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Do You Make These 5 Relationship-Wrecking Mistakes? Mistake two.
"The 5 Heart-Breaking, Relationship-Wrecking Communication Mistakes"
How to Identify, Understand and, Most Importantly, Avoid Them!
Mistake #2, Story Telling
Before we take a look at the second mistake of relationship communication, I want to ask if you've had the time to look at the article on my website, "The 4 Steps of the Language of Peace." It outlines the basic steps of the communication method that Paul and I teach.
This method is a form of Nonviolent Communication (developed my Marshall Rosenberg, www.cnvc.org ) that helps anybody in almost any situation stay connected with the other person. If you haven't had a chance to look at the article, click here: http://www.harmonicinteractions.com/FourSteps.htm.
The last section of the Special Report discussed the first most common mistake in communication: Case Building.
Now let's look at the second most common communication mistake: Story Telling . This is when you tell yourself a story about an observation -- and then believe it.
You see, the mind is a Meaning Making Machine – no matter what event we observe, the mind will make up a meaning around it.
At the high school where I used to teach, my students would spend endless hours in turmoil and despair because of the way someone looked at them when they entered the room. All sorts of stories were created: “She looked at me weird. She's stuck up and she doesn't like me. She's a bitch.”
I suggested to my students that they always check out their stories. The other person would either say there was a problem, or they'd probably look a little baffled and say there wasn't. Either way, the student would know where they stood and could either go on with their school work, or take care of the friendship problem. If they didn't check, they would spend the rest of the day worrying and not getting ANY school work done -- and probably for absolutely nothing.
This one technique is what keeps my relationship with my beloved, Paul, as close and intimate as it is. We almost always check out our stories with each other so that nothing builds up between us. It's not easy, and it's often embarrassing, but it's totally worthwhile.
When you're checking on a story, always give the observation that started the story in your mind. Then politely ask if it's true.
You can ask your partner, “Honey, you've come home late from work three nights in a row now. I'm telling myself a story that you don't care about me any more. Is that true?”
WARNING: always include the word ‘story' in your question! Without it, the question sounds like an accusation: “You've come home late three nights in a row. You don't care about me any more!” Don't do it!! That one will only cause your partner to feel offended, wronged, and in need of defending him/her self.
What happens, men, when your beloved says she doesn't want to make love to you? The stories you make up in your mind might be: “She doesn't find me attractive any more; this is the beginning of the end of the relationship; if only I knew the 10th secret to amazing love making, then she'd want to sleep with me.”
What, then, do you whisper to your beloved in bed? “You're not interested in me any more, are you?” Look out! This needs to be phrased as a question. It should be about you and your story. Otherwise, it's going to sound like an attack. The only possible response for your beloved will be to defend herself, or offend you (the best defensive is a good offense).
Instead, say, “When you come to bed, turn over and don't want to make love to me, I tell myself the story that you don't find me handsome anymore. Is that true?”
Of course, you're setting yourself up to find out the truth. If you can't stand intimacy, don't ask these questions! Only ask them if you do want intimacy, openness and honesty in your relationship. If you want understanding and compassion and the best that life can offer, then ask away.
“The unexamined story is experienced as reality.” Paul Sterling, my partner, explains that if you don't check out a story's validity, all future behavior will be based on the story as though it were true. And that's really scary. You could end up destroying your own relationship. You might even leave or turn away a loved one for what you only thought was real.
Learning and practicing The Language of Peace is a powerful and effective way to avoid all of these mistakes and to make sure that your relationships are connected and compassionate. And it works in all types of situations –the bedroom, home, work, school, jail, court rooms . . . you name it.
Not understanding these mistakes can cost you the love of the people most important to you. We've worked with parents who haven't talked to their grown kids for years over a misunderstanding – siblings who no longer talk after a disagreement – and of course divorcees... whose relationships didn't need to end, but who didn't have the communication tools to make it through.
This is not just a ‘little' report. This can help you avoid some of the most painful, intimacy- destroying, relationship-wrecking communication mistakes around (I know – I've tried all of them.)
If you would like the one hour AUDIO INTERVIEW of Paul & Kristin teaching how to identify and avoid these mistakes, along with a BONUS INTERVIEW recording of "THE SIMPLE, POWERFUL 4-STEPS TO INCREASED LOVE AND UNDERSTANDING" about the Language of Peace Communication Method, click on the button below. These live recorded interviews are only .95.
About the Author: Paul & Kristin own teach The Relationship Magic Series including ‘The 4 Simple Steps To Heart-Opening- Intimacy and Understanding’ ‘The 5 Relationship-Wrecking Communication Mistakes’ ‘The Seven Secret Keys To Creating a Relationship Oasis’ - To get your own free copy of their special report 'The 5 Mistakes' go to http://www.magicRelationship.com/freeaccess