Larry James' CelebrateLove.com BLOG

Thursday, July 3, 2014

A Red Rose Bud For Her Pillow…

Filed under: Relationships,Romance — Larry James @ 9:00 am
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Some men just don’t get it! They say they love their partner, but rarely surprise her with something romantic. Taking the time to stop by a card or flower shop to do more than tell her how much you care without words is a great idea. A flower is a beautiful way to convey unspoken meaning.

Women love surprises. Especially the ones that show that you were thinking about her and that you had to go a little out of your way to make it happen.

RedRoseBudSo… guys! Listen up! If you are little bankrupt in the romance department it’s time you learned that a single red rose bud means only one thing. It means, “I Love you!” Red roses are given to those who you want to show love and passion and people for whom you have great respect. The shade of the red has a meaning as well. Bright red means Love.

So if you really love her, here is your assignment for tonight or certainly no later than tomorrow night. Stop by a flower shop, pick out the most perfect red rose bud available, buy it and attach a small note telling her that you were thinking about her today and express how much you really love her. Make sure it has one of those little water holders around the end of the stem to keep it fresh. Sneak it into the house and display it on her pillow. Plan to go to bed at the same time. Wait for its discovery.

It’s high time we work a little harder to put more romance in our relationships. Don’t wait until you made a boo-boo to give her flowers, do it for no reason other than you love her and think she is special. It’s one thing to say, “I love you,” and quite another to demonstrate your love in special ways. Plan to do something out of the ordinary that is especially romantic for each other at least once each week.

Short of ideas? There are a multitude of romantic ideas on this blog. Click here for many, many more.

BONUS Article: Rose to the Occasion…

CLoveLOGOCopyright © 2014 – 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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Monday, February 17, 2014

A Great Relationship Begins With You

Filed under: Relationships — Larry James @ 7:30 am
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A great relationship begins with you. You can make it great or not!

BeginsWithYOUMake yourself better than you ever thought you could be and you will find the relationship you have with your love partner getting better.

This works especially well when two people are focusing on working on themselves; together. Then, the relationship you have with the one you love can only grow and prosper.

Only selfish people think only of themselves. When you really love yourself you cannot help wanting to give some of your love away. Other people have a need to be loved. So do you. People are like that.

Like attracts like. What you become you attract. Want a great love partner? Become a great love partner! Work on this one.

Sharing love with someone else must only and always begin with you. Learn to relate to yourself better.

CLoveLOGOCopyright © 2014 – 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
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Wednesday, November 13, 2013

You Don’t Have to Be in a Relationship to Celebrate Love!

Filed under: Love,Personal Growth — Larry James @ 7:30 am
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Celebrating love begins with the one you see in the mirror every morning. Being in a relationship doesn’t need to be a pre-requisite for celebrating love! AND it doesn’t have to be Valentine’s Day to be in a loving mood. What love that you put out there is what you’ll get back. Perform acts of love, big or small. Love is reciprocal. Look for ways you can give love to others. You cannot give love away if you don’t have love for yourself.

celebratelove“Maybe you don’t need the whole world to love you, you know? Maybe you just need one person – you.” ~ Kermit the Frog

Be kind to others. Celebrate the love in YOUR life. Renew the relationship you have with yourself. It’s easy, when your life is going well. But we often take the love we have with ourself for granted. What you take for granted, disappears. Invite a close friend to lunch or dinner. Today, make a conscious effort to smile to everyone you meet. Say, “Thank you,” often. Two simple words that can make someone’s day. Make today a day to remind yourself of the love you already have in your life.

singlecelebratinglove.jpgBe your own Valentine! Go to a movie by yourself and pay the ticket price for the person behind you. Put a Post-It note on their bathroom mirror with a sweet sentiment. You can write “I love ME,” or “Let’s have a date tonight,” then go someplace special. Pamper, relax and indulge yourself. Buy yourself some flowers arrangements and scatter them around your home.

Think about something you’ve always wanted to do, but always came up with a million excuses for not doing it. Then take that first step. Think about something you’ve always wanted to do, but always came up with a million excuses for not doing it. Then take that first step.

“Do things that make you happy – whether it’s curling up with a good book or treating yourself to some pampering. Go to the gym, start a new workout routine, or look up a new recipe! Remind yourself of your strengths and talents. You’ll find that you can make yourself happier than anyone else can if you really try to.” ~ Maya

Spend a weekend in the meaningful way by spending time with the needy and downtrodden. You could visit an orphanage or old age home and spend time with the people there who are always in need of love and affection.

Take a personal day from work and take a short day trip. Invite a friend. Or take the day and volunteer. Taking care of yourself is great, but you can also get an amazing boost of endorphins by helping others. Brighten someone else’s day with your words and actions. Treat yourself to a massage.

Write a love letter to yourself. It’s amazing the power words can have on how you feel about YOU.

Pick one day in the year and call it your own. Make a note to yourself to have that day be YOUR day and celebrate YOU each and every year. Choose one other day each year to celebrate love with friends. Use that day as an opportunity to celebrate love of all sorts, and express your appreciation and affection for the amazing people in your life.

journalCelebrate your single-ness. Love your single-ness. Savor your singlehood. Think about all the marvelous benefits of being single, from not fighting over the TV remote control to being able to keep your living space as clean or as messy as you’d like. Make a list. Focus on the benefits rather than seeing drawbacks. Think of the money you’re saving. 😉 Choose to be happy within yourself regardless of your relationship status.

Take a quick tip to a book store and start a journal. Take an afternoon and write down all the things you can do to demonstrate love. Keep writing this list – add something to it daily. Call it your “Instructions for Loving.” Don’t stop until you’re feeling great about yourself. At least once each week share one item on your list with someone you love. Also make a list of what you “love” about yourself. Bet you haven’t done that for a long, long time – if ever! Write down 15 things you absolutely love, then make plans to do them.

momentsofLOVEEmbrace new experiences with close friends. Spend as much time as you can with people you really care about. Getting together with one close friend can be as beneficial as hanging out with a group.

Put your love in action! Doing unselfish good deeds such as giving, helping, thanking, forgiving, etc. are “love in action.” Love is less of feeling and more of choosing and doing good deeds to family, relatives, friends and even strangers.

If you knew that you only had one week to live, who would you rush to tell, “I love you?”

BONUS Article: 10 Radical Self Love Exercises To Boost Your Summer Lovin’!
How to Celebrate LOVE without Being Mushy

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
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Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Relationships Only Thrive in a Safe Space

Filed under: Guest Authors,Relationships — Larry James @ 7:30 am
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Chris Prentiss, Guest Author

“We find rest in those we love, and we provide a resting place in ourselves for those who love us.” ~ Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153)

Your relationship thrives, withers, lives, or dies in an environment. If the environment in which your relationship lives is harsh and unforgiving, a place where sarcasm, degradation, and anger is present and where forgiveness, thoughtfulness, and love are in short supply, your relationship will wither and die… painfully. It will die just as a garden dies without water, nutrients, and light.

SafePlaceHere is the heart of the Law of Love regarding Safe Space: In your eyes, your partner cannot make a mistake or do anything wrong. That is the ultimate condition of Safe Space. That doesn’t mean your partner will not make mistakes, do things you don’t agree with, or do things that are hurtful to you or someone you care about. What it means is that you will treat their action as if nothing wrong was done, as if what happened is fine with you.

You will not be harsh, hurtful, sarcastic, degrading, or even somewhat put off by what happened. You will keep in mind as you respond that you are talking to someone you want to love you completely, warmly, and sincerely. You are talking to someone you want to spend the rest of your life with. If you were able to choose how your partner would treat you, wouldn’t you want to be treated gently, lovingly, and with great tenderness and complete consideration no matter what you were to do?

The degree to which you provide Safe Space for your loved one is the same degree to which your relationship will blossom and the same degree to which you will find the love you seek in the eyes and heart of the one you love. The degree to which you fail to provide Safe Space is the same degree to which your relationship will diminish, tarnish, and die. If you do not offer a haven of Safe Space, your mate may become afraid of you and afraid to make mistakes, which will surely cause those mistakes to occur. If you would exist in that rarified world of relationship heaven where only a few have entered and even fewer have remained, you must fully embrace the condition of Safe Space.

When you live by the law that relationships only thrive in Safe Space, you do not become upset or angry with your partner over hurtful events caused by them because you know that, speaking in today’s vernacular, you’ve got to cut them some slack – in fact, total slack – if you want to be loved. Creating Safe Space requires nothing less than becoming the kind of person who looks with perfect equanimity on the shortcomings of your loved one – the kind of person who sees the seeming mistakes, omissions, blunders, failures, and even the intentional hurts and transgressions and makes them all okay.

Making Your Love Felt

At this point, there will most likely arise in your mind a myriad examples in your current or past relationships that you can point to and say, “Well, what about this or that – am I supposed to just overlook those things? Am I supposed to say, ‘Okay honey, it’s alright that you continue to lie to me.’ Or ‘Don’t worry, dear, about not paying the bills on time, month after month, and ruining our credit. I understand you were busy with your friends and I love you just the same.'”

SafePlace2Lying is not okay. Ruining your credit is not okay. Driving recklessly is not okay. Being disrespectful or nasty to you is not okay. Neglecting important things is not okay. Cooperation is not a sentiment; it is an economic necessity. If those transgressions and things like them continue despite your best efforts to help your partner correct them, they enter into the domain of “deal breakers.”

Before the above examples turn into deal breakers, when they are still in the annoying stage but have not become intolerable, it’s essential that you create Safe Space for your partner so you do not wind up appearing uncaring or difficult or making them feel as if you don’t love them. How you treat your partner during those occurrences will determine the degree of love and respect you will receive from your partner.

In the universal sense of the word, all events are part of the perfection of the unfolding Universe, part of your process of growth. By acting in accord with that truth and carefully adhering to what you have just read about Safe Space, your partner will revere you, love you, cling to you, and be forever grateful to you for being the loving, compassionate, and understanding person they have always dreamed of and longed for, either consciously or subconsciously. Your loved one will speak about you and think about you in the highest terms of endearment. You will have earned their love.

Providing Safe Space for another is, in reality, an act of complete selfishness. What you are after is to be totally loved by the one you love. You are, in fact, the direct beneficiary of your creation of Safe Space. First, you get to live with and experience the joy and love of someone who is free to grow and expand in the Safe Space you have created. Second, you get to experience what it’s like to live with someone who is not afraid of doing the wrong thing. That leaves you and your partner free to experiment as you move through life and removes fear from your relationship.

Third, because your mate has experienced what it is like to live with a person who is generous and compassionate, they will therefore want to provide you with the same Safe Space you have provided them. As my wife, Lyn, says, “Partnerships allow you to love yourself and life through another.” To the extent that you have created Safe Space, your partner will have perfect trust in you. Your partner will “know” you – know you to be in love with them and know that they can trust you to be loving in response to any action they take, even actions that would seem to the world to be mistakes, bad judgment, or even intentional transgressions.

Removing Fear from Your Relationship

Here’s an example of how Safe Space manifests itself in a perfect relationship environment. Say your spouse takes the new car out to run an errand and smashes it. When you are committed to Safe Space in your relationship, your response will be: “As long as you’re safe, that’s all I really care about. I hope you’re not upset by it. I want you to know that I love you, and that you are my treasure. I was so worried about damaging our new car, and now I realize that the only thing that is important is that you are safe and sound. Cars are replaceable – you’re not!”

prentiss-cov

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How do you think your spouse will respond to that? I know how I would respond. I would feel a surge of love and gratitude for being in the presence of someone who truly loves me, who thinks far more of me than of the banged-up car, whose first and main concern is my well-being. Wouldn’t you feel the same?

Here’s another example of how to create Safe Space in your relationship. Say you arrive at the airport, only to discover that your partner forgot to bring his or her driver’s license or passport as identification. Your response: “No problem, honey. We’re obviously not supposed to be on that flight. Since we can’t fly until tomorrow, let’s have a special celebration tonight to make the most of this unexpected bonus time. I’m actually glad we missed the flight. Something good will come of it. Do you know, I may have forgotten to lock the back door. This will give me a chance to check on it.”

Then, all during the rest of that day, find reasons to feel good about having missed the flight. Make statements such as these: “It would take a heck of a lot more than that for me to ever be angry with you.” “You’re such a perfect partner for me, and I don’t want you to feel uncomfortable, even in the slightest, for anything you do.” “Do you know, if we hadn’t missed that flight, we might never have discovered this great restaurant.” “If we had made that flight, you wouldn’t have gotten that important phone call from work.”

Safe Space relieves apprehension on the part of your loved one. We all know what it feels like when we know we are going to be scolded or punished for having done something wrong. Those feelings should be absent in your relationship. Making everything your partner does okay with you will remove most of what causes dissension in relationships. There’s really nothing quite like Safe Space for creating and maintaining a wonderful, loving, stress-free relationship.

Don’t forget about yourself too. Remember to create Safe Space for yourself as well. Don’t needlessly beat yourself up over things you’ve done that you wish you hadn’t. Be patient with yourself. Give yourself the right to be happy with yourself and your actions. Many a life has been ruined because of long-term feelings of guilt, regrets about missed opportunities, and the whole world of coulda, woulda, shoulda.

Larry’s Note: This article is an excerpt from the new book, “The Laws of Love: Creating the Relationship of Your Dreams.”

prentissCopyright © 2013 – Chris Prentiss. Chris Prentiss is the author of several popular works on personal growth, including “Zen and the Art of Happiness;” “The Alcoholism and Addiction Cure;” “Be Who You Want, Have What You Want;” “The Little Book of Secrets;” and “The I Ching: The Book of Answers.” He is the cofounder of the world-renowned Passages Addiction Cure Centers. He has also written, produced, and directed a feature film. He lives with his wife in Kauai, Hawaii.

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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
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Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

When Was the Last Time You Complimented Your Partner?

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

If you’re looking for ways to improve your marriage or relationship, you can start with a compliment. Compliments given with sincerity are a genuine gift of love. Offer them often. Be generous with praise for your partner. Catch them doing something right. Let them know you noticed. Compliments demonstrate appreciation. When you feel appreciated, you tend to feel loved. Everyone wants to be appreciated.

U-ROCKIf you haven’t complimented your spouse lately, it’s time to start. The road to prosperity in relationships is paved with a commitment to generosity toward your partner. A good compliment is not just something that can make you feel better; a good compliment has the power to improve your marriage. I’m not talking about the same old “You look nice today,” but different things each time.

We feel closest to people who cause us to feel good about ourselves.

When you give sincere encouragement and authentic compliments to your spouse, several things are accomplished.

• Your spouse’s self-confidence is increased.
• Your own self-worth is increased.
• The friendship between the two of you is strengthened.
• You will feel more romantic.

Be sincere. When compliments are not sincere, your compliments turn into flattery. Flattery is usually received with negativity and may be perceived as being manipulative.

Never keep compliments to yourself. “I’m so glad I married you,” is a good one. Compliments are to be shared. Sincere compliments cost nothing however a lack of compliments can cost you your relationship! Little kindnesses are what got you happily from “back then” to now. Never stop doing the things that brought you together in the first place. Think back to all of the things that you used to say to your sweetheart when you were dating. Start there. Make a list. Begin to do it again! You may want to share your words of appreciation with a hug.

There is absolutely no room for “constructive” criticism in a healthy love relationship. Constructive means to build up. The intent of criticism is to tear down. Those two words do not fit together at all. Criticism by its very nature is only and always destructive, not constructive. Try constructive compliments instead; expressions of love straight from the heart. Those words will be music to your partner’s ears. Some might call it “ear candy!”

Perhaps all of us would be better off if we would take a lesson from the weather. It pays no attention to criticism.

People don’t change because they are criticized. They change when the relationship is nurtured with warmth and goodwill – with compliments that inspires them to please their partner. Appreciation is on the list of top ten needs for most people.

“Those who give the best compliments must first develop an awareness of the other person’s gifts, talents, appearance, hard work and other things that play a part in an authentic compliment. Take note of the daily accomplishments, character traits and physical qualities you appreciate about your spouse. Material for a meaningful compliment abounds when you look for it.” ~ Zoe Maletta

All there is, is relationships! Relationships are about how we relate; with ourselves; with people; with our love partner; with the predicaments we find ourselves in; with our boss; with everything! If you want to keep your significant other happy and content – try an occasional compliment.

It is also important to earn how to receive a compliment as well as give one. Trading compliments with your lover is a sure way to keep your romance alive. There is nothing worse than getting a compliment that feels obligatory.

“Some partners truly stop celebrating or complimenting their partner in small or large ways because their partner will not take a compliment. Low self-esteem or a history of criticism can make anything positive feel suspect, manipulative and discrepant to an unloving self. Sadly, the dismissed compliment is depriving for both. It can engender anger, avoidance, and dismissal– the very things that re-enforce low self-esteem.” ~ Suzanne Phillips, Psy.D.

Look for something about your partner that is uniquely special that really deserves a compliment. Pay attention! Do your best to offer at least one compliment to your parter every day. Frequency is important. Make it a point to look for things to compliment. Things go better with sincere compliments!

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
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Saturday, September 15, 2012

The 3 Stages of Love

Filed under: Guest Authors,Relationships — Larry James @ 7:00 am
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Steven Eric Connor, Guest Author

As relationships evolve, the unwavering commitment to communicate with love will challenge you mentally and emotionally.

funlovingcoupleThe three stages of love:

The first stage is Enchantment; infatuation, excitement, charming, captivating and feeling good.

The second stage is Disenchantment – misunderstood, hurt, abandoned, disconnected, burdened and trapped. When you see challenges as a speed bump rather than the end of the road, you realize that sometimes the “better” comes after the “worse.”

The third stage of love is Maturity – unconditional love, connected, healthy communication, grateful, honored and respected.

Love with kindness, rather than a response to another’s behavior! Love is a choice, not a reward!

BONUS Articles: Halfway to Each Other…
Shh!
Ear Candy, Anyone?

StevenConnorCopyright © 2012 – Steven Eric Connor. All rights reserved. Reprinted with Permission. – Steven Eric Connor is a seasoned Transformational Life Coach, Communication & Relationship Coach, Professional Sales Trainer and Profitability Consultant. Steven Connor knows firsthand the challenges of stepping outside one’s comfort zone to create and live a vibrant, more meaningful and fulfilling life. Visit Steven’s Website at: www.StevenEricConnor.com and follow him on Facebook.

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
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Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

I HATE You, Daddy!!!!!

Filed under: Love,Relationships — Larry James @ 7:00 am
Tags: , , ,

When my daughter was about 10 years old she went berserk. Well, maybe not berserk, but it sure felt like it to me. She moved into a total stage of rebellion. It was so bad that I heard the words, “I hate you” more than I care to recall.

Thumb and Index Finger Indicating Just a Little Bit - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/Joe_Potato, Image #5620578

“I love you, Daddy (about this much!)

When asked to do something she didn’t want to do, she would have this sudden burst of anger. It was like a knife going into my heart. When this began to happen, my initial (angry) response was, “Don’t talk to me like that!,” etc.

I never went to “Daddy School.” I was at a loss as to how to handle this kind of outburst.

One day while driving my car, I was listening to an audio cassette (remember them?) and I heard the speaker say, “When someone treats you badly, calls you names, etc., always remember, ‘that is them expressing as much love for you as they can at that moment in time.'” It was the voice of Werner Erhard. I pulled off to the side of the road, hit rewind and must have listened to those same words at least a dozen times.

I immediately thought of my daughter’s harsh words. I made a decision that day. I decided that the next time I heard her scream, “I hate you,” I would respond differently. I was committed to listening to her differently! Instead of hearing her say, “I hate you,” I would listen as if she were saying, “I love you, Daddy, but only a very little bit.”

tasteyourwordsIt didn’t take long. Later that afternoon, she had just gotten home from school and I reminded her to clean her room before dinner. Her response? “I hate you!” as she stormed off to her room. Instead of my usual response, I followed her to her room and said, “Kelly, I love you and no matter what you say or how you feel about me, I am your father and I will always love you. You have my permission to hate me.”

Her response? “I don’t need your permission to hate you! I hate you! I hate you!” By this time she was in her room about to slam the door. I quickly put my foot in the door and as she continued to try to shut the door, I said, “I understand, and you need to always remember that I will love you no matter what you say or how you feel now.” I removed my foot from the door. It slammed and a miracle occurred.

TonguehasNObonesThe miracle? She never said, “I hate you” to me again. I’m certain there were times when she thought it but the magic was, she never said that to me again.

It took another 11 years – on her 21st birthday – when she finally said, “I love you, Dad.” It was worth the wait. I got tears in my eyes, gave her a big hug and today have a terrific relationship with my daughter.

So… what’s the point? Be a committed listener and listen differently. Respond differently. In a committed relationship disagreements occur. Anger sometimes rises to the surface and we are tempted to call our partner names; to say things that we will later regret. When we do it’s important to remember to:

STOP! Before you respond, remember they are expressing as much love for you as they can at that moment in time.
THINK! Weigh your words. Think about what you will say and how you will say it.
REQUEST a Time-out! Take time to cool off. Waiting to respond is worth the wait.

Treat each other with kindness. Withhold calling the one you say you love bad names. Be the one to take the first step toward healing the hurt not perpetuating it. Demonstrate your love!

luvUthisMuchCLoveLOGOCopyright © 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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Friday, September 7, 2012

Relationships Only Thrive in a Safe Space

Chris Prentiss, Guest Author

We find rest in those we love,
and we provide a resting place
in ourselves for those who love us.
~ Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153)

Your relationship thrives, withers, lives, or dies in an environment. If the environment in which your relationship lives is harsh and unforgiving, a place where sarcasm, degradation, and anger is present and where forgiveness, thoughtfulness, and love are in short supply, your relationship will wither and die… painfully. It will die just as a garden dies without water, nutrients, and light.

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Your generosity, understanding, good nature, supportive attitude, gentleness, and knowledge of the “Laws of Love” are the nutrients and the bonds of a strong, endearing, and enduring relationship. Blended together, they create the environment for a successful relationship: Safe Space.

Here is the heart of the Law of Love regarding Safe Space: In your eyes, your partner cannot make a mistake or do anything wrong. That is the ultimate condition of Safe Space. That doesn’t mean your partner will not make mistakes, do things you don’t agree with, or do things that are hurtful to you or someone you care about. What it means is that you will treat their action as if nothing wrong was done, as if what happened is fine with you.

You will not be harsh, hurtful, sarcastic, degrading, or even somewhat put off by what happened. You will keep in mind as you respond that you are talking to someone you want to love you completely, warmly, and sincerely. You are talking to someone you want to spend the rest of your life with. If you were able to choose how your partner would treat you, wouldn’t you want to be treated gently, lovingly, and with great tenderness and complete consideration no matter what you were to do?

The degree to which you provide Safe Space for your loved one is the same degree to which your relationship will blossom and the same degree to which you will find the love you seek in the eyes and heart of the one you love. The degree to which you fail to provide Safe Space is the same degree to which your relationship will diminish, tarnish, and die. If you do not offer a haven of Safe Space, your mate may become afraid of you and afraid to make mistakes, which will surely cause those mistakes to occur. If you would exist in that rarified world of relationship heaven where only a few have entered and even fewer have remained, you must fully embrace the condition of Safe Space.

When you live by the law that relationships only thrive in Safe Space, you do not become upset or angry with your partner over hurtful events caused by them because you know that, speaking in today’s vernacular, you’ve got to cut them some slack — in fact, total slack — if you want to be loved. Creating Safe Space requires nothing less than becoming the kind of person who looks with perfect equanimity on the shortcomings of your loved one — the kind of person who sees the seeming mistakes, omissions, blunders, failures, and even the intentional hurts and transgressions and makes them all okay.

makelovefeltMaking Your Love Felt

At this point, there will most likely arise in your mind a myriad examples in your current or past relationships that you can point to and say, “Well, what about this or that — am I supposed to just overlook those things? Am I supposed to say, ‘Okay honey, it’s alright that you continue to lie to me.’ Or ‘Don’t worry, dear, about not paying the bills on time, month after month, and ruining our credit. I understand you were busy with your friends and I love you just the same.'”

Lying is not okay. Ruining your credit is not okay. Driving recklessly is not okay. Being disrespectful or nasty to you is not okay. Neglecting important things is not okay. Cooperation is not a sentiment; it is an economic necessity. If those transgressions and things like them continue despite your best efforts to help your partner correct them, they enter into the domain of “deal breakers.”

Before the above examples turn into deal breakers, when they are still in the annoying stage but have not become intolerable, it’s essential that you create Safe Space for your partner so you do not wind up appearing uncaring or difficult or making them feel as if you don’t love them. How you treat your partner during those occurrences will determine the degree of love and respect you will receive from your partner.

In the universal sense of the word, all events are part of the perfection of the unfolding Universe, part of your process of growth. By acting in accord with that truth and carefully adhering to what you have just read about Safe Space, your partner will revere you, love you, cling to you, and be forever grateful to you for being the loving, compassionate, and understanding person they have always dreamed of and longed for, either consciously or subconsciously. Your loved one will speak about you and think about you in the highest terms of endearment. You will have earned their love.

Providing Safe Space for another is, in reality, an act of complete selfishness. What you are after is to be totally loved by the one you love. You are, in fact, the direct beneficiary of your creation of Safe Space. First, you get to live with and experience the joy and love of someone who is free to grow and expand in the Safe Space you have created. Second, you get to experience what it’s like to live with someone who is not afraid of doing the wrong thing. That leaves you and your partner free to experiment as you move through life and removes fear from your relationship. And third, because your mate has experienced what it is like to live with a person who is generous and compassionate, they will therefore want to provide you with the same Safe Space you have provided them.

As my wife, Lyn, says, “Partnerships allow you to love yourself and life through another.” To the extent that you have created Safe Space, your partner will have perfect trust in you. Your partner will “know” you — know you to be in love with them and know that they can trust you to be loving in response to any action they take, even actions that would seem to the world to be mistakes, bad judgment, or even intentional transgressions.

Removing Fear from Your Relationship

fearHere’s an example of how Safe Space manifests itself in a perfect relationship environment. Say your spouse takes the new car out to run an errand and smashes it. When you are committed to Safe Space in your relationship, your response will be: “As long as you’re safe, that’s all I really care about. I hope you’re not upset by it. I want you to know that I love you, and that you are my treasure. I was so worried about damaging our new car, and now I realize that the only thing that is important is that you are safe and sound. Cars are replaceable — you’re not!”

How do you think your spouse will respond to that? I know how I would respond. I would feel a surge of love and gratitude for being in the presence of someone who truly loves me, who thinks far more of me than of the banged-up car, whose first and main concern is my well-being. Wouldn’t you feel the same?

Here’s another example of how to create Safe Space in your relationship. Say you arrive at the airport, only to discover that your partner forgot to bring his or her driver’s license or passport as identification. Your response: “No problem, honey. We’re obviously not supposed to be on that flight. Since we can’t fly until tomorrow, let’s have a special celebration tonight to make the most of this unexpected bonus time. I’m actually glad we missed the flight. Something good will come of it. Do you know, I may have forgotten to lock the back door. This will give me a chance to check on it.”

Then, all during the rest of that day, find reasons to feel good about having missed the flight. Make statements such as these: “It would take a heck of a lot more than that for me to ever be angry with you.” “You’re such a perfect partner for me, and I don’t want you to feel uncomfortable, even in the slightest, for anything you do.” “Do you know, if we hadn’t missed that flight, we might never have discovered this great restaurant.” “If we had made that flight, you wouldn’t have gotten that important phone call from work.”

Safe Space relieves apprehension on the part of your loved one. We all know what it feels like when we know we are going to be scolded or punished for having done something wrong. Those feelings should be absent in your relationship. Making everything your partner does okay with you will remove most of what causes dissension in relationships. There’s really nothing quite like Safe Space for creating and maintaining a wonderful, loving, stress-free relationship.

Don’t forget about yourself too. Remember to create Safe Space for yourself as well. Don’t needlessly beat yourself up over things you’ve done that you wish you hadn’t. Be patient with yourself. Give yourself the right to be happy with yourself and your actions. Many a life has been ruined because of long-term feelings of guilt, regrets about missed opportunities, and the whole world of coulda, woulda, shoulda.

Larry’s NOTE: “I’ve read, ‘The Laws of Love: Creating the Relationship of Your Dreams.’ Every couple should keep this book on their night stand and read it together – a little bit at a time. Digest it. Savor it. It will help you find the path to a relationship you will be proud to be in. Chris Prentiss has written a terrific guidebook to genuine couple happiness!”

Copyright © 2012 – Chris Prentiss. Chris Prentiss is the author of several popular works on personal growth, including Zen and the Art of Happiness; The Alcoholism and Addiction Cure; Be Who You Want, Have What You Want; The Little Book of Secrets; and The I Ching: The Book of Answers. He is the cofounder of the world-renowned Passages Addiction Cure Centers. He has also written, produced, and directed a feature film. He lives with his wife in Kauai, Hawaii.

CLoveLOGOLarry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and a nondenominational minister. 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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Saturday, August 18, 2012

For Singles Only – Dating on a Budget

Filed under: Dating,InfoGraphic — Larry James @ 8:00 am
Tags: , , , , , ,

In summer, the world is a college student’s proverbial oyster. You can go anywhere, see anything, and meet anyone. It probably helps that summer is oyster season, too. BBQ’ed oysters, YUMMM.

Food cravings aside, we created a guide summer romances, along with some interesting stats on meeting that special someone who will make your heart flutter. Keep these tips in mind to keep a new romance afloat, or it may fizzle (unless that’s what you were going for – which is OK, too). Good luck in the love department!

Copyright © 2012 – http://blog.bookrenter.com.

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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Monday, August 6, 2012

How a Trip to the Grocery Store Can Feed Your Sex Life – (Guys! Pay Attention!)

Filed under: Guest Authors,Intimacy,Relationships — Larry James @ 7:00 am
Tags: , , , ,

Shela Dean, Guest Author

Do you sometimes wonder what happened to that randy, can’t-get-enough couple you used to be? You know, before the fatigue of everyday life set in and before the kids arrived. Back when you could have the week from hell and still strap on your dancing’ shoes and, after a great night out, have energy for sex. If you just sighed nostalgically, I get it.

Euphoric man pushing a shopping cart full with foodI understand how easy it is to let the demands of everyday life take precedence over romance. I know how easy it is to find yourselves, on what used to be date night, in sweats, watching a Netflix, eating delivery pizza, and drifting off before the end of the movie. Been there. Done that.

Every relationship guru on the planet, including me, recommends that you schedule regular date nights and times for sex. You have to make your relationship a priority or one day you’ll wake up to find it gone. That doesn’t mean you can ignore your relationship the rest of the time. In fact, with just a little imagination you can turn everyday events, such as a trip to the grocery store, into acts of emotional foreplay that enhance intimacy–in and out of the bedroom. How? Let’s take a look.

Grocery shopping is one of those chores you can’t get around. Ya gotta eat! The trick is getting it done AND using the opportunity to engage in emotional foreplay. Emotional foreplay is doing those things that make your sweetheart feel high-on-a-pedestal adored, always-number-one special, you-deserve-the-best nurtured, and can’t-live-without-you cherished. So here are some ideas for you:

Give the gift of time. If it’s your sweetie who generally does the shopping, offer to do it and give your sweetheart some “me” time. Everyone needs time to recharge their battery. Women, in particular, are not so good at taking time for themselves but everyone, men and women alike, run themselves ragged in today’s busy world. When you give your sweetheart “me” time to recharge, he or she has more energy for everything, including you and your relationship.

Give the gift of yourself. Do the shopping together. Take your time strolling through the aisles and use the time to talk to each other. Couples spend far too little time just being together. Doing something that doesn’t require laser beam focus such as grocery shopping is a great time to just chat.

CoupleCookingGive a surprise thinking-of-you gift. Toss your sweetheart’s favorite dessert in the cart. Surprise your sweetie by serving it to him or her in bed and enjoy it together.

Give together time. Buy the ingredients for a meal to cook together. Even better, use a recipe from the book by Martha Hopkins and Randall Lockridge titled “Intercourses, An Aphrodisiac Cookbook.” It’s a wonderful book full of recipes using 17 sensual foods, aphrodisiac histories, beautiful photographs, and more.

We all have huge demands on our time. When you fail to make your relationship a priority, you will find yourselves growing apart.

By engaging in everyday acts of emotional foreplay, you’ll stay connected and that is a darned good thing for you, your relationship, and your sex life.

Larry’s Note: A revealing new study by Cone Communications says 52 percent of dads now saying they are the primary grocery shopper in the household. What’s interesting is we’re seeing a debunking of the stereotype that a man would just rush in and grab whatever they thought looked good. These men are putting just as much, if not more, planning into the process. According to Cone, before heading to the supermarket, dads say they:

• Create a detailed shopping list – 63% (vs. 65% of moms)
• Collect coupons or read circulars – 56% (vs. 62% of moms)
• Plan meals for the week ahead of time – 52% (vs. 46% of moms)
• Perform background research on grocery products – 24% (vs. 11% of moms)

More men have also figured out that effectively using coupons means regularly getting groceries for 50%-70% off and that’s a compelling enough reason to get them behind the cart – to say nothing about the possibility of closer intimacy. 😉

sheladean

Copyright © 2012 – Shela Dean. Shela Dean is a Relationship Happiness Coach and speaker. She has counseled more than 2,000 couples since 1983 and is the author of “ReDate Your Mate, 4 Steps to Falling in Love All Over Again” and “Frequent Foreplay Miles, Your Ticket to Total Intimacy” – a guide to improving intimacy for couples. Since retiring from the practice of law, she has shared her relationship strategies with others through one-on-one relationship coaching, seminars, and now through her new book detailing a fun and effective strategy for improving emotional intimacy. Visit Shela’s Websites: http://www.FrequentForeplayMiles.com and http://ShelaDean.com! Visit Shela’s Facebook page.

Larry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and a nondenominational minister. 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
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