FROM CONFLICT TO CONNECTION

The 11 Principles You NEED TO KNOW to Rapidly Transform Your Current Relationship Challenges Into Resolution

By: Lee Noto, Intimacy Coach & Sensuality Specialist

1. Perspective is Power

We’re humans, which means we’re “meaning making machines…” we make meaning out of everything. The meaning we CHOOSE to make of something is what determines our reality and the quality of our life. 

We can look at one of our truest mirrors for how we’re creating our reality: our romantic partnership. 

What does this look like for you? Is your relationship healthy & stronger than ever OR is it on shaky ground just waiting for the earthquake of conflict to arise? 

What thoughts, opinions, and beliefs do you have about yourself, your partner, and your relationship? Are these thoughts allowing you to create a relationship based on love and connection OR one based on blame, mistrust, and conflict? 

The perspective you CHOOSE to have about your relationship WILL DETERMINE the quality of your relationship and the quality of your life. 

If the lens through which you currently view your relationship is as spotty as the sunglasses you haven’t worn in weeks, then is there a new lens you’d like to try on? 

What new thoughts, opinions, and beliefs can you hold that will bring you closer to love and intimacy? 

Try them on for size and see what happens...

 

2. Communicate for Conflict

Would you go to the beach without a beach towel and sunscreen? Probably not...since you know what you need to bring so that you can have the most enjoyable beach experience.

Same is true with conflict. It’s inevitable. We know it will happen, so why wouldn’t we prepare for it beforehand? 

Now, this doesn’t mean anticipating conflict at every turn. It means creating the “rules of engagement” while in a neutral state, so that when conflict occurs, you and your partner have a solid, agreed upon plan! 

Here are some examples that my partner and I use:

Create a sacred space to resolve the conflict (see # 8 below)

If either of us goes to the place of voice raising, finger pointing, or becoming defensive, we take a few minutes to breath and re-calibrate before returning to the conversation

We commit to staying with our emotions instead of defaulting to our thoughts and opinions, i.e. we share how we feel (in the first person), so that we can keep our hearts open and take radical responsibility for our own experience

3. Create a Safe Sanctuary

When conflict arises, what sensations arise in your body? 

Do you generally feel open to expressing your emotions, i.e. do you say things like “I feel scared when…” or “I’m feeling sad right now…?”

If you find yourself going straight into your mind and sharing thoughts like “it really pisses me of when…” or “I can’t believe you…,” then a few things may be at play

1). You’re not taking responsibility for your experience and you may be placing blame on your partner

2). You don’t feel safe to express your emotions and the parts of you that feel most vulnerable 

If this is true for you, take a deep breath, place your hands on your body (somewhere intuitive), and let yourself know that you’re safe…

You’re safe to feel, you’re safe to express, you’ve got your own back (regardless of your partner’s reaction), and that you love yourself

This can help create a sense of physical and emotional safety in your body, that will get you one step closer to expressing from your heart, instead of from your head!

 

4. Get Naked: Take the Armor Off!

This is an important one! 

I know you don’t intend for your relationship to be a jousting battle...but when we’re fighting to protect ourselves, instead of revealing our hearts, that’s what our relationship ends up becoming.  

This means you’ve gotta check your dignity at the door (aka your ego -- the one who always wants to be right, not be wrong, defend, and protect), and take off your emotional armor. 

To do this, you first have to recognize that you’re wearing the armor…

Then, commit to staying with YOUR experience and with your emotions vs. thoughts. 

For example, instead of saying “I hate it when you leave the dishes in the sink,” you can say “When you leave the dishes in the sink, I feel frustrated.” 

See the difference? 

The first one has a tone of blame and relinquishing responsibility for your emotional state and the second one uses a clear observation to share your emotional state from the first person.

 

5. No More Time for Stories

This is a great continuation of numbers 1 and 4. 

Most people are operating from the past and their stories about how things once were, instead of actually being in the present moment. 

I can’t tell you how many times I set my partner up for disastrous failure by assuming that he’d behave the same way as he had in the past, just because that’s what I’d once experienced and made the assumption that the same thing would happen again. 

Doing this DOES NOT create presence, love, connection, or intimacy; it only sets you up for conflict and separation. 

Notice where you may have stories about “how things are” and examine whether or not you’re allowing your partner to show up newly each time you interact (vs. having a story about him/her and the way they “are.”)

 

6. Over Communicate

Now, more than ever, it’s time to OVER COMMUNICATE! 

We’re at home with each other all day every day. The things that would go unsaid before because we spent our days apart can no longer go unsaid. 

Make it a point to share even simple things like when you’ll be on a conference call, so your partner knows to honor that space by not walking into the room, not making excessive noise, etc. These small tweaks in communication will set you up for success and peace around the home. 

In addition to this, be sure to communicate what’s really happening for you emotionally. These can be trying times, and your partner probably wants nothing more than to know where you’re at and how they can help support you...so let him/her in. 

This is a great way to be present with your emotions and to share them with your partner, thereby creating presence, connection, and intimacy.

 

7. Turn Conflict into Ceremony

Create a space where you and your partner go to resolve conflict -- yes, create a sacred space in the home so that resolving conflict becomes a sacred ceremony instead of a thing you “have to do” in order to avoid WWIII.

My partner and I have a space on a bench in the living room to do this. Notice that we don’t choose to have these conversations in the bedroom where we sleep and have sex, at the dining table where we eat, in the home office where we work, or on the couch where we relax. 

Creating a separate space for this allows your brain and body prepare for loving communication (should you set the tone for it) and doesn’t get confused into thinking you’re going to eat, sleep, have sex, work, or relax. 

Another thing that can be powerful here is to set the space up so that it’s as relaxing as possible -- light candles, use essential oils, do whatever it takes to get your body into a relaxed state, so that you’re receptive to the conversation and to your partner.

8. Get Curious

Remember when you were a little kid (or maybe when your children were little) and you’d do nothing but ask “WHY?”

Kids are curious, they want to know how the world works. 

Take this same mindset and apply it to how you show up in your relationship. 

Instead of assuming that “this is just how he is…” ask questions like: “Honey, what do you need right now? What was that like for you? Can you tell me more about how you’re feeling?”

Not only does this provide you with more context into your partner’s experience, it also allows you to be empathetic of their experience, deepening intimacy and connection. 

 

9. Move It!

If you’re anything like me, when conflict arises, you shut down and your heart closes off. It’s as if the doors to the subway car have closed and the train is leaving the station without you. 

Whether you feel yourself freeze and shut down, fight back, or feel yourself wanting to flee the scene, bringing movement into your body can allow it to leave the “fight or flight” state and reactivate the frontal lobe of your brain (the center that makes rational decisions). 

When I use this practice, I let my partner know I’m going to take a moment to breathe and move. He honors this time since he knows that doing this will allow me to be more present and heart-open in our conversation. 

I then jump up and down, shake my limbs out, roll out my neck, and flutter my lips. 

With practice, you can let your body know that it's safe to feel and express!

 

10. Schedule Time for Intimacy

How often do you feel “too tired” for sex or generally uninspired to spice things up?

This used to be the case for me too…

I’d go through a full day of work, gym, cooking dinner, eating dinner, preparing for the next day, that by the time I was even available for any sort of physical connection, it was nearly midnight. 

I would think to myself “I’ve gotta be up early. I don’t wanna start this right now, I’m tired and want to sleep!”

My partner and I turned that all around by having at least one day per week that we put on the calendar for intimacy. 

We don’t always have sex in this time slot, but we do always honor the time by finishing work a couple hours beforehand, so we can each tap into our selfcare routine. 

This allows us to show up to our intimate time feeling relaxed and present. 

We’ve also found that by doing this, we naturally created more spontaneous time for intimacy, both emotionally and sexually. 

 

11. Make Space for Play!

Pleasure comes when we feel relaxed, not when we feel anxious and contracted. 

One of the best ways to tap into pleasure and a childlike sense of wonder is to create space for play! 

Whether that’s organizing a family game night, having a pillow fight, or dancing in your underwear with your partner, it’s vital to allow play in. 

The benefits here are many: you reduce stress, you increase relaxation, you laugh, you release feel-good hormones, you get out of your head and into the present moment, you create connection, and you have a damn good time! 

Replenishing yourself with play also supports you in showing up as the best, truest version of you in all areas of your life!

 

Want deeper support to take your relationship to the next level?

Learn about the mistakes couples make that leave them Disconnected & Doomed and the 4 Pillars of Untamed Intimacy that you need in your relationship to unlock rock-solid communication, mind-blowing sex & Power Couple Partnership

About Lee 

Lee helps powerful women cultivate emotional and erotic intelligence, so they can create Untamed Intimacy in their romantic partnership(s).

She uniquely integrates psychology and sensuality, and shares powerful communication tools and somatic practices that allow women to connect deeply to their own bodies. 

By guiding clients into deeper self-love, self-acceptance, curiosity, and play, Lee helps them boldly open their hearts in order to give and receive the epic love they desire. 

She is most loved for her ability to hold a safe space for clients to step into their power and create a bliss-filled life.

You can find Lee dancing in the park, singing aloud, or talking in various accents for her own entertainment. :p

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