TheConfidante In the Media
We’re up to the final part of my Intentional Relationship series where I’m offering great tips to “level up” your relationship. So far we’ve covered:
Today we’re focussing on how we can become “Masters” versus the dreaded “Disasters” in our relationship? This term refers to Dr’s Gottman’s research involved analysing married couples over the space of six years. They found those still happily together at the six-year mark “turned toward” each other 87% of the time. These couples were called the “Masters”. By contrast, the couples that had fallen apart — labelled, very bluntly, “Disasters”, only managed to turn towards and connect three times out of 10.
How can we strive to “turn toward” our partners more often to given them as much engagement and attention we’re capable of?
1. LOOK FOR THE POSITIVES: “Masters” view their environment, and their partners more appreciatively. They create an air of respect and gratitude for one another making it easier to engage with their bids for attention.
2. DISAGREE RESPECTFULLY: “Disaster” couples look at their lives and partners negatively. They get hung up on any failing, no matter how inconsequential. Couples that find themselves tearing at each other disrespectfully are on an express elevator to separation. If you need to express it, consider your delivery and use your feelings words to convey the impact of their behaviour.
3. UNDERSTAND WHY YOU ARGUE: Many arguments stem from a sense of disconnection. It is not about the dishwasher or toilet seat. It is about whether the other person has your back. Underneath we can fear abandonment. Fear turns to anger and we lash out at the person we’re terrified of living without. When you understand how insidious this fear of disconnection truly is, it’s easier to put the effort into those “bids” for connection.
4. ENJOY INDIVIDUALITY: You and your partner are not clones! For all your similarities, you have different tastes and interests. Let your partner know how much something means to you. They don’t need to necessarily partake in everything with you but know that it is meaningful.
5. BE KIND: If your partner is down in the dumps and you’re tired and laid out on the couch, it can be the greatest gift in the world to get up and hold them tight. It’s these small gestures, these small expressions of kindness and compassion, that exemplify turning towards your partner when they need it. Understanding the magnitude of acknowledging “bids”, builds a stronger relationship that inevitably turns everything else ON as well!
Joanne Wilson is the weekly columnist for the Sunshine Coast Daily Weekend magazine, weekly radio guest on Salt106.5, professional relationship counsellor and certified neuropsychotherapy practitioner of TheConfidante Counselling. She is based on the Sunshine Coast, Queensland - Australia. You can contact her at: www.theconfidantecounselling.com or email HERE.
Joanne will be your Confidante, enabling you to speak freely in complete confidence and serenity. An integrated approach tailored to your specific needs will be utilised.
Relationship Specialist for Individuals and Couples servicing areas including Caloundra, Noosa, Noosaville, Buderim, Mountain Creek, Gympie.