Great love requires great respect.
Without respect you have nothing real to build from. No great love story is without its challenges, and without great respect those challenges become wildfires that burn the story of your love to the ground. Before you give your heart, before you dive deep, before you build your life around someone, make sure you respect the fuck out of their soul and they return the sentiment. Great love that lasts a lifetime must be built on solid ground, solid foundation, and there is nothing more potent than a partnership built on the grounds of mutual respect.
Listen up friends, I’m fairly sure we can all agree that love isn’t always a walk in the park. It’s also true that love on it’s own is often not enough to sustain the ups and downs of the relational terrain. Love is essential yes. But so is respect. Far too many people place too much emphasis on the initial butterflies of lust instead of paying attention to whether at the core of their being, they truly respect and adore the person they’re about to enter into relationship with.
Choosing a partner is a big effing deal.
This is the person you’re choosing to build a life with.
This is the human you’re choosing to be the home for your heart, the space for your healing and the container for your biggest expansion.
But when we fail to establish great respect, the relational container becomes nothing more than a hollow home where two people feel endlessly misunderstood, unappreciated or lonely.
Respect is the powerhouse ensuring even in the grittiest of times you both refuse to deck out the low blows, respect is the undercurrent enabling us to respair when we’ve done something hurtful or damaging and respect is the brilliance inviting us to remain forever humble students of love.
Nothing kills great love faster than the arrogance of thinking you know everything there is to know about yourself, your partner or partnership. Partnership is an evolution. It’s constantly growing and expanding us. Love refuses to let us be small, it calls us to be extraordinary. But if we lack humility to remain students of ourselves, our partners and our relationship, we have no footing to proceed when times get challenging.
When you respect your partner even when you’re pissed you can access softness and remind yourself, even if it's for a fraction of a moment they’re your ally not your enemy.
Couples who do not have respect for each other turn conflict into the arena of character assassination, attack and barrier building.
Truth be told no great love story will come without its challenges.
Friction is normal.
Challenges are normal.
Being out of sync with one another sometimes is normal.
Couples come to me all the time when they hit the phase of the power struggle in total dismay that the constant friction means there is something wrong with the relationship.
What is actually happening is they are evolving.
Evolving as individuals.
Evolving as a couple.
Evolving into deeper integration with love’s true essence.
You see there’s something big going on underneath the surface of their awareness. The conflict is unearthing critical emotional information they need to understand and personally integrate in order to become the most magnificent versions of themselves.
A partner helps you to come into greater knowing of yourself through their presence. It’s impossible to not get more intimately acquainted with yourself through relationship to other. A partner mirrors back to you all the brilliance of your being, but also the places where you need to grow, evolve and expand.
So when we hit conflict, we’re starting to contact the places within ourselves that are incongruent with our magnificence.
Then, as a couple, conflict teaches us the container of the relationship needs to expand. Months or years into the relationship you’re not the same people who began dating. You’re constantly growing and so your relationship must grow too. We get to a point where the shit that isn’t working causes such a shitstorm that we have to pay attention. We have to learn new ways of relating that actually set us up to win and co-create powerfully.
Without respect we’ll blame, shame and project our own inner work onto our partner. Making up some story that they’re the reason we’re feeling so much discomfort while at the same time refusing to account for our own wounds, integrated pain or straight up annoying parts of us.
We’re all annoying, we all have things about us that drive people bonkers, humility and humour help us see those pieces and respect helps us hold them without shame.
Without respect we’ll villainize the relationship thinking the relationship is to blame for the conflict, or attach to the belief that conflict means misalignment.
Often times though, conflict doesn’t mean misalignment, but instead it's an invitation to evolve to grow to become the greatest relational badasses we can and transform the container of relationship to be one that can HOLD the brilliance and magnificence of two humans set on soul fire.
But if you lack respect for yourself or your partner or your relationship the doorway to this type of love remains closed. At anytime you can open it by seeing with new eyes. Eyes that remind you of the deep respect that the person you love deserves, the respect that you deserve.
The more self-respecting you become, the more it bleeds into everything you do, everyone you know and every person you choose to love.