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Don’t Want To Be Disappointed By Your Relationship? Make Things Happen

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Don’t Want To Be Disappointed By Your Relationship? Make Things Happen

What can I say? I am a sucker for romance, I love a happy ending and I cannot resist the lure of Valentine’s day. It is the one holiday that I connect with the most, but, at the same time, it is the one that never fails to disappoint. It is fast approaching and reminds me to pause and reflect on my life and my marriage and where our relationship might be headed. Having been married for over 30 years, I have learned a thing or two about taking some time to re-consider your options. If you can easily outway the good with the bad then it is worth pursuing. January 2017, things are looking good.

Relationships are never easy, they take time, work and patience to build.

Our relationship is pretty solid and while we do have issues, they aren’t jealousy, finances or communication. We have those covered. Our issues tend to be more related to what I call the “fun” side of things.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my husband but like everyone else, he has his flaws. For one, he is not very romantic or sociable. His idea of a romantic date night is sitting in the living room watching online movies and chilling with some cider. That might actually be fun if he did not run into the other room to check the hockey score every few minutes.

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While there is nothing wrong with online movie date nights, there are more romantic ways to do it.

For example, you can add a theme to the date. Have your partner dress in costume and play a character. Isn’t a Game of Thrones candle night movie and dinner sound a whole lot more romantic than just plain old online movies? In fact, throwing a little role playing into any situation can add a little spice to the date night. It does not have to be a movie night. You can even go out to a sporting event and do this if you and your partner are brave enough.

High expectations

Do I have high expectations for my marriage? I used to think so. Truthfully, back then it seemed a bit more unbalanced. I was always giving into what my husband wanted to do. But, I have learned over the years that a strong marriage means knowing what you want and need. And, understand the behaviors you will and won’t accept. Clarity on this helps to keep the drama out. (Trust me on that one!) My husband has grown to accept the fact that I need him to be a little more “sociable” once in awhile. This does not come as naturally for him as it does for me. And, I do not want to have to ask for it. I expect him to do it. ( Expect may sound harsh, but in order to balance our situation, he must do this once in awhile.)

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Know what you want and need, and then voice it to your partner.

Dealing with disappointment

Yes, I have been disappointed on many occasions. But I accept that because I put the expectation on it. What happens when I feel disappointed by my relationship? It makes me question if he feels like I am even worth the effort. And, I feel like I have failed. Sound familiar? It should. According to Randy Milne, an expert on kinichat.com, “Most of us have experienced disappointment at one time or another. It usually happens when we expect something that we shouldn’t.”  He also mentioned, that as partners we are equally responsible for the disappointment. One partner failed to deliver and the other failed to send the right message.

Turning things around

The one other thing that I have learned during my 30-year marriage is that if you want something bad enough, you may have to make it happen. If you know your partner is not able to provide it, don’t get angry at him or her. Instead, help them deliver by steering them into making the right direction. A hint: a nudge or poke never hurt anyone.

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I created a jar to give my husband ideas of things he could do or buy for me that would make me happy.  Things that I wanted or expected without having to actually discuss it with him. He picks a few ideas out of the jar (on occasion) and makes the plans for me. This way, he succeeds and I do not get disappointed. It’s a win-win.

It is not a huge effort, but at least it is an effort. That is all I expect from him and I am content with that.

Setting limits on demands

If a little effort is all your partner can do, then you need to accept that. Do not expect too much too soon; they not be able to change as fast as you may like. But any attempt at change is a good sign. If your partner is showing an effort, you need to encourage them. Otherwise, they may not see the point in making an attempt. This is where most partners fail one another. They are not able to recognize how difficult it may be for the other partner that’s making the effort to do it. High expectations may lead to further disappointment. The best way to deal with this is to acknowledge every effort as a romantic and caring gesture. You will both feel good about it.

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People give up too easily when things are not going exactly as they planned. It does not mean you have to throw in the towel. With a few adjustments, you can be more comfortable with the outcome. Even if it means listening to the radio while soaking in the spa in your own backyard. ow that is a great compromise. Maybe I will add that to our suggestion jar so my husband can plan that for our next Valentine’s date night.

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Madeline Foster

Free Lance Writer

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Last Updated on November 22, 2021

Thanksgiving: It’s About The Simple Things

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Thanksgiving: It’s About The Simple Things

Thanksgiving, a day of pure gluttony, football, and possible uncomfortable situations with family members that you may or may not like. Oh, yeah, and the whole “know and reflect on what it is to be thankful and grateful.”

During the holiday season many people forget what this time of year is bout and are too worried about getting the “early-bird” deals on Black Friday and making sure that they have the perfect gifts for their loved ones. I am sort of a “Grinch” when it comes to the holiday season, mostly because of that mentality by many of the poeple around me.

But instead of being grinch-like this holiday season, I decided to simplify things and get back to what this time of year is actually is about; being thankful for what I have and what I can give.

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Simplify

I’m not a “minimalist” in any real sense, but in the last few months the talks of Patrick Rhone and others have got me to rethink my stance. Can you really have too much stuff?

Absolutely.

And with all that stuff comes the burden and the weight of it on your back.

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If you feel that the things around you are out of control, maybe it’s time to simplify and be thankful and grateful for what you have and use. Here are a few things that you can do to simplify:

  • You know those gadgets in the drawer that you said you were going to sell? Well, time to get the listing on eBay and sell them. Or, send them to a place like Gazelle. Even if they are old and won’t get money, you can at least recycle them.
  • Get rid of things you don’t need. Like old books, clothes, tools, etc. Have something that’s been laying around forever with no use? Donate it to a charity or church. If you aren’t using it, someone else could be.
  • Find your productivity tools and stick with them. Use tools and gadgets that serve multiple purposes so you can simplify your tool set.

Be Mindful

You don’t have to be a master Buddhist or meditator to be mindful (although, it can definitely help). Being mindful comes down to being cognizant of the present and not keeping yourself in the past or future. It’s about living in the moment and being aware of yourself and everything around you. It’s just being.

Without getting too “California” on you, it is super important to be mindful during the holiday rush. Rather than worrying about the things that you forgot at your house on the way to relatives or thinking about the next stop in your endless holiday travels, just breath and think about what you are currently doing.

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Spend the time with your family and friends and don’t crush the moment. Try not to concentrate so hard on getting the perfect photo of the “awesome moment” of the day and actually miss the awesome moment.

Being mindful over the holidays will help you be with your families, friends, and yourself allowing you to enjoy your time.

Reflect

As the year is coming to a close (yes, it really is that close!) it’s a great time to start reflecting on what you have accomplished and what you haven’t. Within the next few weeks we will have a more throrough reflection article here at Lifehack.org, but reflecting every now and then over your holiday break is a great way to see where you have been doing well in your life and where you need to improve.

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Reflection shouldn’t be used to “get down” on yourself. Reflection should be used to take an honset inventory of what you have accomplished, how you handeled situations, and what you can do better. If you journal everyday (a daily form of reflection) it may be a good time to start going over some of the things that you have written and start to put together a year’s end journal entry. I mean, how else will you write your autobiography?

But, seriously, reflecting on yourself makes you aware of your successes and faults and helps you plan and make goals for the coming year. It makes you a better person.

So, while you are stuffing your face with bird, stuffing, and mashed taters’, remember that the holidays are much more than the superficial things. Use this holiday to become a better person.

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Featured photo credit: Libby Penner via unsplash.com

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