A Beginner’s Mind in Love: When Things Change, Part 3

If you’ve been with me for a few weeks, you’ll know that I’ve been really pondering this question of what to do when things change in your relationship. This theme has been constant for me after the honeymoon phase was over in my marriage, and it’s been gaining speed in my mind. I now know that this urgency was a clue that a shift– learning– was happening.

Some things to note:

1- None of the individual ideas are original. What is original is how I’m piecing them together and applying them to make sense of love.

2- I don’t claim have it all together. I’m learning myself and sharing with you as it’s revealed to me. We’re all in it together!

2- Though this seems to be centered on romantic relationships, it is not limited to that. This also involves your relationship with Self, friends, family, your community, etc.

So with all that said, here’s the next part:

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Some of you all my know that I have strong Buddhist leanings. One principle that has been showing up over and over in my thoughts is the principle of a beginner’s mind, or shoshin. In short, it’s the idea that you relate to a thing or person as if you’ve never seen it before. Your wonderment is pure. There is no judgement. You are open to learning and receiving. With a beginner’s mind, you are able to separate what is from the story you’ve created about it.

In love, we often lose that beginner’s mind once the honeymoon is over and the months (years) pass. Cultivating a beginner’s mind is part of what we must do to love and see the Self in our partners.

These are some questions we can ask ourselves to uncover which lens we are looking at our selves and partners with:

  • What are the actions that I am seeing and the words that I’m hearing?
  • What am I rationalizing it as? What value/meaning/interpretation am I adding to what I’m seeing?
  • What am I fearing about what I see?
  • What am I celebrating in what I see?
  • What about what I’m seeing is also true about me? My life? My actions and choices? People I know?
  • If I let go of what I’m adding, what else could be the possibility?

I don’t have any answers for what to do when you have answers to these questions, but I’m willing to bet that the process of evaluating your thought process is enough to start the ball rolling to reconnecting with your Self and your partner.

I can’t wait to hear your thoughts and responses!

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Part 1- When Things Change

Part 2- Your Self in Love

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