Bringing Everyone Together
Shelley began practicing "living on purpose" after a nasty divorce, when she was finally open to a new relationship. However, she wanted this next relationship to be unlike any she'd had before. She completed a "living on purpose" seminar, and shortly thereafter, her current husband showed up. This time, Shelley was ready for the relationship.
At Shelley's seminar, each of Shelley's "life" students chose a relationship to focus on. We then selected from a list of almost one hundred positive values the six most important values in priority we'd like to move towards in that relationship, as well as the six most important values to move away from.
Students were then asked to describe each value. Sounds easy, right? Not so fast. "Describe what the value looks like, the action of the value, not just a feeling," Shelley added. Easier said than done.
Many of us got tricked up on self-defining definitions. You know, "My #1 value in my relationship with Ed is happiness, and I know I'm experience it when I feel happy." How much does that tell you about what you mean by happiness?
The key lies there, in giving these important values--both positive and negative--real meaning. By doing this, you can connect with the other person in the relationship in a new, more communicative way.
Perhaps my #2 value in my relationship with my fiancé is adventure. He agrees! His #2 value is also adventure. So why do we so often end up feeling like the other person doesn't "get" our sense of fun? Why do I feel like he's ignoring my needs when we rent a movie on a Saturday night and order Ethiopian food?
Perhaps adventure to me means going on a safari in Sub-Saharan Africa, whereas his idea of an African adventure is that Ethiopian take-out.
However, once we've defined these values that are important to us, we can understand better what the other person wants, where they're coming from.
Shelley holds "Living on Purpose" seminars only a couple times a year, but you can find out more information on her website and blog. Purchase her book, Integrity-Based Communications on her website or on Amazon. Email Shelley at email@example.com.