Thursday, December 31, 2009

Avoid mind reading

Don't assume that you know what your partner is thinking and feeling. There's a good chance you could be wrong, and wrong assumptions cause unnecessary conflict.

Imagine this situation. You walk into the living room and there's your husband sitting on his favorite chair glaring at the wall. His lips are tight; his jaw is clenched. Your immediate reaction: fear! "What did I do? Why is he so angry at me?" You tentatively approach him, "What's the matter, David?" you ask, expecting him to pour his wrath upon you. David slowly turns toward you. The tense, angry look begins to melt and he says sadly, "I've been laid off." "Thank God," you almost blurt out, "at least it wasn't me."

In this case, the woman checked out her assumptions and discovered that her husband wasn't upset with her. Yet, how often does it happen that we make the wrong assumptions and just go on believing them without ever discovering if they're true?

It often happens during the process of marital therapy that assumptions, illusions and fantasies are exposed as false or only partially true. For example, the angry, critical husband who supposedly hates his wife might in fact be an insecure man who is convinced that his wife doesn't love him. Perhaps, as in one case that I know of, a distant, rejecting wife turned out to be a very sad woman, grieving the loss of her mother. Don't assume. Check it out.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Patience for the Future

In our world of instant communication, we are no longer used to waiting. In order to succeed in marriage, however, you must have the patience to allow your spouse to change, to grow, and to overcome the obstacles that he or she has been born with. People do change, but it takes years. Marriage is not instant. Changing oneself is not instant. You must learn to have patience with the other person’s foibles and carry them until they can change.

And that is what marriage is about — learning to have patience to allow the other person to become better, and to schlep around their idiosyncrasies until that happens.

Like everything that is worth having, a happy, successful marriage requires work. But there is not a more worthwhile investment in the world. Nothing is as rewarding as a good marriage.

Whether you are a single person -- may God send your soul mate speedily -- a newlywed, or an old hand at marriage, remember that marriage is about giving, about caring enough to criticize respectfully, about willing to forget and to forego -- about willing to make that change from caterpillar to butterfly.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

why love starts fading ?

We often tend to have a subconscious wish list of how we’d like our marriages to be: more time spent talking, more sharing of feelings, more compliments, no criticism, more affection, less judging. But to whom is this wish list addressed? Usually, our spouse! How many of us go around thinking: if only I could be more loving, more affectionate, more complimentary and warm toward my spouse?

So we are essentially hoping to receive rather than to give!

Perhaps this is why love starts fading when we each start wondering how we can get more out of our marriage, thinking about our expectations, how our spouse can give us more and what we are lacking. Instead of investing and giving, we are starting the taking cycle. The choice to dwell on our expectations of our spouse, then, might be the choice to actively allow the love to stagnate and fade away.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Turn towards each other

When you pass your spouse sitting at her desk doing some work, do you stop and rub her shoulders, give her a kiss on the cheek, and whisper something nice in her ear -- or do you just walk on by? This is the meaning of "turning toward" as opposed to "turning away."

Marriage research shows that happily married couples do a lot of turning toward each other whenever they get the chance. They look for ways to be physically and emotionally close to each other. Turning toward each other means making each other your number one priority.

Another important aspect of turning toward each other is doing things together that you both enjoy. Taking walks together, drinking coffee together after dinner, learning Torah together, and listening to music together, are all examples of how couples turn toward each other.

A powerful way to turn toward each other is to show the ultimate respect -- by standing when your spouse enters the room. Sounds old-fashioned? It is. But it's a powerful way to turn toward your spouse, make him/her feel very special.

Couples who "turn away" from each other don't develop closeness. It's a basic principle stated in the Talmud, "A good deed begets another good deed. A bad deed begets another bad deed."

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Rituals are habits that build and strengthen a relationship. One couple had the following "greeting ritual" at night when the husband came home:

Our actions affect the way we feel. How are your greeting and good-bye rituals?

Here are some rituals you and your spouse should consider working on:

* Daily e-mailing each other with a compliment.

* Daily phone call. (especially important for husbands to do)

* Anniversaries deserve special attention. Plan to do something both of you really enjoy, rather than feeling stuck two days before your anniversary arrives and then running out to get some flowers.

* Before you turn in for the night, try saying two compliments to each other. This means coming up with something new each night!

* It is essential to have a "date night" at least every other week.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Good communication to resolve hot issues

The technique that every couple must learn is called the "listener-speaker technique." The problem with the way most couples argue is that they try to find solutions before fully giving each other the chance to say what they need to say. The speaker-listener technique ensures that before you can engage in solution talk, each person feels they have been fully heard.

Here's how it works: One person holds an object in their hand which symbolizes that he or she has the floor. While one person has the floor, the other person can only listen by repeating back or paraphrasing what the other person said. The listener can stop the speaker if s/he is saying too much for the listener to repeat back.

When couples use this technique, it automatically ensures that each person will be able to say everything s/he needs to say without interruption, rebuttals, criticism or attack. Only after each person has been fully "heard," do you then proceed to problem solving.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Create a safe place to discuss issues openly and honestly

Abusive relationships are ones in which you are afraid to express feelings and opinions. Happily married couples create a sense of safety that allows each person to feel comfortable expressing his/her feelings, problems, and dissatisfactions. This sense of safety is the foundation upon which a couple negotiates things that are bothering them.

It's common for each person to come into a relationship with certain expectations about how things will be. But without the ability to communicate and negotiate, these issues become sources for power struggles that almost always damage the relationship.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Today's Flower #1

Give each other pleasure

Happily married couples are committed to the goal of giving each other pleasure. You must stay focused on the ultimate goal -- which is to give each other pleasure and not cause pain. It sounds simple enough, but can be very hard in practice.

For just one day, try to maintain a consciousness with everything you do, by asking yourself, "Is what I'm about to do or say going to cause my spouse pain or pleasure?"

To monitor how you're doing, each of you should make two lists: One for all the things your spouse does to cause you pain, and another which identifies what you would like your spouse to do to give you pleasure. Swap lists, and now you know exactly what to do and what not to do. No more mind reading!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Monday, December 14, 2009

jealousy protects love

All marriages have good times and some bad times. Don't let small issues develop into large ones.Occasional jealousy is natural and can help keep a relationship alive, but if it becomes intense and irrational it can very destructive.

We've all experienced jealousy at some time in our lives.In relationships where feelings of jealousy are mild and occasional, it reminds the couple not to take each other for granted. It can encourage couples to appreciate each other and make a conscious effort to make sure the other person feels valued.

Jealousy heightens emotions, making love feel stronger and sex more passionate. In small, manageable doses, jealousy can be a positive force in a relationship. But when it's intense or irrational, the story is very different.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Personality and Relationship

Most of us are probably allured by the attractive notion that effortless relationships exist. Whether it be happily-ever-after marriages, or friendships which last forever, or parent/child bonds which supercede the need to understand each other, we'd all like to believe that our most intimate relationships are unconditional, and strong enough to withstand whatever may come. However, at some point in our lives most of us need to face the fact that relationships require effort to keep them strong and positive, and that even wonderful, strong relationships can be destroyed by neglect.

Whether you're looking to improve a love relationship, familial relationships, friendships, or employer/employee relationships, understanding your own personality type and the personality type of the other person involved in the relationship will bring a new dynamic to the situation, which will allow better understanding and communication. Although the different types of relationships have very different characteristics and specific needs, there are two basic areas which seem to be critical in all relationships..... Expectations and Communication.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Qualities of good relationship

All relationships have some adjustment periods, but being hurt shouldn’t be part of being in love. Loving relationships have good qualities, such as support from your partner, a willingness to communicate, a desire to compromise, and open an honest communication. When you do not have these fundamental qualities in a relationship, that relationship isn’t likely to grow, and become something that you desire.

There are many qualities that make relationships, (1)good support, (2)compromise, and (3)open and honest communication are just a few of these qualities that you may desire in a relationship. Engage only in relationships where both partners can openly discuss their wants and needs, this can take practice. These three qualities alone will help you nurture and develop a deeper relationship with your partner.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

How to have a happy marriage

There are no such things as secrets to having a happy marriage. Most of what it takes to be happily married is infact real love. Once there is real love between a man and a woman, the rest of the things will almost fall into place. That is not to say there won't be some disagreements or cross words passed back and forth along your journey through life, as we are only human and certainly not perfect.But, having a genuine relationship full of real love helps to patch the holes in sometimes rough road of matrimony.

Eventhough there are no secrets for being happily married, there are some basic rules every man and woman should keep in mind.

Rule #1
Communication is essential for any relationship to flourish, especially between a husband and wife. Share your feelings, your thoughts, and discuss your mutual plans for the future. Along with communicating, take the time to actually get to know your husband or wife, and continue to know them as the years pass by. You might think you know each other when you got married, but, as times goes by, especially if you married at an early age, you and your spouse both will mature, evolve and change. Time as well as the events that will happen to both of you throughout your married life will change your relationship as well as your outlook on life. Don't be afraid of these changes, whether it happen to be your changing or your spouse's at the time. Just remember to recognize those changes and communicate with your spouse about them.

Rule #2
Be loyal and show your spouse that you are devoted to them, and them only. Be faithful to them as well as supportive. Your spouse should be your confidante, your best friend, your safe haven in the storms of life as well as your exclusive lover. While you and your spouse will have loving relationships with family and friends, your marital relationship is exclusive and very special, and cannot be shared with anyone else.

Rule #3
Spend plenty of quality time together, but remember to allow each other to have ample time alone. Even though you are a married unit, and you will want to spend time together enjoying your favorite activities, or just sit together and relax at home, each of you is still a separate individual with certain likes and dislikes. You both need time alone to enjoy hobbies that you might enjoy, but your spouse doesn't. Don't think that because you are married, that you are joined at the hip and cannot do anything on your own. You both need equal time alone to think and organize your own thoughts or simply to wind down.

Rule #4
Be realistic about love and marriage, and especially, be realistic about your sex life. No matter how hard you may try, your marriage will not be perfect. As time goes by and changes occur in your lives together, your sexual relationship will also change. Most couples experience stars and skyrockets at the onset of their sexual relationship, but due to lack of time, energy, and other factors that come into play, things are bound to change. Probably the most common change will be that you and your spouse will not have sex as often as you did when you first were married. If this bothers you, or any other changes, talk openly and honestly to your spouse about your feelings and concerns.

Rule #5
Last, but certainly not least, work things out together. If you have a disagreement, which there are bound to be many throughout your married life, don't let things get out of hand. Talk things over as calmly as possible and agree or learn to compromise on a solution to the problem, then kiss and make-up and go on. Don't hold grudges against each other. And don't make the mistake of taking each other for granted either. Life is full of uncertainties, but death is certain. None of us know exactly how much time we have on this planet, and how much time we have to enjoy the company of our spouses, so don't waste it on not getting along!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Committed Relationship

Relationships are essential if you want to live your life to the fullest. In fact, relationships should be your top priority. That’s why we all need to learn how to build good relationships. Good relationships not only help us meet our needs but also make our life more fulfilling.

Fundamental to a strong relationship is commitment. Commitment to making the relationship strong and healthy is the foundation on which it can grow. Relationships take work. They take effort. Like life itself, relationships are dynamic, ever changing because we are ever changing. A strong relationship requires continuous nurturing, and that takes commitment.

Commitment to the relationship means unconditionally caring about maintaining and improving the relationship, even during times of anger or disappointment. There may be times when you aren't even sure you like the other person, but if you're committed you'll spend the effort to sustain the relationship during tough times.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


We are pleased to announce the start of the The bright side shines through. We will be frequently posting ideas, concepts, suggestions, and anything else that comes to our minds to help in your aid to success.

Welcome to 0ur blog. Here you’ll also find posts related to almost all aspects of life, with some random thoughts thrown in for good measure.