June 30, 2020

What to do When Your Partner Won't Grow With You with Janelle Fraser

What to do When Your Partner Won't Grow With You with Janelle Fraser

Today on The Systems Made Simple™ Podcast, business systems expert Courtney Elmer chats with relationship expert Janelle Fraser about personal partnerships & what happens when the two no longer align.

Have you ever struggled to get your spouse or significant other to join you on your journey of personal growth? 

Today’s special guest, Janelle Fraser helps couples navigate communication, intimacy, and the ups and downs of life together.

As a relationship and intimacy expert, Janelle helps couples grow together in their personal partnerships, so you can reconnect with the person you love and feel like you did when you said “I do.”


  • The cost of busy-ness and burnout on your personal partnerships and relationships

  • What to do when you’re on a journey of growth and your partner is not

  • How to be fully present in your personal relationships, and do successful, meaningful work without sacrificing one for the other

If this episode inspires you, leave a review and share your biggest takeaway with me. And while you've got your phone out, make sure to follow me on Instagram @thecourtneyelmer for more quick tips on how to streamline your business systems and spend more time in your zone of genius.





Ready to learn how to create, launch, and leverage your message into a top-ranked podcast of your own? ENROLL NOW in our brand new short course: How to Start a Profitable Podcast and get $50 OFF right now with code SAVE50! Guaranteed to shorten the learning curve and save you hundreds of hours of headache, trial, and error.

Making Interviews Better: Guestio is the world's only marketplace to find professional guests and platforms —  CLICK HERE to let Guestio know we sent you!


Some product links on this site are affiliate links, which means we may earn a nickel or two for any affiliate purchases you make (at no additional cost to you). We only recommend products that we use and/or personally trust, so you can browse with confidence.

© Copyright 2022 | The EffortLESS Life®


Courtney Elmer  0:00  

You're listening to the Systems Made Simple™ podcast Episode 24, which is all about personal partnership, personal relationships, and spouse relationships. Have you ever struggled to get your spouse or your significant other to join you on your journey of personal growth? This is a complaint I hear often from the entrepreneurs that I work with that they are so excited to be learning and growing and transforming on their journey of personal development.

So if you answered yes to this question, if this is something you can relate to, then today's episode is for you. Now, today's special guest and I have a bit of history. And she is someone very near and dear to my heart because she was my very first business coach way back when my business was just an idea in my head. She helped me get it out of my head and down on paper, and set in motion the company that I run today, now three and a half years later, and she did a whole lot more than just coach me on how to start my business. She was the person responsible for helping me realize that success doesn't happen from the outside in.  

Since then, my friend Janelle Fraser, who you'll hear on the show today has pivoted from helping women grow businesses, to helping couples navigate communication, intimacy, and the ups and downs of life together. Because one of the things she noticed and maybe you've experienced this yourself, is that when you set out on a journey of personal growth, oftentimes your partner is reluctant to go on that journey with you, this can create tension and stress, and suffering that bleeds out into other areas of your life. 

Today Janelle shares her expertise on personal partnerships, personal relationships, and spouse relationships, and why this happens, and what to do about it. Because as you'll learn when you finish listening to today's episode, there's a human behind every business which means when your relationships are affected, you better darn well believe it's going to affect your ability to show up in the world, and to grow your business and to serve your community in the way that you want to. Now Janelle has nearly a decade of experience and she has taught hundreds of workshops, led countless retreats, and coached thousands of clients. You'll also learn about how to improve your personal partnership, personal relationships, and spouse relationships, and what to do when you're on a journey of growth and your partner is not. Let's dive in.


Courtney Elmer

Janelle, welcome to the Systems Made Simple™ podcast. I am so excited for our conversation today on personal partnerships, personal relationships, and spouse relationships.

Janelle Fraser  6:10  

Yes, I'm pumped to be here and can’t wait to chat about personal partnerships, personal relationships, and spouse relationships and business.


Courtney Elmer  6:12  

You and I have had a bit of a journey together. And I am so excited and eager to dive into what you're going to be sharing today. Because we were mapping out this episode a little bit ahead of time, and what you have and the journey that you've been on is so powerful. And it's such an inspiration. And our journey relates to each other in so many ways. So why don't we just start with this? Why don't you let our listeners know who you help, and how you help them with a personal partnership, personal relationships, and spouse relationships?


Janelle Fraser  6:45  

I am a relationship and intimacy expert, and I work with women, as well as the partners who adore them and help them to navigate their life together. So that looks like their communication that looks like their intimacy looks like their sex life. But it also looks like doing life together. And I think that so many couples, not so many, all couples go through so much in the journey, right, you're going to navigate birth, death, illness, jobs, mental health, you know, you navigate it all when you partner with someone. 


Courtney Elmer  7:59  

Beautiful. And I know you didn't start out there. So why don't you take us through your story a bit and at least the journey from you know where you are, what inspired you to start your business and some of the changes that have happened for you along the way?


Janelle Fraser  8:11  

Yeah, I started my business, I've definitely been in the personal development world from the beginning for almost a decade now. And so I've been coaching all over the place and really started and focused a lot in personal development and mindset, I was actually certifying and training coaches, right out of the gate. And then I sort of started just niching down a little bit and focusing on women and women who, specifically who were in business, helping them get their businesses up and going focusing on a personal partnership, personal relationships, and spouse relationships. 


Courtney Elmer  9:33  

The main topic that we're diving into today is kind of how this idea of stress and busyness and burnout can affect our relationships on every level. So how did you see that playing out in your life? You know, you started your business, you had all this success, you grew that business. And then there was a turning point for you. Tell us a little bit about that with your personal partnership, personal relationships, and other spouse relationships.


Janelle Fraser  9:52  

When I started my business, the motivation to even get into this work in the first place was for my relationship. And my sexuality. So that's where I went seeking coaching and this whole industry, that's why I was devouring all the information. That's why I took every certification that I could to get the skills, I knew that ultimately there was gonna be a business born out of it. But the deeper motivation was certainly to move through some of the challenges that I was experiencing. And so what might sound totally twisted is that I believe I, you know, on a deeper level, I was growing my business to try to transform my relationship. It doesn't, you know, seem like they relate, and they don't necessarily, that's what I learned later on. 

In fact, it was probably worse because I was also, you know, running this large business running 10 plus retreats and workshops a year. And so it's like, I worked all the time. And if I wasn't working physically, I was definitely working mentally. And it just kind of came to this head of like, I loved I was, I loved my work, I love my clients, I was successful, there was lots of, you know, progress getting made by clients, they were transforming their lives, like everything was really aligned in that way. But I just couldn't make the strides in my relationship. And so what was happening is I would feel so lit up in my work when I was with my clients, and then I would come home and in my daily life, my interactions with my partner, I would feel like a completely different person, I would feel like a little girl, I didn't feel like a powerful leader, that I was I would feel distracted and not present, I couldn't transfer all these personal development skills into my relationship. I couldn't get my partner on board to change and grow. And, and so it's like, I think I hit that burnout when there were a lot that contributed to the burnout. But sort of the turning point was like, why am I doing all of this? Why am I putting in all this effort, I'm making all this money, I'm traveling. But what about my personal partnership, personal relationships, and client spouse relationships? 


Courtney Elmer  13:13  

There's so many good things that you just said, and I want to dive into a couple of them. But first, this idea of being distracted from like, the real issue that was under the surface. And it was like, what I'm hearing is that you kind of sensed this, but it maybe wasn't totally clear, totally apparent for you at that time. And the pain from that felt painful, it was emotionally painful, you know, and then, so we tend to fill up our lives with things to distract us from pain. 


Janelle Fraser  14:09  

Yeah, absolutely.


Courtney Elmer  14:11  

And that can be really tricky for some people because it's like, well wait, I left my nine to five, I'm not doing what I was doing before that I didn't love where I felt stressed and overwhelmed and exhausted. Now I'm doing something I love but those feelings of stress and overwhelm, and exhaustion are still with me somehow. They're just showing up in different ways. And so that I'm fascinated by this because it's so true that you know, we can bog ourselves down in busy work and it does still pop up in other areas of our life, like in our relationships. And one of the frustrations that you had mentioned was, you know, getting my partner on board to change and grow. And this is a struggle that I see. That's really common. So what would you say to those people listening that maybe are in that place right now that are like, okay, I feel like I'm on this journey of personal growth and development and I'm growing and I'm doing things that better my life. But my partner's just not there yet. What would you say about a personal partnership, personal relationships, and spouse relationships? 


Janelle Fraser  15:03  

Yeah, I actually did a whole podcast episode on this. And the biggest takeaway that I had, because I felt it, I felt it was super valuable to share that side of my journey, because that's what all my clients used to go through as well, right? You know what it was like, it's like, you come home and you're like, I'm on fire, like, I'm changing the world. And then you're like, I need this king to change the world with me. And yeah, and then your partner's, like, uh, you need what do you know, it's like I didn't sign up for I don't know what you're trying to get me to do. But I think one thing that I want to remind people is that your partner is growing, and your partner is changing, and it's going to look different than the way you grow and change. And I think that we often, especially in the personal development world, our change looks like retreats, workshops, coaching sessions, and oftentimes, not always, but oftentimes, our partner, you know, isn't going to be interested in those same things in terms of their development.


Courtney Elmer  18:26  

That is such a great point. This shows up in my relationship all the time. And I remember back in the day when I first started on my own journey in the personal development world, and just was so excited to be growing. And it was just like this whole new world that I had never experienced before. And it was like it lit up a part of me that I wanted to share in my relationship. But then it kind of got to the point where it was oversharing. And I kind of stepped into that coach role. And I'm like, well, you need to be doing this, and you should be doing this, or why do you think you're doing it that way, you know, and all these little bitty things that Alan would resist because it wasn't best for it to come from me. And even down to the point of like, Oh, I just read this amazing book.


Janelle Fraser  20:10  

Because basically, you train your partner how to treat you, how to interact with you, what you're available for, and what you're not available for. And so, you know, I think we've all had a desire a point to make a change, or started to make a change, and like, your family, or your people around you, your significant other doesn't believe you, you know, or is like, right, like, how long is this gonna last for, like, you know, and so I think there can be a lot of that, because, you know, what you do impacts your relationship, so much how you live your day to day. And, you know, it causes you burnout, it causes you pain, it causes you suffering, but like, how do you think that makes your partner feel as well, like, there's an impact on them. 


Courtney Elmer  24:47  

It is and I love how you mentioned that and in just in our conversations, we've talked about this before how really you know breaking up with busy is like overcoming an addiction. We have to deal with toxic out of our lives. And that looks so different on so many levels. Yes, it's in the way we approach our work. Yes, it's in the way we show up in our lives. And yes, it's in our personal partnership, personal relationships, and spouse relationships in so many different areas, as you said, not just with romantic partners, but also just with, you know, our parents, our kids, our siblings, our friends, yes, all of those relationships. 

And so in my own experience, it's an ongoing experience, I feel like I will always be in recovery. Because when we do feel unsafe, when we do feel like we are in danger, we might not physically be in danger. But when those waves come, and something all of a sudden feels like it's not the status quo anymore, this is different. This has changed some, I feel like I'm totally out of my comfort zone here, those feelings of fear and all that surface, it's really easy for us to go back to those old habits and those old patterns of behavior that we have created in order to feel safe in order to feel like we're in control. 


Janelle Fraser  26:32  

Yeah, I would say that, the way I like to explain it is this hat, this is true for all transformation. So when we transform something until a transformation is very much solidified in our life, what happens is, anytime that we get under stress, external or internal stress happens, what will naturally happen is that we will revert back to our last completed and solidified level of change and transformation. 


Courtney Elmer  31:42  

Yes, definitely a process. It doesn't happen overnight. It's not linear, as you said, it's got all these different pieces and parts. And I like to think of it like a puzzle, you know, we're over here, we work on one piece of the puzzle or on one personal partnership, then personal relationships, and then spouse relationships. And then all of a sudden, we recognize Wait, there's another piece way over here that I didn't think was even I was even working on right now. 

And it was also the thing I had to let go of, and my ego being a huge one, that, you know, I had experienced success. And I would think you know, you could probably relate to this, I had experienced a lot of success in my life up until that point where I was like, Okay, I'm ready to leave this old way of doing things and this old way of being behind because it wasn't working for me. It wasn't sustainable, it was too much work, too much stress, too much pressure. And then stepping into this new way of being it was just totally foreign to me. I was like, "Wait a second, who am I without my work? Who am I now without busyness?" How is this impacting my personal partnership, personal relationships, and spouse relationships? 


Janelle Fraser  33:10  

For me, it was also how do I make money like this like I could make money quickly and efficiently. In my old way of being the biggest challenge inside of my business was I was feeling good in my life, feeling like I was slowing down and you know, at peace and trusting the process and you know, all those great things. And that's like, like, it took me a long time. And I'm still in sort of the upswing of my business again, because sort of in the middle of this change. I had a baby, I took some space with that as well. 


Janelle Fraser  35:51  

One of the questions I proposed to a group that I spoke to last week was, Why are we building lives that exhaust us? Right? Why are we negatively impacting our personal partnership, personal relationships, and spouse relationships? And that's a question that we, you know, really need to explore: Why are you building a life that exhausts you? Why are you building a business that exhausts you, guaranteed, that's not the reason you got into business guarantee, that's not the way you want to feel about your life. So why, and that question, you know, if we go into that, if we journal and not if we just have a conversation about it, I can pull up all kinds of beliefs and struggles about what you know about our value. And you know, that we are only valuable when we're doing something, that we're lazy, that we're not good enough, we're trying to prove that we're good enough that, you know, I want, I feel like I can't handle it all. So I'm trying to prove that I can handle it all. 


Courtney Elmer  41:40  

Yeah, that's powerful. And it's a dance, it really is a dance between the two. And I think my hope is that those listening will come back to this episode, often. And even if not the whole episode, this last piece of what you just shared really is an art form between the two. And I think armed with that knowledge and that conscious awareness going into our life, knowing that the goals that we set for ourselves, and the things that we work so hard towards are not always going to bring us the feeling that we are desiring by achieving those things. And knowing that they're different, and also exploring how to achieve that feeling with or without hitting the goals that we want to hit that we can have both we can have it all we can have happy relationships that we are present, and we can travel, we can have a successful business, and we can feel happy to win, we know that all of those external things are not necessarily going to translate into internal peace and joy and happiness, sometimes there's a different path towards achieving those things. 


Janelle Fraser  42:59  

One thing that I would love to share is that this element of time comes in, because I think that I mean, in the beginning of my business, I wanted to get everywhere as fast as I could, I wanted to hit six figures in the first year. And then once I saw the potential to hit it in the first three months, I went for it and I did write, you see this everywhere, these elements of time like wanting to get where I want to go in the school really, really fast. You know, clients even come in, I want to change my personal partnership, personal relationships, or spouse relationship and you know, all these great things, and they wanted it to happen in like a week. And so I want to bring this out. 


Courtney Elmer  49:02  

I'm so glad you brought that up. And it's so true, we have to examine our relationship with time because it really comes down to how we see time is how we experience time. And I have a whole segment that I teach on this in my online program, because it is so important for us to get present to time to recognize how we're seeing it right now. And what we are doing with that time that we do have, and I think that is the perfect note to end on and just leave it as food for thought for people. Because it's one of those things that you know, my hope is that those listening will walk away and just start to think about things a little bit differently. Really, that's the whole point of this show is you know, to create a life that doesn't depend solely on your time, your energy or your efforts, because all of those are limited resources you're only going to get so far. And so to start shifting our perspectives and being willing to lean in and explore other ways of doing life, of doing business, of showing up in our relationships and of showing up in our life. And I have one final question that I ask every guest that comes on the show. And I'm really excited to hear your answer. And the question is this, it's what is your definition of success with your personal partnership, personal relationships, and spouse relationships?


Janelle Fraser  50:16  

I'm gonna go with a really potentially unpopular opinion. I don't know what other people are answering. I've listened to all your episodes that I can't remember what other people's answers were. I don't know, I am in a place in my life right now, where I don't fully know. And I think I used to be very clear on what that meant. But then I got it all. And that wasn't it. And so, to me, I guess maybe I do know, its presence. 

It feels like presence with a personal partnership, personal relationships, and spouse relationships. But I don't necessarily know how that fully looks yet. But now if you ask me this question, I realized that I want to explore that deeper for myself, because, to me, it really is about presence, I want to be able to be present with my daughter, you know, not on my phone or not in my head and be able to just play and enjoy her, not always be thinking about what the next thing is. I don't want my life to be so structured and scheduled, and I don't want to have too much stuff in it. But I have to be thinking about the next thing to be able to get it all done. 


Courtney Elmer  52:08  

Thank you for sharing that it really takes courage to say I don't know. And I feel like in you saying that just now that it gives others permission to not know as well. And then it's okay, we don't always have to have it all figured out. We don't always have to know and have our life all planned out, you know, and it's going to go because we know it's not going to go according to plan. As soon as sometimes just be in that space of not knowing. And also being willing to explore, and to discover, and to pay attention to the things that come up that will guide us in the path from not knowing to knowing, or at least knowing more clearly, or knowing more facets of this big multifaceted thing we call life. And I think that's a beautiful space to be. I've been in that space so many times in my life. And even on a day-to-day level. 


Janelle Fraser  53:21  

Yeah. I'm trusting that life will guide me, that God will guide me and the opportunities will present themselves. And it's like, I just I think of like, you know, the next few months, what do I sort of want to establish what does it feel like I'm guided to establish in my life and in my business, you know, and then make decisions from that new place every time like currently in my business, I'm really establishing my one on one practice online, as well as in my city. 


Courtney Elmer  55:19 

I feel like I've reached a point in my life where I am doing that. I've not really been conscious of it until now. But it's like, okay, now that I've done this thing, okay, now where to from here, and making it more based on where I am versus where I want to go. That's a really important distinction. I love that. Yeah. Thanks for bringing that up. Awesome. Well, I know our listeners are going to want to connect with you, especially those who are maybe needing support and advice and coaching around a personal partnership, personal relationships, or spouse relationships, particularly so where can they connect with you?


Janelle Fraser  56:00  

Yes, they can find me all over social media. Instagram and Facebook, I have a YouTube channel as well. You can just search Janelle Fraser and you'll see my face.


Courtney Elmer  56:36  

Awesome. And we'll link all that up in the show notes too. So everyone can go and jump straight there and come connect with you on a personal partnership, personal relationships, and spouse relationships. 

Thank you so much for your time on the show. This was an awesome episode, it was a powerful episode on your personal partnership, personal relationships, and spouse relationships. My hope is that our listeners come back to it often. And that we'll have you back on the show again because you know, these are the kind of topics we need to be talking about and digging into. These are the kinds that have the potential to transform our life, not all the surface stuff. We got to be willing to go deep. 

Thank you guys so much for tuning in. Remember to subscribe so that you are the first to know as soon as a new episode drops, and please take a second to leave us a review on this episode about your personal partnership, personal relationships, and spouse relationships. It only takes a couple moments of your time and your reviews really do help people find us people who need to hear this message too. 

All right, we'll see you back here next time on the Systems Made Simple™ podcast. Until then go live your EffortLESS Life®.