The same is true for your relationship. If you are not moving closer as partners, you are moving apart. There is no pause button. So, where do you want to go in your relationship?
You are within a few steps of peace, or oneness, with yourself and your partner (plus the planet). If peace seems to elude you, it is because you are stuck en route.
When you see where you are, you can navigate in the right direction; and when you see how close you are to peace, you will want to press on.
Five Steps to Peace
1. P-retending to Be What You Are Not
2. E-goic Striving
3. A-dmitting Dissonance and Confusion
4. C-oming Clean
5. E-xperiencing Ecstasy and Oneness
You Are Here … if you:
Step 1 — Pretending to Be What You Are Not
•Simply conform to what’s expected
•Are pre-occupied with meeting your needs for survival
•Have resorted to merely escaping the pain of rejection
Step 2 — Egoic Striving
•Strive for more to prove your worth
•Worry about how others judge you
•Find excuses to take care of others, rather than yourself
Step 3 — Admitting Dissonance and Confusion
•Are confused about who you are
•Realize you feel disconnected
•See the humor in sitting down with a carton of ice cream
Step 4 — Coming Clean
•Choose to be your true self, regardless of
•Let go of control and risk “failure”
•Stop trying to be right and make others wrong
Step 5 — Experiencing Ecstasy and Oneness
•Feel radiant instead of flawed; look radiant instead of
•Feel connected instead of isolated or used
•Are virtually free of fear, stress, and negative emotion
Pretending to Be What You Are Not: Fear and your survival instinct kicked in when Mommy and Daddy wanted you to be something you weren’t naturally — even if it was just quiet—and the charade to win approval began. It was propelled by religion, society, peers and, yes, the pursuit of romance; and it has taken on a life of its own. Yours!
Egoic Striving: You are doing your damnedest to prove that you are worthy of love. But regardless of how many goals you reach trying to prove your worth with your currency of choice — whether it’s money, looks, accomplishment, sexuality, or indifference — the gratification is temporary.
Admitting Dissonance and Confusion: You are so motivated to achieve consonance that you have justified your dissonant actions every step of the way, almost convincing yourself that the façade is you. But you are weary of playing the role of somebody else in your own life.
Coming Clean: This is where you courageously dismantle the façade, one piece at a time, to reveal your authentic self and align with it, which is the only way to get self-esteem. You finally know with certainty that you are lovable.
Experiencing Ecstasy and Oneness: Heaven, you’re home. You now have unshakable peace, because it is not contingent on anybody stroking your ego, being right, being accepted, or even survival. It never was, which is why peace eluded you.
PEACE is freedom from the hell of believing and living a lie. It is living the truth of who you are, instead. It’s heaven!
Repeating the steps isn’t failure, though; particularly if you process another layer of pretense and resist the temptation to rebuild the defensive wall you have already dismantled. Ultimately, you learn to trust the cycle, yourself, and your partner enough to move through it with anticipation and joy.