The Courage To Stay

Let’s face it.  We live in a consumer culture.  At first it started with the material world, and unfortunately, this habit of disposable goods has leaked into the realm of relationships.

I see people leave their partners and here are some of the reasons.

“I’m just not in love with him.”

“We just don’t communicate well.”

“I couldn’t be there anymore.”

It is time for tough love:  THESE ARE NOT REASONS TO LEAVE.  The above are excuses tied to our culture’s WORSHIP of our emotions and valuing how we feel more than anything else.

Don’t get me wrong: feelings are great, however, they change in a split second!  And they can be altered, all too easily, by our obsessive thinking.  In other words they are not reliable!

To put it another way: our egos are constantly collecting evidence to support whatever idea will keep it “safe” in the moment.  Ego is safe when there is no growth, no change, no risk.

When we take a commitment, it is just that, a commitment to stay the course no matter what.  I love the phrase “It is called a commitment, not a convenience.”  This is hard to swallow for a culture that is used to disposing of things when we are displeased with them.

Love is a Decision

What about looking inside instead of blaming the other person?  When there is something wrong, a disturbance in the force, we always have the opportunity to show up in a new way.  We can always ask ourselves, “What am I contributing to this situation?  Am I making things worse simply by taking what they are doing personally?  How can I show up in love and commitment?”

In no way do I imply that one should endure abuse of any nature.  I do suggest that our relationships have become too easy to throw away.  This is so sad, because real intimacy comes from weathering storms together and transcending obstacles in a team spirit.

Yogi Bhajan said that without commitment, there was no chance for happiness.  What that means to me is: if I don’t commit to something, I am caught suffering in the endless cycle of “should I or shouldn’t I?” which is mental gymnastics that I do not want to play anymore.

We aren’t trained to stay committed.  We aren’t trained to approach problems—even with each other—from a team spirit.  It isn’t easy, but it is possible.

Your Assignment:

Reflect on times that you really committed to something and what that did for you, your self-esteem, your personal growth.  Are you willing to stay the course even though it may be uncomfortable?  Are you willing to allow love to be a decision rather than an emotion?

Do you want training in how to apporach your problems from a team spirit?  Call us to get started 415-779-4267.


4 Responses to “The Courage To Stay”
  1. Dale says:

    You and your hubby are extremely wise. These are the ideas that we’re working to share with our own children after 25 years of our own marriage. Commitment. It’s definitely learned…how could I be in a family with very little divorce and loooonnnnngg marriages? My sister has been married almost 45 years and started this at 18 years old. I get madder thank ‘heck’ at my hubby, but he will ALWAYS be there for me. Thanks, Anna! Keep up the good messages!

  2. Ann Marie says:

    This post means a lot to me. I struggle so with “staying”, though I must admit, I’ve probably made the right choice in leaving the relationships I have been in. Part of me has knew from the beginning that there was a red flag (or a couple of yellow ones) that I chose to ignore.
    That said, this post contains much wisdom…and I will mark it as a favorite and refer to it often.
    Thank you.

  3. This is a great post, and one that means a lot to me. My husband had a psychotic breakdown two years ago, and I struggled with whether to stay or not for a few months before coming to terms with the fact that I would never respect myself again if I walked away just because he’d become ill. We are fortunate that he’s recovered completely, and we have a better relationship today than we did before his breakdown. (I actually just wrote a blog post about this and would love to hear what you think if you have a chance to stop by:

  4. Patrice says:

    Thank you for this. Its really hard to stay while trying to resolve a major issue.

    Even harder when you feel that it may not turn out as hoped but i’m trying hard to trust that the Universe will work things out for the best.

    Please do more posts on this topic if you don’t mind :)

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