Relational habits & disconnection

October 2, 2023

Wedding photos 9/26/2009 @ the Chicago 18th Street L Stop (Before Instagram 😄)

Becoming the leader and person that we want to become requires three things…

Knowledge, Awareness, & Practice.

This week I celebrate 14 years of marriage. Anyone happily married for over a decade knows that it is a celebration of growth and evolution within a relationship.

The year David and I said “I do”, Nokia had the largest share of the smartphone market globally. To say a lot has changed for us and the world in the past 14 years in an understatement.

Two moves, two kids, a 5 year medical residency, and a growing business speaks to the fullness of the past 14 years.

The truth is, there were long periods of time when connection within our marriage was not the sweet, “We’re so happy and growing” FB anniversary post that I see others post from time to time. In fact, those posts really annoyed me.

Taking responsibility for my own contribution, I chose to bring awareness to the habitual way of relating I had developed during the long road of residency.

I began to see that while I missed David and his availability to connect while in medical school and at the hospital, I had developed ways of coping that allowed me to escape the uncomfortable feeling of disconnection.

I got productive; I dove into learning cool stuff about the brain; I withdrew from looking at any level of disconnection in my marriage.

Why sit with an emotion that you don’t feel empowered to address? It made complete sense – but it did NOT make for the deep honest connection that a marriage needs to thrive. In suppressing these uncomfortable feelings they turned into annoyance, being critical and further disconnection.

Humans are beautifully complex – our needs, our behaviors, our desires. I absolutely adore taking a moment to look at it all from a balcony perspective, it creates space for more compassion and love. The more I become self aware and work with others who desire to create internal change, the more we all make sense.

By increasing my KNOWLEDGE of my personal need for connection, becoming AWARE of my habitual response of withdrawing emotionally, I was then able to consciously PRACTICE engaging with my emotions and choosing different behaviors to create a different result of a deeper connection in my marriage.

Every. Single. Day. We operate out of habit. Relationally and otherwise.

Our lives, our work, our love is dictated by how we think and feel about ourselves and our ability to create the change we want.

This is the truth I want to offer you as you walk your own leadership journey.

Reflection Time

  • What honest emotions are you avoiding feeling?
  • What habits have you created to avoid certain feelings?
  • What would it look like to show up for the relationships that matter to you with honesty and the awareness to create the change you want to see?

Curious about how your relational habits are impacting you & your leadership? Let’s grab some time for a discovery call below.

Con Amor, Sonya

P.S. Overheard in a coaching session:

“Wow, by being unwilling to feel disappointment, I have instead been living in anxiety, afraid disappointment could happen but not really knowing”.