“A healthy relationship is a feast of affection/giving for both people; not one receiving crumbs and trying to convince themselves it’s enough.” - ShannonThomas
I had a lovely chat with my mentor, George Pransky, on this week’s rerun of Insightful Conversations. Before meeting Sydney Banks back in 1976, George was a successful psychotherapist working in the Bay area. George and his business partner and colleague John Enright had heard about this enlightened man up in Canada who profoundly affected the people who came and listened to him speak. People from all walks of life were experiencing dramatic shifts for the better. People who were stressed out and depressed became happier and more relaxed. People whose relationships were on the brink of divorce were falling back in love with each other.
Curious to know what this enlightened man’s methodology was, George decided to pay Syd a visit on Salt Spring Island. After spending a couple of days with Syd, George still couldn’t figure out what technique he was using, but he knew he had been deeply affected by this kind and gentle man. He was also struck by how many happy, beaming couples were also attending Syd’s talks. Couples who had been together for many years genuinely appeared to be in love with each other. Given that George and Linda were going through a hard time in their marriage, this piqued George’s curiosity.
Once he returned home, George was excited to share his experience with Linda. Even though they had discussed separating, they decided to give their marriage one last try and go and visit Syd together. George recalls their relationship changing overnight. Once they met Syd, both George and Linda regained hope that they could once again experience the love they had shared at the beginning of their relationship. The rest is history. George and Linda have now been happily married for over forty years. Since that time, they have helped hundreds of couples teetering on the edge of disaster reclaim the love that originally brought them together. George shares his years of experience and wealth of knowledge in his book The Relationship Handbook, a simple guide to satisfying relationships.
In the Relationship Handbook, George says that we can be in a relationship with anyone if we understand the Principles behind our experience of life. I would agree with George. Understanding the Principles can help us achieve the love, harmony, and fulfillment we seek in our relationships. They can also be pivotal in helping couples who feel they have fallen out of love with their partners or have drifted apart or have nothing in common regain the love that initially brought them together.
When we understand that we live in the feeling of our thinking; we stop blaming our partners for how we feel. When we understand the Inside Out nature of life, and we acknowledge that no one can make us feel a certain way, we stop blaming our partners for how we feel. When we understand that we each live in a separate thought-created reality, we stop blaming our partners for how we feel. Finally, when we resist the temptation to label our partners and see them through fresh eyes, the newness and excitement of the relationship is maintained.
Instead of trying to change our partners to make ourselves feel better when we are in a low mood, we accept them as they are. We understand that our state of mind will change just like the weather, and we will once again return to our innate well-being and see our partners through loving eyes. Goodwill and respect are the foundation of a healthy relationship. It is like a bank account. The more you deposit goodwill and respect into the account, the healthier our relationships become.
I want to clarify, given my personal experience with Narcissistic Abuse and the fact that most of my work is with people who have suffered from Codependency and Narcissistic Abuse, it takes more than understanding the 3 Principles to make a relationship successful. Both partners need to show up with goodwill and positive regard for each other. If one of the parties engages in abusive behavior and feels that there is no need to alter that behavior, then the relationship is doomed to fail. Relationships are a two-way street. Both parties need to be committed and invested to achieve a loving and harmonious relationship.
Having said that I have witnessed miracles happen when couples view their relationship through the lens of the Principles. You only have to look at how many first-generation 3 Principles teachers are still happy and content in their long-term relationships. It is evident that the Principles have helped support them in maintaining their healthy, loving relationships.
With love and appreciation, Del💕