I decided from my last post that it was time for me to create what I thought I wanted. I share this with you because I want you to know life coaches don’t always get it right. In fact, that is why we do the work we do. We know how to Epically Fail! We work really hard on making those thoughts of failures mean something. Let me create for you the scene, rose petals, hotel room, candlelight dinner, a surprise romantic getaway.
All the makings for either an Epic Romp, an Epic Fail, or an Epic Breakthrough.
If you live on the coast you know that this time of year, the salmon come in droves up our rivers, to spawn. I didn’t take this into account, when I was making these surprise arrangements. So my dear husband had no idea when he decided to leave work and head to the river that I had made other plans. Also, I didn’t take into account that people still believe it is summer so the restaurants are full. The romantic EXPENSIVE room with a view had a sliver of a view, no bathtub and more resemblance to a tin can than it did to the romantic getaway I had envisioned. I also did not expect my car to break down, no worry just needed a new battery. Can you see how this romantic night quickly became anything but romantic?
As I was laying there at one in the morning feeling like a failure, trying to get a grip on all my thoughts so that I could create a feeling I wanted, I said:
This has become one of my all time favorite phrases, Fuck It and I Don’t Give A Damn. I am pretty sure there is a blog waiting to be written with one of those titles.So back to my fuck it moment. One of the benefits of being a life coach is that you have your very own life coach with you 24 hours a day. I am laying in bed thinking WE SUCK at romance. This evening has been an Epic Failure. And it is true, we have never done romance well, and honestly we actually have never really dated. We have liked each other, we have loved each other, we have hung out, we have had sex, hence 16 and pregnant, we have got married, but we have never dated.
Every attempt we make at romance ends with me in tears or yelling, and / or him in tears and yelling. And all of a sudden I thought, why do we keep doing this? Why are we trying to be something we are not? So the example of me trying to fix the car came to mind. I can’t do it; I suck at fixing a car. I can help you fix your life, I am a GREAT Life Coach but I am a terrible mechanic you don’t want me near your car.
So what are we amazing at?
We are amazing at raising children, at compromise, being partners, at sex, we know how to stay together when most people give up, we are best friends. We just epically suck at romance. We can have a great time together, send us on a business trip, or vacation and we will rock it like no one’s business, just don’t label it romantic. He does his thing, I do my thing and we come together and fireworks go off.
As I was laying in that fetal position, asking myself what the hell are we doing wrong, I realized we were trying to be mechanics. We aren’t mechanics and we keep trying to be mechanics. What would happen if we just acknowledge that we aren’t good at romance and that is okay. We don’t’ have to be Epic and Amazing at everything! We are Epic and Amazing at a lot of things. So what if we suck at romance? My other favorite phrase: SO WHAT!!!
I tell my clients that at times I can sound blunt and what I may say may not sound compassionate but understand that if you are using your thoughts as a weapon against yourself I am going to tell you. If you were standing in front of me with a knife and multiple stab wounds crying I don’t know why this hurts, I don’t’ know why I am in pain. The most compassionate thing I can do is tell you to give me the god damn knife. Stop stabbing yourself and you will feel better. Saying oh I see you have a shiny bloody knife there in your hand, do you think you should maybe put it down, is not helpful. And it sure isn’t compassionate. Give me the fucking knife and stop stabbing yourself.
I realized that over the years this thought of romance has been the knife we have used to stab ourselves over and over with. The thought in my head was that in order to have a good marriage you must have a romantic marriage.
Is that true?
No there have been great marriages over the years that had no romance. So I decided I could put that thought down. I didn’t need to believe it anymore and I certainly didn’t have to stab my husband and myself over and over with it.
What felt like an epic failure last night turned into an epic breakthrough this morning. We had an amazing, no lies, albiet painful but way less painful than that damn knife, talk. We admitted that we are really bad at this and I told the truth that I just don’t want to do it anymore. I don’t want to hurt and I don’t’ want him to hurt. Lets just acknowledge all the ways we are great and let go of all the ways we aren’t. We can give each other the grace that we just suck at romance and we are just not going to keep stabbing each other anymore.
What thought are you holding on to that is cloaked in really good intentions but that you are actually using as a knife to stab yourself?
You don’t have to do it, you can put the knife down and stop stabbing yourself. Your epic failure in that one area, is only as big as you think it is. It can be your Epic Breakthrough!
All you have to do is: PUT THE KNIFE DOWN!
If you are having a hard time putting that knife down:
I Can Help.
You Aren’t Alone.
You Can Stop Bleeding.
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