Relationship Wreckers can derail even solid unions without care and maintenance.
-by Dr. Jacqueline Del Rosario (edited)
Relationships often collapse because couples are not prepared to withstand the inevitable conflicts or even the humdrum and monotonous plateau period that’s nearly certain to present as the years go by. A relationship can feel more like “boot camp” when trying to acclimate to each other’s personality differences and habits—frustrations, tensions, and resentments that can persist well into a long-term love affair and undermine the ability to feel happy and content. For other couples, it’s shear boredom that can wreak havoc—if the partnership doesn’t continue to stimulate and enrich their lives, the doldrums can be a relationship death knell!
"When couples do not understand these are anticipated and natural events in the course of a relationship, they may start looking for the exit door thinking that they have made a grievous mistake," notes Dr. Jacqueline Del Rosario, “America’s Marriage Coach." "But, many people don’t realize the extent to which their relational health and happiness is under their own control. That power lies in one’s ability to self-assess and foster quality communication with their partner."
Below Dr. Del Rosario has identified 10 relationship wreckers that, when reversed, can only help a relationship survive, and thrive.
1. Not putting your best face forward. People dress up and look their best for the outside world. Put forth the same effort to impress and excite your mate.
2. Not continuing to grow. Come into a relationship willing to always improve yourself and the relationship can continue to evolve. Consider trying new things together. Exploration to understand and appreciate who your partner is daily. Continue to date and experience new things as a couple.
3. Not continuing to invest the time and effort to maintain a strong foundation. All good things take work, and both parties must proactively commit to doing their part to improve the union. Stoke the flames of passion; avoid business as usual.
4. Not knowing the relationship ‘anchors.’ Reaffirm things that keep you rooted and well-connected with your partner. Identifying and nurturing similar life beliefs in your relationship are fundamental and will carry you through the tough times.
5. Not ensuring an effective communication style. It is essential to learn how each party communicates. Make the conscious effort to deliver and receive messages from your mate according to their style, which may differ from yours. Knowing dissemination techniques is a key relationship skill. During a disagreement, always remain fair and respectful. Prepare to agree to disagree.
6. Not addressing unmet expectations. Unmet expectations are often not shared. They can fester and result in resentment and bitterness. Voice your expectations. Don’t expect that your partner “should know” your cues indicating something is wrong. Be honest with what you need from your partner so those needs will be met,
7. Not resolving emotional triggers that might be adversely affecting the relationship. Triggers link back to past traumas. They can hinder the way we address present day issues. Put your old baggage aside and experience your current partner on their own merits and actions.
8. Failing to stop, look, and listen. Take the time to listen to and validate your mate. Keep the channels of communication open with open talk time. Set aside the time as special to bond the heart and eliminate the feeling of growing apart.
9. Allowing outside interference. There is a reason “interference” is a penalty in most sports. It is because someone is getting involved where and when they do not have a right. Interference focuses on the wrong issues and reinforces dangerous and emotional conclusions. Qualified assistance can come from marriage coaches and counselors who are there to help get the dialogue back on the right track.
10. Not having a relationship maintenance plan. Are you still doing what you did to get your mate? What emotional benefits do you offer your mate that others don’t? Take the time to assess what your virtues are then make a concerted effort to foster these qualities.
“America’s Marriage Coach” Jacqueline Del Rosario, an internationally regarded relationship expert, is President and CEO of Recapturing the Vision International, an organization dedicated to promoting healthy marriages and family strengthening. Her cutting-edge series, Marriage Solutions and The Marital Constitution™, help couples successfully work through problems and find healthy solutions. Dr. Del Rosario may be reached online at www.DrJacquie.com.
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