Do you know the difference between true intimacy and the fantasy bond? Many people confuse the fantasy bond with true intimacy. Although these two styles of relating may appear similar to outsiders looking in, they are indeed very different. Continue reading
Don’t Keep Score!
If you want your partnership to last a lifetime, than you will have to stop keeping score. Ruminating on past problems keeps you stuck. If you continually bring up every injustice in your relationship, you never give your relationship room to grow. If you stay stuck in what is wrong, you will be blind to what is going right.
Do not tolerate abuse, but give your partner grace. Everyone messes up from time to time. Confront the issue, do what you can to find resolution, and then let it go.
Be mindful of the positive. Your partner needs to hear at least five “good” things that he or she is doing, for every “bad.” The positive things that we say to people tend to go in one ear and out the other. The negative things tend to stick like glue.
If you have been trying to get your partner to stop doing something, and he or she does it again, ask yourself, “Has there been any improvement? Has there been any progress? Is it happening less than it use to happen?” Appreciate the progress. (I am talking about relatively small things here. If the repeated offense involves abuse or an affair, please get professional help immediately.)
Partners that have been together forty or fifty years, probably don’t spend a lot of time bringing up forty or fifty years of grievances. Can you imagine? Remember, your partner is human and will let you down from time to time. Don’t allow what is going wrong to overpower what is going right. Look for progress, not perfection. Don’t sweat the little things if you want your relationship to thrive.
“If someone is not treating you with love and respect, it is a gift if they walk away from you. If that person doesn’t walk away, you will surely endure many years of suffering with him or her. Walking away may hurt for a while, but your heart will eventually heal. Then you can choose what you really want. You will find that you don’t need to trust others as much as you need to trust yourself to make the right choice.” -Don Miguel Ruiz, The Four Agreements
It never feels good to be dumped! Although it may not be anything personal, we still feel the stinging rejection. We miss the things that we considered good in the relationship. We often fear being alone. We don’t like change. But we often miss the bigger picture when we are enveloped in fear, grief or desperate attachment.
Many people come into my office distraught because someone has ended a relationship with them. Many times the relationship was never healthy in the first place. They have a difficult time seeing that this person may have actually done them a favor. Continue reading
A client came to me the other day. She is chronically anger with her mother and has been for years. The anger is poisoning her. It is tearing her apart. She describes herself as nothing but a bitter shell of who she use to be. She is so consumed by her anger that she is shutting out all of the joy in her life (and there is a lot). I shared with her my lesson. Continue reading
Relationships take work. Hard work. But the rewards to having a fulfilling relationship are MANY. Are you doing the things necessary to keep your relationship strong? Could it be stronger? Look for ways to improve your relationship today and everyday. Continue reading