In any relationship, whether a spouse, child, friend, colleague…we develop a pattern of interacting with them.

Often we fall into a “role” or a comfortable way of being with them. Even if this “role” does not serve us or honor who we really are and what we really want.

Breaking the Patterns

Because there is discomfort in changing these patterns, and because human nature is to avoid discomfort and pain, we allow ourselves to continue in relationships that are no longer working rather than breaking the pattern and improving the relationship.

Even after divorce, we often continue to play the “role” that we have always played with our ex’s.

We may say that it’s “not true” and that we are “different”, but the pull of that old pattern continues to call to us.

Don’t you think it’s time?

Time to break that old pattern?
Time to establish a new role?
Time to face the fear and do it anyway?

Time

It may be that falling into the old pattern and “role” is simply a way of connecting with your ex?

A way of engaging with him…even it is unpleasant and volatile.

Is it possible that you fall into this pattern?

If so, let me offer five easy steps to begin to break the pattern and create a new role for yourself in the relationship. If you break the pattern, he will have no choice but to react differently as well and the dynamic between you will have to change.

5 Steps

Step 1: Limit conversation.

The first step to breaking the old patterns between you and your ex is to begin to implement email as your primary means of communication. It is not necessary for you to have conversations with him, rather, any exchange of information can be done easily through email and with less emotion.

Step 2: Determine your own values.

One of the best things you can do for yourself as you begin your journey through divorce is to identify what your core values are. There are many ways to do this and exercises that can help you walk through the process but working with a professional is the most effective ways to do it correctly. Once you know your core values, any future choices and decisions will be driven by them.

Step 3: Honor what you want.

Often it can be intimidating for women to articulate clearly what they want. Many of my clients, and myself included, “caved” to what their husbands want or what they think others would want them to do. It is critical that early on in the journey of divorce that you begin to get comfortable not only with what you want, but articulating it to those in your life.

Step 4: Identify your desired outcome.

If you feel that you are falling victim to an old pattern or “role” in your relationship with your ex, take some time to begin to explore and gain clarity about what you ultimately want to happen. Your desired outcome is what you want to come out of the conversation or exchange. Frequently we forget about what the result is that we want, and rather, react to the emotion of the interaction. Focus on your desired outcome and you will be more likely to develop your new pattern.

Step 5: Remember that it is about you.

If you are clear about what you want, you have identified your core values and you keep your eye on your desired outcome, then the likelihood of falling prey to old patterns diminishes. This is now about YOU….the new YOU!

It is hard for those around us to accept change. Your change in pattern may throw your ex off balance and force him to react differently. Allow for there to be time and space for him to adjust to the new you.

Change takes time…for both you and those around you.

Stay committed to the process of changing your pattern, and you will be amazed at what might happen!

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