Oftentimes in an attempt to avoid temporary pain and discomfort, we avoid hard conversations, stuff down our own feelings and hide how we really feel from others.
In this episode, you’ll learn about how to create long term healing by practicing the concept of sustainability. By looking down the road at what we may have to deal with if we put things off today, it can give us the courage to do the hard things now, knowing we are ultimately creating something lasting.
Most of all, you will learn how to help create sustainable practices of healing that will help you truly transcend infidelity and use it for your good.
Shelley Swapp’s information: www.shelleyswapp.com
To learn more from me, be sure to be on my email list here.
Apply for my group program, Know in 90, here.
I’m Andrea Giles, and you’re listening to the Heal from Infidelity podcast,
episode number 109, Long-term Healing.
Hello and welcome to the Heal from Infidelity podcast for courageous women
learn not only to heal from their spouse’s betrayal, but to become the
boldest, truest, most decisive and confident versions of themselves ever.
If you know there’s more for you than the life you’re currently living but
don’t quite know how to get there, you are in the right place. Stick around
to learn how to create a life that will knock your own socks off. Is it
possible? It is, and I’m here to show you how. I’m your host, Andrea Giles.
Are you ready? Let’s dive in.
Hey everybody. Welcome to episode number 109. I’m really looking forward to
diving into today’s content. I think it will be really helpful. I think
it’ll give you some things to think about as you are navigating life post
infidelity. Before I jump into our topic today, I want to just say that the
doors are open for Noah 90. As of a couple days ago by the time this airs,
the applications are open. You can find them over on my website,
andreagiles.com. The links to everything are in the show notes.
Applications are open. I’m reviewing them, and we’re going to get started
with the new group here in just a little bit. So go check that out. Go
check it out. It’s going to be amazing. It’s going to be amazing. We are
wrapping up my current group with my current Noah 90 women, and I’ll just
say it’s been phenomenal.
Just phenomenal. The growth that I’ve been able to witness, just
transformation, absolute transformation. I think one of the things that
just kind of blew my mind, because I understand it at a deep level, but to
see my clients understand this concept that I’m about to tell you is just
phenomenal. So Noah 90 is about deciding to stay or go. But sometimes the
decision is to actually to pause and to wait and to collect more data, to
see things play out. And I have a client in my current group, who, she was
on her way to leaving. She was taking the actions, filed all the things,
and he moved out and some things changed and he really kind of woke up to
all the things and what was happening, and it’s been amazing to see her
just hold steady and to stand on her own two feet and to know that she
doesn’t need anything.
She doesn’t need him to stay to make her feel a certain way, that she can
be single, that she can stay if she wants. But she said something profound
in one of our last calls, and that is that she thought she was going to
have the result in this program of making the decision and really moving
forward. But what’s been more profound for her is knowing how to be with
herself and knowing how to take care of herself so that she doesn’t have to
be quite as panicked about the outcome and can be at peace while she kind
of watches these new events unfold. That my friends is power. That is
power, and that’s what I want for all of the people in my group, and that’s
what we do. That’s what we do in there. This also goes for people who have
made your decision, but you’re really having a hard time actually living in
That stuff we cover deep in my program, why it’s being so hard for you to
actually be in the decision, to live in the decision, to embody the
decision. There are real reasons for that and things that you need to
understand and know how to implement within yourself. So that’s what we do.
Come join. It’s going to be fire. It’s an amazing program if I do say so
myself and applications are open now. So I’m going to go ahead and jump
into the content from this week. So something that I have been talking a
lot about in my program and that I’m going to be incorporating in a more
substantial way moving forward is a simple concept that you are probably
familiar with, but maybe not in the way that I teach it here. The concept
is sustainability. You’ve all heard the term sustainability.
What does it mean? Most of the time what it means when we think about
something being sustainable is that it means that the way that we’re living
now, the way that we’re doing things now, can allow future generations the
same freedoms that we do. So when I generally think about sustainable, I
think about packaging. I think about what things are shipped in, stored in,
how things are made, recycling, things like that. That’s I think where most
of our brains go when we think about something being sustainable. But today
I want to talk about sustainability in regards to relationships. Let me
give some examples of what I mean. First, an example that has nothing to do
with infidelity. Let’s talk about changing diets. So many of the times when
we’re changing a diet, we white-knuckle it. We’re like, “Yeah, I can
totally do this for whatever, a month, 90 days, I can do it, right?”
30 days, like that whole 30 diet. I can change my diet. I can change my
workout and do, what’s that one? Hard something, 70? I don’t know. Anyway,
clearly I haven’t done that one, but we can do that. We can short term do
anything, right? But the question is, is it sustainable? Is it something
that I can do for the long term? I in my years of my life have tried random
different things at different times that are the hype of the day or
something that will be a detox or whatever, and right now at 45, I am
actually doing something that I’ve never done before. I’m working with a
nutritionist who is amazing, so amazing at … she covers it all, like
hormone testing, really checking everything, very thorough, understanding
your body, what’s going on for you, and I’m following a diet that works
really well for my body.
It’s very specific to me so that it’s sustainable. So it’s something that I
can do long term to heal some of the issues that I have of just getting
older and having had a baby older and nothing massive, but just some
changes I need to make and I want to be a healthier weight for my body,
things like that. And I’m doing it in a way that is sustainable and I love
it. I love that I know that, that I know that what I’m doing are things
that I can continue on and enjoy. It’s sustainable. I’m not white knuckling
it. How does this relate to infidelity? So sometimes my clients will tell
me they don’t bring up certain issues about the infidelity with their
spouses after the first few months or so. There’s the initial discovery,
lots of discussion there. But then when the dust starts to settle, they
often feel afraid to bring things up.
Sometimes they fear the spouse’s response. The spouse might say things
like, “I thought we were past this. Are you ever actually going to get over
this?” Almost this impatient thing. “Why are we going back here? Why do we
need to keep bringing this up? I already said that. We already discussed
that.” So they might be afraid of that kind of a response. They might be
afraid of re-triggering themselves by bringing things up. They might be
afraid of going backwards in the relationship. Like, “Oh my gosh, look,
we’ve made all this progress and we’re backtracking.” So what do they do?
They stuff their feelings sometimes by food, sometimes by drink or other
distractions. They stuff it down. Sometimes they tell other people what
they’re feeling, how they’re doing, things like that, but not their
spouses. They might tell their friend. It may feel like a relief to have
someone else listen.
It probably is, but it won’t actually accomplish what you want it to. It
won’t actually accomplish that. So it might bring some relief in the
moment, but not long-term. It’s not going to create long-term relief.
Another example I see in my clients is the way they try to feel better.
Sometimes they try to white-knuckle their own healing. They power through.
They try to distract, distract, distract, whatever they can do to just not
think about it. I just don’t want to think about it. I’m fine. They’ll put
up a wall a mile high so they don’t actually have to feel or they’ll swing
the opposite way and wear every emotion and thought on their sleeve and go
online and go to groups in there and kind of rant on there, let their
spouse see all of it, every emotion, everything in hopes that their spouse
will see their pain and change their behavior.
Have that be a motivation to change their behavior. Why are these examples
a problem? They’re a problem because they’re not sustainable. If we think
of healing as something that is bigger than us, it’s not just for you. It’s
bigger than us. It’s going to bless our lives. It’s going to bless the
lives of all we are surrounded by. It takes careful, intentional healing.
It’s on purpose. It’s slow and steady. Part of healing is uncovering
stories and beliefs that are not serving us and replacing them with new
ones. We are allowing in the healing space all of the painful emotions to
arise to the surface and processing it for as long as it needs to be
processed. We’re taking responsibility for our own healing rather than
handing it to someone else to do it for us. So let’s go back to some of the
examples that I gave and see where this applies.
Let’s go to not bringing up an issue, not bringing it up to your spouse.
What does it create for the long haul to stuff things down, to go, “Oh my
gosh, I can’t. He’s going to get mad. He’s going to say, ‘Oh, well, we
already have been through that. I thought we were past that.'” What can
happen is it gets bottled up and bottled up. What can happen to the
marriage is that you’re not creating a truly intimate marriage where you
can be vulnerable and transparent and to learn how to sit with each other
in our truths, even if it’s really hard to hear. If you know that you’re
divorcing, it can be tempting to just not think about the infidelity. It
doesn’t matter anymore. I’m leaving. Power through upward and onward. Here
we go. Moving on. But eventually, we do have to do the work of slowing
down, feeling it all, processing it all, understanding the meanings we
attach to the infidelity, or we are basically prolonging our own healing or
putting it off.
We might do things in the here and now that bring temporary relief that
might feel good right now, but it’s not sustainable in the long term. Just
back to my diet thing, we might do things that have treats and sugar and
alcohol and things like that that bring some temporary relief in the
moment, but some of those things are not sustainable at the levels that we
partake. We’re looking for sustainability. What can last? What can create
good things? What’s not going to break in 10 years or five years? Often,
what happens in marriages or relationships that we leave if we don’t do
this work and really address all of it, really deal with it head on and
feel all of it, often what can happen is we can actually bring it into new
relationships and it will resurface. It will resurface because our bodies
want to heal, and so it’ll come back to the surface because we’re feeling
triggered by different things, and speaking from my own personal
experience, it can create some issues.
One way or another, we got to heal it. So what is the solution? The
solution is to look at how you’re managing things now. Are you dealing with
issues head on or are you putting them off? Are you trying to talk yourself
out of your feelings so you can avoid an uncomfortable discussion? Are you
judging your feelings and therefore avoiding them? Are you thinking, “I
should be past this. I should be doing better? Why am I going back here?
I’m behind. I thought I was good, now I’m not good. What’s wrong with me?”
If you’re judging your experience, judging your feelings, you are not going
to be in a position to heal them to really address them. Are you hanging
out in so much shame around the infidelity that you keep your true feelings
buried deep or do you share more of your true feelings with your best
friend rather than your partner?
These behaviors are not sustainable. While I completely understand them, I
do, in the long run, issues will arise. So for example, feelings that we
stuff about someone else often turn into resentment. We resent them for not
doing what we want, and we may even resent them for not feeling safe enough
for us to talk to. I don’t feel safe talking to you because I’m pretty sure
I know what you’re going to say and I resent you for it. We may blame them
that we have to shove so much pain and misery down or that they are not
doing exactly what we think they should be doing to help us feel better,
but resentment unchecked turns into an inferno. It burns everyone up. The
unhappy feelings grow so large that they can explode out of you and create
some damage. Things are said sometimes from that space that you wish you
could take back or it creates so much damage in the relationship in general
that it becomes much harder to repair, and you’re not able to partner with
each other from this space.
You can. It just becomes harder. So some of the people I work with or
spouses of my clients who were unfaithful, they don’t want to talk about it
because it brings up their own shame. They don’t want to talk about how
they were unfaithful. They don’t want to talk about why. They don’t want to
talk about what it feels like for their spouse, because it’s painful. Of
course, it feels better not to. Of course, it feels better not to see the
mirror in front of you of what you have brought into somebody else’s life.
Of course I get it, but what is the end game here? What are we really
trying to create, to be just Fairweather friends to each other where we
just kind of move along and just kind of get along? Why? We just get along,
it’s good enough. Or is the end game to create something deep, strong, and
lasting where you trust each other enough to tell the truth, even if it’s
really, really hard?
So for many, infidelity started in the first place because they didn’t know
how to express their feelings and sought out something that felt better
than what they were currently experiencing. It created more problems. So
I’m not saying that if you don’t follow these things, it’s going to happen
again. That’s not at all what I’m saying. What I am saying is that when we
bottle things up, when we push things aside, when we don’t deal with things
head on, we’re prolonging pain. Ultimately, we are putting off the actual
healing that needs to happen. We’re putting off this work. One way or
another, it needs to get done, and the more we put it off, the more we’re
robbing ourselves of all the joy of being healed, especially for those of
you who are staying with your spouses, the joy of creating a truly intimate
marriage, probably for the first time ever, or creating it with somebody
Feeling free, feeling truly healed. As you listen to this episode, I want
you to pay attention to three things and ask these questions. The three
things to pay attention to are, one, your own behaviors towards your own
feelings. Do you judge them? Do you make room for them? How do you process
your feelings? How do you honor what is going on for you? Number two, your
behaviors toward your partner, if that applies to you. How do you speak up
for things with your partner? How do you think about your partner? What do
you think of them? Do you spend a lot of time in judgment? Do you spend a
lot of time in fear? Do you spend a lot of time wishing that you’re married
to somebody else? What are your behaviors towards your partner? Number
three, what are the behaviors of your spouse, both around infidelity and in
general in relation to you and the marriage you are creating?
Then ask yourself these questions. I recommend getting out a piece of paper
and writing these things down. If this behavior continues indefinitely,
what could be the result? Is it sustainable? Are these behaviors
sustainable? Is it something that will last the test of time? We’re really
forecasting out if this behavior right here continues, what might happen?
Is it going to ultimately create what we want? Is it going to set us back
or is it going to blow up? Next question. To change the trajectory of this
path, what courageous thing do I need to do or say now? Next. What do I
need to remember to support myself as I step into a clear, more direct
resentment free version of myself? What do I need to remember? Oh, yeah, I
need to remember that I can have my own back no matter what anybody else
I need to remember that ultimately I am responsible for all things in my
sphere. I’m responsible for my own feelings. I’m responsible for how I show
up. I’m responsible for getting the results I want. So if it means showing
up in a stronger way, so be it. Then my friends, I want you to go do those
things. Journal until your awareness of what is not sustainable is so clear
that it propels you forward to create something lasting, real, strong and
true, truly intimate. Whether you’re doing this work for you alone or with
a partner or with the idea of a partner in the future, you are worth it.
You will reap the benefits. You will know that you are living with so much
integrity. You will know that you are living in truth. You’ll know that
you’re showing up to life, that you’re engaged, that you’re in it, that
you’re sitting in those uncomfortable feelings and those uncomfortable
conversations like you’re here for it.
There’s so much confidence that comes from allowing yourself to go to these
places. You will blow yourself away with what you’re capable of. The more
we can tolerate our own discomfort, the more and more and more we can show
up to all the beauty of life, and especially in relationships. It’s where
we can create the most intimate, most truth telling most, oh, just most
loving, delicious, beautiful relationships. I want that for all of you.
All right, that’s what I got. So much love to you. I yesterday received an
email from somebody who has been a listener of my podcast for a while, and
she said something that really touched me. It was really touching. She said
that she found my podcast shortly after finding out, and that she refers to
me as my friend Andrea, and it really just … I got a little emotional. I
had to wipe away a tear because I think of you as my friends. I know that
you are listening all over the world. I know that you are listening when
you are in crisis, you’re in a lot of pain. And I think of you as my
friends. I know you have so much good coming for you. I know that this has
the opportunity. This infidelity has the opportunity to work for you in a
way that you just can’t see it, and I wrap my arms around you and am really
grateful to have you in my space, my beautiful friends. So much love to
you. Thank you for being here, and I will see you next time.
Thank you for listening to The Heal from Infidelity podcast. If you would
like to be kept in the know about upcoming free classes, new podcast
episodes, and other ways of working with me, go subscribe to my weekly
email. You can subscribe at andreagiles.com/lies-about-infidelity/. Again,
it’s andreagiles.com/lies-about-infidelity/. I will see you next time.