Every Marriage Needs Saving Sometimes. . .
In fact, every relationship occasionally needs saving. We all get off track from time to time. If we don’t know what’s happening, and don’t know how to recover, things can spiral out of control very fast. Suddenly we are keeping our distance or headed for emotional divorce – living parallel lives, more like roommates than lovers. Or headed toward the divorce court. Or an affair.
It’s because of a little almond-shaped structure in our brains called an amygdala. (We each actually have two of them. ) The amygdala’s job is to keep us safe, by making sure we can react fast instead of being lost in thought if a major threat like a saber-toothed tiger shows up. The amygdala “hijacks” our brain, shutting down the parts we think best with – our frontal lobes – and sending the blood to our emotion and habit centers so we can fight or flee. Or freeze, so the predator won’t notice us. It also narrows our focus, so all we’ll see are potential threats.
The problem is, we don’t run into many saber-toothed tigers these days. Instead, the threats we face are more subtle. We need to be able to think clearly to deal with them well. Threats like having someone criticize or misunderstand us. Situations where having your amygdala hijack your brain and throw you into fight-flight-freeze can be hazardous to your relationship.
Most couple counseling doesn’t really help. That’s because the couple counselors teach you communication techniques that you can’t use when you need them the most: when your brain has just been hijacked.
What does help is learning how your brain works so you can make adjustments – and in addition, learning what people who stay happily married do that other couples don’t do to bring out the best in each other (instead of bringing out the worst!). As a relationship rescue specialist, that’s what I help people learn. How to rescue their relationship if it’s teetering on the brink, or how to rescue their relationship from the five Relationship Killers that can send any relationship careening toward the brink any time those Killers show up.
If this sounds like something you want to learn, we should talk.
Give me a call. Let’s strategize how you can move toward the relationship you really want. There’s no charge for an initial 20-minute strategy session. You’ll come away with more clarity about what you want, what’s been getting in the way, and which steps it makes the most sense for you to take right now.
Just call (303) 589-7107 to schedule a time to talk (in person or by telephone or Skype – all work fine). I look forward to speaking with you.