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Repair Rituals for Couples

Ideally the Holidays come with expectations that often cause tension and conflict.  We are offering these suggestions from Diane Poole Heller and a visit to her wonderful Kind Eyes exercise.  Here are some suggestions from a recent email:

Relationship life is harder than work for most of us – there’s no way around it.

We struggle to find a common ground and to muster up empathy for each other; the good news is, studies suggest that for a good relationship we only need to be in attunement 20% of the time, as long as there is a mutual intent towards repair.

As we find our way back into harmony with one another, we grow our skillfulness. It serves us well to learn how to realign.

Both partners, ideally, should practice repair. It doesn’t matter who goes first.

I suggest repair rituals for all couples, and I’d like to share with you some of my favorite ones: for example, a client who was of much smaller stature than her partner, after an episode of disharmony would go and stand on the first step of a staircase with her arms open, to signal that she was ready to receive a hug and repair the disruption. That became that couple’s secret language to express the intent and willingness to seek harmony after an argument or a disagreement. Or the partner who first feels ready for repair could go and light a candle in a designated place in the home…  A special, scented candle may be chosen for this special purpose only, or you can play a particular music or song… there are many possibilities, and I recommend to be creative and playful about it.

Kind Eyes Exercise

Love this exercise so repeating again. In this exercise, you imagine your partner lighting up when they open their door and see you. You take that image and feel it “into” your eyes and allow your eyes to reach out to that joy you see in the other person’s eyes. Sounds nice, right? But this exercise requires a tremendous amount of trust and the overcoming of intense fear as an avoidantly attached person takes the huge risk of “looking again” after years of blinding themselves to contact, especially in their eyes. Here’s the video.

Diane Poole Heller

To see the complete email and more about her training programs click HERE.

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