being yourself in relationships, healthy relationships, healthy self-love, mindfulness in romantic relationships, practicing mindfulness, reset your relationship filters, transforming dysfunctional relationships
Set the filter. Swipe left. Move on once the passion is over. Does this sound like your love life or the romantic experiences of someone you know?
In February, we’ll look at creating and maintaining all kinds of healthy relationships. The series title, Your Naked Soul, was inspired by Charlie Chaplin. Chaplin wrote to his daughter, Geraldine, “Your naked body should only belong to those who fall in love with your naked soul.”
Are our exaggerated and sometimes irrational expectations part of the reason relationships fail? Comic Azis Ansari thinks so. He observes, “It’s easy to find and get the best, so why not? If you are in a big city or on an online-dating site, you are now comparing your potential partners not just to other potential partners, but rather to an idealized person to whom no one could measure up.”
As part of his research writing Modern Love with sociologist Eric Klineberg, Ansari met Derek, who admitted he was a “pretty boring guy”. Yet after one glance at a beautiful girl’s favorite sports team, Derek “…simply clicked an X on a web-browser tab and deleted her without thinking twice.”
Filters aren’t limited to online dating. Humans of New York profiled a man who changed his perspective about the staff at his “just for now” job. His self-imposed isolation slowly gave way to creating deep connections. Here’s his story:
“I’m a Customer Engagement Program Operations Director with a pharmaceutical company. I started working there twenty years ago. At the time, it was just a temporary position. I was writing standard operation procedures to ensure FDA compliance. It was boring and technical, but I was trying to become a theater director and needed the extra income. I remember looking at my co-workers and thinking, “I’m not one of them. I’m just here to make money and leave.”
But I moved to a full-time position after my daughter was born. I didn’t want her to be at the mercy of me wanting to become an artist. Soon I no longer saw myself as different than my co-workers. The sense of “other” disappeared. I realized that nobody saw themselves primarily as an employee at a pharmaceutical company.
A few years ago, the company gave us a survey to test our morale. One of the questions was: “Do you have a best friend at work?” Everyone laughed at that question. But I do have a best friend at work. His office is down the hall, and we’ve seen each other every day for ten years. And that does make a big difference in my life.”
Whether you’re looking for a new romance, have a current partner, or just want friendships to improve in this month of love, take a look at your beliefs and ask if they might be blocking your Good. Could adjusting your filters transform your interactions? Imagine reinventing your relationships to align with your 2016 intentions of joy, authenticity or healing.
You never know how changing your version of “perfect” this week may have a ripple effect. Your One may be closer than you think.