Question: I am tired all the time these days and my relationship gets worse and worse. Could there be a connection?
Don: It takes a tremendous amount of energy to pretend something is true, that isn't.
Though it is important to get a doctor's evaluation on physical tiredness and symptoms, trying to make something work by pretending to feel, think or act in ways that go against how you really feel is exhausting to the body, mind and spirit.Why? The body, mind and spirit work best when freed to deal with things the way they really are. The mind is simply a tool to help you survive and thrive. When it is put in "pretend" mode to survive, that goes directly against how you feel and really think, it takes more physical and emotional energy to distract your awareness from the reality of your situation. This "pretending you do when you really don't" directs the mind to extend its "operation denial" to more and more areas of your awareness as the natural stressors of a relationship continue to happen.
Eventually much of your available daily energy is being used to hide the truth from your own awareness--this is also known as depression and dissociation-- with less and less energy for the simplest of daily tasks. The problem is the unrealistic image that you hold inside your mind of how you want things to be that aren't. So, if you want to feel relief from this tiredness, face your "pretending" and answer the following questions with candor. Better yet, quickly write down your answers and read then read them out loud to yourself:
• How do you really feel about how you have become in this relationship?
• Who have you become that even YOU don't like anymore?
• What actions are you taking toward yourself that are uncaring and dishonest? Toward your partner that are uncaring dishonest?
• What conversations need to be taken to clear the air about how you really feel and really want for yourself and your relationship?
• What expectations are unreal and what are more realistic given how things really are at this time and place?
• What is your partner trying to tell you that you refuse to consider that does has some truth in it that your are resisting? HOW is what your partner telling you about your behavior true in some way that is part of the problem?
• What images of yourself, your partner and the relationship need to be unpacked and changed to match what is really needed and possible in this relationship?
• What do you need to do now to be true to yourself--how you really feel and think--that is reasonable and mindful?
Expecting something to be actual that isn't, creates emotional fatigue, compartmentalizes your awareness that leads to deception and wounds your heart deep inside. Facing the reality will hurt but will also feel like a great relief. It takes less physical energy to face the truth about something than to pretend. "Pretending" is only a temporary drug-like effect that creates more hidden pain while draining your body and spirit of vitality.
When the emotional dust and necessary confusion settles from this revelation of the way things are, it is surprising sometimes that there are new more energizing options available that are possible that were covered over, hidden, by the "pretending" something about our relationship-image and self-image is true, when it isn't.
To heal your broken heart requires that you acknowledge what you have pretended to be true that isn't. Only then can decisions about what is actually going make you feel more energized and alive be made. The recovery phase focuses on becoming a person that YOU like in your life and your relationship. Hard choices about real things that matter opens new doors of aliveness.