You’ve all read my past newsletters where I discuss the fact that all couples fight. My emphasis in those newsletters was on showing you that it is how couples fight that determines the happiness of your marriage.
Today I am going to discuss how to look at differences in your marriage so you can approach them from a place of love – instead of hate or anger so that no matter what the future holds – you will not have to live with regret.
- The personality traits that we initially fell in love with in our spouse are the same personality traits that will drive us crazy a few years into our relationship (this is a fact substantiated by research!). Remember how your partner’s dumb jokes made you laugh early in the relationship – not because they were funny but because they were so dumb. Fast-forward two years into the relationship and now you find those same dumb jokes, well, just plain dumb. And you might also find them somewhat annoying and stupid – and they make you mad.This confuses your partner because you use to laugh at his/her jokes in the past, and they don’t understand why you don’t find them funny anymore. So the next time your partner tells a dumb joke – remember – you use to find them funny!
- Accept your partner with all their idiosyncrasies. Okay- I am going to just come right out and say it. You are out of your mind if you think you are going to change your partner. Period. It just isn’t going to happen – just as they are not going to really change you. Remember that you fell in love with your partner with all their little quirks and annoying habits – which you have too I might add. Be accepting of who they are and make the conscious choice, yes, you have a choice, to not allow these habits to annoy you. No matter how angry you get, or how annoying these habits might be, you are not going to eliminate them from your partner’s personality. Trying to do so will only create tension in the marriage so let it go!
- Focus on the positive – in your partner and your overall relationship. By the time couples seek out my help, they have become so entrenched and focused on all the things they cannot stand about their partner, that they have lost all perspective on their partner’s positive attributes. This is not done consciously – it happens over time – but its effects are incredibly crippling to the love and viability of the relationship nonetheless. If you find yourself only thinking negative thoughts about your partner and marriage, make a conscious decision to shift your mindset to the positive and focus on those things, not the negative. I’m not saying you have to totally ignore the negative things in your relationship, I am suggesting you do not dwell on them – and focus on the positive. Positive Psychology shows us that when we focus on the positives, that is, in fact, what we will see.
Use the above 3 tips as a way for looking at your relationship, so you will live with no regrets!
Stand in the place of love, not hate! Remember – tomorrow is promised to no one!
Rekindle Romance and Happiness in Your Relationship,
Dr. Patty Ann