Yes I know. I’m the author remember…
Well weren’t you being a bit harsh? What was a nice spiritual bloke like you doing writing something nasty like that about women in their 30s?
Actually I was trying to make a point, as you’d know if you’d read the next chapter, smartass.
That we live in a society with insanely high expectations to what it takes to be okay and live a happy life – not least when it comes to relationships. And that these sky-high expectations often hit women in their 30s extra hard. For many reasons – because their biological clock is ticking ever faster, because of past historic programming, and because of a host of other factors which drive many women in their 30s up the wall.
Yeah… okay… well there might be some truth to that. But still, shouldn’t a nice spiritual bloke like you be looking within rather than pointing your finger at other people? As far as I know you’re no saint yourself when it comes to relationships or having unrealistic expectations to yourself and to life. And while we’re at it…what about men in general – don’t men also have problems when it comes to relationships?
Absolutely. Which is why the next chapter is called “Why are men such wimps?” In this chapter I tried to explore why so many of the men in my generation (including myself) have such difficulty saying no and setting limits in relation to the women in their lives – especially the women who have such sky-high expectations when it comes to relationships and the men in their lives.
Okay, but I still don’t get what all this has to do with the title of the book “101 Relationship Myths”? What’s a relationship myth?
Well when I say “relationship myth”, I mean an unquestioned collective belief about relationships that has nothing to do with reality. In other words, an untrue story, that’s what a myth is. In the book I try to explore how our innocent beliefs in a whole range of unquestioned stories about relationships, love, sex, men and women are driving so many people today crazy. These beliefs are not only sabotaging our happiness and peace of mind, but also our ability to practice basic healthy “relationship and people skills” such as clear communication, minding our own business, being assertive and setting limits, and so forth.
I still don’t get it… Can you give me an example of a relationship myth?
Well some of the juicy ones I investigate in the book are….
- “My happiness is dependent on my partner”
- “If I work try hard enough sooner or later my partner will change”
- “If you love me, you’ll do what I want”
- “I know what is best for my partner”
- “It’s better to be in a relationship than to be single”
- “A relationship can only work if you compromise”
- “Strong sexual attraction means we’re a good match”
- “I need partner to be happy”
Those don’t sound like myths to me. Everyone knows that that’s just the way things are. Love is hard sometimes.
Are you sure about that?
Well yes, I mean just look around you, that’s what everyone is saying. On TV, in the magazines, in a thousand and one pop songs. Just ask your mum and dad for chrissake!
I know. But just because almost everyone believes these stories, it doesn’t necessarily mean they’re true. 500 years ago everyone believed that the Earth was flat. Until one day Columbus discovered that the Earth was actually round.
Okay, so now you’re comparing yourself to Columbus? Don’t you think you’re being just a tad arrogant here!
I’m not comparing myself to anyone. All I’m doing is asking questions, taking nothing for granted, looking at life and relationships with an open mind.
Okay, well let’s just say for argument’s sake that some of these beliefs are not entirely true. What then do you propose that we do about it?
Well, if you’d read a little more you would have discovered that that’s the main point of the book. Once I’ve identified some of our most common relationship myths and how they sabotage our happiness, I then show the reader how to question and free themselves from the painful and limiting grip of these age-old beliefs.
You make it sound so simple.
Once you understand the basic mechanism, it actually is. Whenever you’re feeling upset or unhappy in your relationship, it’s always a sign that you are innocently believing something that is not true. So identify the belief that’s making you upset and give it a reality check. Does this belief have anything to do with reality? And if not, what would it be like to live in harmony with reality, rather than being run by this stressful assumption. I call this technique “mythbusting”. Once you’ve tried it, you’ll be amazed and delighted at what you’ll discover.
Hmm. Maybe I should read the rest of the book.