Two to Tango
Sometimes a relationship can feel totally vintage...and not in a awesomely retro way. Monogamy is not dead, it just needs to be revived....really, really revived! Did I say really?! My marriage has taught me a lot through hands on experience; good, bad and ugly. I'm calling shot gun as I explore how to keep it thriving while the boat is afloat! Let's dive in, shall we?
Are you using your listening ears?!
Sometimes seeing Stephen's perspective takes a lot of thinking outside the box while trying to find WHAT box he's in, ha, ha!! That sounded crazy, didn't it?! Right, because HE is. He is crazy, lol! Learning strategies to keep the conversation on track without either party getting frustrated when issues arise needing a resolve has been our greatest work yet. I have found LISTENING is the single most effective way to understand the other person. Once you've listened and HEARD what they have to say, repeat what you understand them to be saying to ensure proper understanding. This will accomplish one or two things:
1) This gives an opportunity for your mate to feel assured their being heard and gain a greater understanding of how you're are hearing what is being conveyed or
2) Helps you mate to clearly see where they may be being irrational or over the top. Things sound very different when your words are coming from someone else's mouth, lol. I have listened to my husband recite a statement I've made while being in my feelings and had to stop him midpoint because it was I was being absolutely ridiculous. I was able to clarify my feelings and toss out the unnecessary expectations to get to the resolve.
Give listening 100% in efforts to progress! There's a lesser chance misunderstanding when listening to hear is abundant.
This year's lessons...
14 years in counting...
Each year you spend in a marriage brings forth new challenges, strengths and an overall understanding of yourself as you evolve into a constant state of #relationshipgoals. We have been married for 14 years and I would say the best thing about this past year is our ability to reach a new level of transparency. We also went back to square one with listening to correct and understand. It's been such a rewarding experience of growth.
While we love a good gift, our anniversaries are now spent with reflection and creating plans to make the next year even better. It is absolutely the best way to spend quality time on your anniversary and ensure you're on the same page going into a new year!
Tip: Start encorporating reflection and a "new year game plan" into your anniversaries each year and start thriving as you grow in your love.
Holiday Helping Hands
So, baes not Bobby Flay or Rachel Ray... that's ok! There are still plenty of ways to use helping hands to make your holiday dinner a success! Here are some awesome ways the two of you can work together and your love can provide needed assistance:
Gifting: When in doubt, UPGRADE!
You've gotten everything in years past and you are fresh out of ideas... Gifts for him can be tricky but you try to avoid getting him basic necessities by default. This is when you should consider upgrading!! Newer version of electronics you know he loves or even a limited edition what by a brand you know he lives for. These are awesome ways to gift and get it right every time. If he has the best of everything, considering upgrading the way his things are stored. If he loves Vinyl, order him a kick butt display for his pride and joy! If he love the great outdoors, grab gear that you can alter custom to him. These are all thoughtful ideas that will make him feel the effort and he will remember, enjoy and appreciate for years to come! Baby, let me upgrade ya!
Atlanta's not-to-miss date ideas!
November 29: R&B MegaFest
November 29: Holiday tree lighting (Atlanta Aquarium)
December 7: Cirque de Soleil
December 8: Trans-Siberian Orchestra (Infinite Energy Center)
December 13: Holidays at the High (High Museum of Art)
December 18: Chinese Lantern Festival
Jan 1: Resolution Run (Piedmont Park)
January 18: Atlanta Winter Wine Fest