By: Kathy
June 20, 2016

It’s normal to feel frustrated, stuck in a pattern, or unhappy with life circumstances. It’s also normal to know what causes frustration, irritation, and disappointment. The challenging aspects of being in a relationship affect everyone. The hardest part isn’t knowing what’s wrong. The greatest challenge is knowing how to change even when change is good idea.


What are patterns? Patterns are how we think, react, and behave. It’s easy to see patterns in people. Among friends, family, and co-workers, patterns of living are obvious. We all have preferences and choices we express. We also have choices in the patterns we express that are hurtful or negative. So why do patterns matter.

We cannot change what we do not acknowledge. We cannot “do something” with a pattern we can’t identify, whether it is our own or someone else’s.  
Even though we know what hurts what makes us uncomfortable disappointed angry or upset patterns are the things that we know how to do in life it doesn’t necessarily mean that patterns are what we need for the pattern that we create is truly the one that we want or makes us happy.

Patterns are a part of our thinking; how the brain works. What makes sense to one person may not make sense to another. We are all unique to our thinking, our preferences, and our patterns. So patterns are what we know to do and what feels comfortable.

Is it what we want?

It’s normal to go about a day making thousands of decisions. Knowing what is desired or wanted is part of our pattern of thinking. Since patterns are our default, automatic thinking, how do we know if what we think we need or want is working to make us happy or unhappy? What if you want to change a pattern in your life? Some patterns are unhealthy and cause unhappiness or pain. Something like feeling anxious around conflict or feeling negative self-image or feeling unacceptable. Some patterns are positive and healthy, like eating well, exercising or feeling fulfilled in relationship. If the desire is to change an unhealthy pattern, then acknowledging the pattern in your relationship or within yourself. Is necessary for change.   
The lack of acknowledgement or denial that something is wrong will only contribute to lack of change. So things will remain the same. But change can cause upheaval and discomfort. It’s normal to be conflicted and not feel sure about making changes. 

In order to change a habit or a way of thinking, we have to acknowledge and do something different even when change feels uncomfortable. Eventually the discomfort begins to feel comfortable and can become a new normal pattern, bringing less dissatisfaction and more happiness.