Hello and welcome to the Happy Love Project! I am so glad you are here!
I’m Katherine Phifer and I am a relationship coach. Formerly a psychotherapist and art therapist, I support women to find, create and maintain happy love. I riff and interview thought leaders about ways we can ultimately have amazing relationships.
I am mama to 9 year old twin boys, and an 11 year old angel daughter. I’m also wife to the most amazing man. I tend to intertwine stories about myself and my family within the podcast. I usually chat with you from Franklin, Tennessee.
The Happy Love Project is just that, a project. And season one is all about self love.
Creating self love is the foundation for creating your own happy love project, whether you are looking for a partner that meets your caliber or you are in a relationship and you want to maintain happy love.
YOU GET TO DECIDE.
Throughout my life I’ve kinda stumbled upon one thing to the next. In high school I was really into photography. And then in college after a being an “Undecided” major for a while, I decided to study art and photography. When I was graduating, I decided I didn’t want to be a professional photographer (imagine that conversation in the car after graduation with my parents…) . I ended up working at an art gallery for a year while I tried to decide what came next.
Then, I stumbled upon studying art therapy and mental healthy therapy. In following that path, I wanted deeply to become a healer, and studied for my Master’s degree. And then I finished that, moved to Alaska, and became a mental health therapist and art therapist. I worked at an amazing forum, and I felt like I was being guided and led, but I wasn’t really contributing to the dream.
At some point I realized I could have a say in what I did and I didn’t have to stumble upon things, I could have part in creating it. And that was really eye opening for me. I could create a life, I didn’t just have to live it. I’m still learning about that.
I feel like that happens in relationships too. Where we stumble upon them. And in ways we manifest relationships, but we don’t really think about it or dream about it or write down what we want… unless we do.
That was something I did a little over 12 years ago. I wrote in my journal exactly what I wanted in my next relationship. I was incredibly clear. I wrote down all of these attributes of a man (for me) of what I was looking for in a match. I manifested him. I wrote down a list of things I wanted. Not in a perfect sense. I didn’t imagine that it would be easy or perfect. I didn’t imagine that we wouldn’t have arguments or struggles.
But I did expect that this man would have attributes of what I wanted. And he appeared.
At first I didn’t know. I love to tell this story. I met my husband on e-harmony. I had just moved to Anchorage, Alaska and I wasn’t likely going to meet a man in the traditional sense (at a bar or at Barnes and Noble). So with the encouragement of a therapist, I joined e-harmony and filled out a profile.
And met my husband. We talked on the phone a bit and then met in person. And after our first date, I didn’t think this guy was it! He didn’t talk very much, he was quite shy, I felt like I was at work asking a bunch of questions. I also felt like he was so shiny. He was fresh and excited about life, and after ending a long, tumultuous breakup, I felt jaded. I felt like I was not up to his caliber.
So over e-harmony messages I wrote: “Hey, I just don’t think this is going to work out, we are really different.” And he wrote back, “yes, I agree we are different. Why don’t we be friends? I don’t have many friends besides work buddies and you just moved here, do you think you’d want to be friends. “ And so I said “OK”. And we started hanging out as friends. And then the pressure was off and I realized I really liked him and he was meeting all of the criteria I was looking for.
It wasn’t until much, much later in our marriage that I realized I had manifested this man. I had manifested the partner I was looking for. I had said to the universe and world “these are the things I want” and it came in the form of Anthony.
We are very different, but we are a great compliment for each other. And the relationship is a lot of fun.
It’s funny, because I didn’t know I was doing that. I was just writing down what I wanted. I wanted to be clear with myself on what I was looking for, because I had relied only on attraction before. I didn’t think about the attributes of the person I wanted to spend my life with.
Now I realize I was deciding that I wasn’t going to “happen” into the next relationship.
Once I realized that I did that, years and years later, I realized I could do that for other realms of my life.
One of things I was really clear about then, and I am now, is myself. Knowing who I am and my core. Knowing my groundedness. So that when I do call in amazing love, or the next step in my career, I know I am grounded in me.
This episode is all about you getting to decide. You get to decide. Dream about what you want in your life. What do you want in a relationship? Even in a current realtionship.
Do you want to connect more? Spend time on the couch? What do you want?
If you are manifesting new love, what does that look like? What are your boundaries? What do you have room for? What do you not have room for?
You could be saying: seriously, I get to decide? And I want to say “yes”. It may take time and restructuring, but yes, you get to decide. You are the author of your life. You are in charge.
So, a little homework: Write out some of the things you are dreaming about. Some of the attributes you want in love. Dream a little bit. And see if there are any openings in your life to create that in your life.
It’s pretty amazing when you start to realize you are in charge of you life and you don’t have to ride a wave you aren’t in control of.
Essentially, we are in control of how we act, who we are, and how we deal with our feelings. You get to decide about those things.
Thanks to A&K Podcast Services for supporting me in debuting this podcast.
You can listen to this episode and all episodes of The Happy Love Project by clicking the buttons below or by going to iTunes, Spotify, Google Play and Stitcher.