I’m in a long-term relationship with someone I love, but I find my partner challenging at times, which makes me sometimes doubt whether I’m in the right relationship. Some people tell me I give too much — others tell me I need to give more! I’m confused. How do you know if you’re in the right relationship? When is compromise and acceptance letting yourself get walked all over, and when are they part of spiritual growth and learning to truly love? Thanks for your insight.
PART 1: BALANCED COMPROMISE
Thank you for these questions. Whether you are in a long term relationship or simply moving through the day interacting with people around you, learning how to compromise, when to accept and when to move on, are skills we all must learn along our path to wholeness.
We have all met people who do not like to compromise and resist doing so. They somehow manage to manipulate situations to get their way, either through twisted charm, temper tantrums, dramatic diversions, guilt strategies, bullying techniques or passive denial. Even if these people are supposedly “getting what they want”, I don’t believe that they truly are happy if they behave that way.
In each moment, there is perfect balance. When we give more than what is in rightful balance, another person is taking more than what is their fair share. If you feel taken advantage of, or left with more than what is rightfully yours, then something is out of balance. These kind of energy exchanges happen every day of our lives. We pay the ticketed price for a purchase. We thank people for their hard work or we get a pay cheque for the hours we have put in. We take what is rightfully ours and give what feels sincere. Acting this way keeps our lives in balance and keeps us whole, spiritual beings.
In each moment, we are individuals held within a perfect whole. So though we are here, living our lives on this earth, there is also a huge, expansive intelligence which is within us and surrounds us. In fact, we are part of a vast universe, never alone. We are always part of that wholeness, loved, supported, complete. It is our habit to see ourselves as separate.
Being able to compromise is a skill that comes from understanding this bigger picture, beyond what is just before us. When we are rooted in the bigger picture, we can tap into the fullness of abundance, rather than grasping at scarcity. The bully, the one who always gets his or her way, is in scarcity, not in abundance, even if they seem to always get what they want and may even live in the lap of luxury. When we look at life from the vantage point of wholeness, any given situation becomes less about “you” and “me” and more about balanced flow within a greater whole. When we are simultaneously aware of our flow and the greater whole, we feel balanced, loved and alive. From this perspective, compromise must feel balanced in order for it to be rooted in dharmic (righteous) spiritual alignment. True compromise is not born from feeling “less than”.
When we think, eat, speak and do things that are not in alignment with our highest good, we lose our vital energy. If you tune in, you will see that when you are out of alignment, you start to feel spaced out, listless, weak or ungrounded. When you are in flow, in your centre, you will feel rooted, vital and expansive. To make compromises that are in alignment, that are both personally empowering and win-win, we must understand what alignment feels like.
Each person, in every situation, will have different responses. No two people are alike. But I believe we all feel aligned when we feel energized and as though we are growing. Not forcibly, but through feeling tapped into life’s immense river. Sure, there are growing pains at times, but when we are in alignment with evolution, the expansion we experience brings us energy, fullness, not depletion. So compromise must feel ultimately rooted, vital and expansive for it to be in alignment.
Next time you begin to make a compromise, ask yourself this simple question: “Does this make me feel rooted, vital and expansive?” If your answer is no, you need to go deeper and find a different solution. If your answer is yes, go ahead and make that choice.
Compromise is different than acceptance, though they are closely linked. Tomorrow we will look at the nature of acceptance, and how that differs from resignation in Acceptance Versus Resignation.
Thanks again for this question. I look forward to answering it throughout the week.