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Making Molehills Out of  Mountains/Reclaiming Your Personal
Power in Your Relationships

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Reclaiming Your Personal Power

By Dr. Steve Frisch, Psy.D.

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No More Skillet Calling the Kettle Black

Kindness can become its own motive. We are made kind by being kind.
-Eric Hoffer

Our relationships are the foundation on which our emotional and spiritual well-being is built. Meaningful, cooperative relationships are the cornerstone of an emotionally healthy life, rich with purpose and love. And you know, these kind of relationships don’t just happen, they’re created. They’re molded and shaped, crafted and nurtured. Strong connections are crafted by two people who believe that the rewards far outweigh the risks of getting close to one another--the risks precipitated by two people forging a bond woven from the strands of emotional honesty, emotional intimacy, and emotional vulnerability.

This bond is woven with the use of special tools--specific relationship skills. These relationship skills enable us to repair, maintain, and nurture the well-being of our relationships. These skills bridge the gap between mistrust and trust, misunderstanding and understanding, self-centeredness and empathy, and hurt and forgiveness.

If you asked Judy what impact the relationship skills she learned in her Relationship Bridge-Builders group had upon her life, she wouldn’t explain it the way I would, but she could say it far more eloquently. Judy would simply say, “I learned how to love and be loved.” 

Far less technical, yet far more poignant than anything I could have come up with. For Judy that was the essence of what had changed for her--the ability to love and be loved. So much of her life had been spent keeping the world at arm’s length. Never letting anyone get close enough to care about her. Never opening herself enough to somebody else to care about them. No, Judy had fabricated her own safe place in the world, never believing that it could ever be any different.

But all the hurt and disappointment that came with her involvement with the people in her life had been magically transformed. Transformed from fear and mistrust to self-confidence in her ability to cope with the inevitable difficulties that arise in any relationship. No longer did she feel a prisoner to the ebb and flow of her relationships, a rhythm that so often left her feeling powerless and out of control.

Judy had rediscovered her voice, of equal importance the means to articulate her emotional needs at those times that she was feeling most depleted. For so long, fear controlled her willingness to say out loud what she needed from another person. Too many times she had been laughed at, met with judgment or anger, or worst of all, totally ignored.

Judy had finally said good-bye to the days of her simmering anger. Those were the days when resentment had consumed her as she gave and gave while her emotional needs were left to twist in the wind. The red hot embers of anger were slowly replaced by the brilliance of an emerging inner glow. This glow was given birth by Judy’s willingness to boldly put herself out there.

No longer content with being a good sport, she had discovered a place within herself that enabled her to feel entitled. This entitlement fueled her courage to slowly but surely invite people into her world who would honor her voice. A voice that proclaimed her rights as a person. A voice that empowered her to no longer settle for the status quo in her relationships.

No, if you asked Judy, she would look you right in the face and tell you flat out, “The status quo was forbidden.”            

But Judy could also tell you that it took more than a new attitude to make a difference in her relationships. You don’t just wish something different and then it’s so. That’s certainly how it begins, but that’s not where it ends. Judy discovered what you’re about to discover--reclaiming your personal power in your relationships requires a lot of know-how. Your willingness to create the kind of relationships you desire is the first step. Step number two is creating a better awareness of who you are and how your personal issues appear in your relationships. Step number three is learning the relationship skills that can emancipate you from the current patterns of confusion and self-sabotage in which you continually find yourself ensnared.

And so it is that this book is dedicated to the proposition that you too can learn how to love and be loved. Your relationships don’t have to burn out like a white hot comet that initially glows so brightly, but eventually crashes and burns. Maintaining the passion in your relationships is not a passive process. Anyone, let me repeat, anyone can learn how to sustain the well-being of their relationship. You simply need to better understand how your relationship gets stuck. More importantly, you need to learn how to navigate  beyond the rocks in the choppy waters upon which your relationships run aground.



Dr. Steve Frisch, Psy.D. is a clinical psychologist in private practice in
Chicago, Illinois and Northfield, Illinois.

You can contact Dr. Frisch, Psy.D. at drfrisch@aliveandwellnews.com  or at
(847) 604-3290.

Recover from chemical dependency and its toxic impact on family members. Raise your children to choose to be alcohol and other drugs free. Learn how to in Dr. Frisch’s, Psy.D. Recovery book series.


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Enrich Recovery
Resolve Conflict
Reclaim Your Life
Stop Self-Sabotage
Love and Be Loved
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Enrich Recovery
Reclaim Your Life
Liberate Your Soul
Stop Self-Sabotage
Develop Your Spirit