Longing to Feel In Love

The Google search terms “how do you know if you’re in love” or “not in love with my partner” are some of the most common ways that people find their way to my work. Because our culture has sold us the bill of goods that romantic love is the answer to life and that when you fall in love with the “right” person you’ll have arrived at the golden elixir of happiness, when you don’t feel that feeling, it’s understandable that you would wonder what’s wrong.  The culture tells you that you should feel swept away, and when you’re not you assume that there’s a problem. How many healthy relationships and marriages have ended because one person says to the other, “I love you but I’m not in love with you.” Translation: You’re not making me feel giddy and alive, so you must be the wrong partner.

While the … Click here to continue reading...

Grace Through Uncertainty

birds in flight

“Whether through birds in snow, or geese honking in the dark, or through the brilliant wet leaf that hits your face the moment you are questioning your worth, the quiet teachers are everywhere. When we think we are in charge, their lessons dissolve as accidents or coincidence. But when we’re brave enough to listen, the glass that breaks across the room is offering us direction that can only be heard in the roots of how we feel and think.”- Mark Nepo

Uncertainty is part of life. Part of the human condition is to be aware of and struggle with uncertainty, yet few people inherently know how to live with it in a graceful way. Left to its own devices, and in the absence of a culture that teaches us how to create footholds that help us anchor into life in healthy ways, the mind will choose the path of least … Click here to continue reading...

How to Let Go: A Dark-Night Page from my Journal

As I shared a few weeks ago, our older son, Everest was planning to solo for the first time in a glider after he turned 14 (the minimum age you can solo). He had been training all summer and had planned to fly the day after his Bar Mitzvah, but the circumstances didn’t align and it had to be postponed. Every day that week he asked when he would solo, and every day we told him, “When it’s the right time.” The following Sunday night, his instructor called to tell us that tomorrow would be the day. We decided not to tell Everest until morning to increase his chances of getting a good night’s sleep. We wanted him fully resourced the night before he would take to the cockpit without anyone in the backseat.

As I got into bed that night, I could feel fear creeping into the edges … Click here to continue reading...

Health Anxiety, Money Anxiety, and the Fear of Loss

As highly sensitive people we’re physiologically wired to look for what’s wrong or amiss. While this hypervigilence once served us and our community extremely well when we were living in the outback or jungle and we were the first to scan the horizon to notice the slight wisp of smoke that signaled that a band of marauders was a few miles a way or the slight change in grass the indicated a tiger around the next bend, this evolutionary advantage can feel like a curse in modern culture. It’s fair to say that at least one element of modern anxiety is our evolutionary advantage, the part of our brains that kept entire villages alive, left hanging. As it’s primary job has been taken away, it now swerves into the path of least resistance, which often looks like scanning the inner horizon for danger: Am I with the right partner? (Is … Click here to continue reading...

What is the Work of Breaking Free from Relationship Anxiety?

A coaching client recently said to me, “You talk a lot about doing “the work”, and I wondered for so long what “the work” was. I thought that if I understood anxiety intellectually I would feel better. And the first time I went through the course I did feel better for a while, which I know is very common for new course members. But then I felt anxious again, and I realized that I wasn’t doing the work.”

“How do you understand the work now?”

“For me it means going underneath the story. It means taking the information out of the realm of intellectual understanding and putting it into practice. It means dialoguing with these different parts of myself, which is about engaging with them instead of being fused with them. It’s so different to dialogue with the part of me that’s scared of intimacy as opposed to just thinking … Click here to continue reading...