Likely you have heard the word mojo used in reference to virility as in the Muddy Waters' song with that immortal lyric: "I got my mojo workin'." Younger generations may recall the "Austin Powers film The Spy Who Shagged Me," wherein the spoof-hero loses his mojo. The word "mojo" is defined often as a type of magical charm.
Its origins can be traced to the African Congo where "moyo" means soul or life force. Variant usages and subtle connotations aside, in general use "mojo" also means that special spark of creative energy between two people.
How Do We Lose Our Mojo?
From a Whole Body perspective, author, relationship expert Steve Sisgold in his book, "What's Your Body Telling You" points out that nearly every relationship conflict boils down to one thing-- loss of mojo. How is it that through time we often lose the spark between people and grow habitual and stale?
What causes us to repeat the patterns that degrade our relationships over and over?
- The goal is not to force connection where there isn't one, but to bridge the areas where a gap exists and fill it with awareness rather than resentment.
- Understand why and how to drop that age-old demon: blame. What makes blame such a big bad form of conflict is its powerful allure. When blame arises, it is accompanied by a physiological stance that can become quite animated when we feel threatened.
- Take a breath, and back off that defensive, blaming stance.
Before you speak, ask yourself, "Do I want to be right or close?"
- Step One: Share what's so, without blame
No spin here, just state what's going on matter-of-factly with no drama; as if you were reporting the time of day: "I walked into the kitchen before going to work and saw your dirty dishes on the counter."
- Step Two: Tell what your feelings are
Again, no spin here. Scan your body, feelings, emotions, and report the findings:
"I notice that my belly feels a little tight and queasy when I'm ready to leave for work and see dirty dishes. I feel disrespected, even a little angry."
- Step Three: Explain the source of your feelings
And again, no spin. Don't make it about them where they can get defensive. This stops you from get entangled and in a tug of war: "When I saw the dishes with egg on them and it wasn't cleaned up I had feelings come up around my requests not being honored.
I personally have a need for the kitchen to be cleaned before we leave for the day to see that everything is straightened up and fresh and ready when we get home from a long day. It helps me set the tone for a fresh evening with you."
- Step Four: Ask for what you need. Requests not complaints
Be sincere. Make sure you are not whining or complaining or sending off threatening body signals: "I am glad I got to tell you how important having the kitchen cleaned up in the morning is for me.
I appreciate that you listened. I have a request. Before you leave would you be willing to make sure to leave the kitchen clean?"
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