Before reading this article, clear your mind of any previous beliefs, notions, opinions or expectations of what relationship means to you because in order to enter the paradigm of intentional and conscious relationships, we must begin from a new perspective. Until now, relationships have been placed in the domain of romance and we tend to look at them in the context of romantic partnerships but they encompass every connection that we have with every person, situation and thing in our lives. To really understand relationships, we must begin with understanding that we have a relationship with everything in our lives. And to begin at the beginning, our first, most important and the only meaningful relationship we can ever have is the one we have with ourselves.
There is a give and take to relationships, what we share with others and what they share with us. And we tend to look at this from the perspective of what we receive but they actually start with us, with what we give. All of our energy is reflected back to us in the relationships we have and that begins with us and our healing and karmic purposes. While they may seem complicated and confusing, when we ask the ‘right’ questions every relationship can reveal a treasure trove of information about our purpose and what we need to heal within ourselves to have the fulfilling, life and self affirming relationships that we want to have. All of the joy, peace, love and abundance that we want from our relationships can be ours when we view our relationships from the context of ourselves and the healing gifts they have for us.
Every external relationship we have in our life, which are the ones we have with people and situations and indeed, with life itself, is a mirror of our internal relationship with ourselves. So as we go through the journey of life we are provided with a mirror of our internal connection with our ego and spirit. It is not possible to explain the nature of relationship without making the connection to self and to Self. If we try to look at our relationship life without first making the internal connection, we can easily step into victimhood because we are disconnected from the true cause, nature and purpose of relationship, which is discovering who we are and our healing path and our journey to wholeness in body, mind, emotions and Spirit.
What is our relationship with ourselves? How do we think of ourselves in the context of our life? Do we like ourselves? These are either the last questions we ask or we never think of asking them and yet they are the only questions that matter when we talk about relationships because they are the ones that will help us understand what is happening within all of our relationships and also determine the kinds of relationships we will have. The farther we are willing to go within ourselves to answer our relationship questions, the more success we will have with all of our relationships.
But too often we look at what is happening outside of ourselves, to our relationships with life, with others and within different situations and when they are not what we think or wish they were, we think that something is wrong with us. Then we try to fix the situation or person, change them and their energy, in the hope that they will respond to us differently. But that is putting ‘the cart before the horse’ so to speak because they cannot be more to us than we are to ourselves. In other words, they are only mirroring our energy back to us. If we want a different outcome we have to start with the cause, which is always us.
How can we get someone to see us differently, to love, honor and respect us when we have already tried everything? We don’t and doing so is a waste of our time and energy. What we can do is view them as what they are, the mirror of our energy, and change what we are expressing energetically. Then they have a choice, to shift and meet us at our expanded level of consciousness or move away and allow someone else to take their place. And there’s where we get stuck because we want to hold onto our relationships, to be rewarded for the time, emotion, and effort that we put into them. The reward we seek is gratitude, commitment and love but it’s a reward that doesn’t materialize. Instead, we may be rejected, abandoned and receive anything but the love we seek. What is wrong with us? Nothing. What is wrong with the other person? Nothing, they are just doing what they are supposed to do, which is to mirror our energy back to us. And if we don’t love, honor and respect ourselves, they won’t either.
When we expect something from our relationships we are putting the responsibility for our healing on someone or something else. Then we move into resentment and victim consciousness, when the results are not what we expected. Now we must ask ourselves a painful question, what was our agenda? Because we all have agendas in relationships, which are the things we want and expect from them. We don’t see ourselves like this because we say we want the best for others but we really want the best for ourselves. And there’s nothing wrong with that, as long as we’re honest about it.
Every relationship serves our need for healing because that is our primary life purpose and we ‘relate’ to others with that as an energetic purpose, although it may not be our emotional purpose, which is to have our emotional needs met. But the energetic healing and transformation needs are why we choose that particular person or situation, no matter how unromantic or self serving that sounds.
As we become more spiritually mature we are able to acknowledge our healing and embrace those who step into our sphere to bring us closer to wholeness. These are our teachers and they introduce us to powerful lessons whose purpose always benefits us in some way, no matter how challenging or painful the relationship is. When we choose how we want to relate to others, balance ourselves from within and stay grounded in our desire for wholeness, we see relationships in an entirely different light.
Then we can set intentions for our relationships and while there will be a healing purpose, we are aware of it and are a conscious part of the healing journey, fully aware of what we need and use our energy in focused and directed ways that use our relationships to bring us closer to wholeness. At this point we know we will have the emotional fulfillment we crave so we don’t work so hard to create it and it comes to us, effortlessly, wrapped within relationships that give us the love, honor, commitment and joy that we want without the drama and trauma of unmet expectations and the hard work of trying to meet someone else’s needs so they will respond by meeting ours.