I want to invite you to do is to reach out, to reach out for help, to reach out to me, to reach out to a counselor because my hope is that Compassionate Mediation becomes a new paradigm for conflict resolution,
I hope that people all over the world will have access to these tools so they can implement them when there is a convict.
I mean, eventually I hope they teach it in schools and on playgrounds and in boardrooms and in politics so that, we can all bring higher self-awareness into conscious conflict resolution.
I was joyfully married to my college sweetheart, and about 20 years into the marriage with two wonderful daughters, we were looking at a divorce, sadly, and we didn't have these tools.
So unfortunately, we struggled for a long time. We stayed separated for a very long time.
And during that time I thought I was being helpful to my family because we weren't really divorced yet. But the ambivalence was really difficult. We both were dating other people. It was a very confusing, very long time
And I remember there was one time we were, had a status call in court and I sat in the courtroom and my beloved soon-to-be ex-husband was sitting on the other side of the room.
And I remembered thinking back that this was the man I married. This was the man that was there from when our children were born. This is the other grandfather to our three wonderful grandchildren.
And this is not how it's supposed to be. There has to be a better way to do this.
And I remember sitting in the courtroom and I as woo woo as it sounds, I just remember visioning some pink light coming down, some light from God, the heavens to say, we can sit in compassion.
We can know that there's a higher purpose, that we've come to this moment, and we don't have to go the typical route to get divorced.
And in that time, I sent compassion in his direction and we did resolve it. And it had its ups and downs.
So even if both parties aren't aware of this process, you can align your heart with the intention that you are going to bring consciousness, higher self, calm, compassion into this process. And everybody can benefit.
Even if your partner is upset, it's one of you that's upset at family gatherings, not both of you. Your children aren't necessarily in the middle. And over time, that compassion can forge a whole new bond that your family can marinate in, in whatever form it takes.
I wrote the book to help you – Compassionate Mediation® for Relationships at a Crossroad: How to Add Passion to Your Marriage or Compassion to Your Divorce.
I want to offer you 10 Minutes to a Better Relationship with Compassionate Communication.
Let's go start. Take a breath, take a breath, and think about a relationship you'd like to improve.
Who would you like to improve your relationship?
Someone that you're married to, someone that you're in a relationship, someone that you work with a child or parent,?
Think about a relationship for just a minute and then see, what are the stories you're telling yourself?
Tell me the stories that you keep repeating. He always does this. She never does that. They're always going to be that way. Just notice that you're telling yourself a lot of stories about yourself and the other person, and then take a look at how you're acting in the relationship right now.
How are you showing up? Are you showing up as your best self and ask yourself how willing are you to change your reactions?
What we're going to talk about is How Compassionate Communication can Help you in just a Few Moments and What is Compassionate Communication
It's the ability to connect to your highest SELF, let go of your limiting beliefs in judgements, unburdened pain from the past and relate from your heart.
What I find is that many people don't want to get out of the foxholes that they put themselves in.
For instance, you might think that the way you're being right now remind you of a time in the past, when you were younger, your family of origin, or even in this relationship right now,where there was a problem…
… you felt scared
… you felt hurt
… you felt sad
… you felt unloved
… you felt betrayed
Unfortunately we stay down in that foxhole, meaning we have some post-traumatic symptoms that we bring into the present moment.
When someone is doing something to hurt us, we're not able to state what we're feeling, but instead we go back to feeling what we did when we were under stress or under fire.
I want you to take a deep breath because I want to talk about how to get to self, how to be your best self and what you dowhen you're in your best self is you have these qualities.
Meditation is one way to get to self.
Unburdening the pain from your past is another way to get to self. When you're in self you're calm, clear, compassionate, curious, connective, creative, confident, courageous, and I've added grateful.
As an Internal Family Systems (IFS) therapist, they talk about self in parts and in ifs, the self that we're talking about helps you heal.
That's what it's going to do for you to get to self. When you're in self, you can be more calm, clear, and compassionate and bring those qualities back to your relationship.
Now. imagine if you showed up in your current relationship with more calm, clarity, confidence, compassion, take a deep breath.
Just think about it.
What if you could be more compassionate and I know you may have spent a lifetime being compassionate and offering understanding, and you're feeling misunderstood.
Start with being compassionate to yourself, start understanding that yes, you're feeling vulnerable or you're feeling hurt.
You can also send compassion to the other person who may have been doing the best he or she knew how to do up until this time
What you can do is begin to change your story. Instead of seeing yourself as a victim, see yourself as a hero where you're now able to talk about the parts of you that are sad or hurt or scared or even angry in a way that is more self-lead. You're doing it with more compassion, with more confidence, with more courage, but you're also doing it in a way that's calm and clear.
You're not judging the other person.
You're not critiquing the other person.
You're learning how to speak for your feelings in a way that brings change.
When you start showing up in your highest SELF, the relationship changes.
If one of you is having an argument or you're having an argument, and one of you takes a breath and decides to just bring in some curiosity as to what's happening right now as to how you can change it.
Moving forward, curiosity is an element of self because you're not judging.
You're not blaming.
You're not looking through the filters, that which you judge your partner and you don't have those walls around your heart that keep you from getting more connected.
See if you can bring more self into your relationship. Sam Keen says, “It's not about finding a perfect person to love. It's learning how to perfectly love another imperfect person.”
Believe that no matter what your relationship looks like now, even if one of you is willing to change your reaction, to become more self led, to be more compassionate, to be more curious, to be more authentically sharing your feelings with courage and not judgment.
That's going to change your relationships because as you let go of your limiting beliefs, as you let go of your judgment of your partner, of your child, of your parents, of your coworker and of yourself.
We judge ourselves for not being strong enough or not making a decision earlier.
If you can let go of your limiting beliefs, you can actually break the chains that are binding you to another person in a negative, energetic situation.
What does that mean?
Everything is energy. When you're showing up with an attitude or a wall or a filter, you affect how you are showing up in your relationships.
The other person sees the wall, sees the judgment and isn't available to connect heart to heart.
If you can unburden the pain from the past, at the same time, you let go of your limiting beliefs…
… you'll find that when you're not carrying the baggage of all the things that happened to you in your past
… you may need to get some counseling for this. Whatever you need to do – clear up your pain from the past.
… let go of the limiting beliefs that are causing you to stay constricted and judgmental and begin to relate from your heart.
When you relate from your heart, you can talk about anything because you're going to talk in a way that's self led – calm, clear and compassionate.
As you relate from your heart, you're going to see new possibilities open up in your relationship.
What you're going to do is begin to get to your best self. And that's what I want to help you do.
‘ve created a guided meditation to get to self, and it's part of my Compassionate Communication Care Kit.
If you go to www.LindaKroll.com/ccc, you're going to get a care kit that has a Seven Minute Guided Meditation to give you a felt sense of what being in self is about, where you connect to the earth, where you have compassion for yourself, where you separate from the parts of you that are judging or reactive.
You really go to your highest incarnation of the Divine Nature that you are.
From there, you can relate to the other people in your life.
Then there's a short video talking about how Compassionate Communication helps.
There's also a Relationship Assessment where you can start to observe your current relationship and see where you can make changes now.
There's also a Compassionate Mediation roadmap.
Just to reflect on what we've talked about, you can take 10 minutes right now.
You can think about a relationship you'd like to improve.
You can understand that the story you're telling yourself may not be true. It's just a story you can think about – how you're being in this relationship now and how willing you are to change.
If you're willing to change, you can meditate, journal, go for walks, get some counseling, take good care of yourself so that you have more self-energy to communicate with yourself, with the person with whom you're having conflict.
As you be your best self, let go of your limiting beliefs, unburden the pain from the past and relate from your heart.
You're going to see a whole new possibility open up between you and this other person.
Again, you can listen to the guided meditation to get to self and do it in a way that brings peace and harmony to your heart, to your relationships, to your families, to your community and to the world.
Go, get your Compassionate Communication Care Kit, stay out of the fox holes.
If you need help doing that, let me know, connect with me. I'll show you how.
Remember when you compassionately communicate, you're going to heal all the relationships in your life, starting with the .one you have with yourself.
Thanks for listening. We did it in 10 minutes and I look forward to staying connected.
If, after this challenging year and quarantine, you’re not sure what you want to do about your relationship, then this blog post is for you.
Many years ago, I was facing a similar crossroads.
There wasn’t a pandemic, but my world did turn upside down…
I faced the possibility that my twenty-year marriage to my beloved college sweetheart might be headed towards “irreconcilable differences.”
I Wanted to Save My Marriage.
I finally convinced my husband to go to marriage counseling, but the counselor was not very helpful… and our issues persisted.
Perhaps we had each thought about leaving, but we didn’t want to talk about THAT, because we thought the counseling would be over and we would have to find attorneys.
So we didn’t talk about that “elephant in the room.”
And we went back to carrying on and making do and neither one of us was really happy…
After a very long period of parallel living, or loud confrontations, or days of silence, we decided to separate….
I hoped that the distance would help us both realize how much we loved each other and would then fight to rebuild our marriage.
But that wasn’t what happened.
We had not learned how to communicate, so we got further apart.
At first, we went through the motions of co-parenting our two young daughters.
We came up with our own schedule of having them live with me with his seeing them as often as he wanted, and sleepovers at his place when schedules allowed.
We kept our finances joint.
We even did some outings as a family.
Sometimes we looked like an example of a respectful separation…
But deep down, my heart was breaking as I saw our marriage slipping away and my family been torn apart.
I Stayed “Stuck” for Years
Although I was a licensed attorney, nothing prepared me for living a separation.
I went to counseling on my own, and I even became a certified mediator to learn how to navigate the situation.
I thought I was doing a good thing by keeping my family “together” – even though we were living apart…
I thought with time, we could resolve our differences and still find our way back to each other..
I was afraid of being alone, losing our financial security, dating again, and living without the man I had promised to love forever.
I stayed in limbo… not wanting to upset the situation.
I stayed in delusion… thinking that just because we were each dating other people, those relationships could end…
I stayed in denial...not wanting to admit the obvious.
But the distance continued, and we stayed separated until…
We Finally Agreed to Get Divorced.
First I filed, then he filed in a different venue, then we delayed it for years for various reasons, and stayed separated and in the divorcing process for almost a decade!
My sleep and health suffered…
My sleep diminished…
And my smile hid the deep sadness in my heart.
Eventually we started dating other people and leading separate lives.
I then went back to school to get my Masters in Counseling and I become a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor.
It was my third professional degree and the one that most resonated with my heart.
And I think during all that time, a Part of me was hoping that we could learn a better way to communicate (or wave a Magic Wand) and keep our family intact and grow old together happily.
But that didn’t happen.
He reconnected with a lovely old friend from high school with whom he started living and later became his wife.
I dated in some long term relationships, and a part of me STILL hoped for that fairy tale ending.
Finally I faced the fact that we were truly getting divorced, and I had to prepare myself as best I could.
I hired an attorney, and so did he.
He eventually hired three different attorneys … and we spent years in and out of court.
Our legal bills mounted.
Our communication deteriorated,
And the devastation of the typical adversarial divorce process was affecting our children, our families and our friends.
But the road we were on felt like it was leading to disaster – financially, emotionally, physically and spiritually.
One day, as we were sitting in the courtroom while our attorneys were back in the judge’s office discussing our futures (without us present), I knew there had to be a better way.
There HAD to be a better way to get divorced!
Shortly after that I met Dick Schwartz when he was first sharing Internal Family Systems
…. and what it meant to be “in SELF.”
And my process of Compassionate Mediation® was created.
Compassionate Mediation was merging all my degrees – as a therapist, mediator and attorney,… and later a Chopra -certifide teacher of meditation, yoga and Ayurveda…
and helping my individual and couples clients to add passion to their marriage or compassion to their divorce.
And for the next 30 years, I helped thousands of individuals and couples to heal and transform their relationships – no matter what form it took in the future.
I offered them the emotional and spiritual healing and legal and financial information and support that I had wished someone could have given me.
However, just because I created the process, it didn’t mean my estranged husband believed in it.
So I had to practice it alone….and it still helped our situation to eventually resolve in the highest good for all concerned…
I wrote a Prayer the night before the date of our final dissolution, and I gave it to my soon-to-be ex-husband and our lawyers..
And even though our marriage finally ended with as much SELF-leadership as possible…
It was still ten years later…
Hundreds of thousands of fees…
And deep wounds on both sides.
I Want to Help You Avoid the Pain My Family Suffered
The night before I was to be in court to finalize my divorce after a very long separation, I was moved to convert my sadness, hurt and anger into hope for a new beginning.
I wrote a prayer.
When I arrived at the courtroom, I gave a copy to my formerly beloved (and soon to be ex) husband and to his attorney. I hoped to end our marriage in a way that would set the tone for a peaceful and respectful co-creation of our future restructured family.
I wanted us to always be able to Compassionately Communicate — to connect our highest and best SELF, let go of all the limiting (and judgmental) beliefs we held, unburden pain from the past, and relate from our hearts.
I hoped we could protect our children from the shrapnel of any more animosity or conflict.
I offered it as my prayer, and for some, it can be an intention. It was my heartfelt request for a future of respectful co-parenting, genuine friendship and Compassionate Communication.
I hope others can set the same intention or recite the same prayer.
My Prayer for a Peaceful Parting
I pray for a peaceful and respectful settlement meeting, in which all parties come together from their Highest Selves and their truest connection to Your guidance, wisdom and love.
I pray that the parts of ourselves that are angry, fearful, defensive, revengeful, retributive, punitive, unloving, unforgiving, sad, young, abandoned, resentful, negative, hurting and hurtful – that all these parts be quelled with the leadership of the Self, coming from a place of trust in Your presence and light.
I pray for compassion, forgiveness, gratitude and appreciation. Although our marriage has come down to a business closing of money and asset division, I ask that we remember the love that brought us together, and the wonderful children, which our union has borne. For their sakes as well as our own, we wish to put an end to this process in as respectful and loving a way as possible.
Although we each carry our sadness and pain and mutual regrets, I pray that we can look beyond this difficult period to a time when we can be friends and coexist peacefully. I pray that our once intact family can be rearranged to two intact and loving homes, where our children feel connected and comfortable. I pray that we can hold in a different light the love that once joined us forever; that on the deepest level we wish each other well as we let go and let G-d direct our lives.
For the sake of all we once had, and for all we had planned to share together, let us now finalize the terms of our marital dissolution so that we are both free to get on with our lives.
Let us complete this last painful task with a sense of trust in the love we once shared and hopefully can remember after this part is over.
Let us not work from purely simple and self-serving motives, but keep in mind the general welfare of each of us, and our children.
Let us request our attorneys to contribute what is needed for the mutual benefit of all concerned.
In the end, let us know that we behaved civilly, that we can look back with a clear conscience, and that as much as we could, we came from our hearts. G-d bless us and direct us all. Amen.
His lawyer looked it over, and jokingly asked him, “Are there any changes you want to make in this document?”
We all laughed —sometimes through our tears – which is kind of like life
Even in the heartache, there can come healing and hope.
I want to share with you a 17-minute video with Dr. Richard Schwartz, Founder of Internal Family Systems therapy – my mentor, teacher and friend,
Everything I have done professionally and personally for the last 35 years has been profoundly influenced by his model, his teachings, and his generous sharing of SELF and Parts.
We all have a “multiplicity” of Parts. When we are “in SELF,” we can separate from our Parts, compassionately witness their intention to be helpful, accept them and honor their intention, and help them unburden pain and trauma from the past.
Separate, Observe, Accept.
A recipe for internal peace and interpersonal relationships. When you observe “in SELF,” with mindful, witnessing awareness, you access those “C” qualities inside you and become more compassionate and caring. You become more understanding and helpful – and no longer reactive or judgmental.
My version of Compassionate Communication is to
Connect to your best SELF
Let go of limiting beliefs (by compassionately attending to and understanding your Parts)
Unburden pain from the past
Relate from your heart (SELF, Higher Self, Best SELF)
In Compassionate Mediation®, a process to help individuals and couples resolve conflict peacefully and respectfully, the process is:
Learn Compassionate Communication (see above)
Create a Compassionate Relationship
Explore All Your Options
Understand Your Rights and Finances
Create the Relationship You Desire and Deserve
I want to share Dick’s message to help foster as much healing and SELF energy as possible. The more SELF energy we bring to our relationships, families and communities, the more peace there will be in this world
Thanks so much, Dick, for all that you have shared, and this worldwide phenomenon of IFS.
In this video, he describes:
Parts (1-3 minutes) – little personalities inside – our thoughts, feelings, beliefs
Healing (7-8 minutes) – release of extreme beliefs and emotions and restoring the Parts trust in the leadership of the SELF
Unburdening – Parts need to feel the presence and understanding of the SELF. You become a Compassionate Witness to your own history. When your Part feels understood, it can unburden. You can go into the scene with your Part and help it heal and transform.
Origin of the name “Internal Family Systems”
How does IFS differ from other therapies?
Consider the “personhood” of your own Parts. Give your “internal enemies” compassion – your Parts are doing their best to protect you.
Core tenet of IFS.
“We aren’t who we think we are,” says Dick. Enlightenment is a shift in your center of inner gravity to know that this SELF is who you truly are.
In addition to knowing WHO you are, the SELF can create harmony internally and externally.
It’s often said that we are spiritual beings having a human experience.
I feel that when we are “in SELF,” we are living from a more conscious, mindful, compassionate presence. I believe it’s the God inside.
My life mission is to help people become more SELF-led and to bring that divine essence into all our relationships.
My profound gratitude to Dick and all my IFS colleagues for your enduring influence in my personal and professional life.
And always remember, as Dick says, “SELF heals!”
My book on Compassionate Mediation®:How to Add Passion to Your Marriage or Compassion to Your Divorce offers my version of SELF and Parts in my introduction and first chapter.