About the Episode :
Welcome Back Jemma Rane for episode number two. Listen in on the conversation Jemma and Rick have about toxic masculinity, or you can call it patriarchal masculinity, a term by Bell Hooks. Learn how Jemma coaches people in a mindshift change for gender norms.
About the Guest :
I’ve been quietly coaching clients on personal transformation for over a decade, observing what leads to fulfillment and creates lasting change. In all those years I never posted anything related to my coaching career nor personal experience on social media. My first ever post, a video on TikTok about how women (including myself) are the ones initiating divorce and why it went viral. My message about how we’ve been ignoring the crisis of connection in relationships (and with ourselves)is resonating with both women and men. Women are feeling understood and men are the importance of investing in expanding their emotional intelligence not just to advance their careers but to reconnect with themselves and their partners.
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We’re gonna dive right in today. Before we do, I want to ask you to share this with at least three people because we don’t take sponsors and the only way we impact more people and help more people is because of you. So please help us out today and you’re going to want to because Jemma Rane is back for a second episode, we got into a lot of conversations around relationships and how to even maybe separate when the person is a good person, how do you know what time it is, but then also we were talking a little bit about toxic masculinity, which I think is where we’re going to start today, Jemma, welcome back.
Thank you so much for that, I’m happy to be here.
I love this because as we start to figure out where we’re gonna go with today’s episode, you were talking about toxic masculinity and I was saying the inverse is positive masculinity, and I know you have questions for me on this and if I can may start around this as I feel that toxic masculinity is a phrase that’s used a lot when women don’t feel like their man is really being a man and I can see it as almost like a conundrum right, almost like a paradox, I think, for men because they, they want to step up and they want to be a man, but then there’s this inverse side of what you got to be sensitive and you hey I need you to hear me and so you know which, which are all very true but then it becomes which one and it’s like we feel like sometimes we have to bounce back and forth between these two personas. In order to not be taken the wrong way and actually step up and quote unquote. Being the man in a relationship, it’s an interesting paradox, from my perspective.
Yeah, absolutely. I mean I love even listening to you describe that you actually helped identify the problem that it feels like there’s only two options, and then they’re compartmentalized so already straight out of the gate, there’s a lack of integration for men, about what it means to be a man and so, I don’t love it. I think toxic is a word that’s overused anyway. I mean, I use it myself, but I think as soon as you put toxic in front of it. If I put myself in a guy’s shoes, I’m already feeling a little defensive. I already feel that you’re criticizing, being a man. Right, so, I prefer to use Bell Hooks term, which is patriarchal masculinity, right, because what’s happened is from the time you know men are little boys, they are actually conditioned to not have choice, right, they’re conditioned to behave in a certain way that patriarchal masculinity says, This is what it means to be a man and as I think we touched on before, it’s about a mindset of competition of win or lose, only those two options have power over in order to feel empowered. That’s false empowerment, right. So if we shift it to patriarchal masculinity and understand that that’s what’s damaging for both men and women. The differences for man, it compromises his authentic sense of self, and for a woman, it can actually lead to a life threatening situation.
Yeah, no doubt, there’s an interesting book that I read since the last time you’re on, and it’s called Understanding Women and I’d have to find I do audible all the time I’d have to find I think it’s by Beth. I’m going to find it here. I got the new iPhone 13 and I haven’t signed back into audible yet because I just activated this thing and this is why it’s going to take, now I get all the messages. That’s hilarious. Anyways, back to what we were talking about anyways.
The book is called Understanding Women, it was actually a Alison Armstrong, there we go, I don’t know if you’ve listened to it but that, yeah, there’s a book the audio version I really like because I listen to most from an audio perspective but this one was actually a live recording from an event that she was hosting, so you actually get to hear her inflections and vocal tones and just some of the humor behind some of this stuff too.
And energy, right?
Yeah, oh my gosh yes, and some of what she was talking about was about men, you know, this is from a positive masculinity perspective, was that men’s innate instinct is to be the provider and protector but like hands down she’s like that’s, I mean I’m talking like millennia, worth of instinct that’s built into them, and when they come because it this comes back to the, you know, well, women need to feel like they need to be heard by men, and men will struggle with this sometimes but then it becomes if they don’t do this, it becomes toxic masculinity like we’re talking about, but they’re already thinking her example was using a pool, she wanted a pool in her backyard in the pool was gonna cost about $30,000 something like that in ground pool, and he just like hand downs hands down vetoed it without anything else and she felt shut down, whereas his mind went to after they finally cleared the air had the conversation to, well, 30 years down the road that pool is not $30,000 because we’d have to pull the 30k out of our retirement fund and that 30k really is going to be $250,000.
You know this is decades from now so he was from that provider and protector mentality, saying like, “I’m setting us up for a secure financial future.” and it was interesting to hear the two perspectives on that because it was her own experience with her husband who she loves very much but it could have been to where she felt shut down vetoed she did feel that, because that was his area of responsibility but she didn’t feel like he heard her out on any of this but then she didn’t recognize it. “Oh, he actually is doing exactly what I asked him to do in our relationship.” That’s the role that he’s taken on. It was interesting, you know, that could have gone very, very badly.
Yeah, you just described. From her perspective, and you can see where the disconnection comes in and I would also add that, in terms of this idea of being a man understanding that their worth is about being a good provider that’s innate, I’m not so sold on that. I’m not completely dismissing it. It’s just when you go back to hunter and gatherer days. Sometimes men weren’t successful in their hunting expeditions and all the food was provided from what the women were gathering.
So they were also providers. Right, so I think the tricky thing is that we get so sad about these rigid ideas that have actually been socially conditioned, so it’s not an all or nothing. It’s a not or an either or. It’s both.
So, to me it’s about people expanding their sense of their worth, so that men understand your worth is actually about your being, and your worth is about being a provider. You don’t have to choose, right, because then their worth becomes really contingent upon, you know, success in their careers.
That’s what a lot of men dive into any sort of attribute to their value is what am I bringing to the table from a stability perspective, you know, financial, shelter, all of that and that but I’m hearing what you’re saying, on that as well. This was just their scenario and I feel that it was, I’m with you that it would vary from relationship to relationship. Yeah and I think I brought on my brother last episode too right because it’s his scenario where his wife makes more than him. She’s a CPA, you know, he’s a Technical Support Manager for Cars.com and their relationship works very well that way. So they’re both contributing from a financial perspective, she is more so than he and they’re perfectly good with it, which is awesome but they’ve also had a lot of communication around these roles, versus, you started with this word versus a competition.
Yeah, I think that plays into relationships a lot. I think society in general conditions us with a mindset of competition and men more so than women, women are encouraged and supported through many opportunities of learning collaborative thinking and a collaborative mindset and men are actually discouraged from that so I’m not saying that competition can’t be fun. Right, I mean,
Of course it can be fun.
Right, right. It’s just when it becomes a really rigid and dominant mindset, that’s when it’s problematic. In a relationship and also just for men moving through life in general, right, because it’s a focus on external validation of your worth whether you’re winning or losing, right. So, that’s a problem.
Yeah, so if I’m hearing you right. Are you saying that it’s an external validation of your worth that really absolutely has nothing to do with your relationship itself?
Yeah, well, I mean, I think it’s important we all you know for, for all of us we do you care what people think of us right that is part of how we learn to see ourselves is by the feedback and the input we get from other people, and yet we also want to be able to cultivate our sense of worth. On our own from our own understanding of ourselves, what we value about ourselves.
Do you think that they cut this? If you want to call this toxic we could call it a toxic competition relationship. Yeah, that’s probably pretty accurate, at least from how our discussion today, how, how does that play into, or is that really the cause to anybody in a relationship saying well I need to make sure that I’m financially independent on my own, you know is that a red flag in of itself if you see these things popping up and that’s the way that you’re thinking?
No, I don’t think so and I was gonna actually ask you about that too, right, because in terms of what we’re talking about with this identification for men and part of their identity being that to be good men, they have to be good providers. What does that mean for a man? Then, as in society now, as women become better and better at being financially independent. So for women, when they were, you know, years ago, decades ago, when they really didn’t have as many options to be financially independent right when that was blocked. They didn’t have that much choice in their relationships whether they stayed, or left, right? So it’s really a factor now of their financial independence.
This is not a loaded question. The financial independence side of it, I wanted to preface it with that. How do you bring that into a relationship without fostering toxic competition?
Okay, well you tell me about what you’re thinking in terms of how it creates, you know, toxic competition.
Okay, I love the conversation. No, what I’m getting at is, if you see yourself because competition is something that I’ve never wanted to see in any kind of relationship, and it’s if you have the conversation ahead of time and even when, when I was doing some pastoring I would have these types of conversations in sort of like the premarital counseling, right, or just the, it’s more coaching is what I was doing to say “Hey, here are some things,” I would never dictate what they should decide because that’s not my place right and even in what you do as a coach you want to lead people to their own decisions on things so I would spark the conversation and say “Here’s some things that you should talk about,”
We’ll take like the, the quintessential textbook which doesn’t happen too much anymore you know two single people coming together, going to have kids someday don’t have kids right now so it would just for this example, talk about what happens when you have kids, you know, is somebody going to quit their job at that point and who would be the primary breadwinner, so to speak for the family, you know who would, would the woman go back to work, you know, in a heterosexual marriage, how would this work for you have these conversations now ahead of time you know you’ve got some time but maybe this is something to bring up even before you say I do, that way there’s no misconceptions three years, five years down the road, whatever, when this comes up in the form of a toxic competition and you guys find out that you’re not on the same page.
Absolutely, I completely agree and so in, correct me if I’m wrong, I’m assuming that you were thinking as well that let’s say a woman became more financially successful than her partner in a heterosexual relationship, then he could feel somewhat threatened.
Yeah, without this type of conversation, you got it.
Yeah, rather than, you know, if his worth isn’t contingent upon his financial success, then it’s not a threat, then it’s great we can enjoy a different lifestyle, if there’s more money, right? I couldn’t agree with you more in terms of talking about all of those you know I remember with my ex husband before we had kids, we talked a lot about what’s the parenting gonna look like and you know both of us really wanted it to be 5050 and and you’re right, people don’t talk about those details a lot they also don’t talk about what love is. So I really think that what I observe in some relationships is that it’s really about care, more, and there isn’t love being cultivated.
Right, it’s about, you know, there are a number of elements to love and care is one of them however what some people are feeling in their relationship is. It doesn’t feel like love, and that they don’t want to say that they think that that just would be the most, you know, hideous thing to say, until maybe if they do decide to leave the relationship right, so going into relationship people also don’t talk about how do you nurture and cultivate love.
What are rhythms for connection that we’re going to have, because it’s really yeah care is the thing that kind of, I’m hearing you, and care is the thing that sort of bubbles to the surface and becomes sort of the primary I would think, but then that could lead to not so great of a codependent relationship, which could also, if I mean if there’s no love there years down the road and all you have is the care that’s great you can have a good friend, a best friend that could care for you. Versus a partner, it’s a different scenario and I wish that that becomes the wild, probably the seed of a lot of discontent too. Yeah, and relationships because they recognize that there’s nothing more than that but on the horrible inverse side of that, too, is it’s probably one of the things because that care does exist that will keep people in an unhappy relationship because of fear of losing that care.
Yes, I agree with you fear of losing it fear of what it means to be alone society’s conceptions about being alone that you’re not whole. Unless you’re with somebody. Right. People not knowing how to love themselves like you know there’s all this talk about self love right now, and I find people don’t know what that is, when you ask them about it, they’ll start describing practices of care, right? Which, isn’t love, it’s and it’s a dimension of love, it’s an element of love but it’s not actually going to feel that fulfilling, right? The same thing in a relationship and you’re right in terms of that codependent part, if people are really interacting with their partner to try to get, you know, needs met that they’re not even really aware of and not aware of the the adaptive strategies they’ve developed since their childhood, to try and kind of almost unconsciously manipulate situations people get really, you know, triggered by the word manipulate.
It’s true though it’s the right word, right?
I mean, y’all kind of do it sometimes, consciously, right. So, I think that’s a big part of it is understanding what Love feels like that love is going to ebb and flow, that it happens in you know Barbara Fredrickson, who wrote Love 2.0 talks about micro moments of love and expanding our understanding of love, right, that it’s not just in, you know, romantic relationships or friendships, relationships with kids that we can actually have these micro moments of all these positive emotions being evoke with like a small exchange with a stranger even. Right, but couples get stuck in this place of complacency. Right? They’re not consciously cultivating those moments in the same way, they’re not usually consciously cultivating desire. That’s a big one too.
That’s something that has to be stoked.
Right but mostly, right, you understand that, but there’s a lot of people, a lot of, you know, and men who don’t, right? So, they’re actually yearning for intimacy just as much as women, and yet in many hetero sexual relationships, they get stuck in their rigid ways of trying to get intimacym right? Men through sex women through talking, through emotional connection. That actually distances them even more, right? What you find a lot. Like, there’s a reason that, you know, one of my videos about desire went viral is because women were saying “Yes, these guys don’t understand this!” In terms of cultivating desire and arousal over time, right, that’s how a lot of women are aroused. Over time, it’s not immediate arousal and so focus on the seduction and the desire process. Right, rather than you know how many times a week or a month, people are having sex.
As a man you should leave women hanging every now and then there’s a tactic.
Right, and and learn some skills of seduction and cultivating desire of letting the imagination, you know,
yeah, the Art of Seduction is also another very good book. Yes, I don’t know if you’ve read that or not but yes it’s phenomenal. iInteresting turn of conversation. Yes, these are also true, we’re talking a lot, I mean we’re almost painting like a doom and gloom picture here. A lot of this stuff that we’re talking about sadly bubbled to the surface when people are stuck in their homes for so long with each other this past year, and they realize as you were talking especially about Kara and the work of complacency, it’s like that’s where some probably got stuck is in the complacency of care and that’s all they saw in front of them and then it became obligatory.
I’m so glad you brought up that word.
Not a desire to care for that person anymore, but you feel obligated to do so, rather than something you can, or even more so want to do.
Yes, I think obligatory is such a big word in terms of relational dynamics right and going back to not just care but again love. When love feels like a choice. It’s incredibly powerful when it feels obligatory and unfortunately that happens in long term relationships and marriages as well, right? When you really care about someone’s well being, when you care about their fulfillment and you’re, you’re not feeling this reciprocity of love, you’re not feeling like true love helps people feel their spirit feels alive, right? They feel like they’re growing, they feel connected to their true self, they feel more open minded and innovative and creative and, you know, people talk about, that’s why, in the initial stage, when people fall in love in terms of you know the chemical reward right those first 18 to 24 months. They’ll get the dopamine high exactly in the serotonin low and they’ll talk about feeling alive,
The oxytocin bonding, everything.
Right, so what happens after that stage, in terms of, again, you know, cultivating, you know small moments of that, right? So, in a long term relationship, people often do feel this sense of obligation to their partner right so then it doesn’t feel like a love of choice and yet that makes them feel so incredibly guilty so then they shut that down they suppress that awareness, instead of like you said we’re maybe painting a doom and gloom, but we have to identify the problems accurately right?
Amen, exactly. When you’re stuck in an obligated relationship or at least you’re not stuck because stuck is a choice. From my perspective, you know, as somebody feels stuck or whatever, cool, then you can change what you’re doing right now, because what’s the definition of insanity right, doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.
If you feel obligated to do something cool, change it and it’s tough but especially when you have a misconception around what love is and you go back to the care, but then it’s like, okay, well there’s a lot of effort that will need to be done and hey there’s a lot of effort both ways. There’s a lot of effort to stay stuck and there’s a lot of effort to build a good healthy relationship both of them take work, so which, which one are you going to stay in this middle area to where you’re just lazy and you’re just ignoring reality of what’s going on right now, or which side are you going to put work into because it takes effort to stay stuck, and it takes effort to have a healthy relationship, or it takes effort to get out of a toxic relationship everything takes work.
You’re right. Absolutely, and in terms of people feeling stuck, often because of that emotional state that they’re in, it actually kind of hinders curiosity, right, and we need to tap back into curiosity and to ask ourselves the right questions in terms of understanding why I feel stuck. What can I do to start tapping into my worth again and what my desires, and my dream for a better future and what does that mean and how do I, you know, in terms of the work put into a relationship. I like to think of it in terms of investment in the growth of the relationship. I think that sounds a little more motivating than work because no one’s asking for more work.
Nobody likes work.
No! You know what I mean. So, if you think about it in terms of nourishing a relationship, nourishing the connection and along with that, that also means nourishing yourself, not just putting it all on the relationship in terms of your fulfillment
What are you doing, what are you bringing, what can you change and looking inward first and saying okay there’s a scenario, “How can I change the way that I’m being perceived?” Or “I can’t control the other person’s feelings, that’s impossible, but how can I change the way I’m perceived?” Because there’s a different way when you look at it like okay this individual my partner, my boyfriend, girlfriend, my whatever my friend even if there’s a way that their brain can only hear some things and I know this from being a communicator, it’s like you identify your audience and I’m dumbing it down real hardcore. When you identify who you’re actually speaking to and when you get to know that person, you can change your form of communication so that they are able to hear you better.
Absolutely, I agree with you so much. I mean, and this has been an interesting process because the men who don’t feel threatened by what I’m saying understand, I am not blaming men, you know, for the dynamic in their relationship. Some men do. I mean, some men really do, they’re coming after me. I want both men and women to understand.
That patriarchal masculinity is very damaging to men too, right, because it’s teaching you, from a young age, to disconnect from yourself. If you’re discouraged from feeling identified and moving through a full range of emotions. Think about how that’s then also in terms of love, how that’s gonna affect your ability to receive and to give love, you have been taught to move through life by shifting all of your unpleasant emotions to frustration and anger.
Oh my gosh, yes, I’ve been thinking the same thing the past couple of days, but keep going and I’ll give you my take.
Yeah, I do want your take as a man.
To take something like self awareness is a big thing of mine and I tried to do this so some work I’ve been doing on myself the past several months was around this because frustration and anger are very basic emotions, and you know, they’re very basic negative emotions, you know they’re called negative but it just means they’re on that side of the spectrum.
Yeah there you go, that’s a better word. With those two, when, when I’ve have felt those the past several months it’s like, instead of continuing that way or even apologizing for being angry or frustrated in the moment, I would take a moment I’m still doing this to just sit and this has to do everything like I’ve even been logging my emotions now in different emotional waves, you’re clapping, that’s great! Then I’ll wait there even just for a minute, but then it’s the questions like, Okay, I’m feeling this.
I’m going to sit here a minute and allow myself to feel this, because I feel like this foundational emotion, you know, a frustration and anger is really there and it’s masking. What I’m actually feeling or the why, on why I’m feeling the way around this situation, this person, whatever, and then I’ll just sit there and let myself, sit in that for a moment, and then I’ll end up coming up with the why and then it’s like an illumination for me saying, “Oh, okay.” So then it becomes okay well what action can I take because now I truly understand why I allowed the frustration and the anger to pass and let me sit in it for a minute, to have that answer to the question why am I feeling this way and that’s like what action do I have to take. Is it a conversation? Is it a change in my own behavior? During those couple of moments of sitting, I’m actually able to even maybe see it a little better from the other person’s perspective.
Yes, I love all of it, you kind of took all the words out of my mouth.
This has been the past couple of months for me, I am trying to be self aware about the emotional waves and why I’m feeling the way that I feel in any particular moment.
Yeah and this is what I excited about people hearing you talk about that process because then maybe they can have more compassion for themselves and that, you know, you’re not a child of five or twelve figuring this up, you’re a man who’s had decades of life experience, and you’re recognizing there’s still more room to grow, I’m just figuring this out now. So many people don’t know how to identify what they’re feeling and move through it and be compassionate with themselves so that they can move through it in a way that feels safe and that they feel the sense of their own support. Then With frustration and anger, not always, but it can often be a secondary emotion.
Exactly, it’ll mask the real thing that’s going on, bingo, that’s why you have to sit, you have to sit in it,
Get curious right yeah so where, again, we’re patriarchal masculinity, like really boxes men in is that there are all kinds of very destructive messages around expressing, you know with themselves and with other people feelings of hopelessness of fear of grief of shame or embarrassment, right, they they’re they’re told, no, men don’t that’s disempowering, right? So they’re stuck. They don’t know how to identify with themselves that makes them feel like less than, and they don’t know how to talk to their partners about it and so they flip into frustration and anger so a very very common pattern is that they then take it out on the people that they’re around right? Again with that, you know, with the societal kind of power differential between men and women or, you know, with an adult and a child. It’s that there’s an implicit threat in there, right? Anyone who’s had a dad who’s gotten angry like when you’re driving me so many people have these stories of being in the current dad gets angry and everyone holds their breath. Yeah, right, because he doesn’t know what was going on, first before the anger came in, he felt a sense of inadequacy because he got lost or, you know what I mean, or, or something else happened earlier that day, and he doesn’t know how to identify what he’s feeling and to have compassion for himself about the suffering of those feelings and to move through it.
It’s so important and I find it actually, rather than being disempowering I find it very empowering because if you allow yourself because if I close my eyes and I think of just almost like floating in a raft down a river, riding that emotional wave that’s there and then allowing, whatever the frustration the anger to pass in order to find the answer of why it’s only then when I realized the truth of what I was feeling and why I was feeling it’s to where I can determine what the best action is and taking action is extremely empowering for a male specifically, but you can’t get to that, that centered, you know wholehearted truth of yourself action unless you allow yourself to move past in through the frustration and anger into the true why of how you’re feeling in the moments.
Yeah, absolutely and the process that you’re talking about is this integration then with self knowledge and action, right, and you also mentioned, being able to put yourself in someone else’s shoes. Yeah, and look at it from their perspective. So, in frustration and anger. People get very locked in this you know myopic perspective and also in that then comes blame. Yeah, if you’re angry, you’re looking for who to blame. So you’re creating further distance from yourself and further distance from the people that you’re with and that is not just in terms of personal transformation but in terms of relational transformation that is key is people being able, both men and women to identify, here’s what I’m feeling like women are encouraged to be more in touch with their emotional experience and landscape, however, because they’re conditioned to, you know, to think that their worth is about caring for others, they still have a lot of challenges with managing their emotions with caring for themselves.
This is a two way street. We’ve been talking a lot about men and how they process emotions but it’s the same on the female side too. Especially I could see in a not so great relationship where the female has taken on more of a masculine role, because of lack of whatever the partner is or is not doing any of that and around the blame side of it too because for women, men, whatever when you’re in this mode, you know, the opposite of blame is ownership. The only way to even come to that point where you can own your choices, own your emotions, own your actions after the fact and own what you’re bringing to the table or not bringing to the table as to, I feel anyways, is to allow yourself to ride through that, like we’ve been talking, and to settle back into the positive masculinity and the positive femininity that can coexist very healthy in a relationship.
Yeah, absolutely and there’s so many layers to that, like there’s a lot of layers right is understanding the, the reinforcing feedback loops that happen in relationships that when we go into a place of anger and blame and like you said not taking accountability for our part in it. It’s very linear thinking and it’s relational thinking helps better in terms of, you know deeper understanding of what’s going on in the, in the dynamic and taking responsibility for, you know, here’s maybe what I was doing or wasn’t doing and like you said it’s empowering to understand ourselves in that way because then we have choice, I can do it differently the next time.
Bingo, you got it, what’s a way when you coach people what’s a way for it to do like a pattern interrupt on that feedback loop because if you’re feeding off of each other and anger in the moments, how do you break that so that you both can come back to that point of understanding why you’re there to begin with?
So many things one, I think the pause is right to understand that once that kind of, you know, Daniel Goleman describes it as emotional flooding. Once that starts once you know, now we use the language of being triggered, right? Once your nervous system has been activated your prefrontal cortex is offline, you are not thinking logically
It’s a frickin adrenal response at that point.
Yeah, and and it’s usually because of, you know small t or large trauma from childhood, right So, part of it is understanding our relational patterns right of what triggers us what our wounds are how you know start healing yourself and we also heal in relationships it’s both and so understanding for example, you know a lot of the people that I coach have a trigger an emotional wound around feeling invisible, or that they didn’t matter or that their needs weren’t recognized prioritized in any time they sense that unconsciously, in an exchange with their partner, their nervous system is activated right so it’s also awareness around your patterns do you go into fight mode? Do you go into shutdown mode, right? Then how do you take care of yourself to get yourself back to a place where you can engage with your partner and actually hear what they’re saying and share what’s going on for you. Oh, pause, once it’s off the rails, pause, don’t continue the conversation.
Oh, right on. I wish there was like a white flag or something. I’m not saying that anybody’s surrendering in the moment or anything of that size we need a pattern interrupt here.
Absolutely, exactly like what you were saying in terms of the conversations that are so beneficial for people to have if they’re considering marriage, it’s really beneficial to have a conversation with your partner around, you know, here’s what I notice is triggering for me, and, and your partner can weigh in in a compassionate way, not in a critical way, I also noticed you get upset when this or that happens to help you know yourself better, that type of exchange, and to talk about “Listen, can we have an agreement that one or the other of us or both calls that kind of pause moment where we can kind of go off and take 20 minutes?” It apparently takes 20 minutes apparently to soothe the nervous system. Whoa, and in that process of walking away to soothe your nervous system, you have to be careful about how you’re communicating with yourself because if you’re being really self critical you’re triggering your threat response again.
Yeah it’s it you keep yourself in the loop at that point.
Absolutely, with the same thoughts over and over and over. Yeah, about the injustice or you know whatever.
Take a walk outside, take a drive, listen to your favorite feel good music, something else that gives you some other different kinds of stimuli, other than your own head. Yes, 20 minutes.
Yeah, absolutely, because once you’re activated you really can’t hear what your partner’s saying, Yeah, right. You don’t have an open mind, point,
We’re just like, wrap it you know it’s been like 35 minutes already and we haven’t shut up? Good God. This is incredible. 38 minutes my team is telling me, that’s phenomenal. This is great, we’ll just keep going here for you.
A question just immediately popped up for me, as you were saying that that you know when you talked about this process that you’ve been practicing for yourself right and in terms of change, it’s practice with like repetitive practice right and deep practice and think about what went right for me what was effective what wasn’t effective. What can I do differently, and so your understanding that’s been really effective in terms of personal growth. I’m curious if it’s a situation where you’ve had an exchange with somebody else and you recognized, you know, frustration, anger and then you took a moment to really kind of dive deeper and have a better understanding of maybe Was there another emotion I was feeling first. What’s the process then for you that you recognized as effective, you’re like smiling. Maybe you know where I’m going. In terms of then returning to the other person or sharing with the other person your experience or being curious about theirs or what does that look like for you?
Yeah, it’ll happen with an exchange with, with a person or it will happen, even on my own. If so, when you were talking about you know continuously feeding yourself in those moments, but I’ve noticed too that, and I’m not an angry person at all I mean, you know, even parenting, my kids I was the one that would not raise my voice I would go into the room get down on my knees at their eye level you know even when they’re three years old and just talk to him and just talk, walk through this stuff, you know, because my dad was a very same way, you know, and it’s difficult to shove me over the edge, but when I noticed that I’m over the edge, I’m able to notice it faster now.
After doing this integration work that I’ve discovered, whether and when it’s in an exchange with somebody, I will need to say as soon as I recognize this like hold on timeout I’m sorry it’s I’m creating the pause thing, I need a moment please. You know this, I don’t focus in the moment I don’t focus anything on the other individual, telling them that they’re angry too or whatever that is, that says, as soon as it’s like, we need to pause it even just saying I need to pause for a moment, give me 20 minutes, whatever it is, please, and then allowing myself to feel this.
However at the same time if I noticed this by myself and I start thinking about a scenario with an individual, and it’s before, it’s usually before, it’s interesting because your head does this, you know, to yourself, you know, it’s almost like torture I think before you go into a conversation with somebody if you’re going to call him, see him in person, I noticed sometimes these come up. You know, before I’m even frustrated and angry. My brain will go into some kind of negative feedback loop and then that’s the moments where I will delay conversation with that person, you know, or seeing that person, you know, say I’m running late, whatever, just for a few minutes so I can allow myself that time to say “Okay, what is it about this conversation that I haven’t even had yet that is causing me to feel this way, what am I expecting that to happen? Do I have wrong expectations? Is it because of the way that I’m feeling already? Maybe something else that is completely unrelated is causing me to go into this.” So it but it takes that moment to delay that even delay that conversation that you haven’t had yet because you, this is I’m assuming this is human nature, you’ll start to already plan in your head how that conversation is going to go and how it can go badly.
Yeah, absolutely, you’re trying to predict a potential threat.
Yeah, this is the difference between what I feel, relationships should be in a creation mode and saying this is what I want to create in my relationship versus saying this is what I want to run away from I want to stay away from those moments, it’s like, if I’m going into the conversation with that I’m already trying to plan what I want to stay away from in the conversation, which is not the way that I want to show up in any sort of relationship.
Yeah, I’m so impressed with the self awareness that you just described. I’m serious! I’m thinking, wow if more people could actually identify, I’m feeling some kind of way, as I’m thinking about contact with this person, what is that about does it have anything to do with the person and past exchanges with them and beliefs that I’ve started to create about this person and not about their behavior. Is it about past painful experiences that had nothing to do with this person or is it about something else that happened earlier today.
Yeah it could even be little T or big T trauma from when you were a kid because now you’re projecting the way that you were treated onto that person and thinking that’s going to go the same way.
Yeah, absolutely and then you also describe this process of, you know, recognizing kind of, you know, approach versus avoidance, motivation, and also you know people are as humans because of our brain’s negativity bias we are so good at using our imagination to create worst case scenarios, right?, You hear, I mean we all do this, and it takes, you know, the practice of telling my clients all the time. Okay, that’s great so now you’ve created worst case scenario and it can be helpful because you can think about what would you do in that situation, and at the same time, equal time for best case scenario, use your imagination to create best case scenario so if you think about having a conversation with this person an example you gave, it’s, you know, what would meaningful connection with this person feel like, you know, how can I play a part in creating that.
I love that. That’s amazing. Wow, I think that’s where we should stop for today. Okay. That was great. Oh my goodness, this is, we’ve covered so many things today and I think we got really deep. We talked a lot on the last episode and go look at the last episode too because that was a lot of, I feel surface level and today was a deep dive so if you want to know where Jemma and I were coming from today. You’ve got to listen to the previous episode so look that up, Jemma, you’re awesome. Oh my gosh.
I love your investment in personal growth and you like role modeling that for people.
Oh thank you.. That’s the only way I think is to try to forge the path myself. jemmaranecoaching.com and on Tik Tok because Jemma is a frickin viral Tik Tok star. Yeah, Jemma trained onTik Tok, Jemma. Thank you.
Thank you so much this is always just so fun and stimulating and gets my brain going, I love it