Affair Newsletter – Healing from Infidelity: Creating a New Year and a New You

1. A New Year…A New You!!

2. Does it Feel Like a “Game” that you “Should” but Don’t Want to Play?3.How to talk to me1.A New Year…A New You!!

2005 holds great potential for you…because you are here. You want something different. The affair in your life has been a wake up call. It is a catalyst that puts you on a new superhighway of personal awareness and dedicated action.

You want to learn, to transform your life and your relationships. Yes, you can do it. Yes, you will do it. You want to awaken a new you!

One of you sent me this short article which paints a picture of who you and all of us can become. Read it. Print it out. Carry it with you. Reflect. Have this be your guiding light, your vision for you in 2005. As you do, you will find that you will become exceedingly attractive. Cool!

The Awakening

A time comes in your life when you finally get it… When in the midst of all your fears and insanity you stop dead in your tracks and somewhere the voice inside your head cries out – ENOUGH!! Enough fighting and crying or struggling to hold on. And, like a child quieting down after a blind tantrum, your sobs begin to subside, you shudder once or twice, you blink back your tears and through a mantle of wet lashes you begin to look at the world through new eyes.

This is your awakening.

You realize that it’s time to stop hoping and waiting for something to change or for happiness, safety and security to come galloping over the next horizon. You come to terms with the fact that he is not Prince Charming and you are not Cinderella and that in the real world there aren’t always fairy tale endings (or beginnings for that matter) and that any guarantee of “happily ever after” must begin with you and in the process a sense of serenity is born of acceptance.

You awaken to the fact that you are not perfect and that not everyone will always love, appreciate, or approve of who or what you are…and that’s OK. (They are entitled to their own views and opinions). And you learn the importance of loving and championing yourself and in the process a sense of new found confidence is born of self-approval.

You stop bitching and blaming other people for the things they did to you (or didn’t do for you) and you learn that the only thing you can really count on is the unexpected. You learn that people don’t always say what they mean or mean what they say and that not everyone will always be there for you and that it’s not always about you. So you learn to stand on your own and to take care of yourself and in the process a sense of safety & security is born of self-reliance.

You stop judging and pointing fingers and you begin to accept people as they are and to overlook their shortcomings and human frailties and in the process a sense of peace & contentment is born of forgiveness.

You realize that much of the way you view yourself, and the world around you, is as a result of all the messages and opinions that have been ingrained into your psyche. And you begin to sift through all the crap you’ve been fed about how you should behave, how you should look and how much you should weigh, what you should wear and where you should shop and what you should drive, how and where you should live and what you should do for a living, who you should marry and what you should expect of a marriage, the importance of having and raising children of what you owe your parents. You learn to open up to new worlds and different points of view. And you begin reassessing and redefining who you are and what you really stand for. You learn the difference between wanting and needing and you begin to discard the doctrines and values you’ve outgrown, or should never have bought into to begin with and in the process you learn to go with your instincts.

You learn that it is truly in giving that we receive. And that there is power and glory in creating and contributing and you stop maneuvering through life merely as a “consumer” looking for your next fix.

You learn that principles such as honesty and integrity are not the outdated ideals of a by gone era but the mortar that holds together the foundation upon which you must build a life. You learn that you don’t know everything: it’s not your job to save the world and that you can’t teach a pig to sing. You learn to distinguish between guilt and responsibility and the importance of setting boundaries and learning to say NO. You learn that the only cross to bear is the one you choose to carry and that martyrs get burned at the stake.

Then you learn about love. Romantic love and familial love. How to love, how much to give in love, when to stop giving and when to walk away. You learn not to project your needs or your feelings onto a relationship. You learn that you will not be more beautiful, more intelligent, more lovable or important because of the man on your arm or the child that bears your name. You learn to look at relationships as they really are and not as you would have them be. You stop trying to control people, situations and outcomes.

You learn that just as people grow and change so it is with love… and you learn that you don’t have the right to demand love on your terms…just to make you happy.

And, you learn that alone does not mean lonely…And you look in the mirror and come to terms with the fact that you will never be a size 5 or a perfect 10 and you stop trying to compete with the image inside your head and agonizing over how you “stack up”. You also stop working so hard at putting your feelings aside, smoothing things over and ignoring your needs. You learn that feelings of entitlement are perfectly OK…and that it is your right to want things and to ask for the things that you want… and that sometimes it is necessary to make demands.

You come to the realization that you deserve to be treated with love, kindness, sensitivity and respect and you won’t settle for less. And, you allow only the hands of a lover who cherishes you to glorify you with his touch…and in the process you internalize the meaning of self-respect. And you learn that your body really is your temple. And you begin to care for it and treat it with respect. You begin eating a balanced diet, drinking more water and taking more time to exercise. You learn that fatigue diminishes the spirit and can create doubt and fear. So you take more time to rest.

And, just as food fuels the body, laughter fuels our soul. So you take more time to laugh and to play.

You learn, that for the most part, in life you get what you believe you deserve…and that much of life truly is a self-fulfilling prophecy. You learn that anything worth achieving is worth working for and that wishing for something to happen is different from working toward making it happen.

More importantly, you learn that in order to achieve success you need direction, discipline and perseverance. You also learn that no one can do it all alone and that it’s OK to risk asking for help. You learn that the only thing you must truly fear is the great robber baron of all time. FEAR itself. You learn to step right into and through your fears because you know that whatever happens you can handle it and to give in to fear is to give away the right to live life on your terms.

And you learn to fight for your life and not to squander it living under a cloud of impending doom. You learn that life isn’t always fair, you don’t always get what you think you deserve and that sometimes bad things happen to unsuspecting, good people. On these occasions you learn not to personalize things. You learn that God isn’t punishing you or failing to answer your prayers. It’s just life happening. And you learn to deal with evil in its most primal state – the ego. You learn that negative feelings such as anger, envy and resentment must be understood and redirected or they will suffocate the life out of you and poison the universe that surrounds you.

You learn to admit when you are wrong and to build bridges instead of walls. You learn to be thankful and to take comfort in many of the simple things we take for granted, things that millions of people upon the earth can only dream about; a full refrigerator, clean running water, a soft warm bed, a long hot shower. Slowly, you begin to take responsibility for yourself by yourself and you make yourself a promise to never betray yourself and to never ever settle for less than your heart’s desire. And you hang a wind chime outside your window so you can listen to the wind. And you make it a point to keep smiling, to keep trusting and to stay open to every wonderful possibility.

Finally, with courage in your heart and with God by your side you take a stand, you take a deep breath and you begin to design the life you want to live as best as you can.
by: Virginia Swift.

2. Does it Feel Like a “Game” that you “Should” but Don’t Want to Play?

Here is a very insightful e-mail from someone who has poured over my material, and probably the material of many others. She describes a powerful dilemma, if not expressed by others, at least felt by others. Here is her e-mail:

It strikes me that you’re sending something of a double-bind message in these materials. On the one hand, I’m by no means to consider any of this to be my fault, but on the other, I should set about improving myself, perhaps with the underlying intention of “winning him/her back.”

And as I embark on my “improvement” program I find myself in competition with the OP (other person.) Now, how can I “win” that? She gets the candlelight, conversations and sexual excitement of dimly lit hotel rooms. I get the harsh and utterly unforgiving light of day-to-day reality.

Quite right that I need to be fit and happy for myself, but some of this seems like a game to me… a game I seemingly can’t win. I’m tired of the game.


My Response:

Gosh, you hit the nail on the head! THE dilemma: Do I need to play the game better? Or, How do I extricate myself from the game and still care about him?

After all, an affair is a game, initiated usually by someone who is developmentally arrested (most did not “do” adolescence very well), has a character disorder (loves “the game”), Struggles with addictions or suffers from feelings of inadequacy (needs to prove their adequacy or migrates to those familiar feelings of being inadequate).

Because he/she plays the game doesn’t mean that you have to. It also means you can (eventually, perhaps) care and “connect” with him/her.

Yes, The affair in NOT your fault. Did you make mistakes? Well, I would assume so! Who doesn’t? And really, you don’t carry the power to control the behavior of others! :)

Yes, the “improvements” are subtly conveyed as those things we need to do to win the game or get the guy. And, of course, they don’t work, or if they work, we get the guy and say, “Hmmmm, is this all there is!?” And, if we pursue these “improvements” to win him/her back we are merely playing the game, and feel this lack of personal integrity.

Not playing the game means standing back, learning about you, seeing the affair for what it REALLY is, and connecting to your partner by making comments “about” him/her, the situation and/or yourself.

For example, you assume this other person is getting something special – and our media does a number on us with their portrayal of “romantic love.” It may appear so, but affair relationships have a terribly horrible track record. I get a number of emails from those involved in an affair who feel trapped or on a course of self-destruction. And, usually those relationships self-destruct in very messy ways.

Learning about yourself is very different from “making improvements” you described. You don’t have to improve! You need not “get better!” You are ok. But, you do want to grow and create a richer more whole life for yourself and those you touch. This goes beyond a hard body, although a hard body might feel good and be what you want also. But, you want it for you, not to strut and seduce him (although sometimes that is fun!).

Here are some questions you may ask, to move you in the direction of self awareness and away from the game playing:

1. What am I tolerating? What am I willing to tolerate? How and what can I stop tolerating?

2. How can I simplify my life – getting rid of all the relational and physical clutter – so I live from a center of peace (well, sometimes at least)?

3. How do I clear my mind of all the thoughts of what I should’ve, could’ve or would’ve done? How do I throw off the baggage I carry?

4. How do I become a person of extreme integrity – doing that which is right/healthy FOR ME?

5. How do I speak my personal needs in a way that others naturally want to respond, “yes, let me know how I can help you.” How do you get beyond your neediness?

6. What do I need to do right now to manage my life (finances, children, body, work, etc.) in a way that gives a sense of well being, where I can say, “This is good!”

7. What boundaries need to surround me to protect my soul, heart and mind from the slings and arrows of toxic people and situations?

8. What are the standards in my life? How can I double my standards to be more fully me?

9. How can I create reserves of time, space, money, energy, opportunity, love, information, wisdom, self and integrity in my life – getting beyond my neediness so I may live bound by purpose?

10. How can I live RIGHT NOW rather than regretting the past or fearing the future?

11. How can I surround me with people I want and who are good for me and me for them?

12. How do I protect what is vitally important for me?

13. How do I orient my life around my values so I feel truly fulfilled by the goals I set and met?

As you move through these questions (and you won’t complete this in a couple days, or weeks, or months) declare your thoughts and findings to him/her. Act on tolerating less, let him/her know your boundaries, state your standards, live out your values in his/her presence.

And, feel free to make comments regarding what you observe, or don’t observe in his/her life.

Don’t compete. Don’t try to measure up. Be you. And, be curious about him/her.

I know – easier said than done. But here is a game plan that puts you above the “game.”

3. How to talk to me

If you need to talk more extensively and want to accelerate your pace through this crisis, sign up for one of my coaching packages.

Telecoaching: Coaching takes place over the telephone. Some call it telecoaching. We schedule a half hour phone consultation per week over the phone. (Sometimes more, depending on your needs.)

It’s simple. It’s convenient. It’s easy. It’s confidential.

Working with a coach may help you move through the affair more quickly, avoid the mistakes others make on their own, boost your self-esteem, make you feel better and help you get the life and love relationship you truly want.

Click here to check out the coaching packages.

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