Imagine that you are driving on a crooked, dirt road on your way to “paradise”. There are potholes to avoid, large rocks to go around and even a fallen tree trunk across the dirt road. It requires effort, concentration, and good problem solving skills to get to where you want to go. The GPS is of no help because you are on the right road, but there are obstacles. This scenario is also true for the road map of love. You may be on the right road with the right partner, but there are obstacles to overcome.
Some of the obstacles that impact relationships are fear, ego, need to be right, superior and inferior roles, criticism and defensive styles of communication, lack of conflict repair, inability to cope with stress, alcohol and drug use, and undiagnosed and untreated illnesses like anxiety and depression. Take control of your relationship by focusing on what you can control….YOURSELF!
Here are some questions to ask yourself to begin your journey to solve for the obstacles in your relationship:
- “ On a scale from 1-10 (1low, 10 high), how confident are you that you can have the kind of relationship that you want to have?” (This question assesses your perceived ability to make this happen in your life.)
- How did you decide upon that number? (This question identifies the obstacles in your way.)
- How can you go from where you are, to further up the scale two points? (This question helps you to identify your goals)
- What is do-able this week? (This question helps you to set sub-goals and move yourself forward.)
- Evaluate your progress. (This process allows you to celebrate your small wins, track your progress and return to question 1 to solve the next obstacle.)
- How confident are you that you will remain married? 7.
- How did you select 7? I really want to stay married, but we fight all of the time and it is very stressful.
- How could you go from a 7 to a 9 with your confidence to stay married. I need less fighting time and more
positive time in my relationship.
- What is doable this week for you to lessen fighting time and move towards marriage?
- I could begin to control my temper by giving myself a time out when I am too emotionally flooded.