“What I need is a miracle!”
These are the words Karen has been waking up thinking every day for the past month. She and her boyfriend have been going through a really rough time and she’s worried that their relationship won’t make it.
It all began when he and his buddies started making reservations for a guys’ weekend they’re planning to take in Las Vegas. When Karen heard her boyfriend’s plans, images of drunken orgies crowded her mind and kept her awake at night. When she asked him to tell her more about what they’re going to do on their trip, he was vague and evasive. This only intensified Karen’s fears and the tensions between them rose.
Finally, Karen asked her boyfriend if he would promise not to sleep around or do anything to jeopardize their relationship while on this trip. She fully expected him to immediately say “yes” and promise, but he didn’t. Instead, he got defensive and angry and declared that he needs some freedom every once in awhile.
Things haven’t been the same after that argument. Karen’s boyfriend hasn’t said another word about his upcoming trip and neither has she. She expects the worst.
Relationship challenges come in all shapes, sizes and degrees.
Sometimes, as in Karen’s case, they involve a perceived danger to trust and a stalemate that seems to have no easy solution. For other people, trust has already been broken through lying or infidelity.
A relationship can be in peril even if there’s no threat to trust. Some couples simply grow apart. They wake up from their busy lives one day and realize that they don’t really know one another anymore and aren’t sure if the love is still alive.
When communication has broken down and all you and your partner seem to do is fight or “rage” silently at one another, the end of the relationship could be coming soon. It feels like it will take a miracle to turn the situation around and bring back your connection and love.
It’s a lot like when your car starts acting up. It jerks or pulls. It makes loud noises or emits smoke and smells it doesn’t normally give off. You worry that your car’s engine will seize up and you’ll be left stranded by the side of the road. Your “check engine” light might also come on. These signs indicate that it’s time to take a closer look and find out what’s going on.
It’s exactly the same with your relationship. When you’re at at the point when you’re wondering if your relationship will make it another week (or day), that’s your indication that it’s time to find out what’s going on and take action.
To manifest a miracle in your relationship, follow these 5 tips…
1. Assess honestly.
When your car acts “off,” or the “check engine” light comes on, what do you do? You probably open the hood or look underneath to try to figure out what’s going on. Even before you head to your trusted mechanic, you do a little investigating.
What’s called for in your relationship is an honest assessment. With as much objectivity as you can, identify the areas that seem most troubled in your relationship. Think about how you and your partner usually talk to one another, spend your time together (or apart) and how close and intimate you normally are. What has changed? What seems to be out of alignment?
2. Set aside blame.
As you assess your relationship at this time, focus in on the observable actions and also on how you feel. It’s unhelpful for you to make a mental list of all of the ways that your partner is to blame for the frequent arguments or the lack of trust. It’s also unhelpful for you to blame yourself.
Take it as a given that you BOTH have probably played a role in whatever is going on that’s threatening your relationship…even if it’s your partner who cheated. It’s important for you each to take responsibility for your roles, but make sure blame doesn’t stand in the way of understanding what’s going on and what will help.
3. Choose your changes.
As you look at your own role in your relationship problems, what are some concrete changes you could make? If there are changes you’d like your partner to make, think about what they are– and be specific– but be sure to also choose some changes you will make.
Here are some examples: “I will be firm and consistent about my boundaries.” “I will be honest and open about how I really feel.” or “I will listen without interrupting.”
4. Get professional help.
Be willing to seek advice from a professional coach or therapist when the challenge seems overwhelming or beyond your ability to handle. Even if your partner is unwilling to go to a professional, big and positive changes can happen when you alone learn new strategies and apply them to yourself and your relationship.
5. Know when it’s over.
As painful as it can be, there are times when the miracle happens only after the tough decision is made to end the relationship. If you’ve tried as hard as you can or if your partner refuses to do anything to help improve your relationship, consider whether or not it’s wise for you to stay.
Miracles do happen when couples stay together and also when they decide to separate. Actually, they happen all of the time, but they don’t always look or feel the way we think they will. Stay open and focused on what you want for yourself and your future.
Susie and Otto Collins are relationship coaches, authors and speakers who help individuals and couples attract and keep close and connected love relationships. If you’re looking for a miracle, get their free Relationship Reverse Report at www.relationshipreversereport.com