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Well, life has truly handed you lemons, not just one or two, but a truck full of lemons has backed up to your driveway and not even rang your doorbell and asked you where to put them. No, the truck just dumped them all in the driveway, there’s no use complaining about them...what do you do with them? We’re making lemonade...a lot of lemonade, because you truly do have it in you to take a driveway full of lemons and make the most wonderful lemonade that the world has ever tasted. Today we discover the recipe, through acceptance, through owning your own thoughts, feelings, emotions, through learning how to communicate, to stepping out of a victim mindset, to learning how to self soothe all the way to self-confidence. Cliches be darned, on today’s episode Tony shows you how to not simply survive based on everything going on in the world, but to truly thrive. 
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Sign up at http://tonyoverbay.com to learn more about Tony’s upcoming “Magnetic Marriage” program!
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This episode of The Virtual Couch is sponsored by http://betterhelp.com/virtualcouch With the continuing “sheltering” rules that are spreading across the country PLEASE do not think that you can’t continue or begin therapy now. http://betterhelp.com/virtualcouch can put you quickly in touch with licensed mental health professionals who can meet through text, email, or videoconference often as soon as 24-48 hours. And if you use the link http://betterhelp.com/virtualcouch you will receive 10% off your first month of services. Please make your own mental health a priority, http://betterhelp.com/virtualcouch offers affordable counseling, and they even have sliding scale options if your budget is tight.
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Tony mentioned a product that he used to take out all of the "uh's" and "um's" that, in his words, "must be created by wizards and magic!" because it's that good! To learn more about Descript click here https://descript.com?lmref=v95myQ
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Please subscribe to The Virtual Couch YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/c/TheVirtualCouchPodcast/ and sign up at http://tonyoverbay.comto learn more about Tony’s upcoming “Magnetic Marriage” program!
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Tony's FREE parenting course, “Tips For Parenting Positively Even In the Not So Positive Times” is available NOW. Just go to https://www.tonyoverbay.com/courses-2/ and sign up today. This course will help you understand why it can be so difficult to communicate with and understand your children. You’ll learn how to keep your buttons hidden, how to genuinely give praise that will truly build inner wealth in your child, teen, or even in your adult children, and you’ll learn how to move from being “the punisher” to being someone your children will want to go to when they need help.
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Tony's new best-selling book "He's a Porn Addict...Now What? An Expert and a Former Addict Answer Your Questions" is now available on Kindle. https://amzn.to/38mauBo
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Tony Overbay, is the co-author of "He's a Porn Addict...Now What? An Expert and a Former Addict Answer Your Questions" now available on Amazon https://amzn.to/33fk0U4. The book debuted in the number 1 spot in the Sexual Health Recovery category and remains there as the time of this record. The book has received numerous positive reviews from professionals in the mental health and recovery fields.
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You can learn more about Tony's pornography recovery program The Path Back by visiting http://pathbackrecovery.com And visit http://tonyoverbay.com and sign up to receive updates on upcoming programs, and podcasts.
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Tony also mentioned his appearances this week on two podcasts, The Betrayed, The Addicted and The Expert with hosts Ashlyn and Coby, and Virtual Couch former guest Brannon Patrick where we discuss narcissism in detail and the challenges people face in relationships with narcissistic individuals https://www.betrayedaddictedexpert.com/podcast/episode/25d19bf1/is-narcissism-nature-or-nurture and The Millennial Member Podcast hosted by Emily Ensign where we discuss the topic of pornography, what helps with recovery, and what doesn’t https://www.buzzsprout.com/1072564/6209683-tony-overbay-pornography-and-recovery

TRANSCRIPT

Holidays, vaccinations, sheltering in place, the brain's desire for patterns or order, we're a year into covid anxiety, communication, distance learning, people telling me that they always wanted to work from home until it was actually forced upon them with so much uncertainty in the world, in our lives, in our own heads. It is it is no wonder that anxiety, depression, marital discord, frustration and parenting are at an all time high. But I promise you, that doesn't simply mean that you are doomed, that there's nothing that you could do or that you have no control of your future or even your present. Oh, no, my podcast listening friend. Sometimes you do need a push to truly take action and as if 2020 wasn't a big enough push. I'm really not quite sure what would be. But if you haven't taken action already, if you're not even sure what to do next, you are in the right place. Cue the patriotic music. OK, I guess I still don't actually have the budget to license that long of a clip, but I am going to give you the secret to happiness. The recipe for making twenty twenty one your well making twenty twenty one a whole lot better than twenty twenty because do you want to simply survive or do you want to thrive. It's time to thrive my friends and I will tell you how. Coming up on today's episode of The Virtual Couch.

[00:01:23] Welcome to Episode 239 in the virtual couch, I am your host, Tony Overbey, I'm a licensed marriage and family therapist, speaker, husband, father might well have a coach author. I forgot my own spiel, creator of The Path Back, which is an online pornography recovery program. It is changing lives. Truly go check out pathbackrecovery.com and at the very least go download the short e-book that is on that website that talks about five myths that people fall prey to when trying to stop numbing out or coping or turning to pornography as a coping mechanism. And they do that when they're not feeling connected to their spouse, their kids, their health, their faith, their career, their life, which is what we're going to talk about today. And please head over to TonyOverbay.com and sign up to find out more about my upcoming programs. There's a free parenting course on there and including I'm talking about it often now, but a very exciting release of my magnetic marriage course. And if you didn't listen to my episode a couple of weeks ago called How to Truly Connect, a.k.a. the consequences of Crummy Communication, please go back and give that one to listen.

[00:02:17] I lay out my four pillars of a connected conversation, which is a it's a concept that is the foundation to the upcoming magnetic marriage course. But honestly, even just hearing the four pillars can point a couple or a person in the right direction of setting the table to have better experiences when communicating with anybody. I have to tell you quickly that one of the pillars, the first pillar is accepting or understanding or trusting that nobody wakes up and thinks to themselves, how can I truly hurt my spouse today? And I just don't believe that they do. So if someone is withdrawn or if they are angry or if they're aloof, if you come into the situation with that first pillar, at the very least to assume good intentions, it's going to be more of an attitude of curiosity. And curiosity is one of the first steps, I believe, toward empathy. So the reason that I share this pillar, not only because I want you to go listen to that episode, because it truly is one of these game changing the thousands of downloads more than others. A lot of comments, good comments coming in through email.

[00:03:14] But yesterday, I went to tell a health video session with the client and the client has a good sense of humor. So a good, witty comment here and there, I believe can truly help somebody feel more comfortable in a session or in their life, which leads to more openness and sharing. Which side note, if you have a humorless marriage and you really feel like you are a naturally funny person, if you feel like outside of your marriage, people think that you're funny. If humor is truly a core value of yours, then living within a marriage where you feel like your humor is unappreciated or even discouraged. So that's an example of what is called a socially compliant goal. We're going to talk about those more today. But if you're suppressing your humorous side because you feel like you're supposed to or if you keep showing your humor side and it's not appreciated or if it's even judged or shamed, so you repress that side of you, then you're not going to be living your your best life. Your motivation is going to be weak. It's ineffective because you are going to have to show up and go kind of against your own will, your own process of unfolding or becoming.

[00:04:10] So again, we're going to get to more of that later on in this episode. What is the key? Be funny, not you want to be aggressively or a jerk about being funny, but I want to help you learn how to be yourself and kind of live your best you, and we're really going to dig so deep into that today. But OK, so I'm going over this first pillar of a connected conversation with this client and they say, so I'm giving my spouse the benefit of the doubt. I know that they aren't trying to hurt me. When they approached me about this particularly sensitive subject to which I float out a true Jim, I say, that's right. You believe that while they don't wake up and think, how can I hurt my partner, you're kind of more in this mindset of your spouse waits till at least mid-morning after a good snack to think about how they'll hurt you. Any kind of pauses. And he starts to reframe his comment. And I am expecting Rush's laughter. And if anything, there were an awkward pause moment. And he continues basically trying to say that what he just told me in a slightly different manner. So I say, oh, you must not have heard my joke. And I said and I repeated the joke. And this time he kind of laughed wasn't the Rorschach's laughter that I had anticipated. But he shared with me that I had broken up a couple of times.

[00:05:19] The Internet was bad when I was telling the joke. So the funny parts basically have been eaten by the Internet. So it made me sound kind of like a complete buffoon, not understanding my own pillar that he was trying to share, I'm sure trying to get approval. So I just jotted down a note on my iPad, freaking 2020 and the hiccups of distance therapy. And I only give you that as an example of the fact that I was dealing with something that I wasn't having to deal with a year ago. I mean, I've had sessions where the clients Internet is just bad. So we spend a few extra minutes here and there dealing with technology where that wouldn't have been the case previously, or we end up doing it like the Pioneers did on the phone. And so I'm blowing through another couch because I want to be respectful of anybody that is is still choosing to come into my office as I am deemed an essential worker and I have adequate space and wipes. So I continue to wipe down surfaces. And apparently the bleach and wipes was it initially meant they hit the couch a few times a day. But with every wipe or every missed joke, there's also an opportunity to practice acceptance. Yeah, this is what's happening. This is where we're at right now in life in the world. And is it fair? Is it unfair? Not even arguing that it doesn't feel very fair, but once we accept that, we can kind of move on from it or once we accept that, we kind of learn how to transcend it.

[00:06:30] And I feel like this is part of what's happening or as well as I'm I'm kind of learning gratitude and being grateful to be able to work to help people. And as cliched as this may sound, a daily practice of gratitude absolutely provides a bump to one's emotional baseline, because as crummy as things may be in certain areas of our lives, it often takes something major to happen in order to take action. I don't think anybody wanted 2020 to happen, but oftentimes it takes things like that to really push us to a place where we we need to do something different or we even think about doing something different. I mean, I've literally done a corporate training for a fortune, I don't know, Fortune 20 or 30 company where I had executives on my zoom screen. And this was pretty covid. And I'm talking about gratitude. I'm basically doing a personal podcast. And yet I personally didn't take up the practice of daily gratitude until I had noticed over the last few months that my own emotional baseline was starting to dip. So it took a hard time to drive me to a new behavior. And I get couples in my office on a daily basis that are frustrated or even individuals that are frustrated. They're even in my office.

[00:07:33] And usually back to this couples scenario, one of them is frustrated that it took them having to schedule an appointment with a therapist or having to threaten to leave or threatening the D word, the divorce word, having to say that they are essentially done with the marriage in order for the other person to take action. And I've said this often, and it's unfortunate that often it takes a dramatic or a significant event. You know, in that scenario, an affair, betrayal, a complete withdrawal of emotion, a lack of love or a lack of sex, or the newfound addiction of a partner to get people to a place where they believe that they need to work on things. But often it does. I mean, people tend to choose the path of least resistance it's built in. It's an innate survival skill. And let me kind of talk about that for a minute. Your brain thinks it has a finite amount of energy to work with. So it wants patterns. It wants repetitive behavior. It believes that if an action or even a thought process happens often enough, that we can file it away into this habit center of our brain. I mean, think of tying your shoes or brushing your teeth. And brain scans show that we truly don't require a lot of electrical activity when operating out of this habit center where when we are doing new things, we're requiring a fair amount of brain activity, electrical activity.

[00:08:41] So just think that our brain thinks that it is doing us a favor by trying to figure out efficiency. So, I mean, we're truly trying to simply be efficient, to live forever and as well as have a sense of purpose and make a difference. And all the while, we have this innate desire for connection, like a deep connection, and where do we find connection? With other people. So, I mean, you see, when we evolved, our brains evolved from a time when life was not so much about happiness, but it was more about survival. I mean, our brain was initially designed to be what is called a don't get killed device. So we were designed to look out for danger, to anticipate harmful, dangerous situations, because if we could avoid danger, then we would continue to live. But in quoting Dr. Russ Harris, who is author of a couple of my favorite books, The Confidence Gap, as well as The Happiness Trap, let me kind of share a little bit of what he said Dr. Harris has said about this this happiness and our brains. He said early on your goal was to eat and drink and find shelter and reproduce and protect your family so that you could survive. Again, your brain was more of a don't get killed device. But the better we became at anticipating and avoiding danger, the longer we lived in, the more kids we had. So each generation, the human mind became increasingly skilled at predicting and avoiding danger. So now our minds are constantly on the lookout. We're assessing and judging everything that we encounter. Is it good or bad or safe or dangerous or harmful or helpful.

[00:10:02] But now it's not as much as animals or packs of thieves that we have to worry about, but it's about losing our job or being rejected, getting a speeding ticket, embarrassing ourselves in public, getting a terminal disease and a million other common worries. So as a result, we spend so much time worrying about things that more often than not won't happen. And then we also have this inherent need to belong to a group. And early on, if you're Klann boot you out of your group, how long would it be before you were devoured by wolves? I mean, sometimes, literally. So how does the mind protect you from getting booted out by comparing you to other members of the group, the clan? Am I fit in?

[00:10:37] Am I doing the right thing? Am I contributing enough in my as good as others? Am I doing everything that I may do, anything that might give me rejected. So does that sound familiar? I mean, our modern day mines are continually, Dr. Harris says, warning us of rejection and comparing us to the rest of society. So no wonder then we spend so much time looking for ways to improve ourselves or putting ourselves down because we don't measure up, because early on we had this small group of people to compare ourselves to. And now we have here comes my sounding like the fifty one year old man that I am. And now we have this, the social media showing us people who appear to be smarter and happier and more successful. So we're not only comparing ourselves to them, but to a person that we ideally think we need or want to be.

[00:11:17] So sometimes it almost felt like what chance do we have? You know, I've had a couple of people talk to me even over the holiday. We're. Not quite to the break yet, but during the holidays that they have followed a bunch of people on Instagram or social media in order to win certain prizes or giveaways. And I'm not saying anything negative about social media influencers, but one person told me in particular that they they kind of couldn't wait till these contests were over because they found themselves just comparing just comparing to the person's house, the person's hair, the person's kids, the person's spouse. And and I kind of shared that, you know, that person is really putting out their their best self. So when we're when we're trying to compare ourselves to this person that we ideally think that we need to be, again, that is a tough place to put ourselves. And so where does that leave us? So let me set up one more very important premise along this path of learning to to thrive and not just to survive. Author Robert Glover lays out a very succinct set of concepts that I feel like I've circled around in many, many different podcast episodes. So let me quote him. He says that when children come into the world, they're totally helpless. I always say that they're squishy babies in need of help. So he says they're dependent on others to recognize and respond to their needs in a timely, judicious manner. So as a result of this dependency, every child's greatest fear is abandonment. So kind of goes along with what Dr. Harris is saying to children.

[00:12:40] Abandonment means death. So to go along with that, then children are ego centered and nothing judgemental or wrong about this. I mean, that's what they are. The world revolves around them because that's all they know and they want their needs met. It just is so. So this means that kids inherently believe that they are the center of the universe and that everything revolves around them because, again, they're little kids who don't know otherwise and they don't yet know how to self advocate or to get their needs met. And they don't have a clue about what others are going through, primarily their own caregivers. So Glover says that therefore they believe that they are the cause of everything that happens to them. He said that these two factors, their fear of abandonment and their ego centredness that create a very powerful dynamic for all kids. So whenever a kid experiences any kind of abandonment, he and I'm going to go with him. But it's he or she will always believe that they are the root cause of what's happened to them, because, again, they are egocentric. They are attachment base, their a needy creature. Again, zero shame or blame, it just is. So these abandonment experiences are going to happen. The baby's going to cry at times and nobody's going to come to the rescue or even a well-meaning parent might think, OK, I can't just go to the rescue every time I need to teach them how to be strong and resilient and survive. So, again, it's just this balance that no one is going to get it, quote, right or perfect. So there are going to be times where the baby is going to cry.

[00:14:03] Nobody comes to the rescue. There's so many times where the baby is hungry and or even the kids hungry and told to wait for dinner. I had a client the other day processing some childhood issues and it was so simplistic but so beautiful, where this is an adult who was on a road trip over Thanksgiving. They had to go to the bathroom and they were dying to go to the bathroom, but they wouldn't make their needs met. They didn't want to inconvenience anybody. They didn't want to put somebody else out. They are an adult. And when we dug deep, it didn't the well didn't have to go too deep to find that growing up. If they if anybody in the in the family had to go to the bathroom on a road trip, it was they were told to wait, hold it basically. Hey, I don't really care how uncomfortable you are. I'm the dad. And when we stop, we'll go to the bathroom. I mean, again, I have this I think my kids are lucky because my bladder is about the size of a thimble. So we stop all the time. But you know, that that concept of I mean, if you were a dad, you get little kids or a mom and you're on a road trip and have to go to the bathroom, stop, you're not creating some apathetic, needy monster, but you're helping them know that they they matter. I mean, they really do. So so in that scenario, this person realizes, oh, wow, I'm an adult, I can advocate for myself.

[00:15:12] So that was kind of powerful. So, again, they are going to be hungry, told to wait for dinner. Are parents going to get angry because they have their own issues and they think that they are crummy parent because their kid is human, or meanwhile the kid does something that embarrasses the parent out in public and that parents having their own experience of, oh no, what, if my friends think I'm a bad parent, then they won't want me to be a part of their group. Right. Goes back to that what Dr. Harris was saying, where they're going to feel they worry they'll get booted out of the clan. So other abandonment experiences may be a parent putting unrealistic expectations on a kid, you know, expecting the kid to be perfect or trying to live their own lives through their kid. You know, they never had the opportunity to play sports. So their kid needs to not only play sports would be the best. And even if they the parent means well with the old hey, you can do better than that, champ.

[00:15:58] I mean, or heaven forbid the parent does Shame them or hit them or neglect them because again, of their own issues. So because every child is born into this imperfect world with with imperfect parents and imperfect families and because I'm sorry, but there are no perfect families. No, no perfect people that that that same egocentric kid, even if they begin to move out of that egocentric view of themselves, is. Carrying with them now into adulthood, that they must have been the reason for so many of these painful events in their lives, that they that they're unlovable, that why why didn't my parents listen to me? Why didn't they stop to go to the bathroom? Why didn't they hear me when I said that I didn't want to do a particular class or been through that sort of thing?

[00:16:42] And again, I know how how this is. This is such a fine line. I can't tell you I'm still of the mindset that I wish my parents would have made me take piano lessons or the piano lesson one alone is fascinating because I feel like, you know, I get people all the time saying my parents made me continue to play soccer and I hate soccer and I never want to play soccer. No offense to soccer people, but they would say, but I really wish they would have made me play the piano.

[00:17:07] So I get that there is no hard and fast rule of what this looks like for a parent, which is part of the whole reason why this can be complicated and why it's going to be important where where we're heading here in just a few minutes. So, again, they were we're going to feel like we must have been the reason for so many of these painful events in our lives. And that is untrue and incorrect and it's absolutely inaccurate and inaccurate view of their life or their childhood, but without help or without awareness, without accepting this imperfect world and imperfect parents and the fact that the parents themselves are trying to deal with emotions, that as a kid we can't figure out and even for the most part, again, without doing the work as adults, of course, we're going to come into relationships, into adulthood, still trying to figure out how to navigate relationships and how to present ourselves and how to be confident and and be our very best selves in a way that others will think are OK or that others will then care about us.

[00:18:03] And so these abandonment experiences create what many experts refer to as toxic shame, that something must be wrong with us inherently or our parents would have met our needs or our friends would have always been there for us or met our needs, or that people would care about us deeply or want to know more about us, or people wouldn't just try to fix us or judge us or people wouldn't want to just cut us off when we start trying to talk or the people who want to spend more time with us. So we have no way of understanding that our abandonment experiences are not caused by something about us, but they're caused by imperfect people who are supposed to, in our minds, recognize no and understand how to meet our needs. Back to the author, Glover. He defines toxic shame as the belief that one is inherently bad or defective or different or unlovable. And it's not just the belief that one does bad things, but it's a deeply held core belief that we are bad.

[00:18:59] So when we spend the rest of our lives trying to navigate this balance of trying to understand who we are or why we like and care about the things that we do all the while trying to see if our figuring ourselves out is going to allow us to still be a part of the group or the community or our marriage or our family all the while continuing to try then to be somebody that we believe others think that we should be or that others will like.

[00:19:23] And so this is where I go big with the you're OK. You're not broken.

[00:19:28] You need to get to a point of acceptance that you have the thoughts, the feelings and emotions that you have, because you are you you are human.

[00:19:36] You're the only person who has been through what you have been through. And I wasn't going to go into my go to here. But you're the only version of you from a nature nurture, birth, order, abandonment, rejection, DNA hopes, dreams, fears, losses.

[00:19:52] Your that's you're the only one that has that complicated, complex set of experiences that leads you to feel, think and behave the way you do. And an understanding that, again, you're not broken, you're human. And that leads to acceptance and with acceptance. I want all that negative energy to dissipate. I want you to begin to drop the rope of the tug of war against what you feel like you are supposed to feel or supposed to think. Acceptance does not mean apathy. Acceptance does not mean that you are resigned now to a life of mediocrity. Acceptance means that you're human, that you're OK, and you not only think, feel and behave what you do because you are you, but you now then also have the goals or the values that you have, not what your parents have, not what your spouse has, not what your community has. They're not what your church has or not the things that you think you're supposed to believe or feel or think you have values that you have and that needs to be void of that toxic shame. So in moving from just simply surviving to thriving, I want you to you're being you're done trying to just meekly please others and hopes that they will accept you or like you. It's time to step into your confident adult self. Others may say to you, I can't believe you really think that way.

[00:21:08] And instead of reverting to that, I don't know. I must have done something wrong or maybe I really don't think that way. Instead of putting out that vibe, you know, I hope that today you're going to understand that you're bringing you're bringing with you the negativity around a comment that somebody says to you that I can't believe you think that way, you're bringing that from childhood, that toxic shame. So there is power and saying, OK, you may not believe that I think that way, but I do. And you're not being a jerk. You're not being defensive. You're not being passive aggressive. You're stepping into your own person, your own sense of self. Your parents may say to you can't believe you're going to travel during a pandemic. Your spouse may say to you, I can't believe you honestly like that type of movie. Your boss might say, I didn't realize you had such strong opinions or your church may say, no, no, you don't really believe that or you don't want to go read that or you don't want to look into that. And instead of reverting back to the toxic shame based inner child self who doesn't want to disappoint others at the risk of them not liking you, there is so much power and saying, OK, I actually am going to go travel to see my family because I'm an adult.

[00:22:11] I make my own decisions. Or to your spouse. Oh no, I do like these types of movies or to your boss. I really do believe what I just said. I do have strong opinions and I believe what keeps us from doing this so often is this belief that will disappoint others or that will come across as a jerk or so many other thoughts. But when we are not living up to our and I'm talking our values, our desires, our beliefs, our desire for connection with family, our desire to be a better parent, our desire to to live according to our own values, our goal of being authentic and not having to back down from things that we feel important about if we're not doing those things our motivation is weak and ineffective and that we turn to coping mechanisms because then we feel less than then people want to come out to their phones or porn or alcohol or games or shopping, you name it, is as coping to numb out or to possibly get a quick bump of dopamine to carry them through the day to get to tomorrow or Monday or next month or next year. But that is just kicking the can down the road.

[00:23:16] My friends, the secret the key is to embrace who you are, accept it, own it, because once you accept it, you can transcend it. Once you accept that life is going to be a series of not only good experiences, but also not so good experiences. I say bad experiences, then you'll be more apt to lean into the bad because you know that you're going to be able to get through it and you're going to make the most of the good. You're going to be incredibly present in those good experiences. You're going to find more and more this good and just living a true, authentic life, pursuing a life full of meaningful relationships, not trying to figure out who you need to be in various situations so you won't offend others because that gets maddening.

[00:23:53] That's exhausting. But being open and authentic and sure, it's going to feel awkward when somebody questions your belief or your value, but stay in it, own it, get out of that victim mindset and you're going to get through that uncomfortable moment, confident and strong. No longer will you simply be surviving to get to another day. You're going to be thriving. And it's scary to drop that rope of tug of war trying to figure out if will I offend somebody that I say the right thing, that I you you're going to say the things that you feel passionate about or important about, and you're going to drop that energy when people say, I can't believe you said that, it's OK. Well, I did. And I don't mean that to come across as sounding negative or sound like a jerk or sounding defensive. It just that's how I feel. So you'll be thriving and you can't wait for another day because that's another day for you to fully embrace and engage in. And in those moments, your energy will shift from, I hope I don't offend anybody to standing up for something. And that power and that energy is what will not only lift yourself, but others. And remember, this is where one of my favorite quotes and the reason I enjoy even what's leading up to my magnetic marriage course is a communication style that allows for two people in a relationship to have their own thoughts, opinions and and feelings and know that we can learn how to express them without jumping back into our bunkers without feeling like a victim. Because here's the deal. We're bringing in all of this stuff from childhood into our marriages, into our relationships. And sometimes we don't even sometimes, most of the time we don't even really realize how it affects us and how then we just want to be heard in our relationships.

[00:25:32] The goal in a magnetic marriage is not to always resolve. It's to be heard. And the more we feel like we can be heard, the more we're going to turn to our partner to be able to share things, the more we're going be able to process human emotion. Sue Johnson, founder of VDT Emotionally Focused Therapy, says that we are we are designed to deal with emotion in concert with another human being.

[00:25:52] That is that attachment basis. And I've had people recently, somebody reached out to me and they said, I don't I don't know if I agree with that. And and I said, OK, again, OK. I mean, I, I can try to convince you, but I got a thousand couples under my belt now where I know that when people stay in this vulnerable role but not a vulnerable role where than they are trying to navigate this, should I or shouldn't I say this in true magnetic marriage, connected conversation, script, fashion. When people realize that they it's OK for them to say, let me take you on my train of thought, here's where I'm coming from, and when the other person recognizes that pillar number one, that all right, my spouse is not trying to hurt me with what they're saying then that I go into pillar number two. I'm going to I can't tell they're wrong. That's their experience. I can't say I can't believe you don't I can't believe you're saying that. It's like, OK, but I am or I can't say you don't really believe that because they do. And and so that's my second pillar. Third pillar is ask questions before putting out comments. Too often we say, OK, I just don't want to hear you go into all that stuff about what you supposedly believe. But OK, now you can talk we're setting ourselves up for these just not positive, not productive conversations. Then pillar number four is when somebody hears something.

[00:27:10] If you are in a marriage and your spouse finally feels like, OK, I really got to say something. And we've got this conversation script set up, this magnetic marriage, four pillars, connected conversations, script set up where if your spouse comes to you and says, hey, I just got a I just got to tell you how I'm feeling, then, OK, they're not trying to hurt me. Pillar one, pillar two. And I'm not about to tell them they're wrong. This is a vulnerable moment. Even if I don't agree with them, even if I don't believe what they're saying. That's that's my stuff to kind of set aside while I then ask them questions, tell me more and then thank them for sharing and and then pillar four, don't go into the geez. Well, I guess I'm the world's worst husband. No, don't go into victim mode if you're the listener, stay present. And then when that conversation when that person feels heard, now you get to be the speaker, they get to be the listener. Our goal is to be heard, because we weren't heard as kids. We weren't. And and that's that could be from bad parenting. It can be from parents just trying their best and going through all of their own stuff. But we weren't. And so our desire going throughout life is to be heard, to be validated, to know that somebody cares for us, that we matter.

[00:28:19] And so this is where Sue Johnson talks about while this belief may be that I got to figure my own stuff out before I can then show up in a relationship, if you really have a a meaningful relationship, whether it's in your marriage or whether it's in your parent child relationship or relationships with your friends, that you are going to be able to be yourself. And somebody is not going to say, I can't believe you said that. You don't really believe that. Well, let me tell you what I think before you open up with all that garbage. And then and then you would let's say that you do get it out there and then the person says, OK, I guess I'm the world's worst friend. I mean, you can see how this I feel like these four pillars of a connected conversation that I that I mentioned in the earlier episode that I'm talking about right now that are fundamental basis of my magnetic marriage course, which I wasn't I'm going to talk about today are so imperative because you can see how when we bring these this childhood wounding into relationships and then we have to we feel like we have to try to navigate and say those things just the right way. And then we have other people and kind of inserting their opinions or letting us know or what they think they think that we're wrong. Then you can see how we just aren't feeling heard. We aren't feeling like we're our authentic selves. And then we're even showing up in our marriages, which are supposed to be our safe, secure place and feeling like we can't even be ourselves. No wonder that we turn to these unhealthy coping mechanisms or we feel like we're just checked out or we feel like, I guess we're stuck or we feel like this is I guess this is as good as it's going to get.

[00:29:35] So moving from just surviving to thriving is not a passive aggressive, negative or defensive nature. It's a stepping into your true self empowered. This is how I feel. And and I really believe, you know, when you it's that power, that energy. That's what will lift not only yourself, but others, because now you're standing up for something that you believe in and you're finally just embracing your feelings, your thoughts, your emotions. So I kind of feel like ending this episode and pulling it up right now with the Marianne Williamson poem, because, my goodness, I feel I feel inspired by this poem and kind of where we're at right now. The Marianne Williamson poem, Our deepest fear is not that we're inadequate. Our deepest fears that we are powerful beyond measure, because it's not our light, it's not our darkness that most frightens us. Let me read this the right way, because it is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous. Actually, who are you not to be are a child of God and you're playing small does not serve the world. There's nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine as children do. We are born to make manifest the glory of God that's within us.

[00:30:54] It's not just in some of us, it is in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others. You are playing small, does not serve the world. It may serve the insecurities of some of those around you who want to hold you down so that they too can feel justified in not embracing their true senses of self. But it doesn't serve you, and it may be subconscious, but when I first heard this poem, I was moved. I was moved by the middle and the end, but I skipped right past the beginning. I thought that that was crazy, that I was afraid of being powerful beyond measure. But I get it now. That fear comes from that scared little kid who, of course, bless his little heart, who believed that because the people around him were human, that they weren't perfect. Therefore, they weren't always there for him, that something was wrong with him. But now he's an adult. He's an amazingly complicated, wonderful, imperfect adult. And in accepting that complicated, wonderful, imperfect self, he truly can and will transcend it. And in that process, some around him will find strength and they too, will find the strength to rise and others won't bless their hearts.

[00:32:06] They haven't yet figured it out yet. But in playing small, that's not only you who isn't living, but those around you won't even have an idea of what it looks like to live. So then someday, when they decide it's time to do something different with their lives now, they'll immediately think of you that, you know, there was always something different about you. Now they're going to learn. They're going to seek you out. They're going to want to find you and know what that is. What is it that that you have that puts out that different vibe? And I know what it is. You now know what it is. You've learned that life wasn't meant simply to survive, but it was meant to thrive. So if you have a second, please reach out to me and share with me stories of how you've turned from surviving to thriving. Or write to me right now with this episode brought up and you contact that Tony Overbay dot com or go through Tony dot com, the there's a contact me section of the website. But what this has brought up with you and what you can do to thrive, I mean, I know these things can sound so cliched, but let today truly be the first day the rest of your life.

[00:33:05] I'm grateful for you listening, for spreading the word, for helping me move to somebody who is thriving daily, somebody who for decades only survived. I survived the decade through a job that I really didn't care about, but I did. But no, I didn't care about it. And that is what has really led me to this place now where it's I it's I love what I do. They're ups and downs every day. But turning from just simply surviving to thriving has meant more than I ever, ever even knew. And I want that for you as well. So thanks for spending time with me. And I didn't do an ad in today's episode, but if you are seeking some help, I'll just make this short and sweet. Do me a favor and go sign up for better health outcomes. Virtual couch. Give the world of online counseling a try. It's it's worth taking a look at. And if you go through that link or you type in, better help dotcom virtual couch, you get ten percent off your first month's services and who knows, maybe that will throw enough my way that I can actually have that patriotic music clip in the beginning.

[00:34:08] Hey, thanks so much again for spending your time with me, and I'll see you next time on the virtual couch.

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