brene brown on relationships

4 Steps to Recovering Your Loving Self: We Bring Our Own Issues

Nothing kills intimacy in a relationship like disagreements, misunderstandings, and disconnects.

We’ve been around the block. We’ve got a few relationships under our belts. And here we are. Working on building a relationship again. And everything feels nice. We’re both working hard to be together, to be clear in our communications, and to take responsibility for our own disconnects, misfires, and issues. We’ve all got ’em.

So, here’s how it works with me.

When I’m triggered by something said or done, I try to own my side of what’s going on. I may need to be mad. I may need to go away for a short period and process what’s happening for me. BUT, and here’s the big one, I am taking responsibility to RETURN. And upon my return, I am going to OWN it. And that looks like this.

  • I’m sorry.
  • That was my stuff, not your stuff.
  • I can separate those emotions better now, and I commit to being present with you. I’ve come back.
  • I will do what I need to do so this doesn’t keep interfering with our relationship.

Easy. Brene Brown gave us the model for repair. Both partners have to commit to owning their issues. Especially the ones that are not related to the present moment relationship. And here’s the harder part, both partners have to be willing to return and ask for the repair.

These little upsets can set a resonance for the relationship.

If the disruptions keep happening and being unattended to… And if it’s happening more for one partner than the other… Well, someone needs to take responsibility to take some of their stuff and work on it outside the relationship. If one partner is always doing the repair and rebuilding, while the other partner is traveling along after a series of disconnects like “there’s no problem.” Well, that might be your problem right there.

We’ve all got issues. Let’s own them. Let’s take those bastards out and flog them until they no longer flog and confuse us. Own your issues.

When they come up in your present relationship:

  • Stop.
  • Sort through your feelings on your own.
  • Return.
  • Apologize.
  • Repair.
  • Take action towards harnessing those bad boys.

Bask in the present moment with your lover. And fight like hell when distortions and disconnections happen. Then come back to the center first as individuals. Then come back together as a couple. You can both take responsibility for the disruptions and you both take responsibility for your own recovery and repair. Then keep getting it on in the present moment of love.


John McElhenney – life coach austin texas
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I am a relationship coach and a dating coach. I coach women in small groups as well as individual 1 x 1 zoom calls. If you have questions about life coaching I am happy to talk to you. Please schedule a phone call HERE.

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