By Charly Emery
Despite appreciating who you are along with what you bring to the table, mentally, you may still find that your actions fail to follow through with your internal awareness.
When I got married in 2002 I was very much aware of the value I brought to my husband and our relationship. Although we married quickly, we made a pact that divorce was not an option. The first 18 months were fairly exciting even though there were early warning signs of trouble. Some of the signs I saw were: his quick anger, impulsiveness, and penchant for gambling.
I would step away from my career as a strategy consultant to take an active role in helping my husband build business relationships and further his projects. This greatly enhanced my sense of personal appreciation as well. However the pact I made to stay married had unknowingly set me on a collision course for a self-sacrificing marriage. I knew I was a caring, loving and a giving woman, yet in the process of managing his moods, temper and impulsive financial decisions, I forgot that appreciating yourself must also include the actions of others. You must also establish boundaries for yourself that help ensure the life you are living and the way people treat you are reflective of what you appreciate about yourself. In my case, compromise had definitely turned into sacrifice as my preoccupation with staying committed to the marriage. It had unknowingly superseded my commitment for my happiness and well-being.
In denial about the reality of my situation, I gradually began to lose my identity in the daily process of managing his. It was during the third 18 month cycle that I realized there was a large gap in what I thought versus how I was living.
I revisited my rules and made a vital revision to my no-divorce pact. I realized that the only way to stay true to my marriage commitment meant I’d have to betray the commitment to my personal appreciation.
I envisioned my original goals and the agreements we had made before marriage. He had broken every one of them and had no desire to re-commit. Therefore, out of appreciation for me, my life and my potential, I gave myself permission to get a divorce. I built an incredible life, wrote a fabulous book to empower other women and most significantly used the insights I gained to assess how all my choices, actions and relationships relate to what I know and appreciate about myself, without being selfish.