I was looking at my wedding band the other day and realized that I have become so accustomed to wearing it that I rarely look at it or even notice it anymore, it feels like it’s a part of me. On one hand, it shows that I’ve been married for awhile and that through the joy and hardships of life, Cheryl and I are a part of each other. On the other hand, I think I’m not taking full advantage of the power of the ring!
I have a simple technique that will help you to use your wedding ring in a new way; it will help you to see the best in your spouse.
Not too long ago was the Christmas season. How did you know the holiday season was coming? For some, the fresh snow gives it away. As soon as they see the snow, they start thinking of that special time of year. For others, it’s the music that brings them back to their childhood traditions of eating Christmas treats and exchanging gifts with the ones they love. For me, the decorations and the festive music make me hopeful, joyful and bring me peace. You could say that these memory triggers are very powerful.
Accessing the power of the ring
Let me tell you a secret: if you don’t own a ring, you don’t need to run out and buy one. What I am about to share will work even without a ring, but I thought “Power of the finger” was not an appropriate title!
I believe there is no substitution for hard work in a committed relationship, nevertheless, the following technique can be helpful when going through a tough time.
A few years ago before we had children, whenever we would argue, Cheryl and I would take a break. I would most likely go and play drums to my favorite playlist. It was hard for me to stay mad because no matter how many songs I skipped, they all reminded me of the good times I had with Cheryl on road trips. Rather than feeling frustrated that I couldn’t indulge my anger, I actually found it useful. The only caveat is that I can’t always play music while arguing with my spouse. I do, however, always have my ring.
You see, triggers are very powerful. They can bring you to another time or place. They can make you feel very different, very quickly. The taste of a cookie can bring us back to our childhood Christmas or hearing a song can transport us back to a lovely trip. Why not use triggers to our advantage?
Here’s how you can get the same impact with your ring.
1. Remember a powerful memory. Think of a vivid, happy and intense memory of you and your spouse. It can also be a mix of a few memories. Once you have the memory, replay it in your mind. Remember as many details as you can. How do you feel, what do you smell, what do you hear, what do you see? Make the memory as vivid as you can. Part of my joyful and powerful memory is our wedding day. I see Cheryl walking up the aisle towards me with a big smile, putting the ring on her finger and walking out with her to What A Wonderful World by Louis Armstrong. It makes me feel very happy and proud to be with my wife.
2. Install the trigger. Once you have reached the peak of your memory, when it feels the most intense, grab your wedding ring (or your finger) for a moment and then let go. The clearer you can make your memory, the more positive of an impact the trigger will have.
3. Test the trigger. Now is the time to test out your trigger. Clear your mind and touch your ring. You’ll notice the same feelings you had while picturing the memory. If the memory and its associated feelings are too faint, go back and repeat step 1 and 2.
4. Simply use it. When tensions rise, before an argument begins, grab your ring. It’s not magical but it will give you some perspective. It will remind you of your spouse’s best. It will help you be less resentful and more open to what your better half has to communicate. It will give you a more balanced view of the situation.
5. Give more power to the ring! Next time you’re having a great time with your spouse, touch your ring. This will increase the efficiency of the technique. And beyond everything, this is a good strategy to remember vividly great memories you shared with the one you love.
Thanks to Dr. Mike Mandel for introducing me to NLP and other interesting ways of making life improvements.