Dividing Against Yourself Sucks

Today, a story about the best anguish — forgetting who we are.

The Client

Tim comes into my office. He’s torn up inside. He’s been married for several years. But… something’s not perfect.

He says that his wife is a sweet man, great to him, and a terrific mother to his children. And he says,”I’m miserable. And I have not the slightest clue as to why.

We talk for a little. Very quickly, it’s apparent that we are getting nowhere. He is completely stuck in his mind, swirling in his guilt with what a terrible guy he is, for being unhappy with such a fantastic family.

I wonder, should I get out the boxing gloves and pads? Change things up with this man?  Perhaps he can beat the shit out of the demon he feels inside of himself.

Rather, I have him get up and stretch his body, move around. Anything to escape his head. I have him perform several minutes of jumping jacks to change his energy.  Sometimes the mind is a tyrant that only circles itself.

After the motion, we stay standing. I see he’s more relaxed, even milder energetically. “A little workout during a training session,” he says. “Bonus.” He laughs.

I ask him to remain standing, feel his breath, through his or her body.  I direct him to take complete body breaths, from head to toe and then back down.

The Change

We sit down again and suddenly he is more alive. He’s prepared to step in with more bandwidth to research his unhappiness and his union, without so much painful self-judgment. He is opening to himself.  He is no more dividing against himself.

Maybe he states,”I want to explore other associations, other freedoms in my own life, take space and time away from my loved ones.” At the notion of it, his face glows.

I make no conclusions. At least, his energy is shifting. He has more access to parts of himself that he was formerly shutting down.

Needless to say, I don’t encourage him to go have an affair. I have often said, if you can not make one woman happy, how are you going to make numerous women contented?

I’m amazed at his change and not, since I see it often how a person gets much more access to themselves, once they eliminate their moralistic and judgmental perceptions of these. Neutralize the brutal inner critic.

Tim is no longer thinking about what a terrible guy he is for not enjoying his loved ones. He’s actually beginning to think what a fantastic guy he is for loving himself. And while an affair or big trip away probably will not be the avenue to supreme happiness, it is an avenue to get parts of himself against which he is divided.

The Debrief

Yes, all of us have crazy ideas, not all of which we will need to act on. But how can we get the energy of these thoughts and incorporate them into our own lives, rather than judging and dividing from ourselves?

I have heard it said often and I lived it for a long time — that the best suffering is dividing from one’s self.  It happens every day and if it does, we neglect the requirements of our soul.

It can occur in an office, sitting all day, feeling agitated, not understanding why, in front of a computer all day. It can occur in a relationship, feeling grumpy over nothing.

And we benefit greatly if we find a way back to ourselves in the hardest moments.  And it may be as straightforward as yeah, this sucks, I feel separated from myself, and I am OK.

Tim leaves our session, not booking a plane ticket to Honolulu or Guatemala, but conscious that he wants to give himself more time and energy and space. He can not be so hard on himself and then project his distress onto his union.

“It is me, not her. I’m the person who’s messed up,” he says. Ironically, he is glowing. And not ironic because he is back in his power to do something about it.  He’s no more dividing against himself, beating himself up for his own distress.

And for this, he’s a better man for everybody around him — his spouse, his family, and his friends.

Do you know a fighting man who needs help? There are many people out there. Are you that guy, going it alone? Get help today.

Previously Released on stuartmotola.com


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My Ex-Wife Is Giving Me a Second Chance. But If I Blow It, That’s It

Q: My ex-wife is giving me a second chance and if I blow it, that’s it. We fought so much the first time around because we are so different. I, now, have changed and she says she has changed too. How can we make this work, the second time, for the sake of our family because we have two kids.

A: I really honor you for wanting to give it your best shot, to be willing to give it a second chance. Even within a marriage, even if you didn’t get a divorce and are trying to get back together again, there are some doozies people have to work through so good on you! “If I blow it, that’s it” – that kind of thinking is fear-based, not love-based. You are in a contracted state – you are walking on egg shells. You’re giving your power away, you are not open, free, expanded. Let go of this. Open up to your worth, open up to her worth, and open up to the possibility of what this is going to take.

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You said you argued a lot and the cause was because you were so different. Do a little work on how each of you would like to be communicated with and find a way that work for both of you. Do some practice runs before an issue pops up. Maybe both of you like to be acknowledged in a certain way that hasn’t been consistent. Maybe both of you like to be loved, or touched, or receive expressions of love in a certain way. Maybe each of you like to have a different way of dealing with a touchy issue – maybe one likes to sit on it and one likes to talk right away. Find some middle ground, create a deal that works for both of you on how to have arguments, talk about money, talk about sex, be who you are in your life – making sure each of you are taking care of your dreams, goals, friends, etc. Then give it another shot.

Yes, the kids are totally worth it! You are up for creating peace and so that your children can thrive. If you are religious, there could be courses at your church that you could go through. I would be an insanely amazing resource, I would love to help you get to the core of what didn’t work last time, heal it, and use it as a spring-board from which to soar into a stronger marriage than ever. It is not wrong that it happened, there was just growth to be had that you weren’t able to work out. So let’s see if we can do it this time.

So sit down, the two of you can give me a call and we can see if this is a fit or not, but it would be a wonderful foundation to the rest of your life together and there is no need to waste money in another divorce.


All my love,


A version of this post was previously published on allanapratt.com and is republished here with permission from the author.


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