In this week’s Success Newsletter, I would like to reveal the 7 steps to help mend a broken relationship and broken heart.
First a quick update:
*** “Never Satisfied: Why Powerful Men Cheat” – Arnold Schwarzenegger, Mel Gibson, Anthony Weiner, Prince Charles, Tiger Woods, , Jesse James, Marc Anthony, Brent Favre, Rolling stones Ron wood, Evangelist Ted Haggard, US President Bill Clinton, Governor Elliot Spitzer, Governor Mark Sanford, Senator John Edwards, Brad Pitt, and the list goes on. Watch the TV special where I and a panel of experts reveal the real reasons powerful men cheat. The show airs on the Biography Channel at 10pm EST on Thursday, Dec. 8th
*** When stress makes you ill and crazy – We live in denial and ignorance of the real damage that stress does to us and to our lives. Stress destroys our enjoyment of life as well as our heath. Read my article “You’re not crazy” where I outline all the effects of stress, the illnesses it causes and the signs and symptoms of stress – physical, mental/cognitive, emotional and behavioral. There is also a link there to take the stress test: http://patrickwanis.com/blog/youre-not-crazy/
*** The Top Ten Celebrity Meltdowns of 2011: – If it were up to Santa, a lot of these naughty and not nice celebrities would not be receiving gifts. Read my fifth annual list along with my insights, perspectives and what we can learn from the bad behavior and meltdowns of celebrities: http://patrickwanis.com/blog/the-top-ten-celebrity-meltdowns-of-2011/
Now, let’s talk about the 7 ways & strategies that can help mend a broken relationship.
The dictionary defines broken as:
- Having been fractured or damaged and no longer in one piece or in working order
- Rejected, defeated, or despairing
Both these definitions can apply to a relationship – that it no longer works as one piece and the unity is gone and; the relationship is overcome with feelings of defeat and despair.
We often don’t realize that we are in relationships with everyone in our world and life – not just our romantic partner. We are in relationship with our siblings, work colleagues, boss, employees, parents, neighbors and so forth.
When our relationship is working well, we feel a sense of unity – along with a host of other positive emotions and feelings such as significance, love, joy, power, safety, security, desirability, worthiness, valuable, etc.
An action or series of actions and behaviors on our part or the other person’s part can break the relationship.
Here are seven steps to healing and repairing a broken relationship;
It is easy to live in denial or avoidance and thus to refuse to admit that there is a problem. Denial over an extended period of time can lead to irreparable damage in a relationship because it creates resentment, bitterness, isolation, scorn and contempt. Eventually, the two people learn to live together but actually apart, in two worlds, shutting each other out and forming a precarious business transaction void of emotion, trust or deep respect.
You and your partner must share a willingness and intention to resolve and heal the relationship.
3. Responsibility and accountability
It is very rare that only one person is truly fully responsible for the break-up in the relationship. If your partner has cheated, you might have to accept that there were red flags about the way the relationship was evolving, that you were both growing apart, or that you choose someone who either had a track record and past for infidelity or that you didn’t listen and follow your intuition. Again, you are not responsible for the way your partner behaved or the way he/she chose to respond to you. Responsibility is not about laying blame but rather accepting one’s role in the outcome and then seeking a solution; blame does not seek a solution but seeks judgment.
When you are willing to openly accept and admit your part in the outcome, or your mistakes in the relationship, then you encourage the other person to be more open and forthcoming and help him/her to possibly desire to heal the relationship.
5. From the heart
This is a critical step if the relationship is to be healed. Speaking from the heart comes after the blame, crying, screaming, shouting, anger and all the actions that will be expressed as a result of the pain, loss and hurt over the damaged relationship. Speaking from the heart refers to admitting to yourself what are your blocks and issues – those things that have prevented you from living from your heart, from fully & openly expressing love and from fully & openly receiving love. We all have limiting subconscious beliefs and fears. Speaking from the heart also refers to admitting to your partner all of your emotions, fears, pains and blocks, and; your desire and intention to heal the relationship.
This is the hardest part of healing the relationship. Forgiveness is always the biggest challenge for us – in every situation and particularly in relationships. The gravest mistake we can make is to refuse to forgive and then choose to stay in the relationship, thus nurturing resentment, revenge and contempt. When this occurs between two parents the most serious harm is done to the children who not only learn lack of forgiveness and compassion but also learn to copy negative relationships based on criticism, judgment, isolation, lack of affection and so forth. Remember, your children will copy what they see and live out what they hear.
Here are some articles with insights into forgiveness:
* “The fear to forgive” – the many reasons we choose not to forgive someone -
* “Asking for forgiveness” – the steps and suggestions of what to say and do when asking someone to forgive you – http://patrickwanis.com/blog/asking-for-forgiveness/
This is the point where you determine the specific and measurable action that must be taken to rebuild the trust, rekindle the romance, restore the affection and revive the love and respect for each other. Professional help and counseling might be necessary. I used the word “measurable” above because rebuilding things such as trust requires clearly identifiable markers and measurements. For example, here are measurable ways to answer the following questions:
* Can I trust you to be there and listen to me when I’m upset?
- Listen without interrupting, attacking or judging
* Can I trust you to choose me over your mother, over your friends?
- Standing up for me, making me a priority; turning down invitations to other events to be with me
* Can I trust you to work for our family?
- Spending money on the family first and its priorities and not on other things
* Can I trust you to respect me?
- Keeping your word and commitment; listening to me, speaking with affection,, concern and sincerity – free of sarcasm or cynicism; allowing me to express my desires and needs without being mocked or judged
* Can I trust you to help with things in the house?
- Creating a roster for chores around the house; offering without being asked to help out
* Can I trust you to really be involved with our children?
- Creating a schedule to pick up/drop off children; helping out with homework; scheduling events with the children
If you are looking to get over a betrayal, rejection or breakup, use my program:
“Secrets to getting over it” http://patrickwanis.com/getoverit_package.asp
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I wish you the best and remind you “Believe in yourself -You deserve the best!”
Patrick Wanis Ph.D.
Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert & SRTT Therapist