So, what do you do when you are looking for an answer to something? You start looking for information right, and if you’re anything like me you Google. Google and Facebook seem to be the places we go most when we are looking for answers, which is pretty great, really. Technology is amazing because you can put in a topic and get tons of information related to that topic. I think this is fantastic and can be helpful, because it is going to give you more information than you had when you started.
Since no one finds their way to me when their marriage is feeling great what they’re typically up Googling questions like will my marriage ever change, how do I fix my marriage, how do I know when it’s over, should I stay or should I go, etc. Now this is good news bad news. So, why do I say that? If you are Googling those things you will definitely have found your way to articles, blog posts, videos, checklists. All kinds of resources. Maybe these are some of the ones that I’ve created and maybe not. Either way you will get pages and pages and pages of great resources. This is the good news.
While this is wonderful, it’s also pretty overwhelming . That is where the bad news comes in, in my opinion. I say that because this is the place where I see people get stuck. They get stuck in the searching. They get stuck looking for an answer. They’re going from one video to the next, one article to the next, buying one course and then another course, thinking that the answer is out there but it’s just eluding them. They feel like they need to keep searching, but that’s not true. We feel like we are being productive, and we are learning things as we go, but the problem is that we don’t apply what we are learning. SO, nothing ever changes. We can know something intellectually, we can make ourselves a little bit smarter, but until we do the hard work of really applying it to our lives and to our relationships nothing is going to change.
This is where people get stuck. Here is an example. Let’s say someone believes their spouse might be a narcissist. They have heard the term and start researching. They start looking for an answer about narcissism. There is so much information available to them, which is great- BUT they do not take the information and advice because they do not like the answers they are finding. So they keep looking.
Maybe someone will read something and think “oh, I’ve heard that before” and kind of brush it off. The interesting part about this is that yes, they probably have heard it before because it works. They were looking for an answer and found it. If they would actually apply it, they would not still be struggling with it in the same way.
It is amazing the number of tools that we have available to us today and we need them. Our marriages and relationships are struggling and we need to get better equipped to do them well. Just like anything else we want to do well in life, we get equipped, we apply it, and we create change.
I have used this example before but it makes a lot of sense, so I am going to use it again. Weight loss. I can read a book about weight loss, and at the end of that book I will know more about how to lose weight. I will not have lost 10 pounds yet because I haven’t applied what I learned, but I know more than I did when I started. If I actually take that information and start applying it in my life consistently, I will begin to lose weight.
Another example I would use here would be learning to play the piano. Let’s say I watched a YouTube video about it and I learned how to read sheet music. Am I going to be good the first time I sit down at that piano? Will it sound like music after I watched the video and read about learning to read sheet music? No. I have to be willing to try it, practice it, and try it again. Even when it sounds pretty bad and I am not sure if I can get it right, I have to still keep practicing and learning.
This is no different from a relationship tool or any skill set. You can’t just read about it. You have to actually dig in and experience it. You have to go beyond just consuming information and then thinking that the answer is eluding you. Sometimes the answer is right there in front of us. We just have to be willing to apply it to our lives.
So when you are looking for an answer, I want you to really internalize these concepts. Don’t just look for information and intellectually know it. Don’t just understand it and then think you still don’t have your answer. Apply what you learn, and be willing to apply it again and again and again.
If you are ready to get some answers and learn how to really start applying what you are learning, I invite you to schedule a complimentary Exploratory Session with me.