Cultivating positive growth
There comes a time in many relationships when the experiences you are having together make you feel less hopeful about the future of your partnership. Maybe you have been arguing more than you want, or you have been feeling disconnected for some time. When the relationship is no longer something you feel positive about, I suggest taking these steps to empower your relationship and revive the hope you once had. I encourage my clients in marriage and couples counseling to use these skills when beginning the journey of reconnecting and building a better relationship with their partner.
Set Intentions of Change
The first essential step to empower your relationship is setting your intentions of change. When you feel like things have gotten to a point that you no longer feel satisfied it can be easy to begin the process of acceptance. I encourage my clients to resist accepting any part of life and relationships that they want to be different. Setting your intentions begins with refocusing your mind toward creating change. Start thinking about the things you want to be different. Sit down and start having loving conversations about each of your perspectives so that you are clear and on the same page about what changes you would like to make together.
Keep Communication Positive
I understand that when your relationship is needing some care it can be difficult to communicate with your partner. Many of us lose our cool and engage in negative communication when we feel stuck in the dynamic of the relationship. It is discouraging and sometimes painful to not be fulfilled in your relationship. So, when you are feeling stuck and it is hard to be hopeful, it is important to keep communication positive. Even when you are discussing the changes you want to make, try balancing out the conversation with the things you enjoy and want to stay the same. I encourage you to begin acknowledging your partner’s effort to change, as well as the small successes you have along the way. Consistently tell your partner what you love about them. Positive communication helps you stay motivated and willing to work through setbacks.
Establish & Evaluate Your Relationship Values & Principles
Empowerment will help you find motivation and purpose in your relationship. When you have set your intentions of change and made positive communication a priority, evaluating the values and principles of your relationship is a great next step. We all have personal values and principles that we live by. Relationships should also be based on a foundation of shared values between partners. Some examples are honesty, loyalty, open communication, and spontaneity. Begin thinking and talking about the values that you share with your partner. I suggest writing them down and putting them somewhere visible and accessible for you both to reference and add to the list.
Create Action-Oriented Plans
The last essential step to empowering your relationship is to focus on action-oriented plans. In order to move forward and create lasting change in your relationship, it is important to identify the behaviors and actions that go along with the values you set in place. For example, if one of your values is trust, actions like telling the truth even when it is hard and allowing your partner to have healthy friendships outside of your relationship, communicate and support the value of trust. So for each of your values talk about the ways you put them into action. This way you are both aware of the expectations and how you can communicate your intention of love and support for each other and the relationship.
These first steps to empowerment will allow your hope to return and jump-start the positive changes.
Premarital counseling feels easy to blow off when you have so many other wedding "must haves." But it matters. Educate yourself about premarital counseling, and why it's a valuable investment in your future...
Human beings are built to bond — but we can also develop powerful bonds to unhelpful behaviors, toxic people, and even substances of abuse. Understanding the power of connection can help you break unhealthy attachments, and cultivate empowering, energizing new ones. Here's how...
Did you know you have all the tools for setting yourself up for success this year? On the Love, Happiness and Success blog, Therapist and Life Coach Josephine Marin shares the secret to achieving your new year's resolutions!
If your marriage has been feeling hard for a while, it's normal to have doubts. Many troubled marriages can be saved, but not all. Here are the top signs it might be time to call it quits.
Whether you're a premarital couple hoping to keep your great relationship healthy and strong, or have a marriage on the brink of divorce, this podcast is for you: Divorce lawyer Jim Sexton shares his unique insight into why couples split, and what you can do to save your relationship.
You have the power to actively create your ideal reality ten years from now. Listen to this podcast and get the free "My Ten Year Plan" tool to get clarity about what you REALLY want... and empowering awareness about how to make it happen.
It's so easy to absorb messages from others about who you should be, or what you should aspire to. This can lead you to waste your time and energy chasing after things that will never bring you the meaning or authentic joy you deserve. Learn how to get clarity about what matter most to YOU, on this episode of the Love, Happiness and Success Podcast.
On this episode of the Love, Happiness and Success Podcast therapist and author Dr. Mark Borg talks about his new book, "Don't Be a Dick," and shares his advice for how to stay calm and compassionate. (Even when other people are being jerks.)
Does your partner complain you rush to "fix" instead of listen? Here are some strategies to help you turn every conversation into an opportunity for connection.
Relationship questions? Communication questions? Breakup questions? Therapy questions? We're tackling them ALL on the latest episode of the podcast.