There comes a time in every relationship when a bit of rescue is needed:
- Someone has broken your trust – in a big or small way.
- You’re stuck in a cycle of unhealthy arguments.
- You don’t understand each other.
- You can’t agree on anything.
- You’ve forgotten how to have fun together.
Why is it that problems like these suck the life out of a relationship? Maybe it’s because….
Your mind can be a very dangerous place.
Think about it. You can feel as poor as Job’s turkey, and have a pretty fat bank account. Or, you can live like a prince, forgetting that you have the limited resources of a pauper. It all hinges on percerception.
Money expert, Sharon O’Day, explains how our perceptions can keep us feeling poor. She reminds us that “Truth is universal. Perception of truth is not”. And that’s what makes the mind a somewhat scary place to dwell. Creating danger for your relationship…
Your perception of truth could hijack your relationship.
Sceptical? Let me count the ways…
- You can be married to a super faithful spouse (truth), and doubt every move they make (perception).
- Your partner may welcome your free expression (truth), but you zip your opinions up tight in fear (perception).
- Your spouse may think you’re sizzling hot (truth), while you feel dismally dowdy (perception).
- Your mind can spin a wild story (perception) from your partner’s simple, factual statement (truth).
- Your partner can confess to a small offense (truth) and your mind can jack it up to a huge crime (perception).
Basically, your mind can function like an amazing raconteur: it won’t let the truth stand in the way of a good story (perception). If that happens too often, your relationship begins to flounder. You get hijacked on the sea of love – by faulty perception. You need a way to rescue your relationship…
Challenge your perceptions to rescue your relationship.
As a wise client so eloquently expressed it: “I need to think outside the box, and not inside my head”. Take a moment to chew on that profound nugget of wisdom.
How often does the terrifying story in your mind conflict with the simple truth before you?
My client and her partner recognized that faulty perceptions often hijacked their relationship. Things started changing for the good when they learned that “there’s always a truth to unlock”. So what if we make that our mission: to work as a team to unlock the truth? It sure beats pounding the (perceived) truth into each other…
Practical Ways to Challenge Perceptions and Rescue Your Relationship:
- Accept that your mind is a masterful storyteller, and honestly question its perceptions.
- When a partner speaks, step into the role of interested inquirer. Refuse to play a know-it-all judge.
- When you speak, reveal your own perceptions, and be willing to test their accuracy with your partner.
- Be a truth seeker: Approach all communication and interaction with curiosity. Be wary of what you assume to be true.
- Seek to understand, rather than solely demanding to be understood.
If you each learn to share perceptions as what they are – your own understanding, and not necessarily accurate – you can work as a team to unlock the truth together. In the process, you’ll begin to rescue your relationship. That’s what I’ve learned in my own marriage.
What have you learned about truth and perception in relationships? Speak your mind below!
Very good advice for any relationship. We do create a great deal of drama by how we perceive things versus how they really are.
I agree with you on perception. It’s all about the other person and when you make it about them and understand their perception things will start working out for the better. Often times, people do not understand play the “It’s all about me” game. Great post!
What you say is true. It’s all in the perception. I think laughter is the answer to a lot of issues involving people. Life needs a little comedy relief all the time. And a good belly laugh is good for the soul!
Great idea, I know that when I got married to my husband that we took a marriage class. They told us to give our spouse the benefit of the doubt when they do something your don’t like or agree with. Chances are they didn’t do it to hurt your.
Communication goes a long way and instead of stewing over the issues it is best to just talk it out.
Sometimes they say that perception is reality.. Your mind can definitely play tricks on you!
Everything is filtered through our own perceptions. What takes work is understanding the other persons and knowing that neither perception is ‘the truth’.
Perception can be a killer of relationships. We sometimes get lost in our own minds. Thanks for the great advice and information.
We must learn to challenge our perceptions and separate them from the true reality of the situation. Great tips!
Perceptions can sure take you down the wrong road. I believe I need to really be an honest to goodness listener. That can dispel lots of wrong perceptions. Great blog!
Another great one!
LOVE this Gina! Your subconscious only knows the stories you’ve been feeding for years. It doesn’t know right from wrong, fact from fiction or truth from lies. It defines those things based on what you tell yourself over and over again. It’s time to change the way we think to get the relationships we want… but do it honestly and positively!
Great post! While perception can be the key to achieving more, it has it’s polarity as well and can be destructive. This was a hard lesson to learn for me. Now I really try to step back and “see” what the other person is saying. (Rather than jumping to a response.) And 99% of the time it is a simple statement or expression – nothing to catastrophize over. Controlling negative perceptions is so important in a healthy relationship, otherwise you can spin and spin on something that isn’t even there (except in our own imagination).
Happy to see that my “Perception” article regarding money triggered some thoughts of how the same can pertain to relationships, Gina! I feel honored! Great article, by the way … 😉