Love Is Action

IMG_2747The beginning of a relationship is often characterized by what we call the free-ride, infatuation, or honeymoon stage. This is when both of your hearts are open and there’s a sense of ease, calm, and joy that permeate your time together. For some people there’s a magical quality about this time; for others there’s a quiet sense of rightness. The intensity of the feelings of “in-loveness” may vary, but the sweet quality of the honeymoon stage is a lovely window into what’s possible when two open hearts intersect.

And then fear enters the picture. It may hit your heart like a poisoned arrow in one defining moment. It may begin with a thought like, “Do I love my partner enough (or at all?)?” and descend from there into the hell-realm of anxiety. It may be a subtle shutting down that occurs over a period of several weeks or months. It may first appear at two weeks or at two years. Whether subtle or abrupt, fear steals you away from your love, your truth, and your well-being. It’s a thief in the night of the soul of lovers, an ancient gatekeeper designed to protect you from the risk of loving. It harbors old and false beliefs about love that, unless illuminated under the clear light of consciousness, will seep into every layer of your relationship until you believe you have no choice but to walk away.

You do have a choice. The choice is to become a fear-warrior and commit to learning the Love Laws and taking the Loving Actions that will dissolve the fear and grow your love.

You can become a fear-warrior at any stage of your relationship because there are always deeper layers of the guards around your heart that can be etched away. You can be together for one year or twenty and still learn the Love Laws and Loving Actions that will bring you closer to the face-to-face and heart-to-heart intimacy which we all deeply long to experience.

But what are these Love Laws and Loving Actions?  Through fourteen years of working with clients and studying my own marriage closely, I’ve distilled these Laws and Actions into a digestible, inspiring 30-day program during which I will personally guide you through the terrain of opening your heart. The first Loving Action you can take is to say YES, I will commit to learn about what it means to open my heart, to learn about my fear and resistance, to learn to love myself so that I can love another. I will say YES to the path of conscious relationship, which means being willing to face myself and deepen my commitment to loving my partner.

M. Scott Peck wrote in “The Road Less Traveled”: “Love is the will to extend one’s self for the purpose of nurturing one’s own or another’s spiritual growth… Love is as love does. Love is an act of will — namely, both an intention and an action. Will also implies choice. We do not have to love. We choose to love.”

We are culturally addicted to the feeling of love. Conditioned to equate love with longing, we simply become tongue-tied and paralyzed in the presence of a partner who’s emotionally available and committed to forging a shared life. But what if I don’t really love him? says anxiety. What if I’m only here because I’m too scared to be alone? These are classic fear lines designed to convince you to run. And fear has so many convincing arguments which are supported by the rampant and dysfunctional cultural messages about love. If the in-love feelings are dim, the culture at large and even your personal community is often quick to say: RUN!

Here’s the paradox:

When you let go of chasing the feelings and learn to face your fear and take loving actions, the feelings return tenfold.

In my second decade of marriage I’m more in love with my husband than ever.

It’s a rich, deep love, so much more nuanced and multi-layered than the flighty feelings that often characterize the early, “in love” stage of a relationship. Had I listened to fear when it hit at the two-month mark, had I not learned about the Love Laws and Loving Actions that allowed me to break through the gatekeeper’s mythology and say YES to the beautiful man that was holding out his unwaveringly solid hand, I would have walked away from this life of blessings that emanates from the nucleus of our marriage.

M. Scott Peck’s words above are one of my favorite quotes about what real love entails. But what Peck fails to clearly delineate is what are these Loving Actions? It’s not enough to set an intention to love another. It’s not enough to orient your compass in the direction of loving. While these are essential pieces to the puzzle, they’re not the whole picture. We need a roadmap. We need the alphabet of loving. We need the mathematical parts which, when added together, synthesize to create the whole. And that’s what my Open Your Heart Program offers.

Open registration begins today and space is limited. So if you’re longing to feel more love and attraction for your partner and deepen the intimacy between you, allow me to guide you on the courageous, life-changing, enlivening path of opening your heart. Love is choice. Do you choose to learn the Love Laws and Loving Actions that will affirm your choice and grow your love and attraction? If so, then join me as I personally guide you and group of committed people as you learn together what it means to open your heart. 

53 comments to Love Is Action

  • chelsea

    Sheryl, is this the last time your doing this program or will you be offering it again?

  • I’ll be offering it every 3-4 months.

    • chelsea

      Awesome :), I have another question if I’ve been in a long distance relationship for 8 Mon an that’s about to change, my bf is moving to my hometown is that normal to spike anxiety? One minute I’m so excited an the next I’m worrying over little things.

  • Brianna

    Do you have any articles about how anxiety kills your sex drive? I cringe at the thought of sex is that normal?

  • victoria9021

    Hey, Brianna-

    There’s this article (http://conscious-transitions.com/lets-talk-about-sex/) and this (http://conscious-transitions.com/when-youre-not-attracted-to-your-partner/). Both are written by Sheryl as well and are fantastic.

    It’s very normal for anxiety to block your sex drive as it leads to being vulnerable with your partner. Fear doesn’t want us to be vulnerable- and it will do ANYTHING to keep you from love.

    Sheryl- I’m going through The Road Less Traveled right now, and while it’s been really spiky in spots for me, I’m so very thrilled to see an entire chapter on love in action.

    -Vicki

  • Esther

    Me too, Chelsea, me too! Now that it’s suddenly becoming real, I’m swinging back and forth between excitement and fear. The main fear is “what is he makes this big sacrifice for me (in this case it’s moving countries) and then I decide that I don’t like him as much after all”. I’m so scared of feeling “stuck” in a relationship that I might feel obliged to be in. I know we have to give it a go because I’ll forever regret it if I don’t, but I just wish these unbidden fears that could ruin a wonderful situation would go away.

    • chelsea

      I know, the anxiety has been getting better I spent this past weekend with him for four days an was so calm an connected an loved being with him. I just need to understand that will have our good times an then there will be days when I don’t feel as connected an that’s okay to. I to worry like you what if he moves an then we don’t work out? But like you said to you gotta take a chance an deep down I know my bf is loving, caring, supportive, trusting, nice, kind , funny an understanding an the list goes on I feel like he’s the person I’m meant to share this crazy life with. An like right now the fear is buried an I couldn’t be more excited to start this part of our lives. I wish you guys the best of luck 🙂

  • Amaryllis

    What a beautiful article. Perfect timing as always Sheryl. Thank you!

  • Kim

    I’m batteling every day with my anxiety one min I love my bf it can even change in an hour and I start feeling it will be easier if I just left . I pick everything about him I need stupid things like is his eyes to far apart to if his hairs to long . It does my head in I do this with every bf I’m with after the honeymoon stage . I want it to stop its causing me so much distress his such a lovely guy that’s treats he like a princess

    • Toni

      Hi kim

      I totally empathise with how you’re feeling. I am in the same boat. My boyfriend is amazing, kind, caring, loyal, funny, talented, very attractive, pretty much everything i could ever want in a partner, andy had been perfectly happy with him wanting nothing more than to spend my life with him until my anxiety hit in february, i began noticing how much i would pick at his flaws in my mind, i rarely wanted sex and i would get irritable with him over things that had never bothered me before. it all escalated and before i knew it i was in the thick on anxiety and didn’t know what was happening to my once perfect relationship. I now see a therapist every monday and am trying my best to work through the issues i have. I’ve had these issues in every relationship i’ve ever had…once the honeymoon phase has passed and the initial romantic excitement wears off slightly i begin looking for problems even when the relationship is nothing but good. I find it really distressing that i can’t just enjoy my relationship my amazing boyfriend. All of this worrying and questioning has even changed how i see him physically, which is still something i don’t understand. It has gone on so long and i hate it, i try every day to work on loving actions towards my boyfriend as i know it is only through these actions that i will feel closer to him and be able to regain my loving feelings, but i know it can be hard when you’re constantly questioning your feelings and thoughts towards that person to want to get close to them, but i’m trying to push through it, i suppose that’s all we really can do if we want to try and learn to break this cycle and and not run the risk of throwing away a perfectly good relationship with a perfectly good and loving partner.

      Keep pushing on Kim, i hope that as we learn about ourselves we can get through this.
      best wishes
      Toni

      • Kim

        Thank you Toni . I think I need to see someone about mine cause I’m actually getting sick over my anxiety. My mind intrusive thoughts are making me see him in a total different way it’s blocking me from feeling any love cause all I feel is anxiety . I feel so sorry for him his such a kind beautiful person and a lot nicer then my exs were . His asked if I want space but I’m scared cause what if I don’t want him back . And then I find another guy that it starts all again with and his not has sympathetic as this one I’m with who treats me like a princes . To me this is a living nightmare I want it to go away I don’t want to be alone for the rest of my life cause I can’t do relationships 🙁

        • Toni

          Kim I can’t tell you how similar your situation sounds to mine! My anxiety and negative thoughts have been making me see my amazing boyfriend differently too. Like he looked physically different to me! It’s like I’m swing a different person to the person I fell in love with, and I can’t understand that, because he hasn’t changed at all, he’s just as patient, loving, funny and if anything more nature, attractive and talented than when we first met. But for some reason I only see flaws in him, things that never used to bother me, things I used to love in fact! I get irritated with silly things he does that anyone would do. And I clam up when he gets close to me, although more recently I’ve found myself going towards him more often for a hug or a kiss, so I’m seeing this as an improvement.

          There are times when I just feel so did in extend from him and I think is this it? Should I give in and realise this isn’t meant to be?! But something in me keeps me with him even when I feel like running so far away. I have convinced myself I’m only staying because I can’t bring myself to accept its over and I’m just scared of not having him in my life and being alone. I’m trying very hard to work on myself though because my therapist thinks I’ve just latched into a very negative thought pattern and have in Turn given up on the relationship. I realise I have a lot of self esteem issues and these are stopping me from allowing him to get close to me. I know I’d probably do this with someone else, as I’ve done it on my past few relationships. I’d kick myself for letting my boyfriend go, he’s my best friend and although he drives me crazy at times, I know he’s everything I’ve waited to find in a partner and I just feel like if I can get through this we could have something amazing Abd I will have worked on the things in myself that need fixing.

          Sometimes it scares me how long this has been going on, 6 long months… I have no idea how long other people have battled with this, I don’t know if 6 months is too long And perhaps I’m kidding myself, but I suppose in all this time I still haven’t left him, I’ve held on all this time Abd that must say something about what I want?!

          You should start seeing a therapist, someone who specialises in relationships and anxiety, you might find it really helps. And if you ever want to talk, I’m here.

          • Toni

            Sorry Kim I wrote this on my iPhone and just realised how many autocorrects there are! The beginning of the second paragraph is supposed to say ‘there are times where I feel do disconnected from him’
            X

          • Kim

            Wow Toni what you have wrote there is much like my situation .I’ve been going through mine for 9 months its so emotionally draining . I’m glad of the breaks I get but there not for long but it’s in those breaks when my minds quiet I can think clearly and I know I love him lots . If u ever want to email me my address is kimmyangel78@gmail.com

          • Rae

            Toni:

            Your exchange with Kim is something to which a lot of folks can relate. You asked how long others have battled with relationship anxiety, and the answer depends upon how quickly each person recognizes that something is off and takes steps to address it. For me, that wasn’t until 3 years into my relationship. Yes, that’s right – 36 months of emotional upheaval that affected everything from my spiritual health to my sex life. Ugh!

            You and Kim are ahead of the game and should give yourselves kudos. You are able to face the problem and actively seek a solution. Many others wallow in the problem, point the finger at their partner, or avoid it altogether. I am sure I would still be in the thick of anxiety had my boyfriend not discovered this website. Sheryl’s 30 day Open Your Heart course took me to the next step of healing. Up to that point I had awareness, but I was stuck in terms of what to do about it.

            I rarely feel anxiety anymore. I feel much more grounded, open, and sure of him and our relationship. I still have intrusive thoughts sometimes, but I recognize them for what they are and am able to move on without letting them wreak havoc. I have many more moments of clearly seeing my boyfriend’s essence, and when I’m in that place I can literally feel my body relax and joy bubble up to the surface. It feels like being “in love” all over again. It remains a critical part of my healing to remind myself “it isn’t about him, look inward right now” anytime I find myself annoyed/doubtful/negative. I then have to approach with compassion and patience (which isn’t easy for me) my own inner wounds that require tending.

            Keep at it girls and you will wake up one day noticing that you have more moments of calm and peace that last for longer periods of time.

          • Toni

            Kim i will definitely email you.

            Rae:
            Thank you for everything you said. It’s so reassuring to know we’re not alone in this. I’ve never understood why i do this in relationships. I suppose i always thought i must mean i just had not have met the right person, but then i don’t see how that could be when 6 months ago i was so happy with him and all i wanted was to spend the rest of my life with him.

            Sometimes i think what if i’m just in love the idea of spending my life with someone and i thought i’d found that person and this isn’t anxiety it’s just that he’s not the right person for me, but i’m too scared to let go of the dream!?

            I just keep coming back to the fact that i can’t imagine not having him in my life, not knowing him or speaking to him every day etc, not knowing how he is, it would be like losing a limb!

          • Patricia

            Hey Tony,
            Finallyy i found someone tht i can actually relate on this thought.
            My anxiety was calm for the past 2 days but now im wondering.
            “What if im in love with the idea of spending my life with someone , with the idea of love”?
            I have this thought because i never had the enfatuation stage .

          • Toni

            Hi Patricia

            What scares me is how can you differentiate between this just being an axioms thought and the truth? How would we know?

          • Rae

            Toni & Patricia:

            What I learned about differentiating distortions versus truth is this: when I feel anxiety or doubt and it is eating me up, I can always link it back to a distorted thought that originates from a place of fear. In those moments I wall up and close myself off, so how on earth could I feel loving toward my partner? When I’m feeling grounded and centered and have thoughts about my partner/relationship, they are always thoughts that are positive, loving, and don’t provoke anxiety. Those experiences are coming from a place of peace and truth deep in my spirit, and I can feel myself open up and soften.

            The first task is to determine if you are in an unsettled or grounded space. If you are unsettled, anything you think is going to be tainted by negativity, so you can’t take that as your truth. The second task is when you think about your partner/relationship and it provokes anxiety, back into the experience to try and identify the thought that provoked the emotion. The third task is to then take that thought and back up a bit more to explore its origination. Typically you had the thought because of a fantasy you had about an ideal partner/relationship, because of something that happened in your past, or because of a false belief you have about yourself. That is where healing needs to take place.

            Part of the process involves exploring your deeply rooted fantasies about “the one” or even what you think relationships “should” be. Folks talk about settling, and the thought makes them fear that they are with someone just because they don’t want to be alone. Yet just the word settling implies that there is some perfect person or relationship out there…which sets you up for disappointment because no one and no relationship will ever be perfect. It really all boils down to choice. Love is a verb and not a noun; therefore it is requires action.

            So if you choose to love someone, and you want a healthy, fulfilling relationship, that means you have a responsibility to consciously choose to open up your heart to their essence, to let them experience your essence, and to take loving actions daily. Sheryl’s Open Your Heart course was a great place for me to explore all of these things in more depth.

          • Another generous and wise response, Rae. As you can see from Rae’s comment, healing requires a profound commitment to doing your daily work. You can read my posts and ask for help but shifts don’t occur until you take full responsibility for your anxiety and address the root causes. And there’s only one person who can do this work: YOU.

          • Chelsea

            Toni, I can relate to your story as well, I’ve been with my bf for nine months an this all hit at no month three so for six long months it’s been a battle. I have some really good days but I also have some really really bad days were the only logical thing at the time seems to be to give up an run far far away, but like you something is keeping me here. My bf is amazing I feel in love with a guy who’s sweet, loving, caring , nice, kind, funny, compassionate, supportive and patient and so much more, he hasn’t changed he’s still the same person I feel in love with I know it’s me an not him. We have the same dreams an goals an aspiration s in life an he truly is my best friend. How did you go d your therapist that deals with anxiety an relationship?

  • Michelle

    Thanks for posting this sheryl. Unfortunately,
    I can afford to do the open your heart program at this time but your article reminded me that your anxiety started early on too. For me it started with a reluctance to say “yes ill be your girlfriend” and then anxiety that reared up a month or two into the relationship.. Sort of like yours. It’s gives me a glimpse of hope that I can get through this..
    Thanks.

  • Joanne

    I’d been checking back every day to see if there was a new post and this was exactly the topic I needed this morning. Just another reminder that things can get better if I stay dedicated to this journey. Thanks Sheryl!

  • Viviana

    I love this page and the courses! It is SOOOO helpful and I highly recommend it to anyone!!

    Sheryl, you are the best!!! Even though I don’t know you personally, you have helped my anxieties so much!!

    Would love to know if you ever plan on coming to Miami for a seminar.

    Much love and health!!

    Viviana

  • Brianna

    I have always told my boyfriend that I love him and I want him to be my husband one day. For the past week when he says it I get very annoyed and it gives me anxiety! Why??? Is this normal? I feel so empty 🙁 has anyone else felt that way when their partner says it? Please help!

    • Brianna: If you’re not doing daily work on yourself and attending to the anxiety and emptiness nothing will really shift. That’s what my Conscious Weddings E-Course is for, and I encourage you to consider it so that you can receive the help that you need. Finding a local counselor would also be enormously helpful to you.

  • Jennifer

    Sheryl:

    Thank you so much for what you do. I’ve experienced relationship anxiety as early as I can remember. My thoughts and feelings confused me and the people close to me. My own mother couldn’t figure out why I was being so complicated about love. She and others seemed to glide though the transition into a comitted relationship with smiles and ease.

    Then I found you. In between the sections of time I put aside to work through your wedding e-course, your newsletter serves as little stepping stones of peace across the emotional river that is my day. I never thought I’d find anyone to help me understand why I struggle. I though I was just “weird” had “issues” or had too keep pushing people away until I found the “right one” who made these feelings magically go away.

    I don’t completely I understand why I’m like this, but I’m beginning to accept that it’s okay that I am. Thank you for your dedication to those going through these transitions. You are appreciated, adored and very much needed.

  • Jill Rose

    I recently just stumbled upon your blog while obsessively googling to find the answers I needed. I have been with my fiance for 7.5 years and I am now 22. We recently got engaged in the winter and have a few deposits set into place for our big day. The first five months of the engagement were wonderful. One day a huge fight erupted and I have not been the same since. I have been crying for close to two months straight, one day I love him and cannot wait to get married and the next I am paralyzed with fear that I will never feel better and have to end my future with him. I often question if I am settling and if he is the one for me. For the past 7 years, no doubt about him and our relationship has ever crossed my mind. We’ve gotten through high school and college years together with two break ups and I couldn’t have been happier with him by my side. Never once did I doubt that I wanted to share the rest of my life with him. But, all of the sudden everything has changed and anxiety has taken over my life. Your blogs provide me with relief. He is a wonderful man who is caring, supportive and loving. I have spend 7 years in love with him and now I am afraid I am going to throw it all away.

  • chelsea

    Is it a common fear to wonder if just out of the blue on day you’ll find your partner annoying and boring? I understand it’s a relationship an your gonna be annoyed sometimes but lately my newest fear is waking up one day an just being annoyed by my partner. Sheryl or any other Insight would help.

    • Brianna

      Yes that’s common. Before my anxiety even started there were times when I would wonder OMG what if I find him boring one day? But I would just let the thought past and that was that.

  • Kelly

    Chelsea, I can relate. I got engaged to my boyfriend of 3 years a couple of months ago, and have been feeling anxious ever since. The weird thing is, that before the engagement, I used to look at my partner in complete adoration, and thought to myself: I really want to marry you! I once even almost blurted this out to him. Now that he has proposed, all my positive and loving feelings seem to have made room for doubts and negativity about our relationship, while there is no reason whatsoever that I should feel like this. Whenever I hear a song on the radio about break-ups, I will be like: see, this is a sign! As you all know, the radio plays many, many songs, but I never seem to listen to the songs that indicate otherwise. I have always been more prone to negative feelings, and I guess I know this. However, fear makes it all feel SO real! I can get really scared, because walking away from something this good, is just NOT what I want.
    I hate myself for this, because I don’t enjoy our evenings together (we live together) as much as I used to. Sometimes I just cry, either in his arms or just alone. Sometimes when I look at him, I cry because I sincerely believe I’ll have to say goodbye one day. On “good” days, I can be in his arms and enjoy the moment, and just know I don’t ever need to leave. However, these moments aren’t always there.
    I find it hard to talk about this to anyone, because I don’t think anyone will understand when I don’t even understand myself! Why do I suddenly doubt all that was good before in my life? Why do I suddenly get annoyed, and wake up all nervous, when all he’s ever been, is himself? He’s a great person, and I love him so much. I definitely don’t want to leave, and I don’t want to believe that my feelings are gone! I know that I want to get married, and I do look forward to this day, just not every day. Some days, I tell myself that I cannot allow fear to take control of me this way. I am in control. But on other days, it’s almost impossible to see past the fear, and it starts working its ugly way inside my head.
    I recently found this website, and for the first time, I actually believe this is something that can go away. It can be fixed, I am convinced it’s fear that’s causing all of these feelings of doubt. I don’t believe it all the time, but I’m getting there. And as long as there are moments in my life where I actually DO enjoy my partner, when anxiety is not here, I will know it’s ok. Or it will be. At least I’m no longer alone in this because I swear, the longer you let the fear get to you, the more you start to believe in it. The harder I try not to think about things, the more my fear seems to get to me. It hits you where you’re weakest, and when you least expect it. With an open heart, I guess the door is wide open for fear.
    I feel like I need a lot of reassurance. All the time. I don’t want to believe the fearful thoughts. And why should I have to? Fear doesn’t own me! This is what I know… I now have to make sure to believe in myself, and my relationship, all the time. I just can’t believe FEAR can have so much influence on a person’s life. Wow. Where does it come from? Any feedback would be appreciated.

    • chelsea

      Kelly, I’ve been with my bf nine months an my issues began three into our relationship. This site has been a blessing to me a suggest reading through some more articles an though I haven’t yet the wedding e course would also be a good idea. FEAR is a crazy thing it can totally distort your image of something or someone an change your feeling on anything. It is crazy how much fear can influence someone’s life I agree, an if you read more articles you may see some reasons why. You mentioned you have “good” days, for me that’s what I live for becuase my good days are amazing I’m connected an calm an don’t have all of the anxiety an fear. Sheryl does an article on your clear mind vs fear mind on your good days is when your clear minded an you know you an your partner are gonna be okay, anything else besides this is a part of your fear mind. Hope this helped 🙂

  • Rhiannon

    This is causing me so many problems right now. I used to find this site really comforting and helpful about 2 months ago when I first thought “what if I don’t love him enough?” Which started everything off. My BF is very supportive and I was willing to fight it. As I’d spent months thinking I’d marry him tomorrow if he asked, even after some of the initial sparkle had worn off. But then he spent three weeks with his parents on vacation with them so we totally disconnected. Then when he gets back and I meet his parents for the first time he decides to open up about some stuff that he should have done at the start. I had thought we were pretty well aligned about things but then I started to have proper worries about whether our futures work together. I’m looking to move abroad for work, that would probably not agree with him. We have different family backgrounds and I worry that we won’t agree on raising the kids. Now I can’t tell if its the fear voice that says I shouldn’t be with him as it isn’t going to work or my real voice. I’m so confused. I almost don’t want to fight it as I don’t want to be with him. But maybe we are just super disconnected and need to work through these issues together. Any advice on how to calm down and work out what to do?

  • Cecilia

    Dear Sheryl,
    It was on one of those nights, heart galloping and thoughts spiralling uncontrolably, that I googled relationship anxiety and found your website, which calmed me down enough to fall asleep for a few hours and gave me something to look forward to reading the next day. Firstly THANK YOU for that, since that night, which was on tuesday very early morning, I have felt O.K, saved kind of. Dramatic I know, but then again, these feelings ARE very dramatic. Thats the most scary thing about them! Your articles and peoples honest and sincere comments have helped me feel like my heart isn’t about to jump out of my chest. But I have decided to write, because I can’t help but feel ‘ oh god, what if I’m giving myself a false sense of security? What if all this advice, which although helping me, doesn’t actually apply to me???’ ARGH!! So I need to write!
    I have been feeling this lump in my chest, electrcity in my body, a huge heart thumping, off and VERY ON, since sunday the 21 july 2013 ( so not as long as many others on here..)(but even so, immensely disturbing) And on the night I found this, I had just written in my diary ‘ oh my god, am I really getting these panic attacks because of my boyfriend? Maybe I need to face it, that it is my relationship, and that this is a mistake???’When my anxiety creeps up on me it has been telling me ‘GET OUT! BREAK UP!!’ and its freaking me out!! because, why should I do that?? It’s a loving relationship, we have such a connection, and are amazing together! but,..what if I dont love him!???
    I have been trying to think, what else could be causing it. I AM in a time of transitions in my life right now. I’m 29, have been with my boyfriend for 5 years. Friends around us are getting married and having babies, my friends all seem to be on a career track they’re happy with and which suits them. But me, I’m hopeless! I’m not sure about anything! I’, in a job where i learn everyday, but it has nothing to do with what I studied at university and that bothers me. it’s a much frequented topic of conversation and I’m getting sick of hearing myself talk about it and not DO anything about it – my friends and family must be getting fed up too.. Also, my boyfriend and I have been talking (at length) about buy a property. We are completely unsure about hwere – city or outside, house or flat etc ect. Also I have had my implanon implant removed a month ago – making the possibility for making a baby REAL. I’ve had the implant for 9 years, so am thinking the hormone balance or imbalance may not be helping me much. the baby issue is somehting I’ve been thinking about for about two years now. My boyfriend is ready “whenever you are” and people around me – friends, little brothers, aunts, collegues ask questions like “when is it your go?” “you should get started, you never know how long it will take” etc. So thats the background noise of my head, and then Sunday night three weeks ago I was at home alone and ill and watched 500 days of Summer, from which sprang an overwhelming uneasyness and anxeity about my relationship. “Shit! am I unable to make these house decisions because I’m with the wrong person?” ” what if I dont feel ready for a baby because I’m with the wrong guy??” I’ve been off work since this happened. Anxiety, stress, i don’t know what it is. It’s a rollercoaster ride. Yesterday was the first day I felt, ok, felt like myself (ish). But the waves of anxeity have been triggered by the following : films about love, a film about growing old (the iron lady) and L.a.confidential (dont ask me why!?), also about my period being late which triggered thoughts of “oh my god, if I’m pregnant it means I can’t get out of my job and get on the right track”, this obviously aslo made me think – it’s my relationship!! I went to the doctor crying and compeltely unstable, he said he wasn’t worried about me, but I was!! And I came back the next day after another awful day, and he gave me a referal to a psychologist – 11 days away!!!!Thankfully, i very good friend, and an elderly lady where there to help calm me down, and I embarked on the weekend trying to not think I single thought other than “make tea” “enjoy tea” etc… Then Saturday night came…my boyfriend and I had a lovely, very slow and chilled out day and we eneded up having a glass of wine and listening to songs in the sun – then suddenyl at the words ” and we will live together untill life is over” (translated from a danish song) I freaked out. Right! need to get out NOW! Need air,need a walk, now now now!awful evening. the following day I told my boyfriend what triggered it,and because my communication skills under those circumstances are BAD I couldn’t give him the reassurance he needed, and he was really upset, I think we almost broke up. But thankfully we didn’t. And he (after having packed his bag) broke down and said he was so sorry, we would make it through togther, he would help me and be there for me. See? Amazing.. The next day I had planned a distraction, a day with my friend and her baby. It was a good day, but anxeity crept in at thoughts of what if I become a depressed mother? What if I never become a mother?? What if I’m not ready to get pregnant because of my relationshp? What if I dont love him enough? What if I’m incapable????? We went to bed, having had a long day, I hadn’t had any time to myself, and none just with my boyfriend and then at 4.50 in the morning I discovered Sheryls website, and since then have been a lot calmer. I’ve been to the psychologist – dont know what i got out of it, but something has been set in motion at least. And yesterday I went to the library and borrwod five books some of which are form the reading list.
    So far I seem to have undertsood and accept that love evolves, we can’t expect to feel a certain way 100% of the time – thank god!! But that nasty feeling of ” this advice doesn’t apply to you” finds it way to my thoughts once in a while.What if I’m kidding myself? Do I have a problem with commitment? Have I not let go of me as a child? As single? —I also ahve a baaaad tendency to want to ask my dads opinion on almost EVERY big decision I have to make. And I see my parents and little brothers often – two fo them still live at home, so it’s still so homely nostalgic to come home.
    I know this has become a whopper of a message, but I so hope someone can relate, can tell me that this IS the place to be, and that the anxieity comes from all these other crazy transitional issues in my life, and not from my boyfriend.

    as a footnote, which I think is necessary, I just wanna say, my boyfriend and I met in while living and working in Madrid 5 years ago, had a whirlwind romance, we clicked and I’d neevr experienced anything quite so connected, I even said during the first two weeks – we may as well get married now!! yikes! Two months of romance and he had to move back home, so we had to decide whether to do lond distance or brwak up…it was my decision because he was 100% I was the one. Although I had moved to madrid thinking I need to be single after a long relationship, I decided, life doesn always let you plan, and we went long distance for 6 months. Then he moved back to madrid and in with me – which at first I was against – I thought it was rather quick! But since then we’ve lived together happilly, lovingly, and are the best of friends. Thats me and him.
    Please help me. my heart is going crazy!

    • Welcome to my work, Cecilia! You’re clearly in the right place and thank goodness to Google for leading you here :). When you read through more of my site, you’ll learn more about the root causes of your anxiety and how to work with it. You may also consider my Conscious Weddings E-Course as it’s the most effective action anyone struggling with relationship anxiety can take at any stage of relationship. You can sign up for the free Sampler here:

      http://conscious-transitions.com/conscious-weddings-e-course/

      • Cecilia

        Thank you Sheryl, i have signed up for the sample course, am so nervous but also can’t wait to try it.

  • Brianna

    Rae what happens when you feel empty and no emotions? Have you felt that way? I’m always very empty and never sexual so that makes me question. I can be empty and not have any thoughts or anxiety so then it starts the questioning and I won’t know how to differentiate them. I was doing good for 2 weeks but then it started back up again.

  • Kelly

    Thanks Chelsea! I’ll follow your advise and will read more articles. I’m so glad to see that I’m not the only one out here with this problem. Had a wonderful weekend with by BF just now, but I was unable to enjoy it. We did so many great things, and all I could focus on was that I was annoyed. I was being so negative, all the time. I also beat myself up over this, because I clearly see all the good things I have, but I cannot enjoy them the way I want to. I felt so sad just looking at my BF, because of the way I feel. He can’t help it. It’s not his fault, and it’s entirely me. I have to work on this, and I will, but it’s difficult to recognize fear when you feel so annoyed and negative all the time. You really do start believing it! Hope you’re doing better?

    • Chelsea

      Hey, I’m doing okay. I have some really good days then I also have some really really bad days. I think that when your anxious an fear is in the driver’s seat it’s hard to have fun an enjoy your time together an to feel your connection. Fear is a crazy thing sometimes I feel lime the only logical thing for me to do at the time is run far far away an just quit. But something keeps me here an pulls me through. None of this is my bf fault an I feel horrible to put him through this our first three months were amazing I knew I wanted a life with him an he was someone that I could share my life with an then out of no we’re the doubts an fear an anxiety hit but you gotta have faith an keep pushing through 🙂

  • Josh

    Chelsea, This is your loving boyfriend, and I finally figured out how to post on here!!! I know everyday is a different obstacle you seem to overcome and I do my best to help you stumble over it and soon we will do Sheryl’s course on here once you finish school, (so you can better focus on it) and I am looking at myself doing her course on here too… But I actually have one question for Sheryl with the other course on here will it help me actually be better at helping my Chelsea with her anxiety? and am I right that your course for anxiety will not cure it but more a lines help us deal with it and fight back against it? I must say thank you so far for the help that you all on this page have brought to our relationship and the future help you will also bring to us.

    Josh(Chelsea’s loving boyfriend)

  • Kristin

    I think I am suffering from these problems as well. I find I get anxious and have panic attacks in every relationship I am in. Last relationship was very dysfunctional. I was in it for two yrs… And left when he said I had no backbone to stand up for myself. I had anxiety throughout the relationship. After 8 months I found this amazing man that is so supportive and loving. At six months I had a panic attack and questioned my sexuality, whether I loved him, and wanted to be with him. It is about a yr and the attack is back and I want to leave…but no that there is nothing wrong. Please help!!!

  • D

    Hey Sheryl and everyone !

    okay. I used to comment regularly on many posts. During my relationship with the most magnificent girl I had on set of anxiety from the very minute I realized I like her. We broke up because my anxiety along with my depression and BPD was too much for her and the relationship was toxic. I have never had a healthy relationship. I really don’t even know what that is. Now she came back recently and says ultimately wants to try again. I do too. Or at least I did. It’s what I wanted for months. To build a healthy relationship. To try again. To build a solid foundation first and to do it right this time. I had worked on myself a bit. But as soon as she said yes to trying again after all these months I immediately went back into anxiety mode. The same anxiety mode I was in when I was in the relationship at first. I can’t help but cry because it’s so overwhelming and I thought I was done with this. I really did. But I honestly need some help, advice, articles. all of the above ? Because now my mind keeps questioning me if I love her. Keeps telling me I don’t really like her and I am just trying to convince myself that I do. It’s so hard and I don’t want to be this way forever. Someone please help.

  • Cheryl

    I am suffering with classic relationship anxiety. Found a wonderful therapist but still would like to take your course. PLEASE know when the next cycle starts.

    Thanks so much for all you do!
    Cheryl (sad, confused and in an anxiety ridden relationship with a most wonderful man I don’t want to lose!)