Screw the why, let’s talk about the what
Does anyone else think “why” is the most commonly asked question? And I’m honestly not just saying that because I’m a mom of toddlers. Whether it’s a celebrity break up (which seem to be happening a lot this summer) or a tragic story in the news, or just a regular conversation between friends, the question “why” comes up over and over again.
We want to know why it happened, why it started, why it ended and so on and so on.
But the truth is as a couple’s therapist, I’m really concerned about the “what”. Stay with me for a second and let me explain.
Now the “why” can be very important, but it really keeps us more in the past, right? Why did she cheat? Why did he lie? Why did they yell?
All these look to explore the past, and again the past is important, but it’s not the end all be all.
When we’re looking to make change happen, we really need to start exploring the “what”. What is keeping the disconnection going? What is causing the communication to derail? What prevents resolution from occurring?
When we start answering those questions, we get to start looking for solutions.
To put it simply, when you go to get your car fixed, you’re less interested in why it broke and much more in what’s going to be done to fix it, right?
We need to start shifting the “why” thinking in our relationships.
Sure, we need to know the why so history doesn’t repeat itself, but that doesn’t give us the answers to what we’re going to do to fix it.
And we need that information!! We need that part of the puzzle in order to be able to solve it.
The next time you’re in conflict or disagreement with your spouse, I challenge you to start looking for the “what”. What is making us disagree? What is standing in our way of being vulnerable? What is our biggest barrier to communication?
The more you answer that question, the more movement you’ll begin to see and what an amazing process that is.
I want you to share with me how “why” has road blocked progress in your relationship. If you’re with me, let me know! I want to know what your journey through connection and love is like and how you’re applying these tools in your relationship.
Send me an email, firstname.lastname@example.org, give me a call, 916.955.3200 or comment below.
I can’t wait to hear from you.