What you are about to learn is going to be pretty obvious when I direct your mind to them, but sadly most don’t see it on their own and some suffer their whole lives because of it.
You will learn about two very powerful forces what they are and their impact on these couples.
4 Degree Erosion Model + 5 Step Negative Belief Model
So many people come to me with a message of disconnect, most blaming (in their minds) their ineffective, unhelpful, uncaring, unreasonable partner.
So today, I will present below a very simple model that will help you understand the thinking that creates these types of situations and what to do about it.
Understanding this process is at the core of how I’m helping couples out of their crisis, many couples create a model of thinking that leads into a destructive connection.
Essentially I help them to see what they seem to be blind to.
There are a few parts to this, so this will become obvious as you go through this post.
I’m going to start here; what people are really after in their life is achieving meaningful growth.
For some, this growth could be a better connection, more fun, more passion, and more love.
For others, it may mean an ability to connect or get through to their partner.
They may need to feel seen or understood; for others, it could mean feeling safer or protected; others may look for a physical progress of finances/wealth or stuff.
How that progress happens and what that means, of course, is different for each person.
BUT without this critical progress individually, they can start to suffer as they experience a deepening sense of lack.
Now a painful gap appears
So a gap appears between how life should be and how it is, this gap creates pain and if it continues the person starts to suffer.
Too many couples are experiencing a loss of critical progress, so they experience boredom, suffering, disconnection and stagnation.
This results in many giving up without understanding what is happening and why.
Some blame their partner; some conclude they are just the wrong fit, some feel they never really loved their partner as they rewrite their history together.
Now they lose connection, passion and attraction
The result can be they feel a lack of love and passion, they feel less connection, less fun and the compounding negative emotions can start to stack and take centre stage.
Through their lack of what they need many end up growing resentment until they feel detached or emotionally numb.
Some who practised this have difficulty connecting to anything good in their marriage; even their good memories are a struggle to see.
I know many will connect to these kinds of thoughts and feelings.
This is the start of why the loss of desire to fix the problems starts to take a grip.
For some, a need for “freedom” takes over so they may start going out a lot or come home later from work.
Some wonder if separation may be a good idea essentially they are looking to feel good outside the marriage.
Problems are due to two key factors
The first factor is exhaustion; failing relationships are exhausting to be in and most couples are unaware of how to fix their problems.
The second and biggest problem is the one that’s blindly accepted without the person understanding what’s actually happened to them.
The consequences of missing this part are going to be devastating.
The most significant and debilitating energy a person will create in themselves is their SELF-LIMITING BELIEFS.
They will create BELIEFS about themselves, their partner, and the relationship’s history.
The problem is they buy everyone as if it’s a fact because they are so identified with their own negative thoughts.
Perception is everything, and many people are using their distorted meanings and negative perspectives as facts, which leads them to unhelpful outcomes where both people and their children end up suffering.
I’ll explain how toxic this can become for the person using it using this 5 step model.
5 Step Belief Model
Look at this NEGATIVE 5 step belief model so many unhappy married people practice without knowing:
Stage 1. It starts with a negative belief about their partner, event or behaviour(s).
Stage 2. Most will then feel a reduced desire to contribute positively.
Stage 3. As they contribute less, the marriage suffers.
Stage 4. The suffering marriage becomes then becomes the proof of their initial negative belief about their partner and the marriage in Stage 1.
Stage 5. They repeat stages 1-4 for years until one person runs out of hope or detaches enough to exit the marriage either physically or emotionally.
If the person is convinced, their negative beliefs are facts; these marriages usually end or they become bitter suffering people living together in the same house.
Can you see the root distortion starts with the bias-based belief?
I see too many people with unchallenged beliefs.
Even if a couple has massive potential, a poorly formed belief system can kill hope and kill the desire to stay invested in understanding.
This creates a decline over the years that I call The Four-Degree Erosion.
Now look at this model new and its relationship with the 5 Step Belief model you’ve just learnt about.
The 4 Degree Erosion Model
The negative beliefs that they see as facts can now form the foundation for the “4 Degree Erosion” that will ultimately affect a couple’s connection, emotional security, attraction, and intimacy.
The 4 Degree Erosion is the process couples go through, but don’t see until it’s too late.
A 4-degree erosion won’t initially create a gap that’s uncomfortable enough to leave. But a growing gap of four degrees year on year will build a significant state of suffering.
They won’t know this but their foundational problems were there when they first met, but many miss what is right in front of them due to busy lives and limited knowledge.
To be clear, the relationship problems many start with can be easily corrected, but left unchecked they’ll snowball out of control when couples don’t see what’s happening and why.
A 4 Degree Erosion will take place due to a 5 Step Negative Belief Model.
The person will be unaware of will compound effect over 7, 10, 15, 20 years creating a significant gap between how life should be and how it is today.
So many people are suffering because they have prioritised children and careers; the result is the relationship dies because neither knows what to do to keep it healthy, or fix it when it goes wrong.
People that have gone through this may say, “I can’t be me in my marriage”, “my needs are not met”, “I feel alone and misunderstood”, “I’m happier with my friends or at work”.
So the couple/individual that does this model can stack resentments as they cycle those five belief stages many times year after year.
Until something snaps.
IMPORTANT: Beliefs are not facts – just because you think it, it doesn’t make it true.
The problem that most have to overcome is understanding the meanings they have been putting to their partner, and their marriage is not the fact(s) they think it is.
People who reject this concept and are always right will continue their suffering as they will run the same destructive patterns in this or future relationships.
So it’s essential to understand how to put the correct meanings to situations so a far safer belief system (emotional foundation) can be formed.
Safer belief systems can create and unleash the untapped potential for many couples.
Most couples have far more potential than they are aware of they just need someone to show them the way.
Their limiting beliefs and lack of knowledge do not allow them to see their true potential.
Is the help really helping?
Many of my clients have tried other forms of help from family friends to professionals before they come to me and have described their meetings to me.
So here is a thought to help you decide what feels right to you.
IMPORTANT: If that help allows each person’s negative belief systems to appear in the session unchallenged, then communication between the couple in the session will SIMPLY reinforce Stage 4 in the 5-step belief model you saw earlier.
A reminder of Stage 4 – The suffering marriage becomes the proof of their initial negative belief about their partner in Stage 1.
Do we have a limiting belief system in our marriage?
The limiting belief systems must be understood and challenged before the couple is in a position to communicate or their communication will continue to break down.
You see, you can’t communicate effectively if you can’t comprehend what your partner is saying and why!
To compound the problem, how can you be loving and caring for someone if you also believe you must protect or defend yourself from them?
Of course, it’s impossible – so people in this place end up only interested in their own feelings and what they have to say due to stacked resentments.
Why would I care about you if you don’t care about me?
A lady in a session exploring this with me
One lady was adamant her negative beliefs about her husband were facts. If it was obvious to her, then it must be obvious to him – this was her pattern of thinking, but getting this so wrong became a source of significant pain.
Her expectations of him and his inability to deliver what she expected was one of many limiting beliefs she was the creator of in her own mind.
The meaning she put to her expectation was he didn’t love her or care.
She had never considered her thinking was deeply flawed and self-limiting and she was causing her own pain.
You see, she assumed his thinking was exactly the same as hers.
Over the years, her meanings or beliefs became “the facts” she used to protect herself, so she cycled through an upset and withdrawal model.
With this thinking she couldn’t be herself when she was with him, she cycled through withdrawal and rages.
She was unaware she was running the negative Stage 1-5 belief model.
Her belief needed to change if she was going to see the truth and the accurate potential of her marriage.
She discovered that this belief about him and her expectations was limiting her ability to understand or be fair to herself and him.
In fact, her husband’s thinking was vastly different to her, and she couldn’t see it; she just blindly concluded it was wrong, not different.
The moment she understood there was a new perspective and a new meaning she could put to his behaviour, the potential for their connection changed in her.
She discovered that what was normal and obvious to her was not natural or obvious to him.
Seeing the differences as strengths
Masculine and feminine energy have very different perspectives and needs, and people are driven very differently.
So if she used her single-minded thinking to understand him, she would always be wrong no matter how intuitive she thought she was!
We discovered he had the same problem; he had formed limiting beliefs that she was badly behaved and unreasonable he also thought how he thought was normal.
This thinking always creates the 4-degree erosion model so at some point the gap will be big enough for at least one person to start suffering.
Helping them understand their differences created new expectations and new beliefs.
This formed a new model where new beliefs allowed them to see new potential and their ability to grow through reconnecting in a healthy way.
This was the shift of energy they needed to shift their exhaustion into energy that could reap the rewards.
They had both started the process of reframing their thinking from a position of responsibility to their family, but neither had much hope it could work.
They could have given up and caused the whole family terrible pain.
These new positive beliefs formed the start for this couple to become curious about what their relationship was capable of achieving.
By changing their thinking they changed their feelings.
Now look at the 5 Step “Positive” Belief Model they used
Stage 1. It starts with a positive belief about their potential as they both saw possibility.
Stage 2. Feeling safer about their potential, they both start a new model of effective contribution.
Stage 3. This allowed their connection to improve.
Stage 4. Their improved connection becomes the new proof and reinforces their belief in Stage 1 about what they are capable of.
Stage 5. They repeat stages 1-4, re-patterning their relationship minus the limiting patterns to reveal their new truth.
You see a person’s belief is everything, just because someone can’t see the potential it doesn’t mean it’s not there.
This is how it works and why it works.
If the beliefs don’t change, there cannot be a marriage breakthrough.
I hope this post has created some curiosity in you to discover more.
So are you looking for a marriage breakthrough to discover what you are capable of achieving?
You can start reading this blog to see a thousand pages of unique insights into couples’ problems.