A Coaching Power Tool created by Sheila Brennan
(Divorce Coach, UNITED STATES)
Truth is a deep kindness that teaches us to be content in our everyday life and share with the people the same happiness. ~Khalil Gibran
According to the TheFreeDictionary.com, the definition of CONTENT is:
- Desiring no more than what one has; satisfied;
- Ready to accept or acquiesce; willing;
- To make content or satisfied.
Content is something that few of us are able to achieve in our lives. As a society, we seem to always be looking for bigger, better, faster, newer and view the things that we have as not as good as the newest model. This is often true of a marriage and spouses as well. We feel that we’d be better off with someone newer, younger, smarter, thinner, richer, and/or prettier. We lose sight of the good qualities in our spouse. We forget about the commitment, the good times and the love that we once felt. Since as a society, we look to bigger, brighter, flashier, thinner, it’s natural that we forget to acknowledge when we are content and happy especially regarding relationships and one of the most valued relationships, our marriage. Val Farmer, a clinical psychologist, wrote that one of the reasons a marriage fails is because the parties are disrespectful and judgmental of their marriage and spouse. Marriage needs acceptance, admiration, appreciation and emotional safety. A husband and wife need to be able to recognize when they are content and happy. This requires awareness and a deep sense of gratitude. We seem to be grateful for things we lose. We take our good fortune for granted: relationships, health, careers. That explains why people do not describe themselves as content. Content may imply complacency yet that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Content is synonymous with appreciation and gratitude.
Anger and hate against one we love steels our hearts, but contempt or pity leaves us silent and ashamed. Edgar Rice Burroughs
According to the TheFreeDictionary.com, the definition of CONTEMPT is:
- The feeling or attitude of regarding someone or something as inferior, base, or worthless; scorn;
- The state of being despised or dishonored; disgrace;
- Open disrespect or willful disobedience of the authority of a court of law or legislative body.
Contempt is similar to anger in that it brings out the worst in you. If you feel contempt towards someone or something, it would comparable to the poison you drink with the intention of harming someone else. Contempt is all consuming and its cousins are revenge, scorn, retaliation, hate, blame, fraud, etc. You limit your personal growth or development when you feel contempt. It’s very similar to invalidation in that nothing can be done correctly in your assessment. Contempt prevents you from being your best and from achieving the goals you’ve committed to. If content is the “happy” word in marriage, then contempt is the “devil’s” word in divorce. This is because the parties need to find a place where they have accepted the fact that their marriage is irretrievable and the result of the breakdown is divorce. There are not always answers as to why and what happened. A husband and/or wife who is faced with divorce is struggling to find a logical explanation for the situation and transitions that’s been often thrust upon them. During the shift from married to divorce, the parties look for understanding. People faced with divorce navigate the seven stages of loss. These stages are:
- Shock and disbelief;
- Depression; and
- Acceptance and hope