To Be (Social) Or Not To Be: 5 Things to Talk About

Believe it or not, our social lives can be a source of conflict. One partner needs more social interaction, while the other prefers much less. One person thinks the party is on Friday, but the other person is certain they told you Saturday. Throw in limited free time, kids, and other various circumstances, and things can turn into a mess pretty quickly.

One of the keys to navigating this challenge is obvious, but oh so important: clear and honest communication. Here are five things to make sure you’re talking about.

Read More

Spring Cleaning For Your Relationship

Ah, spring. Those first few warm days where people feel the urge to open the windows, dust away the cobwebs, and deep clean the grime that has accumulated over the winter. Relationships can benefit from a regular “clean up” as well, or in this context it could be more of a “check in.” Whether it’s once a year on your anniversary or as often as a weekly or monthly date night, make a point to touch base with each other on the state of your relationship. Here are some things you might have on your task list:

Read More

Baby Steps to Relationship Growth

Growing is part of life. Physically, mentally, emotionally, socially, spiritually, you name it – we grow in so many ways throughout our lives. The thing about growing, though, is that there isn’t a shortcut. We usually can’t skip over the hard, uncomfortable, or awkward parts even though we’d sometimes like to (middle school flashbacks – yikes). Even though it might not seem like it at the time, those stages are valuable. We learn a lot from them, often gaining experience and insight that helps us down the road. Through this, we also gain the confidence to stretch the boundaries of our current state, growing as we tackle the next step.

It’s not entirely surprising then, that our confidence and motivation can take a hit when our “next step” is too big.  Sometimes we go for it and fall, and we say, “Okay, not trying that again anytime soon!” Sometimes we just can’t even fathom how we’ll make it, so we don’t even try. 

Have you ever experienced this? How about in your relationship?

Read More

Can I Get Your Advice?

Has anyone ever asked you for relationship advice? How did you respond?

Chances are, we’ll experience this in some form or another in our lives. Maybe it’s a good friend seeking your input, a younger sibling looking for guidance, or a coworker venting about their significant other. Whatever the situation, you’ll have a choice of how to respond. That response, and the ease with which you give it, depends a lot on the context of your relationship with that person, as well as your own relationship experience. Your comfort level could range from “Argh, I don’t know what to say,” to “TMI alert!”

No matter where you fall on this spectrum, here are some things to keep in mind:

Read More

How to Become Positive Marriage Role Models

We know we learn through observing others – this is natural human behavior. Previously on the blog, we’ve talked about what marriage lessons we learn from our families – either as a young kid or even into our adulthood when we’re so kindly given those one-liner pieces of advice from family members. Thinking about those lessons, we encouraged you to consider what things you carry forward and strive to live up to in your marriage and relationships, as what you’d rather leave behind. Your family has good intentions, but they’re likely not all marriage experts.

What happens when you flip the question, to ask not about what you learned, but what can you teach others?

Read More