10th September 2011
As human beings we are built for relationship and hard-wired for connection. Yet, while we experience periods of great connection, happiness and understanding, it is all too often followed by very difficult and painful periods of disconnection, loneliness and misunderstanding which leave us feeling defensive, attacked and vulnerable.
To make matters worse it is in times of disconnection that we are most likely to take our energy out of the relationship. In intimate relationship we do this by withdrawing, withholding, having an affair and at the extreme separating or divorcing. In business we withhold information, avoid the person/s, bad mouth the person/s or ultimately resign. Whatever we do, it is purely a reaction to the disconnection.
As if that’s not enough, add to the mix the fact that as a society we seem to have developed a habit of reducing relationships to the level of commodity - a commodity only worth having while it is useful, or feeding our narcissistic needs. Unfortunately, the combination of the two leads to a rather distorted view that relationships are nothing more than disposable commodities!
The reality is the disconnection is not the problem. The problem is the fact we are culturally ill equipped to navigate our way back into connection and relationship. Interestingly, my clients (couples and business people alike) tell me it is the experience of connection that helps give meaning to the relationship and make the journey of relationship worthwhile.
So what are we fundamentally lacking? Personally, I believe it is Relational Intelligence.