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A map towards true Connection
It’s my experience, working as I do with couples who are either in relationships
they want to improve or with single people who are looking for their marriage mate,
that everyone deeply desires a “connection” with another. Some may call it a ‘spark’,
others ‘chemistry’, or perhaps it is referred to as a ‘bond’. But I’ve observed
that connection by any other name is still connection – and that’s the bottom line
of what people must have in order to want to be in a relationship. And who can blame
them? After all, human beings are hard wired for wanting connection in a relationship.
If you stop to think about it, as I have many times, you might come to the realization
that human beings are relationship beings, and we are created quite literally in
connection. And I don’t mean just physically, but spiritually too! The very first
‘connection’ we have is with our Creator, experienced already by our Neshama (soul)
in utero. We are taught that our Neshama experiences a tremendous amount of joy
through its connection to Hashem. Perhaps more obvious of our creation in connection,
is our physical connection, in that our physical being develops through its attachment
and then maintenance with another being – our mother. And it is with our physical
birth that we actually experience the first ever loss of connection. It is, in fact,
the imprint of the loss of the joy of this first true connection that is unconsciously
stored in our brains which drives us to search for connection again and again throughout
our life. Hashem apparently designed us to need other people, so that we would look
for connection (and to need Him so that we would continuously look to nurture that
relationship too). A baby, for example, has many needs, none of which he can meet
for himself. Trust me, I have a new baby! His natural instinct is to cry when he
can’t satisfy his own needs (all the time!), in order to seek connection. In fact,
human beings are born with a large part of our brains still not developed. The way
to develop those parts of our brains in a healthy way is only in connection with
others! Hashem designed our nature to need nurture!
And yet connection with another person remains elusive to so many of us. So, what
you might be wondering right now is, if it makes sense that I should have connection
and I am even wired to want this most powerful human drive, how can I finally find
it? Good question! Let me start with defining connection in a relationship as I
have come to understand it.
Connection appears to be the feeling of attachment or belonging between two entities.
It is the outcome of feeling felt or deeply understood, heard, or seen by another
that is not you. It’s a sense of being accepted for who you truly are when you are
your most authentic you. It’s about feeling wanted because you know you are valued
for who you are and for who you are not. Connection is ultimately about being known,
or understood. If you are nodding your head, relating to how you envision connection
to be in a relationship and wanting to partake of it yourself, then you will be
happy to hear that connection with others is an art and we all have been Divinely
given the skills to master it. Stay with me here!
The art of connection is the practice of compassion. Stated simply, the ability
to cross the bridge that goes from our own world of “reality” into another’s world
of “reality” creates a connection. The deeper one goes into another’s reality and
the more often that bridge is traveled will affect the depth of the connection formed
in that relationship. Ah – and as simple as this sounds, my own experience of being
human together with the multitude of experiences working with couples has shown
me that we get tripped up when we try to cross that bridge. Some of us are even
unaware that crossing the bridge is the direct route to developing connection in
Through helping people in guiding them towards connection in relationships, I have
become aware that often the journey is aborted before it begins. I have noticed
that when people say they are having trouble in “relationship” with another, or
“communication” with another, they are often not, in fact, in communication or relationship
with an other at all, but rather only with their own selves. Our own physical selves,
also known as our ego, can be so big that we might have trouble seeing over it.
And if our vision is blocked by our ego, it makes sense that we wouldn’t even notice
that there is a bridge to cross because we would expect the other person to be just
an extension of me! We might not notice that the person we are in “relationship”
with has a world that is their own … and it is different than ours! And it is even
possible that our own ego can also cause an obstruction in the ultimate of all pleasurable
relationships, our relationship with Hashem.
When I guide/counsel individuals and couples who seek a connection with another
person, I see their tremendous strength in their perseverance of this lofty goal.
It is always my honor to guide such amazing people. One of the techniques I sometimes
teach involves helping people get out of their own way! What I want to communicate
is that we often are our own worst enemy when it comes to eluding connection in
a relationship. The very me that wants the consequential warm and loving feeling
that comes from connection in a relationship is often the same me that forgets to
travel into the other’s world to build it! What I am promoting is a free excursion
out of your own world and into the world of another. The only thing you must take
along for the ride is your curiosity, and what you are looking to find while you
are there is your compassion. And you can be the judge of your success. The way
you will know you have taken curiosity along is when you begin to quiet the judgments
that come into your mind when speaking to the other person. The way you will know
you have found compassion on the journey is when you are able to say to yourself,
and out loud to the other person, “given what you have shared with me about your
reality, you make sense to me and I honor you for who you are”.
And now you can begin to glimpse the importance of the relationship tool and uniquely
human gift of our words in finding, and keeping, connection in any relationship,
with ourselves, our friends, dates, spouses, and ultimately with Hashem. As with
any gift we have been given by Hashem, the more we learn how to use it properly
the more we will benefit from all it has to offer us. And I agree with you, there’s
nothing like the pleasure of true connection! Happy travels.
To contact Aliza with inquiries or to benefit from the work she does with singles
in person or by phone, please contact her at
firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 416-225-0224. You can also
visit her website at www.guidingconnection.com.