Love Stories

Posted on in On Our Radar by Chas August

Changing Your Beliefs


We humans mostly love love, especially what I like to think of as “big-R” love—Relationship. We write songs and poems about love relationships, we give gifts, make pledges and promises, go on dates and vacations together, create a bank of memories of loving moments, give and receive appreciation and adoration, share loving touch and physical intimacy, and so much more. When we are in new relationship energy, we gaze into each other’s eyes, we kiss, we fondle, we caress, we text, phone, and email. We send cute cards, buy flowers, go out to dinner, and go for long walks. We make time just for us. We start to hope we might just be on the path to “happily ever after.”

But too often, as our relationship matures and ages, a lot of us begin to curtail loving behaviors and lose sight of our hopes and dreams. Somehow, love grows cold, intimacy leads to loneliness, sexuality gets more and more infrequent and less and less connected. Happily ever after starts to be boring, routine, stultifying. We start to feel like we’re in a rut, and it feels like something in the relationship has died. It turns out that the biggest difference between a rut and a grave is the dimensions.

Do you know about confirmation bias? Simply put, when you believe something, you find evidence to support that belief, and you reject evidence that contradicts the belief. If you believe in God, you find evidence of the divine hand all around you. If you believe that God is just a myth, a comforting story, then you find all kinds of proof of God’s absence. If you believe you are no longer sexy, then you disbelieve people who say you are. If you believe your relationship is dying, then you pay attention to all the ways it seems to be dying and miss all the ways that it just might need a little help.

Learning is a balance between our confirmation bias leading us to more and more depth of knowledge, and also our challenging the foundations of our belief, discovering new and often contradictory truths that have us reject our own confirmation bias. For example, we learn the “correct” way to play a musical instrument and get more and more skillful. Then one day we hear someone break all the rules in a jazz improvisation. Hearing this challenge to what we believe about the rules of music has us reject what we know and open to new musical truths.

In longer-term relationships we encounter beliefs—often unconscious—about love, intimacy, sexuality. Perhaps we believe we are no longer loved (or just not lovable), or that we are no longer desirable, or that other things are more important than working on our relationship. Confirmation bias has us collect evidence so that, day-by-day, our relationship falls into that sexless, passionless rut. We become more partners than lovers, smoothly handling the business of life.

We come to believe what we are repeatedly told, or tell ourselves. Sometimes we have an experience that triggers the beginning of a repeated message—someone treats us in an abusive or unkind way, and we begin to tell ourselves that we deserve such treatment. Sometimes the experience is cultural—home economics classes have more girls than boys, so we tell ourselves that sewing and cooking are for girls and not for boys.

It is a powerful, life-changing, relationshipenhancing practice to notice beliefs about love, intimacy, and sexuality that cause suffering. What if my beliefs about lost libido are not true? What if beliefs about my partner no longer loving me are not true? What if beliefs about how men are supposed to be and about how women are supposed to be are not true? What if beliefs about not having the time, or our partner not willing to take the time, are not true? What if there is a “happily ever after,” and the path to it is to believe in it and then create it?

A note about the work of relationship: relationships take time. It is my experience that we will work on getting better at our job and getting better at our hobbies but seem to believe that relationships should just happen and be magically self-sustaining. If we spent as little time and attention at our jobs as we spend on our relationship, most of us would be unemployed.

One of the best ways to work on our relationship is through shared sensuality and sex—stroking each other from head to toe, eye gazing, shared laughter, and shared thoughts. Great sex is kissing and hugging and dancing. Great sex is lying naked in each other’s arms listening to our hearts beating. Great sex is about surrender and control, about laughing and crying.

Have a happy, love-filled, sexy Valentine’s Day.

Chas August is a life, relationship, and intimacy coach ( Chas is also a workshop leader, hypnotherapist, and marketing director for Human Awareness Institute Global, offering workshops that explore love, intimacy, and sexuality (

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