Change Your Psychological Love Lives & Heal Your Relationship
If you’re in a love relationship and experiencing repeating relationship problems, this article will outline a highly effective and reliable way of making permanent improvements in your relationship. First, remember that what you experience in your love life is determined by your psychological love life, the “blueprint” you have in the back of your mind that determines what you’ll experience in your love life. Of course, in a couple, there are always two psychological love lives interacting with each other.
Every psychological love life consists of the following three things: 1) what you’ve experienced in all your relationships involving the emotion of love starting from your birth; 2) what you’ve learned from those relationship experiences, healthy or unhealthy, and; 3) aftereffects or ways of coping, if the relationship experiences you’ve had were unhealthy. For most of us, our psychological love lives are unconscious. Making it conscious, is the only way of making permanent changes in what we will inevitably experience in our love lives.
The easiest and most effective way of changing your psychological love life is to unlearn what you’ve learned about love relationships. I developed a simple and effective way of doing this I call the Unlearning Method. Since we are talking about making changes in both psychological love lives as a couple, step 1 is to identify your own and each other’s psychological love lives. One important clue is to pay close attention to what has been repeating in your love life experience individually and together. For example, imagine as a couple, one person is feeling deprived and the other person is keeping a distance. This could mean that both persons were exposed to neglect in their separate lives and are now replicating neglect as a couple with each other. Remember, the relationship experiences you’ve had growing up taught you things (unbeknownst to you) about love relationships. They teach you what to do in a love relationship, and/or what to expect your partner to do in a love relationship with you.
Once you’ve figured out what the unhealthy relationship experience is that the both of you are replicating in your relationship together, step 2 involves challenging and disrupting the automatic nature of the replication. Communicate directly about how each of you is helping to recreate the unhealthy experience, without blaming each other. Once you’ve applied an awareness of the problem as something both of you openly share and challenge together, you’ll begin to stop and unlearn the unhealthy repetitive relationship experiences that have been in control of your relationship.
Now that the learned, unhealthy, jointly created relationship experience has been disrupted, you are both ready for step 3, which involves creating together a better and healthier way of relating to each other that is the “opposite” of what you have been replicating with each other. Let’s continue with the previous example, if together with your love partner you realize that both of you have been replicating neglect in your love relationship, you would agree to practice the opposite of neglect which is to practice mutual devotion in the relationship. Now you consciously know what is needed to counteract the relationship experience you were unconsciously creating with each other.
Knowing does not necessarily make it easy to change what we are doing with each other. But it does provide a “road map” to make the kind of mutual change that will stop the replication of unhealthy experiences and permanently improve how you relate to each other.
For a more detailed overview of this psychological approach to making permanent changes in your love lives as a single person or in a couple, check out my easy to read guidebook entitled – Learn to Love: Guide to Healing Your Disappointing Love Life by Thomas Jordan, Ph.D.
Comments are welcome. Tell me about your love life experience.
Dr. Thomas Jordan