042 – Alexandra Stockwell – Cultivating High-Performing Relationships

042 – Alexandra Stockwell – Cultivating High-Performing Relationships

Alexandra Stockwell, a relationship and intimacy expert, knows what it takes to have a committed relationship that is deeply passionate, satisfying, and fun. She helps couples who just know their relationship could be better so they can up-level their relationship and their quality of life. Alexandra and Elliot discuss some common issues couples have and the surprising discovery she has made about conflict resolution, compromise and taking responsibility (it’s not what you’d think!). Listen in to learn an exercise that’ll get your relationship moving in the right direction – and hear some tips for communicating with your partner in a way they’ll understand.

Time Stamped Show Notes

[01:30] – Alexandra’s book Uncompromising Intimacy

  • 02:30 – Many relationship books are for people in crisis; her book is for people who want to make things better than they are
  • 03:15 – She is devoted to helping couples that have a meaningful, collaborative, and successful life who want to up-level their relationship, too

[04:15] – On how our relationships influence our life

  • 04:35 – There is a lack of role models for relationships; we can find models easier in business and in other forms
  • 05:40 – Barak and Michelle Obama are a good example of a couple that are strong independently and together, supportive, and loving
  • 06:09 – We need to get specific on what a goal would be for a fulfilling relationship

[06:30] – How she helps couples improve

  • 07:00 – It depends on where they are and what they think is important; passion doesn’t have to die in relationships
  • 07:45 – Some passion is only available in a long-term, committed relationship; what’s possible in partnership is more than what most people think

[09:05] – The starting point for a couple wanting to get their relationship back

  • 09:40 – Developing rapport and enhancing communication is key
  • 10:48 – The average couple spends no more than 4 minutes a day talking about something other than logistics
  • 11:30 – 75-80% of the time, the rapport and vulnerable conversation about anything meaningful is what changes things
  • 12:45 – Openness, connectiveness, and spontaneity in the bedroom comes after the rapport and communication is built
  • 13:50 – Slow down to be present and share meaningful truths; routine can be comforting but you can still be comfortable while being curious together
  • 15:16 – Cultivate curiosity to open the door to passion and be open to what they share

[16:45] – On setting aside time

  • 16:55 – Set time aside to disrupt the pattern and learn new, relationship-building habits

[18:30] – On the three main kinds of negative relationships: toxic, termination, and toleration

  • 19:00 – Toxic relationships have abuse, unequal power, fear, and anger
  • 19:30 – Termination relationships are when one or both people have given up of the relationship, even if they stay together
  • 20:05 – The toleration relationship is where you tolerate being dissatisfied and not having your/their needs met; it’s conflict and passion free
  • 21:10 – Having a compromising attitude can lead to a toleration relationship
  • 22:22 – Conflict isn’t the issue, the issue is liveliness, presence, receptivity, and connectedness

[22:50] – An exercise couples can do

  • 23:00 – Don’t see things as being 50/50, see them as 100/100
  • 23:50 – Ask yourself what you would do differently if the quality of the relationship was 100% on you, make a list, and do it
  • 25:15 – The concepts are easy to understand but hard to implement

[26:00] – On being a high-performer

  • 26:40 – High-performers are used to practice, study, and expansion, but it’s different in relationships because its vulnerable

[27:00] – On childhood

  • 27:15 – The way you were raised and the way you were shown love impact the way you read and show love now

[29:00] – Communicate that you’re going to work on the relationship so it doesn’t come as a surprise

  • 30:00 – Test your relationship IQ to yourself, your partner, and your union

3 Key Points

  • You can have a committed relationship that is passionate.
  • Cultivate curiosity by asking open-ended questions.
  • You are 100% responsible for your relationship.

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