Two Truths About Relationships

There are two truths that rise to the surface in relationship to others. Both have proven true for myself –  personally and through the experiences of countless clients:

  1. You can’t change others, you can only change yourself. I love the expression “Change it, accept it or leave it,” as it signifies the choices we have when faced with an issue. Because we have eternal hope, we tend to move towards change first as a way to better the relationship. And really, why wouldn’t we? If we can talk to our loved one about our concerns, or how their behaviours, patterns or choices affect us, they just might come to the realization that they can do better. Knowing that despite our best efforts sometimes people can’t or won’t change, it is then through changing ourselves that freedom resides.
  2. People can only give you what they have. Sometimes we long for something from our loved one; we wish they could just give us one thing or another – more time, more affection, less indifference, less anger. But people can only give you what they are capable of and we are better served to realize that whatever is holding them back is getting in the way of their own growth; it is far less about us and far more about them. People can only give you what they have.

When we are faced with the truth, we can move forward in our healing. Our story has the chance to develop, evolve, become richer. Keeping these truths in mind while in relationship can guide us to less futility and greater acceptance. We can focus on what we do have instead of what we don’t, we can work to fulfilling our own needs, we can seek joy.

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Photo credit: https://unsplash.com/@markuswinkler

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