Relationship Coaching News
Copyright 2006 by Relationship Coaching Institute. All rights reserved. Feel free to share with others as long as our contact information and authorship is included. U.S. Library of Congress ISSN#1530-3055.
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Would you like to earn income while you sleep? Passive income is revenue you earn without your direct involvement. You can vacation in the Bahamas and your business continues to maintain it's cash flow!
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In REPTILES IN LOVE Ferguson explains how to recognize and prevent fights that escalate to mutually self-destructive behavior and tells couples how to achieve physical and emotional safety in conflict, sort out real from unreal issues, and identify and overcome the more primitive aspects of our nature.
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Launching November 1st!
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Jeff and David have been hard at work these past few months creating affordable "kits" to give you the information and tools you need to get clients and build your ideal practice.
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Learn how to coach singles, couples, and develop a successful Relationship Coaching practice, taught by RCI founder David Steele and his teaching staff.
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For the one year anniversary of the publication of Conscious Dating: Finding the Love of your Life in Today's World on February 14, 2007 (Valentine's Day) we'll announce the results of our first annual- Conscious Dating Success Story of the Year Contest.
We're awarding an iPod loaded with 20 of our best Conscious Relationship Audio Programs ($369.00 value) to-
This means that if you know someone who could benefit from reading Conscious Dating, or someone who has read it and has a great success story, YOU can also win by referring them!
Submissions will be judged by the staff of Relationship Coaching Institute. To be eligible entrants must certify that they have read the Conscious Dating book. Current and past members and staff of Relationship Coaching Institute are not eligible to enter this contest. All submissions become property of Relationship Coaching Institute and by entering this contest entrants grant us permission to publish their story online and in print.
- Do you have a success story to share? Go immediately to www.consciousdating.com/contest.htm
- Know anyone with a success story to share? Please forward this announcement to them!
- Know a single who hasn't read Conscious Dating and is a success story in the making? With 6 months to go there is plenty of time to learn and apply the principles of Conscious Dating. Please send them to www.consciousdating.com
Let the contest begin!
The following professionals recently joined our ranks:
By Linda Marshall, RCI Director of Couples Programs
Why are we so strongly attracted to, and feel such chemistry with certain people? "Chemistry" is involuntary and unconscious, influenced by our biology, genetics, and emotions. A strong emotional force at work when you are attracted to someone is your attraction to someone who is familiar.
Early in a relationship when a couple is infatuated with each other, they see only their similarities and often say, "I feel as though I've known you all my life." And the truth is, in some ways you have.
Even though you may be determined not to, you will unconsciously be drawn to someone who is like significant people from your past (parents, grandparents, childhood caretakers, siblings, teachers, etc.) or someone who recreates for you the experience you had with these significant people. Author, Harville Hendrix, Ph.D., calls this unconscious partner choice the "imago," the Latin word for image.
Without knowing it, we are attracted to certain positive and negative personality traits that represent our image of the perfect partner for us. The personality traits of the significant people from our past and what we experienced with them is familiar. And what we are familiar with we are also comfortable with, even if we didn't like it. As a result, we will often repeat unproductive patterns from the past and experience the pain of failed relationships.
OPPOSITES WILL ATTRACT
We come into the world whole and complete, fully alive and curious about our new world. We have the capacity to give and receive love. We are open and accepting. And then Life happens to us.
Even the best of parents cannot meet all of our needs perfectly. Social experiences outside of our home and family also tend to put a damper on our full aliveness. And the way human beings deal with unmet needs is to build a wall of protection around our feelings in order to anesthetize the hurt. We begin to shut down our full aliveness. The more painful the experiences, the thicker the wall. We can't choose which feelings to have and which to turn off, so if we build too thick a wall, we eventually become numb even to our happiness and joy.
To survive emotionally we compensate by cutting off some of our capacities and emphasizing others. If feelings are painful, we will deaden them. If thinking is valued and encouraged, we will develop that capacity If we are discouraged from being active, we will learn to behave in acceptably quiet and demure ways. If we are shamed for enjoying our senses, we will shut down our sensuality. When we feel threatened, some of us will learn to express ourselves strongly and others will have a tendency to get quiet or withdraw.
What is very interesting is that we are usually attracted to someone who was hurt to the same degree that we were, at about the same age, and who developed opposite character traits and capacities from those we developed. If we have shut down our feeling self, we'll be attracted to a feeler. And feelers will be attracted to thinkers. If we turned off our sensuality, we'll be attracted to someone who possesses it. If we learned to be quiet, we'll be attracted to someone who is active. Expressive folks tend to be attracted to quiet folks and quiet folks tend to prefer someone who is expressive.
In our attractions, we are trying to recapture the parts of ourselves that we shut down. We are trying to get our needs met and return to our original state of wholeness and completion.
FALLING IN LOVE VS. FALLING IN NEED
This process of coping and adapting emotionally to early hurts happens to all of us to one degree or another. But at some level we never forget how fully alive we once were. Nothing fuels this longing quite so much as falling in love with someone.though unbeknownst to us, we are really falling in "need."
We begin to fantasize about how this "perfect person" is going to meet all of our needs at last. And just as the significant people in our past failed us, our idealized partner is destined to do the same. Hence the repeat of past unproductive patterns and the pain of failed relationships.
THE LOVE DRUG
In the early stage of a relationship, we are often blinded to reality because of a hormone called phenylethylamine (PEA for short) which acts as a "love drug" stimulating feelings of euphoria which results in our being blinded to unattractive characteristics and behaviors (hence the saying "love is blind").
This altered state of infatuation supresses the part of our brain designed to warn and protect us from danger. We put our best foot forward, not just to impress, but because it is a magical time in our life when we are transformed into our best and most powerful selves.
FROM INFATUATION TO POWER STRUGGLE
It seems like it would be wonderful if this would last forever. And when you are under the influence of the love drug, you think it will. However, when you become a couple, the love drug begins its decline. As the danger-alerting area of your brain awakens from its slumber, what you begin to see is how differently this person sees the world and does things. These differences are interpreted by your brain as dangerous because they are reminders of some of your most uncomfortable, unpleasant, and hurtful experiences from your past.
At this point, you will each most likely try to get the other to do and see things your way and you each will, of course, resist. We call this the "Power Struggle" stage. You will each find your most unattractive selves emerging once again with all your protective strategies in full force as you experience yourself under attack. And you will each be wondering, "What happened?!?"
This is a most disorienting time, and it is normal. The intensity with which you experience this post-infatuation stage is directly related to how unsatisfactory your early significant relationships and experiences. You will think it is because of your partner's personality and behavior. It is really because of how you interpret your partner's personality and behavior and the intensity with which you experienced hurt in your past relationships.
THE GOOD NEWS
There is good news to this seemingly bad news development. A couple can experience extraordinary bliss with each other if they are willing to work through the challenges of the power struggle stage. But we are getting ahead of ourselves here.
This information may be a relief if you've experienced the perplexing demise of a relationship. As your high hopes and dreams shatter, you may wonder what is wrong with you. We are here to tell you that there may be nothing wrong with you. You just have never been shown how to get through this stage. It isn't taught in schools, is rarely written about in popular magazines, and parents, entertainers, and peers don't model it. There are very few places to gain this information and learn, practice, and master relationship skills.
FROM CHEMISTRY TO CONSCIOUS MATING
When you find yourself in a pre-committed relationship you have a better chance of remaining conscious if you understand how your past relationships impact your emotional attractions and how the "love drug" is affecting your perceptions and behavior. Knowing this, you are better equipped to be as objective as possible about whether this relationship is a good long-term choice for you.
While it isn't possible or even desirable to avoid attracting someone who recreates hurtful experiences from your past, you have the opportunity to choose someone who is emotionally mature enough to learn about this dynamic and work with you through the power struggle to a lifetime of relationship bliss together.
© 2006 Relationship Coaching Institute– All rights reserved.
Linda Marshall, M.Div., lives in Centerville, Ohio and is Director of Couples Programs for Relationship Coaching Institute as well as in private practice as a relationship coach specializing in working with couples, both over the telephone and in person.
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