Episode 88 – Personal and Relational Growth, with Aimee Gianni, GROW part 1
March is GROW month in the Know, Love, Grow series. There have been some really great episodes on KNOW in January and LOVE in February. It would be helpful to get caught up on those if you haven’t already watched them.
When we know who we are, and we work on accepting and loving ourselves right where we are in our lives, we can begin to grow.
Growth sounds really great and exciting, but it can also be hard, uncomfortable, and a little scary at times.
Join me (Tina Gosney) and Aimee Gianni (a Coach and Marriage and Family Therapist) as we discuss what gets in the way of our growth, what real growth looks like, and how we can be kind to ourselves as we go through this process.
Aimee and I talk about developing Emotional Maturity. Most people have never had this modeled for them, so I’ve created a free download for you to help you work on this. CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD
January Free Download – 30 Journaling questions to get to know yourself better: Click HERE
February Free Download – Combatting Shame: Click HERE
Aimee Gianni 00:00
I think fear always gets in the way of everything when we have fear. And we might think, Well, gosh, growth is so wonderful. How would that be scary? What would we be afraid of. But growth is part of its unknown – because we might want to grow in a certain direction. But we don’t always know what that’s going to look like. And sometimes people even will sabotage their own growth. So I think, especially if they don’t feel worthy of it, or you might create something and you’re moving forward. But if you don’t feel worthy of it, you’ll end up sabotaging yourself.
Tina Gosney 00:35
You’re listening to The Coaching Your Family Relationships Podcast, Episode 88, Personal and Relational Growth with Amy Gianni.
Welcome to the Coaching Your Family Relationships Podcast, I’m certified Family Relationship Coach Tina Gosney, I won’t tell you how to fix or change your family members. But you will learn some very vital relationship tools here. Even more important, I’ll show you how you can affect positive changes in your family. By creating more confidence and trust in yourself, developing emotional resilience, and finding peace in the middle of hard circumstances. If you’re ready for that, join me inside.
We’re entering the final stretch in the KNOW, LOVE, GROW Model series that I’ve been doing for 2023. Hope you’ve been following along. If you haven’t yet, it’s not too late. All those episodes are just sitting there in the feed. So you can always go back and do this whenever you find this podcast, even if it’s not in real time.
A special thank you to Amy Gianni. And I will just introduce her again, as I do every time. She is a marriage and family therapist of over 25 years. She’s also a coach. And she’s my trainer and my mentor. And I’m so thankful to her for doing this series with me. And for the value that she has lent to this podcast, you can find her contact information at the end of this podcast. And it will also find links in the show notes to be able to get a hold of her and be following her and receive her emails, which are just tremendous.
I have to tell you, I’ve loved everything about the Grow month and I have a lot of great episodes in store for you this month. So make sure you’re following along. And if you have any questions about how do I do this for myself, I understand all these things. You’re saying and I’ve been trying to do this work, but it’s still living inside of me and I can’t get it out of my head, and down through my heart, and into my hands to come out into my life. Please just contact me, please just hop on a call with me. And I will help you start working this out for yourself. The information on how to do that is also in the show notes.
I would love to help you figure out how this model of KNOW, LOVE, GROW works in your life, to help you be more in touch with yourself and in your own self confidence and your own grounding in your own life. So that you can carry that forth into your relationships, in your marriage with your children, with anybody in a real you are in a relationship with that you want to work on.
So you can get a hold of me through that link in the show notes. I love to hear from you. And I’m going to let you get into this episode with Aimee in we’re talking about the Grow part of the KNOW, LOVE, GROW Model.
Aimee, this conversation that we have today is going to be great. I’m looking at our outline. And I’m super excited to have this conversation with you.
Aimee Gianni 03:54
Yay. Thank you. Thanks for having me,
Tina Gosney 03:55
This is going to be awesome. So we’ve been doing this whole KNOW, LOVE, GROW Model these last few months. And we’re going to go into the Grow portion today, which I’ve been super excited to get to this portion because I think everybody wants to grow. We don’t want there to have to be anything before that, right? We just want it like tell me how to get to the growth part, which I know everybody’s been waiting for. But let’s just recap what the things are that we need to have in place before we can get to that growth part. So let’s recap the KNOW and let’s recap the LOVE portion of this model first.
So how would you just give a quick summary on the KNOW portion?
Aimee Gianni 04:38
Yes. So knowing is just that it’s really knowing who you are, what your values are, what’s important to you, where your wounds are, you know, where the where are the places where you struggle, we all have some level of trauma in our life or from past experiences, right? So it’s being aware of that it’s really just having awareness of have all different parts of you the strengths, the weaknesses, just having a really solid feel of who you are. That’s how I would explain it.
Tina Gosney 05:08
Why do you think people don’t have a solid sense of who they are already?
Aimee Gianni 05:14
I think sometimes it’s because we look to others to define us rather than looking inward. And so we kind of grow up hearing, you know, people describe us in different ways or telling us certain things. And so we latch on to that. And sometimes those things are correct about us. But not always. And I think sometimes too, as we, as we get married, we merge into another person, a lot of times, or even when it’s when we have children, we just kind of merge into these roles. And we stop looking at who we are or what we all want, and end up taking on roles or characteristics of people around us. And I think that’s where it gets confusing sometimes.
Tina Gosney 05:57
Yeah, I think another thing that feeds into that is getting married and having children and getting into the busyness of life, where you forget about yourself altogether, because you’re just so busy trying to take care of life. Yeah, you even forget that you’re a person that has things that you need to pay attention to wants and desires and needs. Because it’s all about, what do I have to get done? Who do I need to take to soccer practice? Or how what am I going to make for dinner tonight? Or how are we going to pay the mortgage next month? You know, it’s all the questions that we try to the busyness of the day to day living, that we forget that there’s a person behind all of those things. That is us that we need to take care of. Yeah, and and we just kind of let those things slide until it sometimes until it becomes a crisis in our lives.
Aimee Gianni 06:47
Yes. And I think thinking about it that way and talking about it that way brings such compassion to it, because it’s not that we’re deficient. And that’s why we don’t know ourselves, right? It’s like we have the best of intentions. And we’re really wanting to succeed at life and take care of our kids and our spouses and do all the things in the very best way that we can. And just in the course of that all those good intentions and trying to hold everything together. Sometimes we’re the one that gets lost,
Tina Gosney 07:19
And then something happens and you find I need to uplevel myself here, there’s something that’s not okay. And I need to figure out what it is. And that’s usually what will lead us into this KNOW, LOVE, GROW Model. So this is perfect for if anyone’s experiencing that type of situation in their life. This is the perfect model for you to follow right now. Yep. Let’s go to love. And love means really acceptance. Why is acceptance so important?
Aimee Gianni 07:52
Yeah. Because when we can accept where we are, that helps us grow from such a place of abundance, which I know we’ll talk about a little bit later. But it’s that really loving yourself and accepting and setting aside judgment. Because judgment, always I’ve probably said this on your podcast before, judgment keeps us from accessing the very thing that we need to move forward. And so when we have judgment in the way, we’re not going to be able to love ourselves or to grow, that when we can remove that and really accept ourselves exactly where we are. That’s what opens the door for us to make progress.
Tina Gosney 08:32
I don’t think you can say that too many times about acceptance. I think we could say that over and over again. And it will sink in different ways at different times, depending on who and where the listener is and what they’re ready to hear. What is the thing that you said, it blocks us from the very thing that we need to be able to move forward? What is that blocking us from?
Aimee Gianni 08:55
Yeah, because say we learn something about ourselves in the know process. So we learn this thing about ourselves that we don’t love, right? And we have a lot of shame about it. And so we don’t want to look at it, we just kind of push it under the rug, that then we it keeps us from that information, right? Because if we are willing to look at it, then we can say, oh, yeah, here’s where I’m weak. This is something I do that I don’t love about myself. But I see that here’s why I do it. Or this is this is a situation where I noticed myself doing it right. That’s the information that helps us move forward, because then we have that awareness. So yeah, every time I find myself, in this circumstance, I noticed that this is my knee jerk reaction. Well, now I have that awareness. And I can choose to do something different. Whereas when we have the judgment, we don’t even look at it. We don’t get curious. We don’t learn that information. And so we don’t know how to watch for it. We don’t know how to do something different because we haven’t actually explored it.
Tina Gosney 09:54
Either we push it under the rug or we just beat ourselves up because that’s the way that we are, and we have so much judgment and we just heap it on top of ourselves, which kind of buries it in itself, it gets buried under the shame of having a being that way, and a certain thing about us.
Aimee Gianni 10:12
And so then we have the the weakness already there, and then we just pile shame on top of it. So we just feel doubly worse, right. And then we’re so focused on the shame that we don’t even really examine the weakness or find the wisdom in it as to how we can move forward,
Tina Gosney 10:30
And then knowing yourself, things about yourself, what you want, the what you’re the way that you handle things, and then being accepting of that in your life can lead you to growth. So let’s talk about what grow means in this model. How do you define growth here?
Aimee Gianni 10:50
So I think about it as progression. It’s really, and I think about it as adult development, we talk a lot about child development. But as adults, we’re still developing, or we should be. And so I think of it, growth here is adult development, it’s growing up emotionally, being able to emotionally mature. So that’s really how I think about growth in this model. And I also think of it as kind of the natural outgrowth of knowing and loving, like, if you’re thinking of planting a little seed, you plant the seed, and you nurture it, right, that’s the love with the water in the sunshine, and fertilize or whatever. And there’s so much going on underneath the surface. And then when that little like green sprout shoots up from the earth, it’s not just something that happened that one day, there’s been so much going on behind the scenes. So I feel like growth is really the thing that’s finally visible. Whereas a lot of the work before that is invisible in some ways. That’s true.
Tina Gosney 11:57
That’s true. emotional maturity is something we’re going to talk about today. And I think it’s a really important topic to really dive into. Because I don’t think most of us actually know what emotional maturity is, or how to get there, also. But I love your example of the seed. Have you heard of the Chinese bamboo tree? Do you know what a Chinese bamboo tree is? Now you’re gonna love this story. So it’s a seed you plant, and your water and your fertilize and your water and you fertilize. And it you water this seed for five years. Oh, wow, I see nothing. For five years. Can you imagine watering something for five years? Now? What would you be tempted to do?
Aimee Gianni 12:44
Just give up and quit? Right?
Tina Gosney 12:47
Or, like, is there anything happening down there? I’m gonna dig this up. Like, I have to see is it just dead it was way but it might have, why don’t you get dead seed. But the fifth year is really amazing. Because the Chinese bamboo tree can grow up to 90 feet in six weeks.
Aimee Gianni 13:06
Wow, that’s a perfect.
Tina Gosney 13:09
You can watch videos on YouTube it you can see it literally growing. That’s amazing, like visibly growing. It’s really it is really amazing. But the only reason it could do that is because it had this really deep, very deep and intricate root system that then allows it to grow at that speed. But if you stopped any time in that five years of watering and giving it sunshine and making it, making sure it had fertilizer, it was well fed, you wouldn’t be able to see that growth. It’s really an exercise interest and in faith that what you’re doing is going to produce results. And I think so often, so many things in our life are like that Chinese bamboo tree, where we are doing things without knowing for sure what the result is going to be. We just know that this is something that is something that I that I want. And I think that by doing these actions by watering, and fertilizing and taking care of this part of my life, that it’s going to produce fruit, it’s going to produce some results in the future.
Aimee Gianni 14:18
Beautiful. I love that. I’ve never heard about that before. So that’s a perfect example. Yeah.
Tina Gosney 14:25
I want to talk about near and far enemies. Because we’ve mentioned that before and I think that is something that we can get really confused about is the near enemy of growth. The far enemy of growth is pretty easy to see. Right? How would you classify the far enemy of growth?
Aimee Gianni 14:47
Yeah, I would say the far enemy of growth is either regression. So going backwards or even just stagnation, right? Just not not moving forward, not progressing. So just staying where you are.
Tina Gosney 14:59
And let me back up just a little bit, if no one’s listened to one of the other podcast episodes that we did near and far enemies are, it’s a Buddhist concept. We have something that we want. And we can tell the opposite quite easily. But the there’s a near enemy that seems like it’s helping us get where we want to be, but it’s actually undermining our efforts to get there, which that’s the one that we want to pay more attention to, because that’s the sneaky one that sneaks in. And that’s the equivalent of watering a dead seed, or, or just not watering something that’s never going to produce the results that we want, right? And so how would you classify and we came up with quite a few different things. Before we hit record, and near enemy to growth looks like what?
Aimee Gianni 15:52
Yes, I think the near enemy to growth is it can be busyness, it can be passive action, where you’re maybe learning a lot, but you’re not doing it, you’re not applying it. So it feels like you’re growing and changing, but you’re really not. And I think it can also fall into the trap of thinking, like learning about stuff and thinking, Oh, this is what someone else needs to be doing. My friend really needs to do this, or my husband really shouldn’t be doing this, as opposed to really applying it ourselves. And so it can feel like, Oh, I’m learning all these new things about how to grow. But if you’re not applying it to yourself, you won’t actually be growing.
Tina Gosney 16:35
We can get easily stuck in all of those things, thinking what everybody else needs to do, except for us. Right? It feels really good also to be learning a lot of things. And like you said, passive action, I think is how you put it. But looking at, I’m consuming so much information. I’m listening to podcasts, and I’m reading books, and look, I’m learning so much. But it can stay there. It can stay in that learning phase and that consuming phase without ever translating it, getting it through our brain and into our heart and through our hands out into our life. That’s an easy place to get stuck. And it feels really good to be there, too.
Aimee Gianni 17:20
Yeah, because consuming is really fun. Right? We all love to learn new things. And I think in this day and age, right? We can listen to a podcast on almost any topic you want. And it’s a TED Talk.
Tina Gosney 17:31
TED talks are awesome, too.
Aimee Gianni 17:33
Yes, you too. I mean, there’s like anything we want to learn about. It’s right there. And it’s so fun. Like our brain loves it, right? It’s so much dopamine to our brain. And we’re learning all these things. And so it can feel really good. But if we’re not applying it, that’s when we fall into that near enemy of growth, because we’re learning that we’re not applying it and actually growing,
Tina Gosney 17:56
And it’s a super easy place to get stuck. So easy. Now busyness, how is that a near enemy to growth?
Aimee Gianni 18:07
Because I think it can keep us distracted. We can be so busy just like going through the motions of like, oh, I need to do this and this and this and this and this, but not actually getting to the things that are going to give you traction. I think it’s also being busy with maybe doing the same thing over and over thinking, Okay, this is what’s gonna help me grow. But you keep doing the same thing. And it doesn’t get you a result. But you just keep doing it and doing it and doing it. That’s kind of how I think busyness is playing in. Yeah.
Tina Gosney 18:36
And I think it seems like that busyness these days is worn as like a badge of honor. Yes, I think I’ve seen women get in almost arguments, but very cordial arguments about who’s busier. Right? Which is really kind of ridiculous. Yeah. Or to just tell somebody how busy you are. Seems like it makes you, it kind of raises importance in your own life. And maybe you think it raises your level of importance in somebody else’s eyes. I think it’s actually really well said to be an enemy and your enemy of growth. Yeah, because I think busyness doesn’t actually help us to grow in the ways that we probably really want to.
Aimee Gianni 19:24
Yeah. And I think what does help us is stillness, which is kind of the opposite of busyness, right? Because when we’re busy, we’re not going to be open or even be able to hear through the noise of the busyness. What the messages are that we need are the places where we really could grow. Whereas when we take time to find stillness, that’s when all of that is going to come through. So I think that busyness just blocks again, the busyness keeps us from accessing the very thing that we need to move forward oftentimes,
Tina Gosney 19:54
Right, right. And I think you mentioned stillness on the know episode that we recorded together, because that’s also a great way to get to know things about yourself. Yes, to be still and quiet. And just to listen to that inner the inner part of you that we get so good at blocking out.
Aimee Gianni 20:16
Yeah. Because that’s where all our wisdom is. We have so much wisdom within us, but we just aren’t always great at accessing it. Because sometimes we have to really sit with the discomfort in order to ask access that wisdom. And none of us like to sit in discomfort, I don’t.
Tina Gosney 20:36
Which leads me to part of what I wanted to talk about today is that growth is not comfortable. Yes, yeah. In fact, as I was doing my workout this morning, I do workouts online with this woman, and I love she just sounds like a coach when she’s like reading these workouts. But she said something like, Hey, if you’re not uncomfortable, you’re not growing. And I was like, Oh, I can use that on the podcast today. I’m gonna record with Amy. But she said, think about it. If you’re not uncomfortable in your workout, your muscles are not being challenged, and they are not growing, and you will not see the results that you want. She said, We get so used to being comfortable in this life. And we have so many comforts that we have trouble being uncomfortable, you should be uncomfortable in your workout. And I was like, That is perfect. Thank you Autumn, which is her name. But that’s true, not just about working out. That’s true about so many other things. How are other what are other ways that we would be uncomfortable as we see growth in our own lives?
Aimee Gianni 21:45
So one thing that comes to mind is you say that is yes, growth is uncomfortable. And we have to sit in discomfort. Sometimes we learn stuff about ourselves that, like I was saying, right, that we don’t really love about ourselves, but we have to face that in order to grow. And I think a near another way of talking about a near enemy to this is kind of being in that place of in order to grow light, like life is supposed to be miserable. And it’s supposed to be hard and horrible. Because there’s a difference between having a workout that’s difficult and uncomfortable. But it’s challenging you in a way that’s growing you and there’s another kind of workout that’s really just like beating your body up, or doing in a way that’s destructive to your body. Right. And I think sometimes we get this mistaken idea that we’ll grow the skills to be uncomfortable. And life is supposed to be hard. And that’s how I know I’m making progress. But I think taken to an extreme. We can almost justify negative situations in our life thinking, well, it’s supposed to be hard. So I must be on track. Right? Think about that.
Tina Gosney 22:53
No, I do. I do love that. And I’m glad you said that. Because anything taken to an extreme, is not helpful for us. Which I think is why we hear moderation and all things. Yeah. And this too.
Aimee Gianni 23:07
So it’s a matter of really fine tuning and knowing okay, what, what is that like? Is this discomfort that I need? Because it is pushing me and it’s helping me grow? Or is this discomfort? More, keeping me in a place of stagnation, where I’m just like, working, working, working, but kind of spinning as opposed to making progress.
Tina Gosney 23:33
Right. And I just in my mind had, as you were saying that I have an experience with a client that I coached a few years ago, who was in a really difficult job situation where she was going to work and literally was being verbally abused, and questioned her. There was no trust with her and her managers. And even though she was doing everything that she could to fix the situations that she was in, there was no, there was no growth in that for her. Yeah, other than to show up or as her best self and then say, I’ve done everything that I can’t hear it’s time for me to leave this situation. That was her growing. Was her choosing to leave.
Aimee Gianni 24:24
Yes, yeah, that’s a perfect example. And the because the examples that come to my mind are similar but with couples, right when I work with couples, and we all hear that marriage is supposed to be difficult or you know, if we’re having difficulties and it’s not smooth sailing, we’re right on track because, yes, having a marriage and a relationship with another person. There’s going to be challenges, but there’s challenges that can help us move forward. And then there’s challenges that are destructive or that are constant where there’s there’s no relief from them and that It’s not how marriage is supposed to be either.
Tina Gosney 25:02
We could do a whole series of podcasts just on that itself. Right. But I just want to kind of leave it there in that they’re taken to an extreme. Yeah, we do need to, to measure. Am I taking this to an extreme this uncomfortableness? Or is this leading me to growth. And sometimes you say, like in a relationship, or even with this client that I had, there was only part of that situation that she had control over. As well as in a relationship, right? There’s only part of this that I have control over, I don’t have control over how this other person shows up, or how they interpret what I’m doing. But I do have control over how I’m showing up how, what I’m thinking and feeling and doing and the effort that I’m putting in. That’s where my growth can happen. And within this relationship, and growing, growing to a point where I know when it’s time to leave. Yeah, if if I do get to that point, I know when it’s time to leave, because I’ve done enough work. And I’ve shown up in the way where I feel like I’ve done everything possible. And it’s still a situation that is not really healthy for me. And so maybe that is the time I need to leave.
Aimee Gianni 26:19
And like you said that is the growth. That is the growth.
Tina Gosney 26:23
Yeah, which is uncomfortable, too. Right. closing a door can be really uncomfortable. And very hard. Yeah. What do you think, can get in the way of us growing? What’s hard about growing and what gets in the way?
Aimee Gianni 26:40
I think another thing that gets in the way of growth is when we kind of have a false sense of safety of where we are, like, well, I’m good right here. And if I grow, things are going to change, right? Because growth requires change. So that’s what growth is we’re changing. Right? You might have this sense of security of like, but I’m good right here, growth might change things so much, then I wouldn’t feel safe, or I wouldn’t like it as much. And so we end up kind of keeping ourselves stuck or holding on tight to where we are because we’re afraid of what growth might look like.
Tina Gosney 27:17
Along those same lines, I totally agree. Along those same lines, I think that when you grow, it changes a relationship. Yes, others. And sometimes, being unsure about how that relationship is going to change with others can keep us from wanting to grow. Because it feels like oh, I’ve got this status quo going, everything’s fine. I don’t need to rock the boat. If I try to go out and do this thing that I want to do. It’s going to rock the boat. So maybe I should not do that.
Aimee Gianni 27:52
Yes, that’s a perfect example. That’s exactly what I’m talking about there. Right? That’s, that’s the scary part of growth. Like I say, growth sounds so beautiful. Like, of course we want to grow and develop and progress. But there are risks to it. Or like you say you don’t know exactly how it’s going to affect things.
Tina Gosney 28:12
And if you’re the other person in their relationship, and you’re watching your partner grow, that can also be a scary thing. Yes. Because there’s a possibility they could outgrow your relationship with you. Or they could change things and you like the way things are right now?
Aimee Gianni 28:30
Yes, yeah. And I see that a lot with partners where they’re like, well, everything was fine, until my spouse started making these changes or looking into this or looking into that. And then they want me doing that with them. And I don’t want to and everything’s okay, how it is. So yeah, I think that dynamic plays out.
Tina Gosney 28:51
But is let’s let’s just visit the emotional maturity in regards to this changing and growing. What, if you gave a definition of emotional maturity, what do you think that would be? How would you classify that?
Aimee Gianni 29:05
So I would say it’s really knowing it’s really taking ownership for what you are responsible for, and what we each are responsible for our own thoughts, our feelings and our actions, right. It’s how we are showing up in the world. And so emotional maturity is owning that and it’s not blaming others, when we can get to a place of emotional maturity. Yeah, we’re able to just take responsibility for ourselves.
Tina Gosney 29:34
And so often, we just blame our emotions on other people. Well, if you hadn’t said that, I wouldn’t be so angry with you. Yes, right. Or you make me so sad. Because you did this thing.
Aimee Gianni 29:48
Yeah. And if you could just be different, I would feel so much better or everything would be better in our relationship. So that’s so all of that is so disempowering, right? Because it’s putting all The blame and responsibility on someone else, which means that you’re left, you’ve left yourself in a powerless position.
Tina Gosney 30:10
But when we can own our own emotions, and we don’t turn around and blame, or blame them on someone else, or give someone else the power to control them. Mm hmm. That in itself is very empowering. And creates a lot of confidence. Yeah, in ourselves. And I think that it also alleviates some of the fear of this growth that you were talking about before.
Aimee Gianni 30:37
Yeah, fear of growth. Right? Yeah.
Tina Gosney 30:40
Because we know that we can handle whatever emotion comes up, I own it. It’s mine. I created it with thoughts, the way I was thinking that I was looking at things. And so I can handle this myself. I know how to handle my emotions. Yeah, yep. I find that to apply to my clients as I talk to them about having really hard conversations, which I think handling your own emotions, is that’s the perfect time to practice that. But they always want to be able to handle their emotions before they’re willing to have hard conversations. But I would say having her conversations helps you practice handling your own emotions.
Because think about it, when you’re talking about something hard. You’re going to be, you’re gonna have some emotion involved in it. And the things that you say are going to cause emotions, or not cause emotions, but they’re probably going to promote some emotions in the other person, right, you’re going to see emotions coming back from them.
You have to be able to handle that discomfort. You’re having the other person having emotions, and you can’t control them. And then your reaction to those uncomfortable emotions that you’re seeing from the other person. It’s almost like not just words going back and forth, but emotions going back and forth. Yeah. And when you can each hold your own emotions, and not give up something or, or bend or blame.
Because of the emotions that you’re seeing from another person that allows you to actually be mature, I’m handling my own emotions. I’m gonna let you handle your own emotions. Yeah. And we can stay in this conversation without having to fix something so that one of us feels better or to blame it on the other person. Yeah. I don’t know if I’m making any sense right now.
Aimee Gianni 32:36
Yeah, no, I think that’s a really important thing to bring up for emotional maturity, because it’s not only taking responsibility for yourself, but it’s also letting go of responsibility for the other person. Now, not in a cold way of like, well, that’s not my problem, right? Right away of I can allow them to have whatever experience they’re having. Let them be upset about something, I’m still going to stay connected and invested in my relationship, but I’m not going to try to control them or blame them, or change how they’re thinking or feeling, I can still stay invested in close to them and love them. And I can be responsible for me, and I can let go and let them be responsible for them. And sometimes that’s the harder part.
Tina Gosney 33:28
Yes, letting go and letting them be responsible for them is tough. But it’s also helping someone else allowing someone else an opportunity to grow on their own. Yes. Right. Because when we take responsibility for them, we’re actually taking that opportunity away from them to be able to grow through that experience.
Aimee Gianni 33:48
Yeah, it undermines their ability to grow if we’re always taking that on.
Tina Gosney 33:53
Yeah. And I think it’s always good to remember in our mind, or if we’re in that type of situation to remember like, yeah, this must be really hard for them what I’m saying to them right now, it’s hard for me to talk about it. I’m sure it’s hard for them to hear it. And so I can just hold so much compassion for both of us through this whole thing.
Aimee Gianni 34:13
Yeah. And I think, you know, that brings us to those words curiosity and compassion. I think whenever we can bring curiosity and compassion to our work we do individually, the work we do in relationships, the better it is, because when we have curiosity and compassion, there’s going to be less judgement. There’s going to be more emotional responsibility, and that’s going to set you up for hopefully a better outcome.
Tina Gosney 34:44
Two emotions that are super important and super helpful with yourself and with other people as you’re developing relationships, curiosity and compassion. Yes, I love those.
So anything else you think is hard? about growing,
Aimee Gianni 35:01
I think a lot of growing relies on remembering. So I think that can be difficult or kind of get in the way, remembering who you are. So we talked about how this know love grow isn’t just linear, right? We keep kind of spiraling back around. And so it’s remembering the work we did in the beginning, and why we did it, like, who am I? Why am I doing this? Why do I want to grow? And growing from that place of abundance, as opposed to scarcity, which maybe this is the time we can talk about what the difference in that looks like.
Tina Gosney 35:40
Yeah, what would learn growing by scarcity look like?
Aimee Gianni 35:44
Yeah, so that’s saying to yourself, I’m not good enough, I need to change, I need to improve because in order to be worthy, or in order to be loved, or because I’m not good enough, where I am, I need to be better. So that’s coming from a place of scarcity. Whereas growing from a place of abundance is I can love myself exactly where I am. And I still want to improve, I still want to make some changes, there are things I’d like to be different. But it’s coming from that place of love, and abundance.
So that’s the difference between those two. And so as we go, we know ourselves, we love ourselves, we start growing. But because growth is painful and difficult, we want to keep coming back to remembering why we’re doing this in the first place. And remembering that we do love ourselves the way that we are, and that we can come from that place of abundance, and it doesn’t have to be from a grasp be a place of scarcity.
Tina Gosney 36:42
I think remembering that why is so important in it’s important and just about everything, we often will just do things just because it’s the way that we’ve always done them or more because this is how my mom taught me how to do it. Or because so and so said this was the right way. But if we just take a step back and say, Why am I doing this? Why am I putting so much effort into this? And remembering Oh, yes, I want to grow? Yeah, that gets us through those times that are hard. Those times that are painful. Back to my workout. Why am I doing that? Because I wanted to have a healthy body. And I want to have the strength to do the things that I want to do in my life. Right? Yeah, that’s why I keep showing up every morning and working out. Not that I love it, which I don’t most of the time. But I do love the results that I get from it. And so that’s why I keep showing up. Yeah, remembering that why I think I love that.
Aimee Gianni 37:40
Yeah. Because you could leave the house being like, Yes, I go to the gym because I want to be healthy. And then as you get in the middle of your workout, you could be like, I have to do this. I hate doing this. But I have to It’s so uncomfortable that I’m in such terrible shape. I have to do this because I need to be in better shape, right? So you can forget and go to that scarcity mindset. So that’s where it’s important to remember when you start falling into that be like No, no, no, I’m choosing to be here. Because I want to have a healthy body.
Tina Gosney 38:09
Right. And our brains are prone to go to that scarcity mindset. Yeah. So if you find your brain going there, there’s nothing wrong with you just chalk yourself back to remembering why you’re doing what you’re doing. Yeah, to remind yourself our brains, we just have to remind them. Yes, all the time. And it’s all fine.
Aimee Gianni 38:29
And remember, remind yourself that you can always have compassion, like, Oh, look at my brain. There it went again. Yep. So judgey of me, that’s what brains do. But really, I get to be so compassionate with myself. So it’s just reminding yourself to go back to compassion.
Tina Gosney 38:45
Absolutely. We, as we grow, and we deal with our own emotions, we become emotionally more mature. And we’re willing to show up for ourselves, we are going to find that we are beginning to stand more on our own two feet. Rather than relying on other people to prop us up. Or maybe your achievements to prop us up or our belongings to prop us up. You know, that if we were just standing on our own two feet and confidence, more confidence within ourselves. So what does that look like in an everyday practical way? What do you think that might look like in change? Just the way we operate differently in our everyday life?
Aimee Gianni 39:29
Yeah, I think we just show up with more confidence and less apology for who we are not in an indignant way of this is just who I am. But it’s like, yeah, this is who I am. This is what I think we’re more willing to share who we are. So I think we become more open when we’re more grounded in who we are. And, and then we’re also more open to others. I think when we’re grounded in who we are, and we’re standing on our own two feet.
We’re willing to be more open and authentic with others, and we’re much more accepting of who they are, because it doesn’t feel like a threat to us. Because if we don’t know who we are, we’re not able to stand on our own two feet. Sometimes we can be threatened by others, or others view of us. Whereas when we know for ourselves, none of that is going to tip us over, right, we can just stand up strong, and be close to people, even if they have a different opinion than we do, or believe very differently from us, or run their life very differently from us, when we stand on our own two feet. We’re secure in that and we can just be connected and love people exactly where they are.
Tina Gosney 40:38
I love that you brought that up. Because I think as we think about this idea of standing on our own two feet and becoming more confident in who we are, I think some people might get the idea that, then I don’t need anybody else. Like I just Well, I just can take people or I can leave them, right? Yes. But I think it’s actually opens us up just like you said to more people. And we let more people into our lives rather than restricting our lives from to less people, and becoming more extremely independent.
I see it, I’ve noticed it actually, in my own life in me opening up to people that I just a few years ago would have not wanted to have her relationship with or not even a conversation with. But now I feel like I am. So I’m a lot more confident in who I am. And I don’t need for this person over here to agree with me or even be any work close to the same as me to have a conversation and hold space for them and get to know them and allow them into my life in a way that feels with feels right to me with healthy boundaries. I think there’s a common. There’s there’s a common thought though, that the more confident we are, the less we need other people. But we know that that is directly against our human nature.
Aimee Gianni 42:06
Yes, yeah. We’re genetically biologically wired for connection. And ideally, we want to have like when I say talk about marriages all the time, right? So it’s healthy interdependence, we want to be connected right in a healthy, interdependent way, which means we can stand on our own two feet, but exactly what you were just describing right, but yet still be close to someone still be connected to them be interdependent, not dependent, or dependent?
And yes, I agree with you. I think sometimes people do get this false sense that the more they develop, and the stronger they become, and more competent than they’re just going to be invincible, and they don’t need anybody else. But I think that’s actually a very weak place to be like, I always call it toxic independence. And so I think the stronger we get in the more confident the more able able we are to be in healthy, interconnected relationships, which is what what we’re wired for. And it has an impact on our health. It has an impact, like our physical health, our mental emotional health, relationships matter. Love really matters. And so the best way to have loving relationships is to have that emotional maturity, because then it changes how you show up and interact in relationships.
Tina Gosney 43:30
And I think that is a strength, I think it is more of a weakness to cut people out of your life and be almost like an island. Like, I don’t need anyone else. I’m here, I can take care of myself, right? Yes, I think it’s a place of strength to be able to give and receive from others. I think receiving from others is a difficult thing for a lot of people to do. Because they view it as a then I’m, I’m in the weaker spot. Right? This other person is stronger than me and I’m weaker, but I don’t think that we need to really see it as a sign of, or even as a thought of strength or weakness. Yeah, in giving and receiving, I think that healthy interconnection gives and receives freely with others without being a one up or a one down position in either way.
Aimee Gianni 44:25
Yeah, beautifully said. I love that. Because think how not fun it would be to be in a relationship with a friend where they were always giving you gifts and they wouldn’t accept anything from you. Because sometimes it’s so fun to be like, I found the perfect thing. I’m so excited to give this to my friend and they’re like, no, no, no, no, don’t give me a present though. I don’t want any of that. Right. That’s not fun. I love thinking of it as just this flow, that healthy interconnection you’re always giving and receiving to each other and it’s just this back and forth between the two of you, which is actually a beautiful strength.
Tina Gosney 45:00
And to just carry that example a little bit further, not just with presence, but with ideas, and opinions and emotions to allow ourselves to receive ideas and opinions from other people. And to be able to take them in and kind of way through them and, and Vietnam bowl them over in our, in our brains. We can’t just expect to always be giving ideas and opinions and, and advice without someone also being able to give to us. If we want to have influence on another person and with another person that has to be a give and take on both sides.
Aimee Gianni 45:40
Yes, yep. And it comes back to that emotional maturity. All once you know, maturity, because the more emotionally mature we are, the more open we are to others ideas, because we know that they’re not a threat to us. We know who we are, it’s not going to tip us over. We can stand on our own two feet and hear these other ideas and take them in and consider them and have thoughtful conversations.
Tina Gosney 46:05
Yeah, all right. I wanted to walk through an example of this whole model, no love grow. What would it look like? And we talk about, it happens over and over again with spiraling. But I just want to give an example, which we actually mentioned to you in an earlier podcast.
Back in the summer that I did this initial training with you and spent a whole week just learning so much information that I was just full of, I think I was full of information. But I was also full of a lot of judgment for myself. And that very last day, when you gathered all of us together on the beach, which perfect place to talk about this on the beach, right? You said what are you taking with you from this training? And I said, you know, I came into this training, thinking I had a pretty strong relationship. But now I don’t feel like I do. And I feel like I have so many things to work on.
And you said, No, you probably do have just as strong of a relationship as you thought you did. What you’re learning is that this is just another way to spiral up. This is just another level that you get to now work on moving to. So in the so let’s just take that example and talk about the no part. Like I learned so much information from you that I had not known before. So often we think that we know all the information we need to know. But there’s a lot more information out there. I learned a lot of information about relationships in general about myself about how to build healthy relationships. I learned just so much information that week from you. That was the knowledge piece.
And then I went into shame, I have to tell you, I went into into shame and judgment for myself. Because I was thinking, Oh, if I had known these things, so many years before I could have avoided and I could have like give you a giving you a big long list, right of all the things that would have been better in my life over the past however many years if I had known these things earlier, so I went into a lot of shame.
But until you said to me, oh no, you probably were right where you thought you were and that was all good. Mm hmm. That allowed me to release the shame. Yeah. And release the judgment that I had of myself. Yeah. And you said, and now you’ve just learned another way that you can grow and spiral up. And so once I released that and just accepted, like, Okay, I didn’t know those things back then. And why would I have expected myself to be different if I didn’t know different? Yeah, I gave myself compassion, right.
And then I went home, and I was able to change some things and to share things with my husband, and with my children. And then I worked on growing myself. And I’ve made a lot of changes in the interim between then and now. And that was a spiraling up. And I say I’ve probably done a few spirals since then, because that was a while ago. But that I think is an example of this model of how it works. Yeah. And I think it can work not just not just in our own, like that was just me doing my own work, right. You had an example before where you talked about. If you’re in a marriage and you’re trying to work, make this work in your marriage, then there’s some other things to consider.
Aimee Gianni 49:40
Yeah, yeah. So each of you doing your own work because when you’re doing this in a marriage, there’s three different things that are getting worked on, right, like your individual, work, your spouse doing his or her individual work, and then the work of this together. So there’s three pieces have, you know your each of you are going through no love grow on your own? And then you’re also going through it together?
Tina Gosney 50:09
Sometimes your spouse isn’t quite on board. Yeah, we’ve talked about before and another podcast, I will link to that one in here. Yeah. But that doesn’t prohibit you from doing this work on your own.
Aimee Gianni 50:26
Yes, you can always do this work on your own. And sometimes you’re doing the work and leading the way, and inviting your spouse to create something better with you, then, then you know, what you currently have? is a great way to get them interested in the work. Sometimes a spouse will say, wow, you know, look at my wife, or look at my husband, he’s doing so much work and growing and things are changing. I want to join him in this. So you can always do the work on your own.
Tina Gosney 50:56
Yeah. And we say, as coaches, we always say, the place to work first to look is always within yourself. Yeah, that’s the place that you always start working is within and not outside of yourself. It’s always inside yourself. So that’s a perfect place to to begin to do this work. Even if you’re the only one that’s on board at first.
Aimee Gianni 51:20
Yes. And it’s I think it’s it goes against our nature, because our nature is to see where the other person is at fault, or the other person needs to change or what they need to do. So bringing it back to, to ourselves, and cleaning up our own side of the street is always the place to begin. And sometimes that’s enough, right? We do our own work. And it’s enough to change the dynamic in our relationship to where great, sometimes it just opens the door and invites the spouse and then your spouse wants to do this work with you. But you can always do the work of yourself on yourself.
Tina Gosney 51:57
Which reminds me of a quote that I just saw on your Instagram the other day. Yes. And you’ll have to remind me, I probably get part of it wrong. Okay, something about marriage is about systems. And when you start to change, you, you start to change the system. Yeah. And you start to change the relationship.
Aimee Gianni 52:16
Yeah. So your your marriage is a system. And so when you start changing, it has an effect on the system, it changes the system. So and that’s why I say sometimes that’s just enough, it’s just enough of a change to make things, you know, the way that you want them in the relationship. But when you change, it automatically changes the system.
Tina Gosney 52:39
Exactly. Is there anything else that we haven’t talked about? I guess to grow? Yeah,
Aimee Gianni 52:48
I guess I would just go back in the very beginning, when we were talking about kind of the definition, you were talking about the trees, right. And I would just say a lot of times the work that we do in coaching, because I’ve seen this not only as a coach, so I’ve seen this in my clients, but I’ve also seen this with me as the client, you might be going along and doing coaching, and you’re doing work, but you’re really not seeing a lot of changes. And then all of a sudden, you’ll look back on like, oh my goodness, I’m a totally different person than I was six months ago, or even a year ago. Right? But it is slowly and sometimes it’s under the surface and so you don’t see it. So I think sometimes we get ourselves in trouble. If I’m like, Okay, I’m gonna hire this coach, I’m gonna work with her everyday for six weeks. And then I’m just I’m going to see all of this progression, right? Because it doesn’t always happen that way. A lot of it is beneath the surface, or it’s happening in small ways that aren’t really noticeable. But then over time, you look back, and you’re like, Wow, I’m totally different now in such a beautiful way.
Tina Gosney 53:55
Because you were getting those deep roots that could allow you that grow.
Aimee Gianni 54:00
So being patient with yourself in this process, right, really having compassion, sticking with it, doing the work, knowing that over time you are changing, it is making a difference. You’re creating that root system. And then and that’s why I also think it’s important to look back over times. We always talk about looking forward, yes, look forward, but also take time to pause and look back on Okay, where was I a year ago? What was I thinking and doing? How am I different now? How have I improved? Where do I see that there’s still room for improvement. So just being really, again, that’s describing curiosity and compassion, right? And just being patient with yourself.
Tina Gosney 54:40
That just reminds me of a book that I read last year, which was, I love this book. Have you read the Gap and the Gain? No. Oh, that is exactly what you’re describing. Yeah. It’s that we have these goals for ourselves. And we see Oh, I haven’t met my goal. But if we look back to where we started, we see how much progress we’ve made. Yeah, And we can measure our our success from there like how far have I grown? What’s my gain? But our brains are going to want to measure how far have I not gotten? Yes, gonna want to measure the gap. So we on purpose have to go back and look, where did I start? Where am I? Now that’s my game that gives us the love to keep moving forward. And to keep growing. If we measure the gap, it leads us into shame and discourages us and then we want to quit.
Aimee Gianni 55:28
Tina Gosney 55:29
Well said, Okay, how do people get a hold of you, if they want to find you after this podcast?
Aimee Gianni 55:35
Yeah, so you can go to my website, it’s aimeegianni.com. And you can sign up to receive my love notes. I send out weekly love notes every Tuesday with practical tips that you can apply to your relationship. And then you can also follow me on Instagram, it’s @amygiannims and I post several times a week with tips for your relationships.
Tina Gosney 55:59
Thank you so much for doing this series with me. I have loved all of it. And I know there’s so many people that I’ve been getting messages from personally and just through DM’s people that I don’t know people that I do know. It’s really helping a lot of people, I just appreciate your willingness to come on here and do something vodcasts with me.
Aimee Gianni 56:23
Yes, I’m so happy to hear that I’ve loved every minute of it. So thank you for having me.
Tina Gosney 56:28
Thank you, Amy. Amy and I talked a lot about emotional maturity. And emotional maturity is really taking responsibility for your own emotions. You know where they come from, you know that you are the one that is creating them. And you don’t blame them on another person, you take responsibility for them yourself. Most likely you’ve not had anyone ever model this for you because it’s very rare to see true emotional maturity in another person.
For this reason, I’ve created a worksheet for you to start working through your own emotional maturity issues. You’ll find a link in the show notes. But this is a worksheet that will really help you to start looking to where you create your own emotional maturity. This is the free download for March to help you start growing because I don’t think there’s another place that is more perfect for you to start growing than your emotions, something that we don’t usually pay attention to. And we don’t even really want to acknowledge so often and so many of us are very emotionally immature.
So let’s start growing in this way this month. Go to the show notes. You’ll find the download there. Thank you for being with me. I hope you stick with me for the rest of this month. Like I said before, I’ve got some really great episodes planned for you.
So stick around and let’s spend this month of growing together.