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Tips To Finding A Solution Without A Fight.

When couple face a disagreement all they can see are the two opposing choices. For example, Paul wants to spend money on a luxury vacation in Hawaii, for just he and Jena. She wants to go camping with the kids in the mountains and save the extra money for remodeling the bathroom. All they see is the differences and they make assumptions about the other’s intentions or reasoning. This leaves them stuck in conflict and anger and they are only looking at the tip of the iceberg. 

Both Paul and Jena have made judgements and assumptions about their partners intentions. These assumptions are created in their own heads and are probably false. They are based on little information and end up making the other person defensive. Because of these assumptions they listen selectively and only hear evidence that supports their belief.

In order to facilitate a shift we need to let go of our judgement and try to explore the other persons choice. At this step each person needs to listen with openness, to put aside judgement and their own interpretations and rebuttals. Not an easy thing to do. 

After gathering information about what each persons idea is truly about, then it is helpful to go deeper into the feelings behind their choice. This can be uncomfortable for some of us who want to jump to a solution, but unless your partner feels that their feelings are heard and understood they are not likely to listen to the solution. So at this point learning what feelings motivated their choice will move you forward. You may learn that what was assumed about the others needs and intentions was false and come to a better understanding of your partners underlying intentions and desires.

In understanding your partners true intentions and reasoning it is then helpful to empathize with them. This does not mean that you are in agreement with their choice but it does help you connect with them, see things from the other persons vantage point and feel what they feel. If you can share this new understanding with your partner you will be closer to finding a solution that brings you together. This also lowers defensiveness and allows each of you to open up to new ideas.

So now you have a better understanding of what is on the table. At this point it is not just a choice between the two original choices but it is time to brainstorm other solutions and ideas that may be a win-win solution for both of you. During brainstorming though each person needs to remain open and non-judgmental about the new ideas. Avoiding sabotaging new solutions, this is a time of creating ideas that are possibilities, not finding the solution yet. This is not a time to persuade each other to your side, it is a time to be creative and listen well to new possibilities. 

After many possibilities are on the table you are ready to pick a solution and one strategy to choosing which solution is best is to play the “Flash Forward Game” suggested by Shirzad Chamine author of Positive Intelligence. This requires each of you to think of your self at the end of __________. At the end of your life, at the end of the year, at the end of the kids’ time at home? Looking back, how do you wish you had conducted yourself? This helps narrow and prioritize your choices. 

This is not an easy process and it does take a great deal of self awareness and control. It is easy to fall into judgement, avoidance, defensiveness, anger or frustration. It helps to remind yourselves that if you work together you will be able to find a solutions that will please each of you. Be patient with each other, you are on the same team. If you are struggling, I am always here to help.  Don’t hesitate to reach out if you have questions! 

Give us a call at (562) 537-2947.  

Written by Lisa Strong

Why Some Apologies Don’t Seem To Help

Have you ever received an apology from someone but it doesn’t make things better? That may be because their apology misses the mark. What we really want from an apology is for the other person to accept our version of reality and to see the hurt that they caused and take responsibility for their words and/or actions that caused the hurt. 

Here are some examples of how an apology can miss the mark;

Some apologies skirt the issue by avoiding the responsibility or making excuses. One example of this is when the person says “I’m sorry but…” When you add on the “but” what you are really saying is that my rude behavior is understandable considering the circumstances. An example of this would be if someone said “I am really sorry for yelling at you but when you roll your eyes at my suggestion I get so angry” The words after the “but” really negates the apology and is used as a justification for the bad behavior. The person is not taking full responsibility.

An apology that puts the focus on the hurt persons feelings instead of the hurtful behavior is another way people avoid taking responsibility. An example of this might be “I’m sorry you got so upset when I borrowed your jacket without asking you. I didn’t know you were sensitive about things like that” This is not an apology that accepts responsibility for the rude behavior of taking something without asking. It really feels more like a dig at the person for being so uptight. An apology that starts with “I’m sorry you feel that way” is not going in the right direction. The focus should not be on the hurt persons feelings but on your specific behavior that caused the hurt.

An apology should not be used to get something back from the injured party like forgiveness or a change of mood. The focus should be on your behavior and not requiring something from the injured party. When a request is added to the apology it can ruin the apology. If we say, “I’m so sorry I didn’t tell you that I went out with some friends last night, will you forgive me?” or “I’m sorry I spent so much time talking to Jim and left you out, can you put it behind you so we can have a nice time tonight?” The problem is that the request comes too quickly and the injured party may not be ready to move on and when you attach that requirement to the apology it sounds more like something for you than a gift for the other person. An apology should not ask the hurt party for anything.

Then what should an apology look like? The person apologizing should take responsibility for the behavior. The apology should be short and not go overboard and should offer some type of corrective action if possible. What I mean is that if you took the persons jacket and then lost it, it would be expected that you replace it, if possible. Also let the other person know that you will do your best to not repeat the behavior. If you can do these things the apology will be healing. 

Many of these ideas came from Dr. Harriet Lerner’s book Why Won’t You Apologize? I highly recommend it to better understand the importance of an apology and the healing a good apology can bring to your relationship. 

Written by Lisa Strong

What is Needed to Build a Fulfilling Relationship

I believe that to maintain a healthy relationship it requires you to be intentional about it. I avoid saying that your relationship takes work because that sounds arduous. I want you to enjoy the effort that you put into your relationship. You may ask; “What exactly is needed to build a relationship that brings each of us fulfillment?”

First off, it might be helpful to think of your relationship as a great adventure instead of a task to be worked on, this will create a more willing attitude. It requires us to be curious about each other, be vulnerable with your self and to venture outside your comfort zone. In order for this to happen there needs to be a foundation of trust. You will only be willing to be vulnerable and brave if you feel like you can trust your partner to be kind. 

When a partner shares a thought or concern they hope that they will be heard and will be shown a consideration of what they are sharing. If you are the one listening then you need to avoid judgement, contempt, criticism and anger. The interaction needs to be a positive one or over time the one sharing will avoid this type of openness. When you share a thought you want your partner to value you and you also wants to know that they care about what is happening in their life, your thoughts and your experiences. 

Here is a simple practical step that each of us can incorporate into our day. Start each day knowing something about what your partner’s day will be like. This requires you to take time to talk about each others day, either in the morning or the night before. Know what is stressing your partner or what they might be excited about in their day. Check in with them at some point and ask about that particular concern. The fact that you care enough to ask about some aspect of their day will build in your partner a feeling of being cared for and considered. This will also build a foundation of connection, like the two of you are on each other’s side and supporting each other through each day.

Dr. John Gottman a best selling author and researcher who studies relationships says; 

    “You’re writing your own love story every time you turn toward each other. Every time you offer comfort. Every time you really listen. Each and every time you put your partner’s interests above your own.”

These simple behaviors of showing comfort, listening and considering your partners interests will build the foundation of trust and care that each relationship needs to stay strong. I do recommend that you not think of it as work but it does take energy and a conscious effort. A healthy relationship is worth the investment. 

If you need any guidance or support, you can call us at Save My Family Today, 562-537-2947.

Written by Lisa Strong

Balancing Relationship Needs During This Time Of Pandemic

In my last newsletter I wrote about a child or teenager’s need for autonomy and how making room for that can be a challenge during Covid-19. Well this is also true in any relationship, how to find a balance between our own autonomy and our dependency. In our everyday lives we manage this balance, we have our work, our friends and connections outside our relationship with our significant other. This separateness allows for independence and autonomy. But as partners we also have agreed to a dependence in the relationship. We accept the fact that we need to consider the other persons wants, needs, values and beliefs. Now with Covid-19 the demand to consider our partner and release some of our independence is required and this can be very challenging. 

We as Americans like our independence and we are used to getting what we want and it is not usually a challenge for us. So now we are all at home, possibly 24/7 with our partner. We need to achieve that balance again as best we can during this challenging time. If we don’t take proactive steps to keep our relationships healthy, it could buckle under the pressure. Here are seven actionable tips that you can begin using today to help your marriage or partnership through this stressful time.

Be open and vulnerable.
Instead of demanding your way or dictating your rules and yelling instructions. Recognizing and communicating that you’re afraid can change the conversation, and it’s a lot easier to be compassionate toward a worried partner than an angry one.

Be kind to yourself
When you’re feeling triggered or anxious, Try to notice when you speak to yourself harshly, and experiment with saying something kinder. Imagine what you might say to a close friend who was stressed. Bringing more kindness to your own fear and anxiety will help you bring more kindness to your partner’s as well. The first priority is to notice when you might need space and create it for yourself. This might mean noticing irritability, fear, tension, or tiredness and deciding to go for a walk, agreeing to have some not-talking time before returning to a difficult conversation, calling a friend or family member, or doing something on your own at home, like reading a book or working on your own project.

Instead of criticism share observations.
Next time you’re tempted to tell your partner what they should do or criticize what they might have already done, try instead talking about the concrete behaviors you’re observing and your feelings, wants, needs, and beliefs about them. Instead of barking “Wash your hands,” perhaps try “I’m feeling nervous that you interacted with the delivery person. I would feel more comfortable if you would please wash your hands before you keep making lunch.”

Remember to be understanding.
If your partner’s behavior has been unusual, give extra attention to their mood, and remember not to internalize it or read into it. If you’re concerned you’ve somehow triggered them emotionally, simply ask directly and calmly. If they say their mood has nothing to do with you, believe it. Remind yourself that your partner is doing their best amid the chaos, just as you are. Make it a point to say please or thank you to each other, even for the littlest things. Tell jokes, laugh when you can, enjoy things together including intimacy both emotional and physical.  The goal is to weather this storm together, as a team and above all, be kind to each other.

Acknowledge and accept your differences
Talking about and naming the differences in how you are responding to the coronavirus is an important step to de-escalating any coronavirus conflict. Freshen up on your active listening skills so you can hear the other person’s viewpoint and have them feel understood for their differences. You don’t have to agree with how they see the situation, but having them feel heard and understood will go a long way to creating more harmony at home.

Carve Out Alone Time
Couples thrive when there’s a healthy balance between time spent together and time spent apart. No matter your living situation, the essential ingredient is communicating when you need alone time, as this is likely to be different every day. And when your partner requests a similar break, honor it. This is the independence that many of us may need to feel.

Routine
For many people, anxiety is fed by two main things: fear of the unknown and wanting to control the future. One tool that is helpful with this fear is setting up a routine for yourself and your family. Planning meals, scheduling exercise times, devoting specific hours to work or outlining a plan of attack for a DIY project, can restore some semblance of normalcy to your otherwise-upended life. Our brains love structure, and the grounding effects of routines are powerful. The COVID-19 situation is evolving, and new developments may require tweaks to these plans, but by getting a handle on the day-to-day you can minimize your anxieties while fostering teamwork.

As I have said before it’s a lot to handle right now and these are challenges that none of us could have predicted. Let us know at Save My Family Today if we can help.

Written by Lisa Strong

Unspoken Expectations Are The Seeds Of Resentment

With the COVID-19 our lives and daily routines have radically changed. If you are at home with a spouse, partner, family members or friend then it can be a time of tension and frustration if you lack communication. The title of this newsletter, Unspoken Expectations Are The Seeds Of Resentment, is a reminder to speak to your loved one about your expectations, your thoughts, your fears and your needs before you become resentful, angry or frustrated. 

We have experienced a lot of loss in this time, loss of finances, loss of our freedom, loss of community and the loss of feeling safe. How are each of us to manage this? Do not try to handle it on your own without talking to those in your home. We need to manage our day in a way that can bring back a feeling of control and security. We each have our own ideas of how to do this.

Unspoken expectations can be the silent killer of your relationship and your ability to cope with the changes. Do yourself and your loved one a favor: be honest about your expectations and ask yourself if they are realistic.

There is a difference between realistic and unrealistic expectations and the unrealistic expectations, even when spoken will still result in frustrations because they are unlikely to be fulfilled. 

Unrealistic expectations are;

  • Believing that an unverbalized expectation will bring you what you want, this is just  wishful thinking and making a false assumption. 
  • Expecting others to do what is in your interest, but not their interest, is unrealistic. We need to consider our partner. This is not a one sided discussion. After listening to each other you can work out a plan that is acceptable to each person.

How to discuss realistic expectations;
Don’t assume that your expectations are clear. Your partner can not read your mind. so you need to spell it out.

  1. Clearly state, discuss and agree upon the expectations. This involves actively listening and considering each others concerns without judgement. Then collaborating together to establish a plan. 
  2. Adhere to the expectations. There is no benefit if you make an agreement and then do not follow through. This again would result in frustrations. Your plan may need to be altered. For example, you may have decided that the family should all get up at 7:00 AM but after some time you realize this not realistic for your family so you renegotiate the terms of what is expected. That is OK as long as each of you is in agreement. This is all new territory for us so there will need to be modifications to our initial expectations. 
  3. Expecting life to always turn out as planned is guaranteed to lead to disappointment because as we can see today, life does not go as planned. None of us could have foreseen this shelter-in-place scenario or COVID-19 danger. So the disappointment and emotions you feel are understandable. Please continue to share with your love ones those emotions and support each other and working together. 

If you need extra support we at Save My Family Today are available to meet with you via Zoom, an online conferencing website, to give guidance, support and knowledge of how to navigate this uncertain time. It is imperative that you stay not only physically healthy but emotionally and relationally healthy as well. Give us a call at 562-537-2947.

Written by Lisa Strong

5 Deadly Sins of Body Language

When the silent movies came out during the early part of the 19th century, actors conveyed love, anger, sadness and respect through body language. We do the same in our everyday life. There is aggressive body language, uninterested body language, closed body language and annoyed body language that can encapsulate other poor behaviors. Since communication is 50 percent nonverbal, we might want to be more cognizant of the use of body language to prevent friction. Here are 5 deadly sins of negative body language. 

Crossed Arms
The crossed arms across the chest are standard worldwide as being defensive. You are simply blocking out others and what they have to say. This is the opposite of what you want to do.  Until you unfold your arms or get the other person to unfold theirs, no one is listening. This invisible barrier is your signal to change the direction of the conversation as you will get nowhere. If you are notorious for crossing your arms, let your arms fall to the sides. This will feel uncomfortable but so what. And with some practice, you will master it. 

Avoiding Eye Contact
When someone avoids eye contact, it could mean that they fear rejection, are ashamed or they are hiding something. If someone is blinking more than normal, they could be apprehensive about something that they want to talk about. As difficult and awkward as it may feel, use direct eye contact.  This builds trust and shows true engagement in the conversation.

Finger Pointing and Arms Waving
You know when you’re enjoying a nice time with someone then one comment is made and boom…unsettling voices start to rise and it escalates to another level with finger wagging, finger pointing and a scowl. If there is lot of movement like a sweeping motion with the arms, it is clear that the person is being aggressive is more than just a little upset. It’s important to remain calm because if you feed into this anger, it will only become worse. Use empathy, as this can deescalate most heated conversations.  Always respect personal space and if needed take a time out.

Looking at Your Phone
This has to be the most aggravating thing on the planet when you are in a conversation. I’ve been known to just stop talking until the person puts the phone away. When we are having a conversation and the other person is looking at their phone it is dismissive and aggravating–all in one. “Tinkering with a mobile phone – however innocent your intention – whilst someone else is speaking gives the impression that you are both rude and disinterested,” reported Maguire Training. If you are engaged in a discussion or spending time with someone, please for the love of Pete–keep your phone out of reach. If you do, understand that you are conveying that you don’t care.

Resting Your Head
I’m guilty! If the person you are talking to is resting their head in their hands, it is a sign that they are bored, not interested or too tired to have the conversation. They want to be somewhere else and they are not engaged with you at the moment. This is always a bad sign since we all want to be paid attention to. I’m often tired so I often rest my head.  I’ve been made aware this makes other feel dismissed.  Be intentional about keeping your head up and eyes focused.

There are so many other examples of negative body language… snickering, eye rolling, walking away, and so on.  Body language is an interesting subject and a good way to gauge where people’s heads and hearts are. We all play a part in negative body language. However, it is up to us to counter these actions with positive forms of communication to prevent angst in our relationships.

I understand that this sounds simple but it’s not easy.  I am always here to help.  Don’t hesitate to reach out if you have questions!  Give us a call at (562) 537-2947.  

Written by Lisa Smith

Holiday Stress Can Be Challenging To Any Relationship?

I wrote a very similar article last year at this time but I think we can all benefit from a reminder of how to deal with the challenges during this time of year. Is the holiday stress starting to crowd in on you and your spouse? This time of the year does bring some unique challenges. So what is so different about this month of December? Here are a few possibilities of what might be causing stress in your home.

  • Money, you are not in agreement over how much should be spent on the holiday.
  • There are still the usual demands at work but now your schedule is extra busy with holiday festivities at school, church or with friends and family. Shopping takes time too. How do you fit it all in?
  • Pressure from family and friends. How can we make everyone happy including the in-laws, extended family, grandparents, kids and friends. Who do we celebrate with?
  • Different expectations, each of you were raised with unique holiday traditions. What do you do now?

When you see your partner starting to stress out, what can you do? Well being quick to give advice is not the answer. According to Dr. Gottman, author of The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work, 

       “The cardinal rule when helping your partner de-stress is that understanding must precede advice. You have to let your partner know that you fully understand and empathize with the dilemma before you suggest a solution,”

Usually the responsibility of juggling gift giving and parties falls on the wife. I know this is a stereotype but let’s just go with it for discussion sake. If the husband starts with the advice then it can put the wife on the defense. She needs to know that he understands her view before he can tell her what to do. This means being supportive. Give statements that show you get it.

Wives are not the only ones under stress, each of you need to be open to the other when they want to share what is stressing them out. If you see signs of your partners’ stress then come along side them, show support instead of judgement and let them know that you are a team together. The feeling of being alone in the stress is often what makes it worse. 

Also you may need to discuss holiday expectations. Each of you should think about what is important to you. You can write down a few things that are at the top of your list for the holiday season. I don’t mean gifts but instead talk about what makes the holiday special to you? Do you like to go as a family and pick out a live tree? Do you remember baking cookies or having a special meal? Do you have a family movie night or give gifts to children in need? Once you both share your ideas then work together to decide which you can make happen. 

I want you to have the best holiday possible so make your relationship the priority and care for each other. Don’t hesitate to reach out if you need support or have questions for us!  We are always here to help. Give us a call at (562) 537-2947.  

Written by Lisa Strong

Healing From Betrayal In Your Relationship

When you can no longer count on your partner, a promise is broken or an expectation is not met then you may feel betrayed. When we are in a relationship we all have expectations. There are too many varied expectations to list but just think about what your expectations are in your own relationship. It may be for your partner to provide financially, to listen to your concerns, to show compassion and understanding, to be a support or to share activities with and to remain faithful.

When a relationship is healthy each partner feels that their needs are being met and their expectations are fulfilled. We trust our partner to meet these needs and expectations. Some of our needs could be time with a spouse, the need for validation and understanding or a partner who regularly gives affection or appreciation. Each of us have different needs and as our needs are being met we become more and more connected to that person. 

Each of you have a responsibility to stay tuned-in to your partner and to communicate openly when you feel things are slipping or you are disconnecting.

Over time things change and we must stay tuned-in to our partner. If this is not happening then the relationship begins to break down. Our attention and focus can begin to change and then your partner can move from a place of trust to a place of betrayal. For example if you become too busy that you have no more time to sit and listen, or you are struggling at work and your partner no longer shows you the admiration and support that you need, these types of experiences may leave you feeling betrayed. This is not what you expected and now you are frustrated and disconnected from your partner. It may get to the point where you turn to someone else to meet your needs. 

If you have allowed this slow erosion to break down the connection with your partner then it will take work to get back on track. The healing of the relationship will become the focus. It does take work to move past the pain of a betrayal and it is not easy but here are some basic suggestions that can refocus your attention back onto the relationship so that the erosion does not cause a permanent separation.

  1. You need to be committed to the process of healing. Looking at each persons behavior with honesty and a willingness to change. 
  2. Learn to share what you need and listen well. One of the things that may have gotten you to this point is the lack of honest, supportive communication. There were signs of the erosion in the relationship and either one person did not share what they needed or the other person did not listen well. 
  3. Re-establishing trust by showing that you are someone who can be counted on. When you were dating you were there to meet your partners needs for support, encouragement, understanding and affection. Your partner wants to be able to count on you to meet their needs and keep your word.
  4. Your partner is human and life can be very demanding. I am not excusing bad behavior but I know that focusing on who is to blame will not move you forward and doing so can be toxic to the relationship.

If you are struggling to regain the trust and connection in your relationship I encourage you to not loose hope. Relationships take work and continual fine tuning but a healthy relationship can bring you great joy. If you need further help then give me a call at 562-260-4796 and I can help you reconnect and enjoy each other again.

Written by Lisa Strong

How to Avoid Letting Jealousy Poison Your Relationship

Jealous behaviors such as asking to be in touch continually, requiring a detailed account of your partners day or suspecting the worst of your partner can poison your relationship. It establishes an environment of suspicion and insecurity which is the opposite of a healthy relationship which needs to be based on trust and respect. In this article I am going to make the assumption that your partner is not cheating on you or looking to replace you but they are feeling the effects of your jealousy.

First I want to define jealousy which at its core is a byproduct of fear, fear of not being good enough, fear of loss. It is the feeling that someone might try to take what is yours. For example, your husband becomes close friends with an attractive co-worker, and you may feel jealous of — and threatened by — their relationship.

This is not to be confused with envy which is not fear based but is a reaction to lacking something and wanting what someone else has. You might be envious of someone’s good looks, or their beautiful home, etc.

Having a fear based emotion continually raising its head in your relationship is going to cause you problems. If you are jealous you may be constantly looking for reassurance because you are afraid that you are going to be replaced. Or you may resort to trying to control your partner so that you can feel reassured by checking on them, calling often or demanding behaviors that they are not comfortable with. Any of these behaviors can be exhausting for your partner.

Jealousy is an emotion that could be connected to some or all of these feelings 1. Insecurity, 2. Fear of being replaced and rejected or 3. Low self-esteem

Healing starts with awareness. The stories you are telling yourself are not true. Examining the origin of your fears will bring healing. Did something happen in a past relationship or in your childhood? The fear of being replaced may come from a past experience but you are carrying it over to this one and you are going to sabotage it. Remind yourself that your partner choose you because of your positive qualities that they like. Your insecurity and low self-esteem are not qualities that promote respect and trust. 

You need to talk to your partner about your feelings in a way that is non-accusatory. It will be helpful if you can be honest with how you feel and take responsibility for those feelings. One suggestion is to work to establish a set of ground rules that can establish trust. For example each of you honoring your word, be home on time, explain what is happening if you are running late. I find that open relationships create an environment of trust. Both of you need to agree to the guidelines.

If you are in a committed relationship or marriage then you can be open with your phone, email or any social media. If you are not ready for this level of openness then you may not be “all in” and if that is the case then talk about it. But once you have established commitment it is best to be transparent. This is not the same as allowing someone to be controlling, there is a difference and each of us can have behavioral boundaries that make us comfortable and working together to agree on these requires respect and consideration.

Don’t let your jealous feeling control your behaviors. It will bring pain to your relationship and that is not fair to either of you. It takes practice and if you need help then give me a call at 562-260-4796. I would be happy to support you.

Written by Lisa Strong

Is It Time To Talk To My Partner About What’s Bothering Me?

In a relationship when something is not right we have options as to how to handle it. We can avoid it and push away our concern but this usually results in frustration, resentment and a possible angry outburst. We could jump right in and tell our partner how their behavior irritates us but this could result in defensiveness on their part, hurt feelings and more anger. So how do we bring up the things that are bugging us and when is the right time. 

You need to be in the right frame of mind. You are ready to share your concern when you can…

  1. Be clear on what do you want to achieve? Before you approach the other person think about what you want to achieve. The goal is not to always get your way but it can be to come to a solution that will work for both of you. The relationship is more important than getting your way. Get clear in your own head what you want to share.
  2. Put the problem in front of the two of you. It is something that you are going to work on together. It is not you pointing fingers or blaming. 
  3. Be ready to listen, ask questions and accept that you may not fully understand the issue so you are open to new understanding.
  4. No shaming or blaming but you can hold each other accountable Be open to owning your own part in the concern.
  5. Model vulnerability and openness that you would like to see in your partner.
  6. Be ready to genuinely thank your partner for their efforts and what they do rather than only criticizing them for their failings or picking apart their mistakes.

When you are ready to share the specifics I suggest keeping it simple and concise so that it can be understood and received. State the facts of what is happening and how it is making you feel. It is easy to get sidetracked and bring up the past, other concerns or exaggerate. This is not a good idea, it confuses things and gives opportunity for rebuttal. In the end it is helpful to state what you need from them. Provide a possible solution and then ask “what do you think?”. This way you are not dictating but asking your partner to work with you to find a solution. 

Unless you and your spouse change your habits and activities so that they make you both happy, instead of only making one of you happy, you will eventually find that your relationship is broken down.

You are not always going to agree but I want you to respectfully disagree. Try to understand your spouse’s reasoning. Present the information that brought you to your opinion and listen to the information your spouse brings. You are working together to find a solution.

This is not always easy and may take time to learn to communicate in this way but it is worth it. If you need help then give me a call.

Written by Lisa Strong