The relationship tripod
Posted On April 2, 2021
Your life has a constant dynamic: relationships. In reality, this is a triple dynamic that includes your intrapersonal relationship with yourself; interpersonal relationships with your friends, family and / or romantic partner; and the spiritual relationship with your Higher Power. So improving your “relational intelligence” makes a lot of sense.
This is “The Tripod of Relationship” with each of the three legs of the tripod represented by your relationship with yourself, your relationship with others, and your relationship with your Higher Power. The tripod works best to stabilize whatever is on it (your life, in this case) when all three legs are firm and solid. If one or more of the legs are weak, there is excessive positioning on the remaining legs and a loss of stability load.
The goal is to balance and strengthen these three areas of your life so that you can consciously and proactively resist life’s challenges. I invite you to deepen your relational intelligence and expand your relational awareness … all to create more powerful relationships in your life and have the most powerful and fulfilling Life you can.
Relationship with yourself
Purpose – Are you living your life on purpose or just by accident? Many people struggle to know their true purpose and therefore settle for whatever comes into their lives. What really turns you on? What are you most passionate about? Take some time to explore this.
Balance – Having a meter to assess your balance is helpful to reinforce your purpose and to maintain your health and well-being. Think of your purpose as the hub of a wheel, and all areas of your Life revolve around it. This would include areas such as social, spiritual, family, recreational, creativity, work / vocation, financial, physical, personal / emotional growth, and physical environments. What must happen in each area for you to maintain the highest level of balance?
Vision – Purpose and balance without vision is like having all your belongings packed up and being ready to move, but having no idea where you are going. So what is your future like? Visualize how you want it to look. Go back to your Whole Life Wheel and include each area in your visualization. Spend some time on this every day, as the more you visualize what you want, the clearer it becomes. Try to let go of the “inner critic”, that part that is always trying to tear down new ideas. Allow yourself to step out of your comfort zone with this. Another useful activity is creating a vision map.
The goal of these exercises helps to create a “metaphysical void” that will draw you to everything you want, while drawing everything you want to yourself. This is the Law of Attraction in action. Remember, life is a journey and, like Columbus, sometimes it can end not where you expected, but rather, where it should be. The big challenge is to set aside the results, as they can change, and focus on staying on track.
Relationships with others
The “AbSOULutes” – They are the relationship dynamics and the personal characteristics of others that you have to have to feel satisfied. Without these, the relationship cannot exist. Trying to make a relationship satisfying without these requirements is like trying to make apple pie without apples … try and try as hard as you can, but it will never work. These are the “negotiators and breakers” and they have no room for negotiation, lest it be sold and left empty. There are those that also feed your Soul, hence the absence of them leaves you with a feeling of emptiness and dissatisfaction.
Limits – These are your personal “property lines”. This is where someone else’s space ends and yours begins. When you know your requirements and what is not acceptable and what you must have, it is easier to define your limits. Allowing others to enter this space when you don’t want them there creates an imbalance and often manifests as fatigue and / or emotional overwhelming. Setting limits is often just the beginning; Maintaining them is the real challenge, as others will often test you for your consistency.
Communication – Being able to speak directly, clearly and assertively is just the beginning of creating healthy communication. Listening is actually the most powerful communication dynamic. Being able to have non-reactive responses through reflection and empathy creates the most powerful position, as well as holding much more energy. Think of yourself as a bullfighter and your job is to invite dialogue in your own way, but not get “hit” by it. Being a powerful listener, you actually have more control by trying to control less … yes, less is more in this case.
Relationship with your higher power
In communion – When and where do you feel most connected and most alive? Whether on the beach, in the mountains, while dancing or singing, in church, in prayer or in a meditative trance; these are the moments, places and activities in which you are having a Superior Experience. When you allow yourself to be in these places and in these spaces, you allow yourself to have a spiritual connection that is satisfying and that also automatically adds balance to your Life. Taking regular doses of spiritual activity, or better yet, going on a spiritual retreat will do wonders for your spiritual relationship.
Keep a journal – Writing to affirm yourself, to do a work of healing or to do a work of growth, can be methods to improve your spiritual connection. Write yourself a letter to remind yourself of all your greatness, talents, and gifts. This can be a wonderful way to help you realize your full potential … your God-given Greatness. Write to let go of old hurts, or a forgiveness letter to let go of old resentments. Both will free you to be more in the present. The more present and fully aware you are, the more available you are to receive spiritual connection.
Reading – There are thousands of books on spiritual practice, and more are published every day. If you’re unsure of your spiritual path, read a bit and pay attention to what resonates with your soul … those are likely the pieces you’ve been looking for. If you know your spiritual path, stretch out and read a little beyond where you are. If you’ve already read them all, then maybe it’s time to pass on some of your knowledge and wisdom … start writing that book (and / or article) you’ve been thinking about!
So here’s the challenge: make all your relationships REALationships, that is, relationships full of REALITY. Live a life of realities. Whether with others, yourself, or your Higher Power, allow yourself to be whole, balanced, and on your way to your Higher Good.