SELF CARE: CHERISHING YOURSELF AND YOUR RELATIONSHIP
In Wednesday’s posting on The Gottman Relationship Blog, in which we shared a recent study out of UC Berkeley on the relationship between sleep and relationship conflict, we brought up the importance of cultivating good habits in self care, one of the most critical tools in maintaining healthy relationships. This weekend, we offer you a few of Dr. Gottman’s tips for goal-setting and stress management! We hope that the following lists will help you as you work to find balance and create a healthier lifestyle, both for yourself and for your relationship.
DR. GOTTMAN’S TIPS FOR GOAL SETTING:
- Make your goals specific and measurable. Rather than telling your partner that you would like to talk more, suggest that you go on a date every other Saturday. Leave the kids with the babysitter and find some time for just the two of you.
- Think about the pros and cons of making healthy changes. If we stick with the example above, we could imagine that a pro would be the ability to feel closer to each other and relax (at a favorite dinner spot, on a jaunt through a beloved park, in a cozy cafe), and a con could be the price of the babysitter.
Please every parent and guardian should teach their children and wards, especially toddlers, very early about ‘PANTS’ rules. Times have changed and the world has become a very sick and pathetic place to live. There are many paedophiles and rapists out there. Be careful, and note that everyone is a suspect here.
We must prayerfully protect our children by arming them with the right information:
P – Private parts are private. Nobody is permitted to touch them.
A – Always remember that your body is yours and yours only.
CHOOSE MEANING AND LIVE BETTER
When should we tune out (and into) our biases?
We have a bad habit of focusing on people’s superficial, negative qualities. Happiness and fulfillment can be gained by giving weight to what should ultimately guide our behavior: people’s profound, positive qualities. Appreciating these aspects of individuals fosters meaningful and mutually beneficial experiences.
Understanding and Combating Biases
Bias has been getting a lot of attention lately due to a growing understanding of the influences it has on our actions and attitudes outside of our awareness (Banaji & Greenwald, 2013). A phenomenon called negativity bias makes us far more sensitive to negative things than to positive ones. If two disparate events are of equivalent strength, the event that is negative will elicit much greater psychological activity and will impact behavior more (Baumeister, et al., 2001). Evolutionarily, this makes sense as it protects us from harm, but if our default is to dwell on the negative and to ignore the positive, then how can we hope to be happy, optimistic people?
10 “NOTES TO SELF” THAT WILL STOP YOU FROM TAKING THINGS PERSONALLY
Let’s start off with a simple question:
Why do we always take things so personally?
There are admittedly quite a few viable and valid answers to consider. But, the one Angel and I have found to be most common through a decade of one-on-one coaching with our course students and live event attendees is the tendency we all have of putting ourselves at the center, and seeing everything—every event, conversation, circumstance, etc.—from the viewpoint of how it relates to us on a personal level. And this can have all kinds of adverse effects, from feeling hurt when other people are rude, to feeling sorry for ourselves when things don’t go exactly as planned, to doubting ourselves when we aren’t perfect.
IS BEING SEXY MORE IMPORTANT THAN BEING BEAUTIFUL?
Should we bring sexy back?
“I think being sexy is far more important for love and sex than beauty; and it is also quickly identifiable. If I see an unsexy pretty man, I can appreciate the looks but I don’t feel sexually attracted to him. This happens often, not just to me, not just to women. I’d like to think of myself as both sexy and good-looking.” A married woman
Both being sexy and beautiful enhance romantic attraction. Which one is more dominant? And which one is more positively received? The answer is not obvious.
THE LOVE TANK THEORY: HOW TO MAKE LOVE ACTUALLY LAST
- “Our relationship is emotionally dead.”
- “We never talk anymore.”
- “My partner is distant, and we never have any fun.”
My inbox is full of emails like this.
These couples often ask, “How did we get here?”
Have you ever had that thought about your relationship?
A HAPPY RELATIONSHIP IS IMPOSSIBLE WITHOUT TRUST AND COMMITMENT
Love is like Legos. In each passing moment, we are either building a wall between ourselves and our lover or a bridge into each other’s heart.
Each Lego is an interaction between romantic partners. The deciding factor of whether we open or protect our hearts is the quality of trust.
“Without trust, there can be no meaningful connection.” – Brene Brown
Often trust is seen as a big word. A massive Lego that connects two people, allowing them to connect easily. But this is false.
Trust is built brick by brick, an accumulation of small choices made every day.
12 HARD THINGS YOU NEED TO HEAR ABOUT YOUR ATTITUDE
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the mind is your ultimate battleground. It’s the space where the greatest and fiercest conflict resides. It’s where half of the things you thought were going to happen, never actually happened. It’s where your inner resistance buries you with negativity. And, when you allow these thoughts to dwell in your mind, they gradually succeed in robbing you of peace, joy, and ultimately your life. You think yourself right into nervous breakdowns and bouts of depression, time and again.
I know because I’ve been there.
Honestly, we’ve all been there at times.
But, what can we learn from our trials? A whole lot!
THE PRICE OF PEACE
Many years ago I listened to a preacher share about how his wife would leave the television on at night and sleep off and they lived in a country where you pay based on how long you keep the TV on. Leaving the TV on therefore increases the television bill.
That attitude of his wife would annoy him and he was always angry at his wife for doing that yet it continued. It was obvious it was going to become a strain in the marriage.
Then one day the Holy Spirit asked him, “Is your marriage not worth fifty dollars extra at the end of the month? If this attitude of your wife will mean an extra bill of fifty dollars is it too much to pay for peace to be in your marriage?”