The four cornerstones of any healthy, nourishing and intimate relationship are Respect, Trust, Acceptance (unconditional) and Understanding must be firmly in place. However, they are not merely academic concepts and can never be taken for granted. I believe that in order for you to create relationships in which they are firmly in place, you have to have first-hand experience of what each of them, as well as their opposites feel like.
I recommend an interactive process with a prompt for you to initiate in any of your significant relationships, whether you’re married, are lovers, friend, parents, children, siblings, i.e., comparing notes and ample space for each person to respond to each prompt.
What does respect and disrespect feel like? Gives examples of experiences you’ve had when you’ve felt respected and disrespected.
What does trusting and mistrust feel like? Give examples of times, experiences and people you are, or have been, in relationships with when you felt trusting and when you felt mistrust.
What does acceptance (unconditional) and non-acceptance (conditional) feel like? Give examples of times and relationships in which you felt unconditionally accepted and those you don’t feel accepted for who they are or are only (conditionally) accepted.
What does understanding feel like, when you feel understood and that you understand; and what is it like for you to not be understood or misunderstood, and not understand? Reply to this email and provide examples of when you felt understood and when you felt you weren’t understood or understanding.
Yes. Rely on the connections you make and intimacy you create for sustenance!
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