The call for “freedom” is usually heard when people feel trapped or constrained by a relationship. The card FREEDOM invites you to consider the true nature of freedom – a freedom that you can experience within a relationship. Freedom does not have to be a solo journey. It can be shared with a partner. The two of you can fly the skies of freedom together.

True freedom allows you to respond to your partner from a place of awareness and choice – no matter what is happening. For some, freedom is cutting loose from the weight of certain sensitivities, no longer feeling the need to withdraw from, avoid, or react to certain situations. For others, freedom might mean not getting pulled back down by negative expectations or thoughts. For still others, it might mean finally being able to freely express feelings or ask for what they want.

These are a few examples of becoming free from limits in relating that many of us put on ourselves. Of course, we don’t intentionally set out to limit ourselves. We normally aren’t even aware we are doing it! Most of our limits arise from unconscious beliefs, unconscious expectations, and unconscious tendencies to react – from way back in our past.

The card FREEDOM invites you to realize that these limits are not necessary! Who you truly are is as expansive as the skies above. Encumbered by unconscious beliefs and reactions, however, there’s little room for your spirit to soar. Yet, at any time, you can lift above the clouds of unconsciousness and fly toward the horizon of greater awareness and choice.

We are not free if unconscious tendencies rule us. We are not free if we are merely reacting to others. When we blame, criticize, argue, judge, withdraw, or act out feelings, we are just reacting. Are we truly free while in the midst of any of these reactions? Or do they tend to clip our wings?

The card FREEDOM asks you to be alert to all reactions you may have to a partner that seem sudden or automatic, like knee-jerk responses. These reactions may not reflect how you’d truly want to relate, if you stopped and thought about it. The freedom you need most at such moments is freedom from reacting unconsciously – not freedom from your partner or from your relationship!

Luckily, you can go beyond reacting automatically – and develop new choices that better serve you in living your life as you truly wish. Self-awareness and a hunger for true freedom are required. Start to notice your unconscious expectations, beliefs, and tendencies to react. When you catch yourself about to react, pause and realize you do not have to follow each urge through. That is true freedom – to realize that you no longer are limited in situations where you usually react, and that you now have a new choice.

True freedom leaves you open as the sky – to explore new, different, and more satisfying ways to respond to your partner, even when things get tense, difficult, or upsetting; even when you expect the worst! Instead of using difficulties as occasions to react against each other, the two of you can remain open, finding better ways to relate with each other. That gives you the freedom to live the life you really want – and the freedom to share this life with others in the way you truly want.