We all have those moments.
We coast along in our relationship with our spouse, our son, our mom — and then something breaks. In an instant, we feel like we’re surrounded by glass.
Whether you’re mending from relationship heartbreak or misunderstanding, or working on an ounce of relationship problem prevention, here are four ways to sweeten your relationships with loved ones.
1. See it, say it
Want to pour some sugar on your relationships at home? Seeing and saying things on the home-front works like magic to make relationships feel more secure — and it’s easy-peasy. All you have to do when you see something great is say it.
When you see your husband take out the garbage, say, “I appreciate you so much!” (And add a giant hug and kiss!)
When you see your kids doing their homework without being asked, say, “You rock for doing your homework, my friend!”
When you see someone (even a stranger) do something nice like holding the door open to let someone go ahead of them, say, “Wow! That was a super kind thing to do!”
Usually “see it, say it” works best if you say it immediately, but sometimes a note after the fact is more effective.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, if you see something that concerns you, address it as soon as you can. And, as always, pour on the love and appreciation (even for being willing to hear you out) after sharing your concerns.
2. Be a strength-finder
Everyone has things they’re good at. Sometimes, looking at the very things that annoy us helps us discover those strengths. Is your child always getting lost at stores? Perhaps his strength is curiosity! Does your loved one spend too much money? Maybe your loved one’s gift is living in the moment! We all want to feel loved for who we are — even if we have a few areas that could be polished up.
If you can’t think of a loved one’s strengths off the top of your head, sit down and make a list. Post the list so you can read it often. Observe your loved one daily, and when you see a strength, don’t forget to say it! (And round and round the love goes!)
3. Pencil loved ones into your calendar
“The proof is in the pudding” or “put your money where your mouth is” — we have these sayings to convey that our actions speak louder than words. Along with telling people you love them, write loved ones into your schedule and make time for them. With a spouse, set up an ongoing weekly date night. With your kids, plan play time with them daily. With dear friends and others to whom you want to show love, set up a lunch date, go to a movie or meet at the park so your kids can play. Schedule important events so they’ll happen.
4. Get on your knees
I’m not talking about begging here (although a dollop of humility is priceless in any relationship). I’m talking about getting on your knees and praying for your loved one. This is especially important when your feelings are hurt. Maybe harsh words were said to you. Pray to know what to say. Pray for the person whose words hurt you. Maybe you have a child who is making choices that cause you heartache. Pray that you can have peace. Pray that you will know what to do. Whatever the reason — pray. Turn your worries, hurts and thoughts over to God who has all day and night to help you to heal your relationships.
While you’re sweetening your relationships with others, don’t forget about pouring some goodness onto yourself. Acknowledge your own successes, accept compliments, give yourself a two-hour nap and, when all else fails, pray that you can get through the day.
Places To Have A Fantastic First Date
First date is always important because it’s where you drop your first impression and most importantly, it plays a big role to determine whether or not this relationship will work out.
There are essentially two categories of first dates.
There are first dates with people you’ve never seen in the flesh, nor probably talked to on the phone — these are people you met through an online dating service. The best first date for this scenario is the coffee date.
But for good reason you can cut things short after a 20-minute chat if the person’s looks or personality don’t match what you expected from their profile, or, if things go well, you can extend the date, and ask if they can accompany you on a second activity — say checking out a local street fair or farmer’s market.
Then there are first dates with someone you’ve already met in person and chatted with a bit. This could be a classmate.
It could even be a long-time friend, who’s previously been nothing more than that. You know them a little (or a lot), but you’ve never gone on an actual date with them.
In this situation, in which you feel more confident in your chances with the person, and are eager to spend more time with them in a new context, you can opt for a first date that involves a little more commitment.
If you are interested in an interesting first date experience that would make for awesome second, third, or fourth, you can try the following places.
You’ll never run out of interesting things to say as you tour through a museum’s exhibits, and the backdrop can elevate your conversation above the usual first date banalities. Plus, a nice art museum just feels dang classy.
Playing putt-putt has an almost cliché, overly wholesome feel to it, but that can actually work in your favor — it shows you don’t take things too seriously, which is an attractive trait. You’ll have plenty of laughs over the course of 18 holes, and afterwards you can move on and treat her to — what else? — a couple of ice cream cones.
Drinks and trivia are both good inhibition looseners, and you’ll likely be in for a night of laughs and fun. Plus, the element of competition adds a bit of emotional charge.
There are places that offer pre-made ceramic pieces that you simply select and paint. It’s surprisingly fun and soothing to do something creative together, and this is a good date if she’s more of a mellow, introverted type.
Minor League Sports Game
Going to a professional sports game violates the “affordable” tenet of best first dates, but attending a minor league game is right on target. Spectating is admittedly a little side-by-side in nature, but minor league games are usually so casual and laid-back that it’s really easy to turn to each other a lot to converse.
Picnics have a lot going for them as far as building attraction.
First, you get to demonstrate your skill and ingenuity in assembling the food you’ll bring as well as in the spot you choose to set up camp.
Try not to go anywhere too secluded though, as that won’t make a lady who doesn’t know you very well yet comfortable.
Also, nature is an incomparable backdrop for a date, as it’s been shown to elicit all kinds of positive feelings.
Nothing will quite get the butterflies fluttering like the laughs and thrills offered by an amusement park.
From the darkened tunnels of the spook house, to the suspenseful climb up the rollercoaster hill, there will be plenty of hand-holding moments to go around.
How To Handle Working In The Same Office With Your Spouse
You should consider this as an opportunity to discover new things about your marriage and partner. Take it as a challenge. This way, you’ll get to learn as much as you can about the benefits and the problems that might occur.
As many cons that there are, there are same amount of pros too. It’s up to you to decide if you like the idea or not.
If you decide to work with your spouse together, you need to have in mind some basic rules about your relationship and communication with your spouse.
Don’t mix business with pleasure
Now this is not just a golden rule. Sometimes, work is stressful and can make one or both of you nervous.
Working together means that you’ll probably travel to work and home together, so try not to mix your work and your private life.
Remember that your working hours are limited and when you finish your daily job activities, you should leave your work in the office. Don’t bring it home, and especially don’t talk about it with your spouse.
Even if you work in the same office, make sure you leave all the work problems right there, and discuss them the next day. Use the time with your spouse for more relaxing things.
Keep it professional at work
Usually, partners who work together in the same company can have different levels of responsibility and one of them may be superior to the other. In those cases, it is important for both to maintain professionalism in the communication.
The way partners talk and act between them at home is one thing, but at work, certain rules must be followed. Addressing one another according to the company rules is something that must be respected.
Working together means you will spend all the time with your spouse together. That is 24/7, seven days a week. If you want to keep your relationship healthy, you must find time for yourself and be separated for at least a few hours a day.
This way you will keep your individuality and you will have time to focus on your hobbies, passions, and interests.
Spending more time with your partner is great, but being together all the time will make you feel bored and will make you unhappy without a doubt.
Find a hobby, hang out with friends, or simply have a walk by yourself, but spend some time without your spouse.
Work is important, but never let work define your relationship. You are a couple because of other reasons. If you’re married, remember why you get married, and work is certainly not the reason.
That is why you must constantly work on your relationship and the love between you.
Remember to surprise your partner with flowers, or movie tickets. Surprise them with breakfast in bed, or late night snacks. Dress nicely only for them once in a while or do something you know your partner loves. Don’t let the work get in the way of your love life.
5 Rules For Friends With Benefits
Friends with benefits is more commonplace in this generation.
It’s a situation that people find themselves in either deliberately or unintentionally.
With this sort of arrangement comes a lot of drama, especially if one party wants more and the other doesn’t.
It’s not impossible to have a successful friends with benefits situation.
You just need to understand the rules of the game so that you don’t get caught unawares.
And it’s also okay not to want to be in a friends with benefits situation. You should not feel guilty about not being able to sustain such an affair.
That said, there are some rules you should know if you must get yourself involved in a friends with benefits situation.
Here are five rules of friends with benefits that will help you through the arrangement.
Don’t limit the benefits to sex
The benefits should not start and end at sex. There is more to life than sex. If you call someone your friend, you should be there for them in situations where they need support.
It’s not right to skip their birthdays or not check in if they lose a loved one simply because you are scared of developing feelings. The term is literally ‘friends’ with benefits for a reason – you are first friends before anything else.
If you can’t do this, you may have been doing the friends with benefits thing the wrong way. You are simply strangers who have sex once in a while – not friends.
Don’t catch feelings
The elephant in the room, a lot of people don’t like to admit that the major risk involved in a friends with benefits situation is catching feelings.
While there are occasions where the friends with benefits grows into a full-blown relationship, the essential reason it’s called ‘friends with benefits’ is the absence of romantic love.
If you’ve noticed that you may have developed feelings for them, have the honest discussion with them.
Tell them that you need to break the arrangement because you have caught feelings already and that wasn’t part of the initial agreement.
The key is being honest. You never know if they’ve also developed feelings too but maintain honesty on your part anyway. That way, you both know if you get to proceed with a relationship or cut off the sex until the other person moves on.
Don’t kiss and tell
They are not your friend if you go right ahead to discuss your rendezvous together with others – your other friends, family, colleagues or acquaintances.
It’s grossly disrespectful and can destroy what you both have. Respect it the way you’d respect any other affair.
Don’t raise your expectations
This can lead to a lot of heartaches for you. While they owe you respect and honesty, having too much expectations of them can jeopardize what you both share.
Even in romantic relationships, you still need to be careful about how you get your hopes up.
Don’t use it as a rebound
Using your friend as a rebound doesn’t usually turn out well. If you must go for a rebound, get knocked up by a total stranger or a distant acquaintance than your friend. It’s something you can’t sustain and you both can do without such drama.
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