Larry James' CelebrateLove.com BLOG

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Does Your Partner Suffer From Memory Slips?

“Oh! Sorry, honey. I’ll empty the trash when I get back from golf with the boys!”

He forgot. Again.

…And she’s wondering if maybe she just might forget about dinner tonight.

MemorySLIPSHmmm. That’s no way to give your relationship sparkle and shine.

Have you or your partner been having more memory slips than usual? I know. It’s annoying, but, essentially harm-less age-related memory impairment is common. In a recent article in Harvard Men’s Health Watch, Dr. David Hsu, geriatric psychiatrist with the Center for Alzheimer Research and Treatment at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital suggested several things that could cause brief lapses of memory.

Simple fatigue can dull your memory. Medications can affect memory – especially those that cause sedation. There is no question that lack of restful sleep can also make you more forgetful. It’s obvious that a physical workout that gets your heart pumping and oxygen-rich blood flowing to the brain leaves you alert and mentally sharper. Too much stress at work or at home can have a big impact on memory. Memory impairment is a common symptom of clinical depression, along with sadness, lack of drive, poor concentration, and less pleasure in things that you ordinarily enjoyed. Alcohol reduces memory performance.

If you or your partner are having more of these moments than you used to, consider this a wake-up call that you should take stock of your lifestyle. In a marriage, the common symptoms of the disorder – distraction, disorganization, forgetfulness – can easily be misinterpreted as laziness, selfishness, and a lack of love and concern. A.D.H.D. (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) or other attention disorders can cause a major disruption in your relationship. Everyone, at any age, forgets, however if you believe that memory lapses may signify that you have an underlying disease, then you might consider consulting a neuropsychologist.

Dr. Hsu notes that a perceived change in your memory performance may simply be due to the well-documented slowdown in thinking speed with aging.

I thought I would get all the excuses that could be used (medical issues above) so we can focus on what is really going on when your partner forgets to remember.

So, if you’ve seen your doctor and it’s not a medical problem… what is it?

Not remembering things that are important to your partner is rude and demonstrates a serious lack of interest.

Audioapathy is a word I coined to describe the condition often experienced when partners become apathetic about listening when their partner talks with them. It is a dreaded dis-ease that can poison your relationship. Although it appears that men are more affected than women, some women also get it. Ineffective communication can make us sad, resentful, upset, angry and more. You must first listen to the things your partner deems important before you can remember them later.

And then there are those who are so embroiled in their everyday life that they seem to have forgotten that for a “healthy” relationship to work, they must pay attention to it. Some have given up and just don’t care anymore.

MakingNotes2The next time your partner wants to talk, stop whatever you are doing – turn off the TV and your smart phone – and make time to listen. It shows interest in the one you love. Don’t interrupt. Avoid distractions. Maintain eye contact. Nod your head. Never challenge your partner’s assumptions. Listening demonstrates respect. Listen with the intention of really hearing what they are saying. Be patient and understanding. This kind of active listening ensures that you are truly listening to the words that are being spoken.

Listen for ways you can remember the things that are important to them. Pay attention. Be mindful, not mindless. Never fall back on the excuse that you are having a “senior moment.” Listen. If you are together shopping and she says things like, “That is so pretty. That would go great on the mantle,” and she doesn’t buy it, go back later and buy it for her and surprise her with it later. Make notes if you must, but never let the things that are important to your partner and your relationship be forgotten, e.g., birthdays, anniversaries and any other important dates. Plan ahead. No more memory-slips.

If you are the spouse of a memory-slipper, be patient. It could be a medical issue, and he/she may need your understanding and you assistance in helping them to remember. “I shouldn’t have to remind him of my birthday!” You’re right and anything more that a quiet conversation letting him know how this causes you to feel is called, nagging!

If an entire day has passed without your husband wishing you “Happy Birthday,” decide to bring it up. It may be tempting to hold on to your pride and keep the hurt within. But instead of lessening the misery, this will only lead to a festering of resentment till the relationship explodes in both of your faces. So choose a quiet time with your husband and ask why he forgot your birthday. And then depending on his response, take it from there.

BONUS Article: Attention Disorders Can Take a Toll on Marriage

CLoveLOGOCopyright © 2015 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” Larry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and an award winning nondenominational Wedding Officiant. He performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere. Something NEW about relationships is posted every 4th day on this Relationships BLOG.

commentSubscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateLove.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com and CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles and “LoveNotes” listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com
Visit Larry’s Relationship Pin Board on Pintrest @ http://www.pinterest.com/larryjames2012/relationships-blog/

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Friday, February 20, 2015

Pay Attention to… Each Other!

Filed under: Relationships — Larry James @ 7:30 am
Tags: , ,

“When you look at all of the complaints about social media, smartphones, and the internet at large, most of the complaints boil down to one thing: attention. People don’t have any attention span anymore. People don’t focus on what’s in front of them anymore. People don’t even talk to you at dinner anymore.” ~ Mark Manson

How sad!

PayAttention2eachOtherBecause we’re all spreading our attention so thin, many of us are losing the all-important life skill of focus. Focus is what generates long-term relationship success. Focus leads to deeper and more meaningful relationships. Focus determines how well we can improve at something. The new age presents problems of attention, not of happiness or narcissism or loneliness. And as the technology’s critics point out, this issue is not going to go away, it’s simply going to get worse. The problem is not the technology itself, it’s how we choose to use the technology. Is it serving us or are we serving it?

Everyone is inattentive sometimes. However, for some people inattention becomes a serious condition that leads to significant problems in their relationships. Times of inattention are a part of life. Your spouse is an imperfect human being… just like you.

I would like to call attention to those people who – intentionally or not – flat out don’t pay close enough attention to their relationship. They let things slide past them as if their partner were not even in the room. Often a moment’s inattention can cause a lasting resentment from your partner.

It’s frustrating to suddenly realize that you’ve been talking to your partner and they haven’t heard a word you were saying. That’s just plain rude of your partner! It causes you to feel invalidated when you are not being heard.

When your partner speaks… stop what you are doing and LISTEN! It’s as simple as that.

BONUS Articles: Are You Guilty of “Inattention?”
Relationships Require Attention

CLoveLOGOCopyright © 2015 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” Larry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and an award winning nondenominational Wedding Officiant. He performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere. Something NEW about relationships is posted every 4th day on this Relationships BLOG.

commentSubscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateLove.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com and CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles and “LoveNotes” listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com
Visit Larry’s Relationship Pin Board on Pintrest @ http://www.pinterest.com/larryjames2012/relationships-blog/

Sunday, August 25, 2013

It’s Not About The Nail

Filed under: Listening,Relationships,Video — Larry James @ 8:30 am
Tags:

“Please don’t try to fix me. I just need you to listen.”

Every man has heard these words. That’s when they need to shut up and simply listen…

BONUS Articles: No More “Mr. Fix-it!” – For Men Only
I’ve Got a Secret! – Wanna Know What it is?
#1 Solution to Communication…

CLoveLOGOCopyright © 2013 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” Larry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and an award winning nondenominational Wedding Officiant. He performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere. Something NEW about relationships is posted every 4th day on this Relationships BLOG.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateLove.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com and CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles and “LoveNotes” listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
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Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

2 Hot Ideas for a Better Relationship

Filed under: Communication,Listening,Relationships — Larry James @ 7:30 am
Tags: , , ,

There are many things you can do to promote a healthy love relationship. I’m sure that you have discovered several on your own. In my many years as a relationship coach, two things seem to surface when couples hit a snag in their relationship.

WhenSheSpeaksFor the Guys

Listen to your partner when they need to be heard. Listening (in a relationship) is an art. It takes practice. It not the kind of listening that signals, “Yeah, I heard that… now what?” It the kind of listening that lets your partner know that you really care about what she is saying. When she speaks… you must focus on what she is saying. Make eye contact. Drop what you are doing. Turn off the TV and really pay attention to what she is saying. Don’t get defensive. Just listen. If she is speaking about a bad day, resist the urge to “fix-it!” She really doesn’t want a Mr. Fix-it, she wants a committed listener!

For the Gals

Say what you want, clearly. Don’t hint. Guys don’t get hints. That’s the way their brain is wired. Men cannot read your mind. Don’t have any undelivered communication. Say what you mean and mean what you say. No wonder you think that he doesn’t listen. He doesn’t have a clue about what you are talking about. I’ve been criticized for saying, “Say things worth listening to,” as if I meant that you don’t. The point is, when you want your guy’s attention, wait before you speak until you have it. If he is not in the listening groove… be patient until he is. Then, be clear and specific about what you want.

mrsAlwaysRightFor Everyone

Almost everyone agrees that communication is the number one problem is most relationships. Communication is about speaking and listening. It’s not about always trying to defend your position or holding on to being right. It’s also about negotiation, compromise, and much more. Learn to be good at it. When one person is speaking (no interruptions), the other is listening (paying attention), and vice versa. Maintaining respect for your partner’s point of view is critical regardless of whether there is agreement or not.

Your comments are always welcome!

CLoveLOGOCopyright © 2013 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” Larry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and an award winning nondenominational Wedding Officiant. He performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere. Something NEW about relationships is posted every 4th day on this Relationships BLOG.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateLove.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com and CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles and “LoveNotes” listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Guard Your Heart…

Cheryl Ries, Guest Author

Some things are really not hard to see, it is just our own stubborn refusal to truly notice all the warning signs and the obvious hazards posted there as we swing open yet another wrong door.

When we listen – when we pay attention – when we heed our own inner voice of precaution and when we observe the intentions of others through behavior and action instead of just focusing on the words which can prove empty, we then are able to see without our blinders what is really meant for our protection and our best.

Guard your heart for it is the wellspring of life. That, in essence, means that whatever choices you make and whatever direction you are now headed must offer first a way to preserve and protect the soul and spirit which lives within you.

IndianProverbIt is wonderful to imbibe in life with a free and fun spirit, sampling and tasting in great variety what is presented, but your ability to choose determines your own ability to reside peacefully and without damage to the inner essence of your own life.

“If your heart has been broken the best way to fix it is to allow time for healing, then open it up again and allow only Love, happiness and joy in. Open your ears to only what the heart needs to hear. In a full heart filled with Love there is room for everything!” ~ Larry James

Choose wisely. Learn to learn from each and every endeavor which doesn’t suit you or in fact has hurt you in part, for in that lesson availed you will find great wisdom and purposeful motivation to change the course you are now on!

Go forth with the most important goal of self-love, which then ensures self-protection and self-preservation! Learn to accept each step as a means to an end through learning to do and to be better and wiser as you go!

cherylriesCopyright © 2012 – Cheryl Ries. Cheryl Ries is a friend who is in the process of writing her first book. This is a preview of things to come. She likes to take a bite out of life’s big juicy apple… and believes that richness is measured in friendships, family, love and what you give away. Visit Cheryl’s Facebook page.

CLoveLOGOLarry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and an award winning nondenominational Wedding Officiant. He performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere. Something NEW about relationships is posted every 4th day on this Relationships BLOG.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateLove.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com and CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles and “LoveNotes” listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com

Saturday, June 23, 2012

I’ve Got a Secret! – Wanna Know What it is?

So many of the couples that come to me for relationship coaching have a dis-ease… it’s called: audioapathy.

Audioapathy is a word I coined to describe the condition often experienced when partners become apathetic about listening when their partner talks with them. It is a dreaded dis-ease that can poison your relationship. Although it appears that men are more affected than women, some women also get it.

notlisteningIneffective communication can make us sad, resentful, upset, angry and more.

It’s important to approach difficult conversations with a spirit of understanding. For your partner to respect your feelings and needs, you need to feel safe to share your true feelings with them. If you don’t things usually get worse.

When your partner talks with you, do you think they feel heard? Do they have your full attention? Knowing how your conversations have gone in the past, do they already have an idea about how you will react before they even speak? This can cause you to become isolated from one another. Can you imagine how this causes them feel? When you are not listened to, remember how it caused you to feel? It can cause you both to drift apart. If your not listening causes them to shut down you have something that you need to do about that.

“Effective communication – especially in times of conflict – calls for a focused dedication and repetitious practice. It calls for honest self-evaluation, humility, a sense of fair play, and a willingness to change according to the needs of the relationship. And it takes (at least) two.” ~ Thom Rutledge, LCSW

It takes two people – both working on the relationship – together – to make it something of value.

The secret to communicating effectively with your partner is listening! Many of us are poor listeners. We lose interest as soon as out partner begins to talk about something that has been a concern or that has caused conflict in the past. We find ourselves dipping into our bag of tricks and using anything to avoid that conversation and it’s usually begins by not listening.

“According to the University of Missouri, it takes 25 percent of our mental capacity to hear what someone is saying, leaving the other 75 percent to wander wherever it wants. However, discipline and active engagement in the conversation can significantly improve your listening skills.” ~ Lily Obeck

just-listenListening can help you bridge the communication gap. Not listening usually leads to misunderstanding, frustration, irritation, hurt feelings and more conflict. It can cause your partner to shut down completely. Hearing what they are saying is a physical ability while listening is a skill. Listening skills allow one to make sense of and understand what your partner is saying.

The next time your partner wants to talk, stop whatever you are doing – turn off the TV and your cell phone – and make time to listen. It shows interest in the one you love. Don’t interrupt. Avoid distractions. Maintain eye contact. Nod your head. Never challenge your partner’s assumptions. Listening demonstrates respect. Listen with the intention of really hearing what they are saying. Be patient and understanding. This kind of active listening ensures that you are truly listening to the words that are being spoken.

It’s not as hard as it sounds. Simply keep your mouth shut. Not only will they be more willing to talk to you, but also you will discover that you are being more interested in what they have to say. You will also find that you will both become more interested in talking about the things that really matter.

They are not always right but neither are you. When you listen it’s easier to understand why they feel the way they do. Listen carefully. Digest what was said and perhaps take a brief time-out to think about how you will respond. Effective communication is not about you getting YOUR thoughts and feelings across when THEY are talking.

Yes, communication seems to always be at the top of the list of relationship problems. Bad communication is at the root of many serious marital problems, and is one of the leading causes of divorce. Being apathetic about listening is the nail in the coffin.

Sometimes it’s wise to enlist the help of a third party to help you get a clear perspective of what is really going on. Never be afraid to seek help.

So… again, the secret to communicating effectively with your partner is listening! Really listening!

BONUS Article: #1 Solution to Communication…

CLoveLOGOCopyright © 2012 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” Larry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and an award winning nondenominational Wedding Officiant. He performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere. Something NEW about relationships is posted every 4th day on this Relationships BLOG.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateLove.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com and CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles and “LoveNotes” listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com

Thursday, September 30, 2010

4th 100 Tweets from Larry James’ Relationship Twitter!

I have posted the 4th 100 Tweets (400 Relationship Tweets in all) on my once daily “Relationship Twitter” and thought you might enjoy reading all of them 140 characters at a time. All are adapted from my book, “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing.”

LoveNotes for Lovers is a collection of meditations, affirmations and reflections on love. A valued relationship is something you work on all the time, not only when its broken and needs to be fixed. LoveNotes for Lovers assists in that process.

lovenotesEvery LoveNote is but one more piece of the relationship puzzle. The design of LoveNotes for Lovers is to help people fit the pieces of the relationship puzzle together in a healthy way. Each one is a mini-lesson in love.

You will also see an occasional link that references an article I have written about that key word. Each link opens in a new window so you won’t lose your place.

You are welcome to use these “LoveNotes” as quotes provided you credit the author as per below:

LoveNote. . . Think before you speak. Words create. They either build up or tear down. Speak only words of forgiveness, appreciation, understanding & Love. – Larry James, from the book, “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing.”

You can read the 1st 100 Tweets at: https://celebratelove.wordpress.com/2009/07/25/100-tweets-from-larry-james-relationship-twitter/

You can read the 2nd 100 Tweets at: https://celebratelove.wordpress.com/2009/11/07/2nd-100-tweets-from-larry-james-relationship-twitter/

TwitterYou can read the 3rd 100 Tweets at: https://celebratelove.wordpress.com/2010/02/22/3rd-100-tweets-from-larry-james%E2%80%99-relationship-twitter/

Follow my once daily “Relationship Tweets” at: http://Twitter.com/LarryJames – Enjoy!

When asked, say, “This is one of our best days!” Positive words build positive momentum in your love relationship. Do what needs to be done.

Do things that promote positive momentum in your relationship. Always be moving forward. It will help you have “one of your best days!”

If you are always looking for the good that makes life better, you will surely always find it. Do more of that for each other & be loving.

There is nothing wrong with putting your best foot forward unless you are only being nice to get what you want. That’s a really BIG “no-no!”

Be yourself. Right now! How sad to try to be someone you think someone else thinks you should be. Be the real you all the time starting now.

Can you imagine? BOTH partners working on the relationship they have with each other & supporting each other in their own personal growth!

Relationships become a struggle when someone is not pulling their fair share of the load. Get involved with your partner. Stay focused!

Be challenged by engaging in meaningful conversation. Talk about things that are important to your relationship. Don’t leave anything out.

Have you reached a point where it is pointless to complain because you now know that relationships are what you make of them?

When true love is present, commitments arise naturally. They expand our capacity to love. They are nurtured by compassion & understanding.

Giving compliments is an excellent way of catching your partner doing something right. They develop better communication and build trust.

When you understand that time spent justifying your position that is not working is futile, you can then move forward. It’s an energy drain.

Relationship problems are shared problems. To manage the complexity of a stormy relationship you must accept responsibility for your share.

Love partners can spot a fake compliment a mile away. Flattery is usually received with negativity & is often perceived as manipulative.

Genuine compliments given freely by your partner reach a special place inside of you. They are a warm reminder of how very special you are.

Thoughtless words spoken by a stranger do not have nearly the impact as the same words spoken by someone you trust or someone you love.

What you resist, persists. The more you hold on to being right about your position, the more you get to grapple with your own inner thoughts

Love cannot exist in the presence of fear. It is impossible for opposites to co-exist. They cannot occupy the same space at the same time.

Instead of always pointing fingers & calling attention to the mistakes of your partner, focus on the good. Catch them doing something right!

Think about it: Relationships never end. Death, divorce or separation only changes them. As long as you have memory, you will be related.

Want a change in the intimacy area? Intimacy demands trust. There can be no trust without conversation; no genuine intimacy without trust.

Whatever you choose to say, say it like you mean it. If your voice isn’t congruent with the power of your compliment, it’s false praise.

Compliments help partners feel good about themselves. It causes them to feel appreciated & respected. It brings out the best in your lover.

Letting go can be the 1st is a series of positive actions that can liberate you from your negative past. Experience the joy of release.

If you have a tendency to put your partner down (even in jest) or invalidate their feelings, make a choice to change that behavior TODAY!

What if you knew this would be the last day you would spend with your partner; the last time you would ever talk to them? What would you say

We often cannot see that we have choice. No matter what happens we always have choice. Think before choice. Not making a choice is a choice.

Relationship off track? The cost of complacency is substantial. Waiting for your partner to “come around,” may prove futile. Go first.

Feel like lashing out? Put your hands over your mouth. Count to 10 or 20. Toothpaste once squeezed, cannot be put back into the tube.

There is no future in the past. Being stuck in the past serves no worthy purpose. It takes energy to remain confused. Live in the moment.

If you do not cherish the companionship you find with yourself then you can never find it with someone else. Be your own best friend.

Trust introduces you to a new freedom, the freedom to think & feel & really be with the one you love. Trust opens the door to possibilities.

The hurt we experience sometimes keeps us at a distance from responsible choices. Move through the pain knowing we are never without choice.

In reality, anger is a derivative of and an expression of fear. To transcend or master fear, we must turn our back on it; exercise courage.

Promise to always openly communicate affection and commitment. Do it in very loving ways. It gives your future together more of a chance.

In a healthy love relationship, things are easiest when both love partners take responsibility for the whole, not just their halves.

I see upsets in my relationship not only as an exterior circumstance to be remedied but as an interior condition to be understood & healed.

Mature lovers who love unconditionally, develop a knack for side- stepping resentment & focusing on the good they see in one another.

Never use your children as an excuse to not work on you or your relationship. Putting them first & you last has your priorities backwards.

To experience the kind of relationship you want & Love, both love partners must have clearly developed, open channels of communication.

The energy required for the self-discipline of honesty is far less than the energy required for withholding what is in your heart.

When your relationship needs help… ask for it. Don’t delay. The longer you wait, the more difficult it will be to move past “stuck!”

Affirmation ~ My love partner and I share similar spiritual values. Higher spiritual values give meaning and purpose to our relationship.

Ask yourself: “Would I want to be in a relationship with me?” & “Am I someone who I would want to be with forever?” Answer honestly.

Committed love partners know it is wise to plan their time together. Go on a date. Talk about it. Plan it in advance. Look forward to it.

When we run from our feelings, they follow us… everywhere! Feelings must be expressed. To stuff your feelings is to stay stuck with them.

Affirmation ~ When I am hurting, I ask my lover for a warm & tender hug. There is Divine healing in a silent, close embrace. It really works

Being vulnerable promotes unity by creating a common bond of sharing that helps each other be the best they can be for the relationship.

Resist being afraid to reveal your limitations to your partner. It’s scary. Working together on strengthening limitations develops character

Forgiveness is a mental attitude. Once convinced of its own idea, forgiveness is complete; freedom follows. Ah. . . what a relief!

Forgiveness is for your benefit. It gives you the freedom to move forward. It releases you from all personal suffering & feelings of loss.

Mutually solving problems brings love partners closer together. It allows for negotiation & compromise. It promotes positive momentum.

The goal of resolving conflict in a relationship is not victory or defeat. It is reaching a mutual understanding through open discussions.

Mature love partners permit each other the freedom to pursue their individual interests and friends without restriction. Enter… TRUST!

Hey guys! Always remember, foreplay begins with taking out the garbage “without being asked!” Do things for her. Willingly. Don’t grumble.

The great thing about authenticity is that it releases you from the requirement to be perfect. No one is perfect. Be you own good self.

Being authentic is the key to truly happy, healthy relationships. It is not possible to be happy without being true to yourself.

Never repress the things that happen that make the relationship not so great. Learn to talk about them & decide to do things differently.

If you are always looking for the good that makes your relationship better, you will surely always find it. What makes life great together?

To neglect our own responsibilities in the relationship in favor of our love partner’s responsibility in the relationship is codependency.

Need relationship help? Ask for it. Your relationship is too precious to ignore. Sometimes constant bickering is the calm before the storm!

Being attentive to your partner’s needs, regardless of the importance you may place on them, will support things in & out of the bedroom.

Women can often tell a man’s interest in them by the length of his attention span. Genuine listening is an act of love. Pay attention!

Where is it written that a man should have only one job & a woman have two? Housework is not just the woman’s responsibility! Offer to help.

Guys: Leave a note on the toilet seat (after you’ve put it down) that says “I put the seat down because I love you, not because I should.”

If you want to keep your significant other happy and content – do things for her… “willingly.” Run errands. Switch roles. Gas the car.

Discover new ways of expressing your love for each other. Hire a skywriter. Put a message on a billboard. Buy a radio spot to say I love you

When you become more than you are, you accomplish the personal rewards that come with doing the best you can & from which others can model.

Are you proud of YOU as an accomplishment? Are you proud of the example you are for others to become? Let your light shine for others to see

As we understand our equal share in creating problems, blame, self-doubt, & discord gives way to personal responsibility, & mutual respect.

Commitment to complete the journey together, come what may, nurtures the love needed to arrive there together. Love answers to all questions

Healthy couples identify problems, talk openly and honestly about their differences and choose workable solutions wisely & quickly.

Couples need to go through the ups and downs, experience the traumas and revel in the successes of their relationship in order to grow.

Your relationship with your partner must be an equal partnership; one that mutually supports each other in their dreams and visions.

Be courageous enough to not always take yourselves so seriously; to laugh, play & be playful & to experience whatever is exciting to both.

Paying attention to the “little things” is not always easy. Practice. It’s the little things that count in a healthy love relationship.

Give up your expectations. Focus on what you need from your relationship. Then proceed with confidence. Mutually discuss your needs.

Become dedicated to mutual pleasure for both you & your love partner. Communicate openly & honestly. Sex is fun & pleasure is good for you!

Spend “quality” time together. Make a promise to have a date with your mate no less than once each week. No excuses, please!

Breath new life into your relationship each day by consistently focusing on new ideas that keeps the fire of love burning. It’s energizing.

The energy we give to our troubles by dwelling on them, saps us of the energy we need to find solutions for them. Redirect your energy.

Mature love partners have learned not to expect perfection in each other. They know that acceptance, love & understanding is its own reward.

Do unto your partner, as you would have your partner do unto you! That’s a really great rule to live your relationship by. Try it. It works

In a healthy love relationship, things are easiest when both love partners take responsibility for the whole, not just their halves.

You are the architect of your own discomfort. The key is to never wallow in the suffering any longer than is necessary to learn the lesson.

Never say things you do not mean. In anger we often say things that we later say we really didn’t mean. Be wise. You cannot un-ring a bell.

Be happy now! It’s a choice you know. There is no future in the past. There is only right now! Focus on the present. Live it to its fullest

You can say, “I’m sorry,” once and you may be forgiven. If you continue to say bad things they can drive a wedge between you & your partner.

Make having a relationship with you your number one priority. The one you are with is you! Put yourself 1st. Spend time working on you.

Saying bad things to your partner that you wouldn’t say to a close friend can be & usually is the beginning of the end of the relationship.

If you’re in a relationship for the long haul, be wise & treat your partner with respect & demonstrate your love in thoughtful ways.

When two people work together, they can always accomplish more. Communicate! Connect in loving ways. Say, “I love you” often.

You give of yourself to the other. You never give up yourself to the other. When you are both #1 no one ever has to worry about competition.

Without trust there can be no effective communication; without effective communication there can be no genuine intimacy. Honesty always wins

Develop a mutual incentive that will assist you in motivating each other to be the best you can be. Be inventive & creative. Share ideas.

Healthy couples identify problems, talk openly and honestly about their differences and choose workable solutions as quickly as possible.

The words you speak determines what shows up in your relationship. Things go well because you both say so & because of what each of you do.

You make the choice. Intimacy or separation. It’s in your hands. Talk or be silent & wait for the inevitable; the ultimate separation.

Never argue with your love partner’s feelings. Learn to appreciate & respect your lover’s different point of view. Only seek to understand!

To have found someone you can share your love and life with is one of life’s greatest treasures and most exciting romantic adventures.

You can read the 1st 100 Tweets at: https://celebratelove.wordpress.com/2009/07/25/100-tweets-from-larry-james-relationship-twitter/

You can read the 2nd 100 Tweets at: https://celebratelove.wordpress.com/2009/11/07/2nd-100-tweets-from-larry-james-relationship-twitter/

You can read the 3rd 100 Tweets at: https://celebratelove.wordpress.com/2010/02/22/3rd-100-tweets-from-larry-james%E2%80%99-relationship-twitter/

heartcarvedintree

Copyright © 2010 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” Larry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and a nondenominational minister. He performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateLove.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com and CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles and “LoveNotes” listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

letsbefriends2

Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Author and Speakers BLOG” at: http://AuthorsandSpeakersNetwork.wordpress.com

NOTE: You are welcome to use any of the above “Tweets” as quotes as long as you give credit. Example:

LoveNote. . . Think before you speak. Words create. They either build up or tear down. Speak only words of forgiveness, appreciation, understanding & Love. – Larry James, from the book, “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing.”

Monday, February 22, 2010

3rd 100 Tweets from Larry James’ Relationship Twitter!

I have posted the 3rd 100 Tweets (300 Relationship Tweets in all) on my once daily “Relationship Twitter” and thought you might enjoy reading all of them 140 characters at a time. All are adapted from my book, “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing.”

LoveNotes for Lovers is a collection of meditations, affirmations and reflections on love. A valued relationship is something you work on all the time, not only when its broken and needs to be fixed. LoveNotes for Lovers assists in that process.

lovenotesEvery LoveNote is but one more piece of the relationship puzzle. The design of LoveNotes for Lovers is to help people fit the pieces of the relationship puzzle together in a healthy way. Each one is a mini-lesson in love.

You will also see an occasional link that references an article I have written about that key word. Each link opens in a new window so you won’t lose your place.

You are welcome to use these “LoveNotes” as quotes provided you credit the author as per below:

We become empowered by anger when we view it as something that brings to our awareness those parts of us that need healing. – Larry James, from the book, “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing.”

You can read the 1st 100 Tweets at: https://celebratelove.wordpress.com/2009/07/25/100-tweets-from-larry-james-relationship-twitter/

You can read the 2nd 100 Tweets at: https://celebratelove.wordpress.com/2009/07/25/100-tweets-from-larry-james-relationship-twitter/

TwitterYou can read the 4th 100 Tweets at: https://celebratelove.wordpress.com/2010/09/30/4th-100-tweets-from-larry-james%E2%80%99-relationship-twitter/

Follow my once daily “Relationship Tweets” at: http://Twitter.com/LarryJames – Enjoy!

Rarely is there a time when it is appropriate to withhold relevant communication in a relationship. It is too important to take casually.

Giving up your choice for satisfying your needs is a mistake. Your need to stand alone must be tempered by your need to stand together.

The goal of resolving conflict in a relationship is not victory or defeat. It is reaching a mutual understanding through open discussions.

To fix an issue requires letting go of our need to be right. Mutually solving problems brings love partners closer together.

Resolving conflict allows for negotiation and compromise. It promotes positive momentum & it must benefit both love partners.

There is no victory without the willingness to risk setbacks or total defeat. Love implies commitment and the mature exercise of wisdom.

Being authentic is to be able to live with your guard down; to be venerable; to be able to be yourself. It feels good. Simply be yourself!

Change your thinking about your relationship, then change your behavior and you WILL change your relationship for the better!

The great thing about authenticity is that it releases you from the requirement to be perfect. No one is perfect. Be your own good self.

Demonstrating authenticity in your relationship is a prerequisite to having a healthy relationship. Make it a specific intention e.g., goal.

Think back to some of the great times you’ve had together & recreate the experiences. You must plan time to be together for play.

Reward your partner for doing the right thing. Stay on track. Honor your combined efforts by continuing to work together to have fun.

Go on a date & this time dress to the nines! Make it special. Rent a tuxedo. Buy a new dress. Make advance reservations. Have a weekly date!

Offer “no excuses” for not being able to plan no less than one night each week to turn on the fun! Not having fun is not an option!

Plug in & play. Be a kid again. Plug into what your partner enjoys & then do whatever it takes to make your play time together memorable.

You cannot change someone else. It simply is not possible. Give it up. Love them & work on you. Never stop working on you.

Relationships can drown in negative emotions. Fear only surfaces when we call it up by temporarily letting go of love. Choose Love always!

Trust demands no withholds. You can more lovingly express how you think & feel when trust is present & feel more free to do so.

Maturity is the ability to live up to the responsibilities of a love relationship, & this means being dependable. It means keeping your word

Remember to flirt with your lover, like you did when you first met. Toss out little signals that tell your lover you are still interested.

Trust commands that you live in the present, trusting one moment at a time. To fully trust takes time and mature, committed love.

For Men – Always remember that more often than not, when your partner wants to talk, she only wants someone to listen & not dispense advice.

Relationships can drown in negative emotions. Feelings of fear are created in our own mind. The moment fear appears; we give up our power.

It is only and always fear talking when we hear a voice telling us not to get our hopes up because we will only be disappointed.

Affirmation – If I feel my lover taking me for granted, it is always & only my responsibility to request the love & appreciation I deserve.

Our feelings often rise & fall as our energy is drawn from the unstable emotions present when anger is being expressed. 1st cool down.

You tell yourself what to think. Tell yourself to ‘shut up’ when the temptation to speak ill of your partner occurs. Think good thoughts!

Intimate lovers don’t have to say words to be understood. A knowing glance or touch can say all that needs to be said to ignite passion.

The goal of resolving conflict in a relationship is not victory or defeat. It is reaching a mutual understanding through open discussions.

We must learn to express love to ourselves and to others in the midst of upsets. Love shows up when we let go & embrace love.

Have a private party for just the two of you. Candles, music, the works. Talk. Listen. Express your love for one another.

Love is a bond or connection between two people that results in trust, intimacy, and an interdependence that enhances both partners.

Cuddle. Lie close and be cozy. Do spoons! Just hold each other. There is a very special healing power in a close, warm embrace.

Guys, this one is for you! – Love is letting your partner have the TV remote for 30 days! And not sneaking it when she isn’t looking. 😉

Ask your partner: What do I do that you think forms a pattern & interferes with our intimacy? The answer may give you something to work on.

Love is loving someone without expecting anything in return; no judgments, no restrictions; no limitations; no expectations! Try it!

Love is expressed when you are being someone who loves someone for who they are, not who you think they should be.

Kissy. . . kissy. . . kissy! Quick pecks on the cheek don’t work. Give your partner an unexpected, looooong, juicy kiss. Be keen on kissing!

Communicating is not optional. It is an absolute necessity for the success of the relationship. Always communicate in a loving way.

To demonstrate Love, say, “I Love you” – out loud – at least once each day to someone you love. There is magic in those three little words.

Love is waking up to find the object of your affection – in the dream you were having – asleep on your shoulder. Now whisper, I love you!

Love is embracing differences & finding ways to build a common lifestyle, share decision-making, & take equal responsibility for the results

Heart-to-heart communication in a relationship requires an emotional atmosphere of caring, safety, understanding and trust.

It’s okay to say, “No.” It’s not okay to say, “Yes” when your heart tells you to say otherwise. You can’t fulfill every request made of you

Tender moments of togetherness are necessary for a love relationship to grow. Balance between closeness and separateness must be respected.

Rarely do you get what you need from a relationship when your only intention is to criticize your partner for mistakes. Compliments work!

Plateaus & setbacks are natural to progress. Growth in an intimate relationship is never in a straight, upward line. Exercise patience!

There is comfort in solitude. A committed love relationship fosters respect; respect for each others right to have some time to themselves.

Being in the same room & talking about things that are important to the two of you, can be almost as much fun & as productive as foreplay.

To manage the complexity of a stormy relationship you must accept responsibility for your “share” of the problem before it can be solved.

Maturity is the ability to harness your abilities, your energies & to do more than is expected in your relationships. Say “No” to mediocrity

Saying you are sorry doesn’t always mean you did anything wrong. it demonstrates an attitude of understanding, caring & empathy.

Without trust there can be no effective communication; without effective communication there can be no genuine intimacy. Honesty always pays

Do your best to see your partner’s point of view. This assists especially when you are both in major disagreement. Focus on needs not wants.

Trust demands no withholds. It invites personal disclosure. You can more lovingly express how you think and feel when trust is present.

You can more lovingly express how you think and feel when trust is present in your relationship and feel more free to do so.

When you trust the one you’re with, you can allow your lover to see the real you & be more of your true self. Trust demands no withholds.

Choose to be in a relationship where both partners continue to do things that you considered romantic when the relationship began.

Be in a commitment to always be in a dance with one another, showering each other with compassion & understanding. That’s true commitment.

The commitment that supports a healthy partnership is the commitment each has to the other to always be working on the relationship.

With understanding comes acceptance. With acceptance comes the ultimate expression of unconditional love. Understanding is the key.

Men & women think, feel and communicate differently. People who love each other learn to respect & understand their inherent differences.

Happy & healthy relationships are usually made between happy & healthy people; people who were happy & healthy “before” they were together.

You must be content to first be happy alone so you can be happy when you are together with someone else. Learn to be alone & not be lonely.

Committed lovers listen for the music in words that come from the heart. The music of the heart is the nourishment of unconditional love.

Love, commitment and loving conversation enables us to make music together in a way that helps us stay in tune with one another.

Not to release & rise above suppressed feelings of hurt & anger is to remain imprisoned by them. It takes no strength to let go only courage

The psychological importance of working through painful resentments must not be underestimated. Break old patterns & possibility is born.

Take turns planning events. Show your consideration for each other in this way. To do otherwise is to take your togetherness for granted.

Committed partners know it is wise to plan their time together. Go on a date. Plan it in advance. Don’t wait until the last moment.

In a healthy love relationship, things are easiest when both love partners take responsibility for the whole, not just their halves.

Trust creates breakthroughs in having relationships work. Among lovers, trust invites the spark of the Divine to ignite their passion.

For Men. I remember that more often than not, when my love partner wants to talk, she only wants someone to listen & not to give advice.

If you are content with your discontent in your relationship it cannot move forward. Change comes when you decide to do something different.

When you invalidate your partner’s feelings, disagreement follows. Never argue with anyone’s feelings. It’s an argument you can never win.

Women have a desire to be cherished & supported. It is a wise man that acknowledges this need by doing his best to offer his support.

By far the most common & important way in which you can exercise your attention to your love partner is by listening. It’s an act of love.

For intimacy to grow there can be no withholds. Feelings, positive & negative, must be shared equally between love partners in a loving way.

Forgive and forget is an impossibility. Forgive? Yes! You forgive because it sets you free; the first step toward healing. Forget? No!

You need others & you depend on yourself. Giving up your responsibility for satisfying your needs is a mistake. Stand tall together.

Cherish your differences. Learn to accept and be with the things you cannot change about each other. It allows for individuality to grow.

A determination to resolve conflict by conversation offers a chance for healing & promotes the opportunity to become much closer.

Saying “I’m sorry” over and over for the same mistake doesn’t work! Not making the same mistake again does.

Your relationship priorities are clear now, right? Go first. Apologize. Do what’s right! Say it. “I was wrong and I am sorry.”

If you need to get something off your mind, say it! Never candy-coat it or act like nothing’s wrong. Be nice but Speak up. Soon.

If couples would look for the one thing each day that made their relationship special for that day, what a difference it would make!

True love allows for disagreements. Problems are not there to break you. They help make you a better partner; they help you grow.

Silence is not golden. It’s insulting to your partner & it erodes trust. Speak what’s on your mind. Be honest. Say it with loving words.

Relationship derailment is a troubling phenomenon. It’s time for the death of finger pointing. Blame in a relationship doesn’t work!

Forgiveness is a gift you give to yourself. It is not something you do FOR someone else. It is not complicated. It is simple.

Stay on track. Do what’s right. Do unto your partner what you would have them do unto you. Indulge in honoring your combined efforts.

Be happy now! It’s a choice. Focus on the perfect present & its opportunities rather than worrying about past guilt or failure anxiety.

The same energy you expend on anger, when re-directed, can help free you of the negative emotions you feel when you are angry.

LoveNote. . . Plateaus and setbacks are natural to progress. Growth in an intimate relationship is never in a straight, upward line.

Don’t wallow in anger. The wise thing to do is to be present to our anger; acknowledge it. Create a new intention to move through it.

A healthy love relationship can exist only between two strong & independent people. Two broken people cannot fix each other.

Freeing yourself of negative emotions is something you do. It is never dependent upon whomever or whatever you think is the cause of anger.

How wonderful to be in a relationship where partners feel free to express their wants & needs. Talk about anything & everything all the time

I always allow my partner to be their own person. The object is not to be as one but to trust each other enough to play together as a team.

You can read the 1st 100 Tweets at: https://celebratelove.wordpress.com/2009/07/25/100-tweets-from-larry-james-relationship-twitter/

You can read the 2nd 100 Tweets at: https://celebratelove.wordpress.com/2009/07/25/100-tweets-from-larry-james-relationship-twitter/

You can read the 4th 100 Tweets at: https://celebratelove.wordpress.com/2010/09/30/4th-100-tweets-from-larry-james%E2%80%99-relationship-twitter/

Follow my once daily “Relationship Tweets” at: http://Twitter.com/LarryJames

NOTE: The 4th 100 Tweets from Larry James’ Relationship Twitter will be available on September 30, 2010 on this BLOG!

loveandhearts

Copyright © 2010 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” Larry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and a nondenominational minister. He performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateLove.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com and CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles and “LoveNotes” listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

letsbefriends2

Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Author and Speakers BLOG” at: http://AuthorsandSpeakersNetwork.wordpress.com

NOTE: You are welcome to use any of the above “Tweets” as quotes as long as you give credit. Example:

We become empowered by anger when we view it as something that brings to our awareness those parts of us that need healing. – Larry James, from the book, “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing.”

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Say What You Need to Say!

“You’re not listening to me!” Heard that before?

Communication is not optional. You can’t not communicate. Everything you say and do or don’t say and don’t do sends a message to your partner. The key to successful conflict resolution is communication. You must consistently communicate with your partner.

Sometimes it not easy. Choose your words carefully and say them anyway!

Most people assume they know how to communicate effectively. Even though they have poor listening skills and often use manipulation, yelling, silence, threats, or blaming in order to try and be heard. How is that working for you?

When voicing your feelings, say “When you (fill in the blank) I feel (fill in the blank).” Example: “When you scream and holler at me, I don’t feel loved.” Saying it this way addresses the behavior and not the person. Never say “you make me feel” statements because only causes them to become defensive. As a matter of fact, “you make me feel” is not true. No one can make you feel any way. You are the one who chooses to feel the way you feel. I know that is a hard fact to swallow, but it’s true whether you believe it or not.

Facial expressions reflect how you’re affected by the other person’s message. Avoid rolling your eyes, sneering, or shaking your head as these behaviors tend to shut the other person down. That pretty much shuts down the conversation.

Withheld communication can drive a wedge between partners. You must say what you need to say whether is feels like your partner is listening or not. NEVER withhold communication that needs to be said.

Here’s what can happen. One day, he doesn’t take out the garbage and you want a divorce and it’s not really about the garbage. It’s about all the things you should have talked about but didn’t.

Choose the right moment and the right place. Turn off the TV, Cell phone, etc. Clarify your ideas in your mind before you speak. Don’t bring up superfluous stuff. Do not speak in generalizations. Get to the ‘heart’ of your message quickly. Stay on-topic. Speak in a calm voice, be brave, and say what you need to say. How you say something relates your true feelings. Make eye contact with your partner. Listen to their response. We often forget that for there to be effective communication listening is as important as talking. It’s a two-way deal.

If your partner moves away, don’t follow them out of the room to finish the conversation. If they feel the need for space, allow it. Let them know you are okay with that and request that you both return to takj about it when you are more calm. Be cautious not to say words that you may regret later. It’s much better to postpone the conversation than to say something in anger.

If youy are the one who hasn’t really been paying attention to what your partner is saying. . . shame on you! Put the iPod or the TV remote aside and really listen.

If you are the one who isn’t being heard by your partner when you talk. . . write him/her a carefully worded letter and mail it to him/her at home or at him/her office. I stress carefully worded. If you need help scripting your words, take some time with it or call a coach. Use the words (see the example above) that will help you express how this behavior causes you to feel and always close with how much you love him/her, etc.

not listeningThe lyrics to “Say” by John Mayer:

Take all of your wasted honor
Every little past frustration
Take all of your so-called problems,
Better put ’em in quotations

Walking like a one man army
Fighting with the shadows in your head
Living out the same old moment
Knowing you’d be better off instead,
If you could only . . .

Say what you need to say

Have no fear for giving in
Have no fear for giving over
You’d better know that in the end
Its better to say too much
Then never say what you need to say again

Even if your hands are shaking
And your faith is broken
Even as the eyes are closing
Do it with a heart wide open

“If we discovered that we had only five minutes left to say all that we wanted to say, every telephone booth would be occupied by people calling other people to stammer that they loved them.” – Christopher Morley

Say what you need to say!

Lyrics Copyright © 2010 by John Mayer

Bonus Article: Read, “Communicating is Not Optional” and “Weigh Your Words.”

skywriteheart

Copyright © 2010 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” Larry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and a nondenominational minister. He performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateLove.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com and CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles and “LoveNotes” listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

Add Larry James to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

We Need to Talk. . .

Filed under: Relationships — Larry James @ 6:00 am
Tags: , , , , ,

Those four words – generally spoken by a female voice – make most men quiver with fear! It’s a powerful statement and it’s intention is to get your attention. And. . . it does!

It usually means there’s something serious in the offering. It sometimes means prepare yourself for an intense experience, but not always. That may depend upon the tone by which is was expressed. It’s okay to brace yourself, but for the sake of your relationship, just listen.

It doesn’t always mean, “I have a complaint.” Sometimes it is a “Heads up – you’re not hearing what I’m trying to tell you.” She may be saying, “there is something I want you to understand. And I don’t think you’re getting it, so I need you to listen, so you know how I feel”. That’s all. That’s enough.

Call it a “design flaw” if you must, but men are – generally speaking – not very good at paying attention to what’s really going on in the relationship. That’s why, “We need to talk” and the words that follow often come as a surprise.

On the other side, women have a tendency to put up with their partner’s crap for longer periods of time before they have finally had enough. . . then there’s this big explosion! By the time they begin to talk, they may have already made a decision and anything you say could be for naught.

That’s why it is very important for couples to maintain an open line of communication all the time, not just when you’ve had enough. Here’s a great promise to make to each other: I promise to always talk to you about anything and everything all the time. It may be one of the hardest promises you will ever have to keep. . . and it’s worth it! Without an agreement in place, neither partner has a promise to communicate. Learn to share the good, bad and the not so good.

It’s time to listen, in fact, get ready to listen and listen some more. Then, when she pauses, repeat what you understand her to be saying. Never try to fix her with your advice, just listen and let her know that you understand.

Guys, while your first instinct may be to run for it, that’s the worst thing you can do, says Ron Louis, co-author of How to Succeed With Women. “Most guys in these situations try to crack jokes or avoid the conversation,” Louis notes. “But it never works.” My advice: Keep your cool – and make the chat as painless as possible.

Denial may seem to be the easiest response, or immediately begin to defend your position but that doesn’t work. Don’t resist. Let your partner say what they need to say.

It’s best to be a “committed” listener. That is someone who is committed to listening to your partner as she or he pours out their heart. Simple, isn’t it? Difficult? Yep!

Empathic listening is a choice. Audioapathy is a word I coined to describe the condition often experienced when partners become apathetic about listening when their partner talks with them. It is a dreaded dis-ease that can poison your relationship. Although it appears that men are more affected than women, some women also get it.

Hearing is involuntary. You can be sound asleep and still hear something or someone, but listening is voluntary. It is an intellectual and emotional choice. It implies effective communication between the sender and the receiver, which hearing does not.

It is a wise partner who, when their partner is talking, puts down the evening newspaper or turns the TV or the computer off, makes eye contact and truly listens to what their partner is saying. Very wise. Listen like you mean it. It may be difficult to listen to what they have to say, however, if the truth hurts – be grateful. When your partner talks, listen for the truth about what they are saying instead of going on the defensive. That only keeps you stuck.

Men and women need to talk more about what really matters. Not surface conversation, but getting down to the good stuff and allowing their feelings about each other and the relationship to be fully expressed. Learn to articulate your concerns with love.

It’s never a good idea to start a serious conversation when you are cranky, angry or stressed-out. It’s important to weigh your words before you speak them. When you speak without thinking is when you can get in trouble. It is a wise love partner who is aware of the potential damage loose words can cause. Words spoken in anger inflict wounds that sometimes take a long time to heal. Think first, then speak.

When the pin is pulled, Mr. Grenade is not our friend. – U.S. Marine Corps

Women should save these words – “We need to talk” – for the real serious stuff, not the “I wish you would put the toilet seat down,” or until a dropped sock becomes, ‘You do not appreciate me,” ‘Who cares how I feel?’ or, “Do you give a damn about me at all?”

And another thing, girls. . . always say what you mean! Don’t beat around the bush. Guys are not great at reading your minds. You may have to translate for him, but lay it out there and remember to say it with love.

Tackle Talk – In other words. . . Communicate. It is often most difficult to restart this process. AND it is the most important way to contribute to your relationship. If you have both been shut down. . . recommit to opening up to each other. Choosing wisely what you say and how you say it gives you great power.

Not talking can cause a serious disconnect from the one you say you love.

Guys: Your mission – if you chose to accept it – is to be a good listener and do whatever you can to work with her to find a mutually beneficial solution so you don’t have to every hear: “We need to talk” again.

Copyright © 2009 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” Larry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and a nondenominational minister. He performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateLove.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com and CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

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