A young woman in her 30s sat on my couch, her face tense as if to keep from crying.
“I care about my boyfriend so much, he’s the sweetest, but I could never live with him because his work life is so unsteady, he has lots of debt, and I want to find someone I can live with.”
She wanted to do The Work on her situation again with her boyfriend so she could get more clear about her relationship and where it was going.
But she really knew the answer.
She had already done The Work on money, debt, jobs and what her boyfriend should or shouldn’t have, and relaxed about his business.
But she never felt the urge to invite him to move in with her.
It didn’t go that way. It was a “no”.
The next time I saw her, she reported that she broke up with him and was going to start dating other men.
Many, many….and I mean many….inquirers have come to work with me, whether solo sessions or in retreats, on a topic that’s old, difficult, common and very stressful.
Should I stay or should I go?
Trouble making a decision to leave something, somewhere, someone.
When do I quit? How do I quit?
I can relate so much to this when it comes to business and work, jobs and career.
When I was starting out in business, I had a part time job. I thought I would have that job for two years (I even said one year when I first began) and I ended up staying for five.
It turned into a really great, simple, very part time job with less and less time required from me.
I did The Work on that job many times. The job wasn’t terrible, but it wasn’t my life’s joy either, that’s for sure. It was stable, offered great health insurance for me and my kids, the environment was quite beautiful, it was fairly easy to get to, the people were nice.
I stayed because I felt it was required for relaxation, ease, and allowing myself to be supported financially by the service I provided for the place I worked.
It was almost when I stopped thinking about leaving, and truly accepted being there and staying put awhile, that I saw it wouldn’t be long before I really would leave. It didn’t matter how great it was or how comfortable I became with it.
I was leaving.
Could it be the same with primary relationships?
Maybe. But often….they seem even like an even bigger deal.
People feel the agony of wondering if they should stay or go in their marriage or committed relationship or someone they’re dating.
What are the thoughts that are so painful?
What I hear, and what’s run through my mind too, are thoughts like these:
- I have to make a decision
- There’s a right thing to do and a wrong thing to do (I need to know what’s right)
- I could make a mistake
- I will hurt my partner (hurt the employer, hurt the neighbors, hurt my family)
- I will regret leaving later (so I shouldn’t leave now)
- I will regret not leaving later (so I should leave now)
- I’m missing something better
- It could be worse (so I should accept/appreciate this partner)
- There is an “I” that needs to make a decision
- I am the one in control of my life with or without this partner
- I’m calling the shots if I leave, or if I stay
- This is up to me
- I’m all alone (and it’s terrible)
I notice. I slow down.
I let things move as they move, without trying to push, rush or force anything.
And if I get afraid of what will happen next, I can do The Work.
“Placing the blame or judgment on someone else leaves you powerless to change your experience; taking responsibility for your beliefs and judgments gives you the power to change them.” ~ Byron Katie
Tell the full truth today, with love and honesty. Then allow life to move and see what happens.
Much Love, Grace