After the honeymoon phase, relationships can start to deteriorate – do this one thing to create and foster a healthy happy relationship!
When two people meet they often have what people call the “honeymoon” phase. This is when they are twitterpated with each other. They flirt, laugh, play and focus on all the things they love about their partner. At the beginning of a relationship, there’s really nothing to lose so there’s not a lot of pressure. Over time the dynamic usually starts to shift with couples. They go from being boyfriend/girlfriend to stepping more into mom/dad roles. Instead of viewing each other as a team and letting their mate show up in life how they choose, it turns more controlling. This is not fun!
Often those same traits, habits, or characteristics someone has that attracted their mate ends up becoming the same thing they resent them for. In my own relationship, my husband is assertive, strong-willed and knows who he is. He is definitely a leader and not afraid to speak up. I love this quality about him and I find it very attractive. It’s one of the things that attracted me to him thirteen years ago. After we’d been together for awhile I would find myself getting upset with him for these very same traits. Instead of me looking at him with a grateful heart that he’s a leader I was looking at him with criticism that he was “dominating”.
Another example I’ve seen is a couple with the female that is very fun, social and the life of the party. Her husband was mesmerized with her when he met her. She made him laugh and he found her zest for life exhilarating. They got married and soon after started a family. Years down the road they were barely hanging on to their marriage because he couldn’t stand how social she is and said, “All she wants to do is have fun and she thinks life is just a party all the time!”
There are two mountains in every relationship. The mountain of criticism or the mountain of gratitude. All day long we are adding to and building one or the other and it is our choice. Most people are not even aware of the habits they have created in their life. If you are constantly building the mountain of criticism your relationship will end up being miserable. If you are choosing to continually add to the mountain of gratitude your relationship will most likely be healthy and happy. Whatever we focus on expands and grows. It becomes a habit day by day choosing what we don’t like or love about our partner. I often ask my clients to tell me the things they want their mate to change. They usually have a laundry list of things ready to tell me. Then I’ll ask what they like about their partner and they often have to really think for a while to come up with anything.
If you are in that habit of building the mountain of criticism you can choose now to change that. Start with thinking of three things daily you are grateful for about your partner. Verbalize one of these things to them every day. Over time you will start to see a big change in your relationship! Here are some ideas or examples of ways to do this…
- send them a text “Hey honey thanks for making the bed this morning!”
- write them a note “I love that you are such a great dad, thank you!”
- tell them face to face “I admire how you can make friends so easily.”
- social media shoutout “My lady takes such great care of me!”