We all have been having a lot of together time, and it can push people different ways, especially if we’re talking about marriage. You can both be on the same page with how you think about what’s going on and how you’re processing everything, or you can think and process totally differently, or it can be a mixture of both.
Stevie and I think the same way but we process differently. It can either make you come closer together or it shows how much difference there is. This is not just true with your spouse, but with your children, and just with the world at large.
I’ve learned most things through a lot of heartache, and I’m still making a ton of mistakes, but this one thing makes a huge difference in relationships.
More curiosity, less judgment.
I’m an enneagram three, so when life gets crazy I process it by getting productive. We’re having a quarantine? Ok, I’m going to learn how to make sourdough bread, and I’m going to organize my whole house, and I’m going to start raising ducks and chickens.
It would be really easy for me to judge everyone else who doesn’t deal with it the same way. There are a lot of people, even in my own house, who don’t deal with stress that way. They don’t want to make 10 loaves of sourdough bread in five days and watch endless videos about how to organize their pantry!
We have to be really careful about how we judge ourselves.
I was doing just fine on the surface, and praying for people who I knew were being greatly affected, but I didn’t think I was being affected that much. Then I took some friends of mine some sourdough and as soon as I saw them, my eyes welled with tears, and I was emotional for days afterwards.
It opened something up in me that I was covering up with productivity. Seeing people from my real life made me realize I was grieving. I missed my friends, and my gym, and having the house to myself.
I started spiraling, wondering if anything is ever going to be the same. But then instead of judging myself for being emotional, because I can be pretty hard on myself, I got curious.
I could have judged myself for having three naps and not getting anything done for a few days. Instead I treated myself like a kind aunt. I told myself it was alright to grieve, to be angry, all of it.
I started to let myself feel the hard things. Maybe you have been frozen with fear. The best way to get out of that is really lean in and feel it, and let yourself be where you are, and have more curiosity and less judgement towards yourself.
Then we can work on having less judgement and more curiosity about the people in our house. Right now they may be driving you crazy, but this is what I’m learning.
However quickly you can get to curiosity and leave the judgment behind, is how soon you get to peace and laughter.
We had a situation where someone let our dog Bandit out. I was judging the whole situation and everyone involved! I was thinking, “I should be in house, having my bath and enjoying my life, not out in the mud chasing a dog.”
I was judging Tom for having his best day ever during this adventure. I was judging the teenagers because they didn’t run out and help. I was judging Stevie because he was irritated.
When we start judging a situation, it becomes a domino of judgement.
I had to be on to myself and start by not judging myself harshly for being judgmental. Then I had to get curious and I thought, “Of course Tom is loving this! It’s the most excitement he’s had in weeks. Of course the teenagers don’t want to be out in the mud. Of course Stevie is irritated. Who am I to say it shouldn’t bother him?”
Once I switched off the judgement and let everyone off the hook, it became a funny comedy of errors.
More curiosity and less judgement of the people we live with really helps our relationships.
What if we had more curiosity and less judgement of the wold? We all think we have the answers. No one thinks anyone else is doing it right. I find it so interesting that everything going on has brought this out in us with such force.
What if we just let people do things the way they do things?
Let’s all give each other
Maybe we’ll start to see a little more joy and even some lightheartedness.
After yesterday, a day filled with judgment of others, I really needed this.