Friday, January 18, 2013

F is for Fun

F is for fun. Never forget to have fun with your partner. As couples we tend to get caught up with everyday life, work, the house and the kids and forget to set aside some time alone to enjoy one another and you begin to lose touch with one another. 

Try and set aside time at least once a week to spend time with one another alone. It's important to keep working on your relationship. Just because you get married, it doesn't mean you are done with trying to keep one another happy. 

Thursday, January 10, 2013

E is for Empathize

Empathize with you partner, put yourself in your partner's shoes and think about how you would react in the same situation. As the old saying goes "Never judge a person until you have walked a mile in their shoes" rings true to life. It is easy to pass judgement on another person when you have never been put in the same situation yourself. You have to think, "Would I do the same thing, if I was in the same situation?"

Enough said, I think you can figure out empathy from here.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

D is Don't Criticize

One of the golden rules of relationships is "don't criticize" your partner or mate. Stop and think before you speak. Criticism will get you absolutely no where. When you criticize, it becomes a personal attack on your mate. What happens when someone criticizes you? Criticism only angers you. Instead focus on communicating how their negative behavior makes you feel. Help them understand why a particular behavior upsets you. Explain how it makes you feel, so they understand why you feel they way you do. Effective communication will help your partner understand how you feel without making your partner feel like you are launching a personal attack on them.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

C is for Courteous

C is for courteous. Being courteous to your mate is very important. Never say anything to your mate you wouldn't want someone say to you. Always think before you speak and put yourself in your partner's shoes. Ask yourself, "What would I have done if I were in the same situation?" The best way of avoiding saying  things you really don't mean is to avoid discussing the issue while you are angry. Take a time out to think about the issue.

A very important point to remember is never engage in name calling whether you are alone or in front of others. You are only going to make them angry and the point at hand will never get resolved. When you resort to name calling, the argument then becomes about the name calling and it is very degrading to another person to be called names. If your partner engages in name calling, walk away from the argument even if it means you have to take a walk or go somewhere to allow a cooling down period. Let your partner know, you refuse to engage in the conversation until they are ready to sit down and discuss the problem productively and name calling is not how to accomplish an adult conversation. You are an adult and should never use name calling as a way to seek revenge on your partner or to purposely hurt your partner's feelings.

Have you ever heard the expression "Tit for tat? Tit for tat is an English saying meaning equivalent retaliation.
This tactic may be appropriate for game playing or in a war, but it is definitely not appropriate in the game of love, it will only destroy your relationship.

Now to summarize being courteous. Never say anything to your mate, you wouldn't want someone to say to you, put yourself in your partner's shoes, think before you speak, never discuss a problem while you are angry,. never engage in name calling, and never resort to "tit for tat" tactics during a discussion.

Now on to the letter "D".

Monday, September 3, 2012

B is for Be Active Listener & Behind Closed Doors

B is for Be an active listener and behind closed doors. Too many people engage in a disagreement with their partner and spend more of their time trying to prove their point and trying to win the conversation instead of listening to what their partner is trying to say to them. Carefully, listen to their point and thoughtfully respond to their point. Stop trying to be the winner, you may end up as the loser and lose the person you love.  There are no individual winners in a relationship, only winners as a couple. A relationship requires team work. You must work together as a team! Include your partner in any decision that will affect your relationship.

Behind closed doors. Keep your personal problems between you and your partner. Do not share you problems with someone on the outside unless you feel you are in danger from your partner. Do not point out your problems in relationships around other people. It is only going to bring resentment into your relationship.  Not only is it degrading to your partner, it can seriously damage your relationship beyond repair. 

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

A is for Analyze and Active Listening

Do you remember when you were young and thought love was simple, you thought you would fall in love with someone and will be with them until the chapters of your life and your mere existence comes to a close? At one point or another in our life we remind ourselves,  love is never what you thought it would be. There is light at the end of the tunnel! Love is simple! It is the living breathing human beings who complicate something as simple and beautiful as love. WAIT, WE HAVE THE KEY! 


 [luhv]  Show IPA noun, verb, loved, lov·ing.

a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person.
a feeling of warm personal attachment or deep affection, asfor a parent, child, or friend.
sexual passion or desire.
a person toward whom love is felt; beloved person;sweetheart.
(used in direct address as a term of endearment, affection,or the like): Would you like to see a movie, love?

 The definition of the word love. Sounds simple, right? At least we thought it was simple before actual feelings were stirred up and added to the equation. Then comes along those feelings that make us do crazy things for the person we love.  It has made clearly sane and rational human beings do some crazy things for love. I know I have done some crazy things for love myself. You know those times, those "What was I thinking? times. So now let's get down to the basics of relationships since we started stirring up those skeletons in the closet. Yes, you have skeletons!  You would not be human if you have never ever made a mistake in your entire life that you wish didn't happen.

A is for Analyze.
Analyze yourself, analyze your relationship. Am I the only one who notices the first half of the word is anal. That can be taken in several ways, seriously be anal when it comes to getting to know yourself. To begin working on your relationship you do not need your partner in on the deal from the get go. First, begin with yourself. Learn to truly understand yourself, how to recognize those triggers and learn how to change the way you react to those triggers.

Do a lot of serious soul searching and discover who you are, what you like, what you want from life and from your relationship. But, one thing I always remind people to do is imagine how you would feel if the person you love walked out the door tomorrow? Would you feel happy or would you feel a loss? 

A is also for Active Listening. 
Ask yourself  if you are clearly understanding what your partner is saying to you or are you getting mixed signals from your partner? There are two answers to this question. Yes, you are getting mixed signals from your partner and no you are not getting mixed signals from your partner. One of the major problems with not actively listening is you do not hear what they are saying to you. Thus, you think you are getting mixed signals from your partner. I can not stress enough to be an active listener. It may benefit you in more than one way. Either way, it works out to your benefit.  Don't give up, there is still hope for humans and love.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

ABC's of Relationships

After my most resent question from a reader regarding relationships, he inspired me to create my own blog talking about the basics of relationships. I thought, why not? I have plenty of life experience of bad past relationships and I have a BA in Family Life Education, so naturally I am curious about what does make relationships work?

Through out the years of bad relationships, I have reflected back on what went wrong in my past relationships, examining both sides of the relationship. I wasn't looking for who was at fault, instead I was looking at what are my signals I need to stay away from in relationships, what are my weaknesses, what type of man do I typically fall for?

The current divorce rate is over fifty percent and it's time for us to do something about it. Do we really want to see our children grow up and fall down the same path of broken relations as we have? Whether it is your current relationship or future relationship it is time to examine ourselves and make changes with who we are as a person. Sometimes your partner grows with you or sometimes they don't, that is up to them what work they are willing to put into themselves and the relationship.

We all have our faults in relationships. If you want to start somewhere, yourself is the best place to start. Now, this does not make the person your in a relationship with more right than you or you more right in the relationship. Stop trying to be the winner!

We are going to strip our relationships right down to the core where it began. I do not claim to be a love guru or even an expert on relationships. I am just passing along information from someone who is on the outside looking in and who is walking on the same path of love. You are your own expert in your relationship. You just don't know it yet.