You've likely heard of how Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin are ending their romantic relationship through a process called "conscious uncoupling." But in order to consciously "uncouple," you need to consciously couple.
This is something people rarely do.
Most people "fall into" their relationships. They have no idea how to create them. They're drawn in by their unconscious patterns and triggers, which seek resolution. They fumble their way through.
All of the people I know who I would consider to be sexual or relationship savants have put in the time. They — usually through pain — have pushed themselves to learn more and understand their own behavior and how to make these things work well.
They've taken responsibility for their healing and learning.
This means that, like any other facet of their lives — exercise, health, nutrition, career — they understand that their relationship needs constant tending to thrive.
The four major resolution any partners who consciously couple make are:
1. We will make this relationship a vessel for growth.
This means that when we are triggered or we see things about the other person that we don't like — or about ourselves — we don't run.
We know that "issues" will come up, and this is OK. This is even welcomed.
We use these as opportunities to heal our weaknesses and build our strengths.
We zero right in on whatever is going on and look at it. Together.
2. We will expose ourselves.
From our hearts to our genitals, we will uncover. And I will let you in. The most challenging and rewarding thing about getting close to someone, is, well, getting close to them.
We drop our guards. We get naked. We dare to believe we will be loved and loved well. And that we are worthy of such love.
3. We will have lots of sex.
Sex is important. Osho used to say something like, "You can f**k all your problems away."
To an extent, he's right. Sex is the glue in intimate relationships and a powerful energy source. You can use it to fuel your growth and to help you move through personal issues.
Sex with no talking won't work. And talking with no sex won't work. But the sex can often resolve a lot of issues wordlessly. And talking can often lead to cataclysmic sex.
4. We will tell each other the truth.
Yes: the truth shall set us both free. Telling the truth, even when it might hurt the one you're with, is way more important than hurting him or her.
If you have an ongoing practice of being honest, the "hurt" will be much less so, because you've learned not to take things so personally. It's only when honesty shows up in a space which has been full of dishonesty that it's such a shock.
If you want the kind of relationship where the sex eventually fizzles out and you and your partner lead separate lives and have separate bedrooms, by all means, tell white lies and full-on lies all day long. Or on some days. Or whatever.
Because the truth is, we all know when we're being lied to. Even if we don't know consciously, or we would rather not know, we know. Trust will erode over the long term with lies. It will build with radical honesty.
When you practice “conscious coupling” you harness the true power of your intimate relationship: as a source of energy, rejuvenation, pleasure and joy.
Practicing these things will take your relationship into the realm of the magical.
Where it's supposed to be.