I love when an email comes through from the BACP media department offering me a chance to talk about my favourite subject, and the one that came through at the start of July was especially welcome.
Since long before I started training with Relate the first section of the Saturday Guardian I’ve turned to has been the Guardian Family supplement, and my favourite bit of that is always Annalisa Barbieri’s advice in response to letters sent in by readers.
So I was super pleased to be asked if I’d speak with Annalisa about a letter she’d received from a reader.
I really enjoyed looking at Annalisa’s reader’s letter and talking it over with her on the phone. We also had a chance to talk about her time doing the column, and how she manages the push back she sometimes gets from readers online.
Do have a look at the piece, and let me know what you think. Maybe it might stimulate some ideas about how you might approach a similar situation in your life?
I wanted to share with you a great habit that I was taught to carry out at the turn of the year, and which has served me well .. which is reflecting on what happened in the past year and how I handled it.
I love the quiet time in between Christmas and New Year and I made a commitment to myself a while ago to take this time for myself, for quiet enjoyment of the season, the weather, and taking a look back over the past twelve months.
Life has a habit of throwing the unexpected in our way, however well we plot and plan our lives, and often I’ll be surprised at the things that happened that I could never have predicted the year before. Sometimes these are wonderful and sometimes less so: in examining how I responded I find clues to who I am and how I’m showing up in my life and others’
So maybe you’d like to join me. Carve out a little space for yourself in the next few days to ask these questions:
What happened in this past year that I could never have predicted?
How did I respond? Was that helpful to me and those around me?
Who was important to me in the past year?
What one thing would I have liked to be different?
What would I like to do differently in this coming year?
I’d love to hear your thoughts .. do you have any other questions you’ve found useful?
You’ve just spent 19 days doing something every day for the benefit of your relationship .. notice a difference yet?
So now you’re a super honed relationship athlete in tip top condition it’s time to start looking for opportunities to flex those muscles ..
Keep your eyes and ears open for the many small opportunities that come up today to make a difference, and see how many you take .. send me your scores by commenting on this post, or on Twitter or Facebook if you prefer .. a relationship Christmas star for the winner!
After a while together it’s easy to assume your honey knows everything about you, but stop a minute and think about that .. in reality you go out and learn new stuff about yourself every day, you’re constantly changing and growing and there’s no way your partner could keep up with all those new bits of you ..
So share something your honey doesn’t know about you today .. a new favourite food, or maybe somewhere you’d REALLY like to be kissed (behind your ears, between the sheets or maybe in public?) 😉
Sometimes it’s tempting to take the good things for granted and only focus on the things your honey does wrong .. they know you love them right??
Wrong .. research shows that to feel positive in their relationship couples need an average ratio of five positive for every one negative interaction .. that means in order for your relationship to thrive you need to get working on those positives .. so notice your partner’s successes, and those of the two of you, and take time to celebrate them today ..
Nothing is more meaningful than when we take the time to write something out .. so today write your sweetie exactly how you feel and put it somewhere they’ll find it later .. in the fridge, stuck to their toothbrush or maybe on the remote!
Get creative, and spread the love ..
Words mean a lot to some people and less to others. If words are important to your love why not write your sweetie a note to let them know how you feel .. or if you have writer’s block pop into a card shop and find the perfect message