Turning Relationship Hell To Heaven: Feeling upset, troubled, angry, irritated, critical, judgey, or full of despair about an important relationship in your life? When relationships go wrong, it hurts. Come do The Work and find your way out of suffering and into heaven. Spouse, Mother, Sibling, Father, Daughter, Son, Boss, Neighbor, Friend.
Module One: Relationship Happiness, What Do You Believe? Find Out by Identifying Clearly What You Think
Classes #1 and #2 – We begin by looking at what we believe brings unhappiness in relationship. You get to identify who you’d like to investigate–an important situation in your life that brings irritation, despair, loneliness, heart-break. We start with getting a specific moment in time (a peak moment in a relationship) where you felt the sting of hurt. Why were you unhappy because of that exchange? What were you thinking in that moment that brought about your sense of fear, anger, annoyance or sadness? Grace will share her personal experience of exploring relationship by looking at values you hold about relationship, and how to get back to an open mind so you can find your freedom again when it comes to the relationship in question.
Module Two: What Should Be True (That Isn’t) and Using Your Imagination to Turn Your Beliefs Around
Classes #3 and #4 – We often have learned what we believe about relationships of any kind by watching, listening and believing those around us from a very young age. What did you learn was the way people should act, in the relationship you’re investigating? How should people behave? How should you behave, talk, think? Notice where you have a belief-system about relationships that you’re applying to the one you’re experiencing personally. We’ll question these “shoulds” and “shouldn’ts” for clarity and truth…and then, we’ll use our brilliant imagination to turn these thoughts around and wonder what it would be like to not have these solid beliefs in place. You don’t have to drop anything (you couldn’t if you tried) but you can imagine what it’s like to live, breathe, speak, think, and feel the opposite of your stressful thinking. If you’ve had trouble with turning your thoughts around, you’ll get to explore how.
Module Three: Fear, Loss, and Dependency–Questioning the Pain of Avoiding the Future, or Resenting the Past
Classes #5 and #6 – Worrying about the future seems very normal, but when it causes us to do everything we can NOW in order to prevent a terrible thing from happening LATER we can feel trapped, stuck, and small. We’ll look at what we believe is terrible or alarming that comes out of whatever relationship we’re investigating in this class and what we think that way of relating means about us. We’ll take this to inquiry and find out what’s really true for us, and how to proceed into the unknown future with greater courage and confidence…even without knowing what will happen.
Click here to listen to a previous class intro: Grace Relationships Teleclass Introduction
“Every single human being is trying his best. We’re all doing the best we can. But when we believe what we think, we have to live out those thoughts. When there’s chaos in our heads, there’s chaos in our lives. When there’s hurt in our thinking, there’s hurt in our lives. Love thy neighbor as thyself? I always have. When I hated me, I hated you. That’s how it works. If I hate someone, I’m mistaking them for me, and solutions remain hidden.”—-Byron Katie in I Need Your Love, Is It True?
One of the most difficult and pain-producing events in my life was the end of my marriage. I found myself trying many strategies in order to cope. I felt tense, nervous, and I’d make plans to help myself feel better, and then give up. I felt rotten about myself, most of all. Stressful beliefs can be present in strained friendships, volatile relationships with family members, people you don’t like with whom you work. When I was going through divorce, my behavior looked like this:
- I decided to search again desperately for Mr. Right while trying not to show I was desperate, so that I could find someone new for financial and emotional security
- I got into an extremely intense, volatile, high maintenance relationship that distracted me from my broken heart (and taught me tons about love and acceptance, it turned out)
- I blamed my ex, I listed his faults, I bitterly criticized him and I had friends and family who agreed with me
- I stayed home by myself, stopped doing activities I used to love, and I didn’t answer the phone
- I felt broken, berating myself for what I did badly and how I needed to improve or fix myself, and what I should have done sooner to prevent this from happening
- I signed up for every self-improvement or self-help seminar I could find
- I lost sleep, I stayed awake repeating the scenes and conversations I didn’t like
- I felt clingy, needy, desperate, and I hated that about myself and tried to cover it up
- When I walked into my kids’ school I thought all the other parents were saying to themselves “there’s the loser mom who’s getting a divorce
My first step was to write down what I was actually believing to be true. Here is a whole list of stressful beliefs that I had, not only about my divorce process, but also about other important relationships in my life with people I loved:
- she should understand me
- she is unkind to me
- he bosses me around
- he criticizes me too much
- I’m not good enough/he’s not good enough
- I should be more accepting
- I need them to help more
- he shouldn’t have left me
After doing The Work many times with facilitators, I had incredible shifts in my world with all the people I felt angry, scared of, or sad about. During my divorce process my most painful beliefs became a catalyst for an amazing NEW experiences right in the present moment. I turned all the beliefs I had in that time that felt painful around.
My life, instead of looking frightening and difficult, began to genuinely look exciting and easy. Questioning my thinking offered new possibilities.
- I had a fabulous time dating many wonderful and interesting men.
- I learned to appreciate my beautiful teenage daughter and do The Work whenever I felt hurt by her, and saw how much she loves me and what an incredible teacher she is.
- I asked for exactly what I wanted and was able to say YES or NO exactly when I meant it, and I started exploring relationships or friendships in a new, more grown-up interdependent way.
- I found a really annoying colleague to be deeply truthful, doing the best she can, and courageous in her capacity to tell me the truth about what she thinks of me.
- I started dancing again, I pulled out my guitar, I went to parties, whether partnered or not, and realized that I AM THE ONE I’VE BEEN WAITING FOR!
“What you believe is all you can project out, as long as you believe it. After you question it, you cannot project out what you don’t believe any longer, so your whole world changes—when mind changes, world changes. And the next time a stressful thought appears, you many not experience stress around it. You many even experience laughter. After today, if you ever believe the thought “I’m unlovable,” you may just burst out laughing because you know what’s also true: You’re very lovable. And if someone says, “You’re unlovable,” you might think, “Isn’t that interesting, I used to think that too,” rather than get angry at them, because you’ve realized the truth for yourself.”—Byron Katie in Who Would You Be Without Your Story?
Relationship Hell To Heaven Telecourse is offered at least once year and always being updated and improved. You can join from anywhere in the world via phone or your computer. Get on the Grace Notes list to be informed of the next session! Or write firstname.lastname@example.org to ask me.