As conscious beings with active minds we tend to think a good deal. Sometimes that thinking becomes excessive or obsessive – we worry. These are the what if’s. If onlys. You know those thoughts that just won’t quit. Worry.
Worrying a touch is normal in fact it can even motivate us to learn or keep us safe. It can act as a protective mechanism. We would have needed it for our survival once upon a time.
It’s when the worry has you trapped in a vicious cycle of procrastination, or frozen that it becomes annoying. I know I live with a certain amount of worry – I know it’s a good part of me trying to help and usually letting me know there is a need of mine not being met. A need to feel safe, be known or to be free.
Worry is at it’s heart anxiety provoking – we are living in an anxious world. A parents this is heightened with all potential threats out there – yet we must allow our children to breathe, learn explore and gain their confidence over time with our trust in them and ourselves.
We don’t want our kids ot be victims of worry. In The Heart of Man Dr Eric Fromm tells how a mothers conceren with only predicting negative outcomes for her child’s future and not noticing their success, he says ” She does not harm the child in any obvious way, yet she may slowly strangle his joy in life.”
Of course any caregiver could be substituted there. We must not smother our child’s natural growth.
Luckily treatment is available. Therapy is always a good option to deal with this part of you that may have been on duty for a long time. Resource Therapy has powerful techniques that work directly with this part to tap into it’s usefulness and find an alternative.
The good thing about therapy is it doesn’t have any medical side effects. As we know the antidote to anxiety is to take action. Say yes today!
Hello and welcome to April, we here in Australia are starting to notice it’s darker earlier and the sun rises later for our autumn. In Japan it’s spring time the magical bursting forth of sakura -cherry blossoms.
This month I am inspired by the movie starring Jim Carey – The Yes Man. Jim plays a negative nelson saying no to everything. He has an awakening at a self help seminar and starts saying yes a 100 percent of the time. He gets a promotion, he gets the girl and we get some laughs along the way.
So I want to challenge you to say YES! With enthusiasm, and guilt free. The only proviso is it must do no harm to either yourself or your loved ones. I know you know what I mean. Act out of your integrity and values. We know from the tons of research out there in positive psychology having a positive mental attitude allows us to be bold and blossom like the cherry blooms.
So the monthly April challenge is for you to say Yes and apply this yes in your relationships.
So if your spouse asks you to clear the table, you say Yes wholeheartedly and do it. This will be especially powerful if you say yes and have taken a while to follow through in the past.
If your partner wants intimacy – respond affirmatively bring in enthusiasm and gain stress relief and aliveness in your marriage.
When your children ask for help on their homework respond with yes and go straight to their side. No excuses really show up. You don’t need to know exactly what to do but be present and work together. Valuable.
With the Yes you have to make the action to back yourself up.
Join us in the Monthly Challenge – begin with your first Yes today.
Love to hear your experience, ideas and feedback on your progress, I will check in.
Please leave a comment and why not share this with your partner or a friend.
Hi there Philipa here, as the March monthly challenge nears to an end I wanted to check in. Recall I encouraged you to learn your partners connection vocabulary? The goal was to discover their two favourite dialects and speak their mother tongue.
I have been both slack and had the opportunity. Chris’s birthday is in March. He got the presents he asked for and more. I know he loves receiving a birthday card – in the mail. So I made sure I posted it in time for him to get to the letterbox. I spoke gifting.
He was great in that he told me what he wanted. You can’t expect your partner to read your mind. That’s a total set-up for let down. He let me know in advance what gifts he wanted, where he wanted to celebrate and even the cake he wanted. He is a darling! I talked actions of service and gifting.
His other language words of affirmation I was not so great on. Writing this column reminds me.
A quick reminder of the 5 Love actions:
Words of Affirmation.
Acts of Service
Love to hear how your Love patter went with your partner. Did you notice your spouse responding? Perhaps it felt good to give? Comment below and I will respond. Thanks for taking the time to read. Philipa
Have you ever felt stuck in a rut? Your alarm propels you out of bed at 6.30, you jump in the shower and get dressed then head off to work. You peck your partners cheek running to catch the bus. It’s still dark, autumn is looming.
Routine equates to boredom and this is no where more evident than in a relationship. We are beings who are drawn to novelty – evidence suggests that’s how affairs can start.
How would it be to bring back that spark of joy from the early days of your partnership? Remember the times you spent having fun and sharing the adventure of each other.
And the first day of March is a fine day to do it! Of course any day that brings you and your spouse closer by your actions is a winner!
Recall Gary Chapman’s 5 Love Languages:
Words of Affirmation. Use your words to build your partner up. Praise them for being them. Here’s my suggestion : I admire you…. add your insider knowledge of your partner’s special talents and thought actions. Verbalize ( text is OK for now but I want you to repeat it in face to face) your magical feelings for both you and your partners benefit.
Gifts. A well chosen gift can be super touching to your mate. It shows you know them intimately and you were thinking of her or him. Watch the ahh in your partners face. Again it’s a win/ win for your connection. Flowers are the fallback here. This love language is related back to our hunter gatherer days.
Acts of Service.Doing something for your spouse that you know they will truly resonate with. Guys for a lot of women that is going to be you bringing in the laundry, jumping up to clear the table, getting in the laundry and washing dishes. Oh how I adore Chris for slaying those dust bunnies with Rowenta our French vacuum cleaner. When I come home I feel a sense peace has been restored in my world, thanks to my thoughtful husband. Aaahhh. Smiley Face.
Quality Time. Focus your love spotlight on your lover! Turn the TV off, phones on silent and check in to your other half. Look them in the eye, ask them how their day was and let them see you lean in to be super present. A tiny 15 minute investment will pay massive dividends, if your partners love vocabulary is Quality Time. The secret is undivided attention to your lovemate.
Physical Touch. Holding hands, hugging, kissing, sex or the squeeze of a partner’s shoulder gently as you pass are all physical expressions of love.
Know the real magic happens when you start giving your partner their gift in their desired love language.
Think back in your marriage and get a sense of what your partner primarily responds to. Identify which of the five Love Languages calls their heart towards you. Choose one or if you are an overachiever two to inspire your love.
Does their face light up as you walk in the door with flowers and tickets to a show? Or do they put the bouquet down and reach to pull you close? Maybe they tell you they’d like to spend more time with you. Or you have heard how good a they are at affirming you or the children. You will see a theme and know.
When you speak your lovers code they will feel closer and more engaged in your relationship.
I want to stress it’s a gift, so drop any expectations of a return. Otherwise you will likely struck with a slap of ouch by the disappointment Panda. I am riffing off Mark Manson’s book – The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck a counter-intuitive approach to living a good live. There’s a gift if they like presents and are a reader.
Decide to be generous as you refresh your relationship from the first of the Month.
I would like you to do this as if you are an undercover agent. It’s OK if you get found out, just no letting the cat out of the bag so to speak. Your special person must experience this as a gift. So let them unwrap your present.
Repetition and reinforcement gets results. Maybe you could keep it up for the whole of March, as we know sustained action encourages results. A daily dose of love, what could be better?
So join the Marriage Works Monthly Challenge – learn your partners number 1 and 2 love language and become a love whisperer.
I’d truly love to hear your experience, what you did, what worked, what tanked and how you felt? So please post your results and reflections. I will respond to you. Drop comment in the box below as your wisdom helps others. Thank You!
A spouse relationship can be the most intimate, warm, and beneficial relationships you ever have. However, being that close to someone inherently opens you up to heartache. Being close to someone requires vulnerability and openness. When that vulnerability and transparency are abused or betrayed, this can lead to intense pain and grief.
However, when a relationship is worth saving , worth fighting for, (and most are people!) forgiveness and healing is the key to getting things back on track. Forgiveness can restore a broken relationship and help you find that place of happiness and harmony once again.
The problem comes when the pain and grief are still too raw. Forgiving can be extremely difficult when the hurt caused can’t be forgotten. Today, we are going to share with you ways that you can move toward a restored relationship through forgiveness, even when you can’t forget.
Begin by Believing
The first step in any significant change happens within your mindset. If you do not believe that something can happen, chances are, you will not truly invest all that you can to try and make it happen.
It is essential that you begin by believing that rebuilding is possible. Elsewhere on the MarriageWorks.com.au blog, you will find an excellent piece about this very topic.
They offer some much-needed hope for people struggling with reconciliation after a spouse has betrayed their trust. On their blog, they say that with professional help, reconciliation is not only possible, but it is also probable.
When you sincerely believe that something is possible, those positive thoughts will inspire positive actions. And what is rebuilding but a series of positive actions encouraged by positive thinking?
Even if rebuilding your marriage is not possible, believing that forgiveness that moving on and enjoying life again is possible will go a long way in helping you reach those goals.
Stop Trying to Forget
When a spouse hurts us, the pain can seem unbearable at times. Since they are often our closest friend, our spouse can hurt us more than anyone else. Dwelling on this pain can be extremely damaging, however trying like mad to forget can also be detrimental.
The way our brains work, trying to forget rarely works. Often, actively attempting to get rid of a memory will lead to that memory cement itself in our brains. And in the case of pain and heartache, that is the last thing that you want.
Sometimes people will work themselves into a rut where they try to forget; the memory comes back, they try to ignore it, the memory reasserts itself stronger yet. This leads to intense frustration and can drag out the healing process for much longer than necessary.
So, stop trying to forget. Stop focusing on the wrong and turn your attention to the things that bring you joy. The memory will fade away in time, but not if you are always trying to forget it.
Forgive for Yourself First
Forgiveness is a powerful thing. Studies have shown that people who forgive often can lead happier, healthier, and more productive, meaningful lives. Is that the kind of life you want to live? I think most of us would have to say ‘yes.’ We all want to have abundant lives that make a difference and allow us to enjoy the moments that we are here on earth.
Often forgiveness is viewed as something we must do so for the benefit of the person who wronged us. However, if you shift your perspective and realize that forgiveness has perhaps more to do with your quality of life than anything else, you will begin to see that not only is forgiveness important, it is vital to you living the life that you want to live.
A life free from bitterness, a life that releases the hurt and pain, is a life that is enjoyable to live. Forgiveness is the path to this kind of life. But if you can’t forget, remember that you owe it to yourself to forgive so that you can live the best life that you possibly can.
Remember, Forgiveness is a Choice, Not a Feeling
There are many things in life that we may not feel like doing. However, we do them, knowing that they are the right thing to do. Sometimes, forgiveness is one of those things.
If you are waiting for a feeling to come before you forgive, chances are you will be waiting for a long time. Instead, take the proactive approach and choose forgiveness even if you may not feel like it.
There are few things as painful as a broken relationship. However, our goal today was to provide you with some hope, knowing that forgiveness is possible.
Another thing to keep in mind is that professional guidance is sometimes needed. For most of us, this kind of heartbreak is all brand-new territory. Having someone with the experience and training to guide you through the process can make a world of difference.
Note: Many thanks to Danielle over at RP Emery Legal Kits for sharing these tips with us. Protecting yourself ahead of time before getting into any new relationship is always a good idea.
Love to hear your thoughts, feelings and experiences on this topic please add comment in the box below.
It’s a lovely piece. Perhaps you have a story about your pet? Please share your experiences.
Chris and I love our rescue cat Taneis
ha to bits. She is 16 years old and still going strong. She’s on my lap as I write this the little darling. She offers unconditional love and it is so nice to stroke her soft fur and hear a purr emit from her belly. The simple things!
Please add your story below in the comments section. Love to see pictures too.
Doggy Love -The Joys of a sharing together.
Buying a dog in any relationship is a huge step. That’s because it essentially means you’re adding a new family member. It’s a responsibility that should not be taken lightly. A lot of thought, research, and careful planning needs to go into choosing a special pet. It’s always a smart idea to make lists of the pros before running to a shelter and grabbing the first dog you see. After careful consideration, you’ll find that a dog is a great asset to any marriage and any family.
What a great pair, think of the fun you can have choosing and caring for your dog![/caption]
Shopping Together for the Dog
Before you pick out a dog for your relationship, you’ll need to do some planning. This helps to make sure that everything goes smoothly and there’s no unexpected hiccups or arguments later on. Do your research on what type of dog you’d like to add to your home. Different breeds have different wants, needs, and activity levels. Find a reputable dog shelter or breeder, choose dog food that fosters their growth, toys for fun and learning, and dog treats that are healthy.
Dogs Can Save Your Marriage
If you’re having problems in your relationship or marriage, adding a dog may just be what the doctor ordered. Dogs can help save a marriage because it gives both people involved something positive to focus their energy on. Dogs also provide love to a relationship that may be struggling. They’re an outlet for positive energy and something that couples can focus their time on together.
Picking Out a Dog is a Bonding Experience
Choosing a dog, their food, their toys, and everything else is a bonding experience in itself. Couples can come together and learn a little bit about each other by learning what type of dogs and characteristics each other fancies. When a couple decides on what type of dog they’d like to adopt, they can make a day out of getting things ready for the dog. Not only does this entail picking out supplies and creating a safe place at home for the dog, it also means picking out the dog itself. Couples get a chance to meet different dogs in a small room or while going for a walk. This helps them find the one that is right for their family.
More Fun Activities For Couples Thanks to Our Dogs
If you are looking to improve your marriage, simply add a dog. That’s because if you are having marriage troubles, you’re most likely bored, frustrated, or unhappy with the routine that you’re stuck in. A dog can fix this because it completely changes your life. Instead of waking up, going to work, making dinner, and going to bed; there are now new possibilities. You can bond in the following ways with your spouse and the dog:
By going for a walk to see the scenery
Going for a hike anywhere that’s dog-friendly
Taking a trip to the dog park
Cuddling up together on the couch The three of you cuddling, laughing and loving together.
This breaks that routine that married couples feel they were stuck in. Dogs mean that everyday will be something different for you and your spouse. If you’re ever feeling frustrated, take some time alone with the dog.
Dogs Give Love Which in Turn Creates More Love
In conclusion, dogs provide love. If you’re marriage is struggling, it might be because it’s lacking love. A dog can come along and change everything. They can show that they have so much love to give which, in turn, can inspire you and your spouse. Dogs are also happy creatures. It’s hard to be upset when there’s a happy, panting, tail-wagging friend that is waiting for you every day. Overall, dogs can boost your morale, give you hope, and inspire you to do better not just in your marriage but in all aspects of your life.
This piece is written by Professional dog walker – Bruce Dwyer. He also runs dog treats business at https://www.healthydogtreats.com.au/. He strongly believes in having a dog to improve your marriage.
Thanks ever so much Bruce for your guest contribution, dogs can be our guides for unconditional love, a truly wonderful thing.
We love all animals at Marriage Works and I am Grandma to Tyson the Staffy!
My Grand doggy Tyson the Staffy is 5!
Have a helpful contribution you want to make ? Please contact me email@example.com
Are you feeling trapped in a cycle of negativity with you and your partner getting stuck in the same old fights. You know the ones – where you experience the loop like a noose tightening around your throat and all you can think is “here we go again”… another argument, but can’t think what to do. Well let me help you. First take a big breath and take a time out. Stop and use it.
This can be a chance for change.
At this stage you are at a choice point. Decide to act in the old routine, with typically the same dance steps.
You know how that pans out right? I’d guess you can cake walk the outcome with your eyes closed. Play with me do it on your own now. Not great huh?
Or you can choose a new move.
Here’s an option for variety, which I call taking a turn down memory lane. It involves purposeful distraction. Parent’s are the master of directing children’s attention to away from distress – simply get them to focus on something else and look at you. New stimulation, different mood equals peace for you, sigh of relief. You remind them of the fun time they had playing soccer or whatever it was they enjoy doing.
I was coaching a husband the other day. He wanted to break out of the old habits of relating to his wife. So I suggested my distraction technique, which is really using Resource Therapy’s powerful methods for change. It’s so simple and yet effective.
I call it –Take a turn down into Memory Lane.
This is where it’s time to stroll back in history. Where you get to go to those earlier days in dating relationship, remember we used to call in courting. The idea is to foster a reconnection with your past successes – as The Cars sang “Let the good times roll.”
You are going for the treasure pot of gold. It’s not at the end of the rainbow but at the beginning of your partnership.
Actually it’s any time you felt warm, loved, connected and light being in each others presence. Where you are delighted and so are they. The happy relaxed carefree times. Not suprising it’s often pre-kids!
You reminisce on the first holiday, kiss, date, your proposal or walking down the aisle staring with hope and joy into each others eyes. Whatever the time was where you were really into each other, feeling connected and cared for. Those love drugs where pumping. We want to bring this back into sharp focus.
They don’t call it re-membering for nothing!
Here you are bringing out your partner’s Loving Resource state, the part of their personality which enjoys you and their choice of spouse. And you are also bringing forth the same part which found them cute and fun to be with.
The way you do this is to really paint the picture, describe the time of day, where you were, the surroundings, the sounds, the sensations, images and warm emotions. Keep doing this until your spouse joins in and you see the light in their eyes, the softness in their voice and gentleness in their features. Play with it. Get some serious fun happening.
It’s so simple.
The only proviso is it must only be happy times with nothing negative attached. Now if things have been rough recently you may need to be tenacious and keep reaching.
All I need to do with Chris is say remember what fun we had Bali? What great meals we had there. Bali is where we took our first overseas holiday and it was magical, it still is a favourite destination.
Then I say how good was our first night’s dinner at the Cafe Wayan in Ubud?
What did you have again? You see Chris enjoys his food and if I get him talking about something delicious I can almost see him drool. His eyes get a dreamy look – I can see he is back there in the warm glades, hearing the tinkle of the music.
Having this conversation about our shared joy makes us closer and brings out the loving parts of us. It sets us up for a great night.
So do yourself a favour and take a walk down memory lane today. And you needn’t wait to use it to staunch an argument. Practice it prior. Use it any time you want to feel connected and inspire love. with your partner.
Please tell me your thoughts on this technique and even better how it went for you. Love to hear your experiences, so please share.
I love psychology especially when it explains for us what is inexplicable. In a lot of readers comments there is a coomon thread of why do I behave like this toward my partner. I push him away one minute and then when he leaves I feel like I am going to die!
As you can hear it is a very young part responding to the threat of them leaving. This younger self can feel abandoned, paralyzed and hopeless.
John Bowlby and Mary Ainsworth who gave us Attachment theory which are formed in childhood with our caretakers. This attachment helps us to survive as infants. We are totally dependent on others for life. We develop our ways of connection – our attachment style in relation to the way our parents or those responsible for our care were available to us.
There are four types of attachment –
1. Secure: A child with this type of attachment will feel easily soothed and safe when with their main caregiver. If they are distressed, they will turn towards their caregiver, or seek them out in some way. This attachment is formed when a child knows they can count on their caregiver to be there for them when they cry, soothe them, and care for them. They will use this secure attachment as a safe base from which they can explore all that’s around them.
2. Insecure-Avoidant: Children do not attach to their caregiver because they don’t feel they can rely on them. This usually means that their primary caregiver either hasn’t been there for them when they needed it or has been rejecting or dismissive of their needs altogether. When a child is in distress and has this type of attachment they will not seek contact with their primary attachment figure.
3. Insecure Ambivalent: Children with this type of attachment will be clingy and needy of their caregiver, but when the caregiver comes to their aid they are rejecting of them and not easily soothed.
4. Disorganized: Children with this type of attachment will show a confusing mix of attachment behaviors and may even appear to be confused or disoriented. They believe that this attachment style is caused by inconsistency from their caregivers. Meaning that a parent may be soothing and helpful, but also fear-inducing and hurtful.
Below is a very famous example of what a baby will do to make their care giver respond. It’s so amazing.
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