The important relationships in our lives are born out of love and compassion; qualities of our higher self. Unfortunately, our relationships with others are too often controlled by the narcissistic primitive ego of our inner-child; a part of us that is primarily focused on our own needs. To nurture a loving relationship with others means that we have to learn to own our own feelings, be willing to intentionally grow in self-awareness, and learn to manifest loving behaviors that focus on the needs of the other person. Only then will we be capable of manifesting an authentic presence that nurtures those we love.
Everyone wants to experience happiness and kindness in their relationships with others. We begin our marriages happy and in love with our partner. We bring our children into the world and surround them with love and care. We offer kindness and compassion to our friends.
The thought of being unkind or unloving, or uncaring to any of these important people in our lives is unimaginable. And yet, these relationships that began with expectations of love and happiness all too often end in sadness and conflict because of the negative energy produced by unkind behaviors.
As we have talked about in previous articles, the unconscious primitive ego of the inner-child that resides inside each of us is much too narcissistically focused on “self” to worry about the feelings of others. In other words, kindness toward others, or concern about their level of happiness, are not very high priorities for our primitive ego.
The narcissism of the primitive ego would not be a significant problem were it not for the fact that ”virtually every adult human being living today is totally unaware that his or her primitive ego is unconsciously controlling almost all of his or her “adult” behaviors.”
When we combine the narcissism of our unconscious primitive ego, which is controlling our day-to-day behaviors, with the reality that every choice and every behavior that we make consciously or unconsciously create a consequence or an outcome, it is no wonder we so often unknowingly create pain and unhappiness in our relationships.
In other words, if we choose to weave threads of love and kindness into our relationships with others, the consequence will be the creation of a life surrounded by love and kindness. When we choose to weave threads of hurtful narcissistic primitive ego behaviors into our relationships with others, the obvious consequence will be the creation of a life surrounded by unhappiness and unkindness.
We are each fully responsible for the threads that are woven into the fabric of our relationship with others. There are times in all of our relationships when we may not feel loving; especially when we are tired, overwhelmed, not feeling well, or distracted. Therefore it is important to know that the love and compassion, the kindness, that each of us weaves into our relationships with others should never be based on a feeling.
Thus, if you wish to have loving and compassionate relationships with others, then you will need to “intentionally choose” to manifest kind and loving behaviors regardless of how you might be feeling emotionally.
Stated simply, because each of us creates our own life, and the quality of our relationships, one choice, and one behavior at a time, “we” are ultimately responsible for the creation of the world we live in. Blaming others for the consequences of our own behaviors and choices is a good example of our unconscious primitive ego’s narcissism at work; a common form of ignorance based on a lack of self-awareness and self-knowledge. It is like asking the neighbor across the street to take an aspirin because we happen to have a headache.
If we choose to base our behaviors on how we are feeling, we may more often than not choose to bring pain and hurt into our relationship with that person. The real danger to the relationship, however is not the pain and unkindness that we create at that moment; it is the unfortunate reality that unloving and unkind behaviors can quickly become a harmful, addictive habit in any relationship; an addictive habit that is often very difficult to change.
As a counselor in private practice for twenty-five years, the majority of the relationships that came to me for help were searching for ways to heal the pain created by years of unkind behaviors toward one another. Sadly, many of these couples were unable to break the years-long habit of unkindness and recover the love they once shared; the pain of their unkind behaviors toward one another proved simply too overwhelming to overcome.
Because love and kindness are a behaviors, and because the commitment to always “be” loving is the foundation of all healthy and happy relationships, we must always be willing to make the choice to “be” loving toward others; regardless of how we might be feeling at the moment.
To actually “be” loving in our relationships with others means that we must be willing to embrace and practice three important practices.
We must learn to own our own feelings. No one can make us feel anything that is not already inside us. It is human nature to want to blame others for our feelings, but Jesus reminds us that we need to deal with the beam in our own eye before we worry about the spec in our partner’s eye.
Intentional growth in self-awareness. To intentionally manifest kindness and happiness in our relationships with others requires the ability to look inside when life is not going the way we would like it to go. Again, it is human nature to want to blame others, especially those close to us, when things are not going the way we would like. Everyone wants to change the world, but it is a rare person that begins by taking ownership of the problem and works to change him or herself first.
The simple reality that only “we” can create our own lives and we do it one choice at a time. Again, it is human nature to want to blame others for the choices we have made or failed to make. If we want love and compassion woven into the fabric of our relationships with others, then regardless of our childhood, regardless of our environment right now, regardless of how loving or unloving others might be, we must be willing to offer loving and compassionate behaviors to those we choose to be in a relationship with.
The golden threads of these three important practices are beyond the capability of our primitive ego. Only when we are willing to grow in self-awareness and strengthen our observing ego will we find the strength and wisdom to weave these practices into our lives.
The behavioral threads of kindness and love that we weave into the tapestry of our relationships with others are important because we trade, day by day, all the days of our life to accumulate the many threads of love and kindness that we will use in our weaving. If we are successful, our weaving will make the invisible love of the Creator visible, and it will give form to the intangible presence of spirit.