser or simply being aware of a nagging feeling of discontent in the relationship. It’s easy for resentment to get a hold on us when we don’t make ourselves happy first, when instead we ignore our needs, meet our own needs at the expense of someone else’s, or forget to speak our truth. The best way to treat a virus is not to succumb to it in the first place. How do we do that? By attending to our personal resilience using the other principles suggested here.
…adopt or re-commit to a daily practice (spiritual or otherwise) that grounds you and brings you back to your inner self.
That sad longing, and profound sense of attraction, we feel when we fall in love is rooted in a deeper truth of our connection to nature and to a higher power. It can be all too easy to ‘drop the connection’ to our soulfulness, leaving us feeling unloved, lonely and lacking in purpose. By devoting regular time and energy to remembering and nourishing our spiritual side, we naturally maintain an open heart for ourselves and for our beloved.
…stay open to growth and renewal – in mind, body and spirit – some call this life-long learning.
When we consider any relationship as a living entity, it’s easy to appreciate that it will need feeding and will need to grow if it is to stay alive. Relationships need us to work on them as well as being profoundly present in them in order to be sustainable. This applies to our relationship with ourselves as well as to our relationship with our partner.