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Language of Love

Language of Love

The Number One Ingredient In Every Happy Relationship

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Laughter is the glue keeping all happy relationships together.

Our kids often turn to us and say, ‘What’s the secret to a happy marriage?’ There is no secret and there isn’t just one thing that keeps us happily married but without a doubt laughter is the glue that keeps us together.

Long-term relationships are a roller coaster ride for sure but ALL of them having one thing in common – a great shared sense of humor. Having been very happily married for 28 years, running a coaching, counseling and hypnotherapy business I understand relationships and what makes people connect personally and romantically at a deep level.

There are many components to being happily married and I can honestly say when you combine work, commitment and time together all bound up with laughter marriage really does get better and better each year. My clients are often horrified when I say to them early on in our sessions – ‘You might never have the relationship you want with your partner’, but they are often thinking of the worst possible scenario. The reality is the relationship might not become what you thought you originally wanted but something so much more fulfilling and loving.

People spend their lives trying to change their partners, rarely looking inside of themselves, rarely accepting they are the ones who need to change, rarely taking responsibility for their feelings. It’s when people take responsibility for themselves, stop the blaming, start accepting their partner for who they are, start communicating better, taking the time to be with one another, appreciating each other’s views and having a laugh together every day that life really takes off on another level.

I’d love to share with you some tips that have really helped my own marriage and that of my clients grow and deepen over the years –

1. Laughter has to be number one – every day we really do have a laugh about something, often something quite trivial but we always have that connection, even if it’s just something small perhaps something Bella, our puppy did. Often when discussing serious matters such as money or work we will always end up making a joke of some sort at the end. Even when we feel upset because we know how to lighten the situation we can ‘get back up again’. Having a daily laugh stops us taking life too seriously and keeps our vibration high so we have positive mindsets.

2. Focus on your partner’s positive qualities – in my own marriage and in all my year’s of counseling I find that couples all complain about similar things, but it’s the ‘happy’ couples who choose to focus on the positive qualities in their partner. Then express your appreciation to your partner…..tell them – this will cement the good things you see in your partner, overriding the negative, annoying things.

3. We all fight and argue – it’s part of a relationship but it’s HOW you disagree that counts. Keep your arguments to the point being respectful and kind, it’s not about ‘winning’ the argument, being sarcastic or putting the other person down so you feel better. Don’t drag everything else into it and you’ll find they are far more easily resolved.

4. Understand your partner – even if you don’t agree with them put yourself in their shoes, try and see their point of view and agree that you understand their opinion; show empathy. Then only if you are asked to, express your opinion. This can ‘kill’ a lot of arguments on the spot as you immediately take the heat out of the situation by agreeing with their understanding.

5. Compliment your partner – this is something that has come naturally to me but so many people struggle with. I noticed early on in our relationship I very rarely said anything against Ian when in company, whereas my girlfriends would spend the evening ‘complaining’ about their partners. Try and change your language and compliment your partner in front of others….’He’s a great cook’, or ‘He’s been a big help this weekend’, you’ll be surprised at the effect it has on how you see your partner. You are validating the person you have chosen to be with.

6. Take time together every day – someone said to me recently, ‘Is it the fact that you and Ian walk the dog every day that keeps you happily married?’ Well, it’s not the whole thing but yes it’s a component. We make time together EVERY DAY and because of this, we have learnt more and more to enjoy just being together. Being married to a pilot means we have a lot of time apart but we always make the effort to text or Skype, keeping that connection.

7. Forgive each other and move on – don’t hold a grudge, it is a waste of time and very destructive towards your relationship. By taking responsibility for your own actions you will learn to forgive one another and not place a wedge in-between you both. Sulking and harboring negative thoughts will be a thing of the past as you move on.

8. Lastly, have a joint goal – it’s always a good idea to be working towards a joint venture whether it’s a housing project, a holiday, a hobby, a fitness routine, a relationship goal, a project or trying out new recipes – do it together! This will give you focus, working towards a shared vision.

Healthy, happy relationships aren’t without arguments, disagreements or flaws; but they do have commitment, respect, love and laughter. Bringing laughter into your relationship every day could make all the difference!

If you’re struggling with this come and join our closed FB group especially created for women to move forwards in a caring, non-judgmental environment, ‘Let’s Talk Relationship & Life’ – https://www.facebook.com/groups/relationshipsandlife/.

Take the relationship quiz here and see where your relationship is right now – http://www.louise-armstrong.com/relationship-quiz/

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Language of Love

Inspired Life – Opening Your Heart

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When we fall in love and feel safe in that love, our heart expands and so does our love for all of life.

I’m sure you’ve felt it: even the birds singing in the trees, sunsets and random people’s children feel more beautiful and spark a deep appreciation and gratitude for life within you when you’re in love.

You feel it all, and you feel alive.

What you may not realise is, that is a choice.

It’s a choice we make to open our heart that gives us that feeling – and we can make that choice with or without a romantic love.

On a daily basis we experience various external conditions in our life that we respond to with orders to expand, contract, expand, contract, contract, contract.

But there is a way to take back that choice from the external world and decide within ourselves to feel safe, open and connected to our hearts and the joyous flow of life more and more often.

I spoke to Kiara O’Leary of An Inspired Life this week about the issues that all of us face in our daily lives, how to connect with one another and how to open our hearts even when its hard.

I speak of how I had a very shut down heart in an abusive relationship and felt completely numb about my entire life, until I slowly piece-by-piece continued to make the choice to open and allow love in. I believe opening the heart is everything in terms of living a life you love.

Kiara and I share how both of us had no idea what to do when we were first told to ‘connect to our hearts’ and actual practical tools to find your way to open and keep it open even in triggering situations.

Inspired takeaways include:

  • A short guided process to connect to a safe, blissful, appreciative open-hearted state
  • The importance of also connecting to the womb for deep creative power and a grounded knowing of worthiness (or energetic womb for men/women without physical wombs)
  • Why self-love truly is the key to opening our hearts, loving others and loving life
  • How to open your heart during any experience by remembering all is divinely guiding us to our greatest self
  • Practical ways to connect to your heart & let more magic in
  • How to keep your heart open when you feel triggered by feelings of unworthiness, being unsafe, undervalued etc.
  • The cycles we go through when we are triggered by negative emotions and how to communicate before, during & after them for more intimate, loving relationships
  • How to support your partner when they choose to contract their heart
  • The two things it takes to become a King or Queen in our own lives (and attract a partner at the same level)
  • The importance of integrating the feminine and masculine energies within us

It’s a jam-packed episode and one that truly will raise your vibration, open your heart and have you feeling more love for your life after listening to it!

You will hear me mention a Heart Opening Meditation.

I also mention a Sacred Women’s Circle called The Inner Circle – come over and join us for a special free event from 20th May to 9th June.

 

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Language of Love

the Heart of Hearts

the Heart of Hearts

Channeling on the Heart of Hearts

Close your eyes. Take a deep breath.

“I…… (Say your name.)

Call forth those humans and Enlightened Beings to work with and through me in this moment – with grace and with peace and with love and with High Intention and with deep integrity in loving service to All That Is.

I ask to be a blessing and to be blessed to give and to receive love, to give and receive Truth, to give and receive peace, to give and receive Wisdom, to give and receive compassion, to give and receive forgiveness, to give and receive freedom, to give and receive happiness and joy.

Take a deep breath.

You are on a journey Home. Home is where the Heart Is.

As you open your beautiful Heart – full and wide like a fountain of Light, like a Violet Flame, like a beautiful rose energy all around you – the sense of the Spirit and the sense of your Higher Self and Soul and all of the angels and all of the Beings of Light surround you. They are holding hands – Circles of Love – sending you Our Love and Our Peace and Our Joy and Happiness.

We, and They, are offering it to you and bringing it through you, Dear Ones – lifting you higher and helping you to re-member and to Know.

Take a deep breath.

You are so much more than you have imagined possible. The World is so much more than it has ever dreamed.

These are the days when the dreams begin to become true in new and wondrous ways – where the impossible becomes the inevitable and where things that seemed too good to be true become the ‘baseline’ to reach even higher.

You are the fulcrum. You are the doorway. You are the window. You are the hands, the eyes and the voice of the Song of Love of the Goddess – of God/Goddess, All That IS – of Light and of Love as You and your World.

Take a deep breath.

The ladder stretches into Infinity. The loneliness of the journey is ending. The understanding – The Calling – The Invitation – The Knowing and where belief becomes Knowing … that is where you stand.

What you are reaching for is Now there. Those invisible hands and that open heart and those relationships, resources and reflections of your deserving and of your worth and truth and of your freedom. Available Now.

Take a deep breath.

You can say with Us and We say with You…

“I open to receive the grace, the peace and the love that is Spirit’s blessing upon the lightwork-er’s, the wayshow-er’s, the healers and the teachers of this time”.

Take a deep breath.

“From my Heart of Hearts to the four corners of this World – to every human heart, mind, soul and spirit – a line of Light, a path of Light, a Song of Love – a Call of Freedom…

I Am here For You,
Humanity.
I Am here With You,
Mother Earth.
I Am here As You,
High Self ~ Holy Spirit.
The Divine As One.”

Take a deep breath.

We give thanks For you and we give thanks With you for moments such as this.

We Love you so. We Love you forever and without end. We love you. We ARE you. We Are One.

We will meet again. Peace and blessings. Namaste.

~ Transcribed and edited by Brenda Garcia.

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Language of Love

How I Changed My Marriage Without One Conversation With My Husband

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Having been happily married for 28 years how does it get better from not even consciously trying? This bit of my healing journey has blown my mind. For most of my life, I suffered from a destructive, toxic relationship with my mother, which in turn affected the relationship with my eldest daughter. The words from my mother’s lips, ‘I don’t love you and I will never change’ became the catalyst for me to seriously change my life.

And that’s what I did; I took the bull by the horns, accepted I didn’t need my mother’s, love, praise, hugs or validation, I was enough by myself. Through this acceptance, this self-love, this healing I shared very little of my journey with my husband, it wasn’t about him and he wouldn’t understand anyway. There are many things he can’t grasp, PMT for example – how can a man know what it’s like to feel out of control at ‘that time of the month’.

As I began to love myself and form a new loving relationship with my mother, unbeknown to me my relationship with my husband was deepening and going to a new level. A level where we have such a knowing about each other life in many ways has become so much simpler.

The confirmation to me is here in the action. For years my husband has had argument after argument with my mother to defend me in many ways and as a consequence to this, he’s had little to do with her. Since developing a newfound loving relationship with Mum for the past two years I have been away with Mum and Dad on a little holiday and we are going again this summer. Totally out of the blue Ian asked if he could join us this year. This is a real miracle as it speaks volumes, especially as his holiday entitlement is limited – he seriously wants to spend it with us?

I’m still on my journey and it just gets better and better as I continue to love and nurture myself I have so much more to give. I have a love tank, I know how to fill my tank up with self-worth, self-esteem, confidence, peace and happiness so I can give this to Ian, not come from that place of lack and need.

If you’re struggling with your relationship take a look here at a few of the tips that might just help you today with your partner/husband –

  • How you imagine your husband in your mind will be the best he will ever be – think about this and let it sink in. Have a picture in your mind of how you WANT your husband/partner to be – make it very clear and you will find yourself ‘seeing’ the positive side in things and not homing in on his negatives.
  • It’s all about you and not him – when a thought comes to mind ‘I’ll be happy when he……’ what you’re really saying is, ‘I won’t be happy until he does…’. You are placing your happiness outside of you and outside of your control. This is so destructive to your relationship – trying to change someone you can’t. Here’s the answer – ‘choose to change how you react to him.’ Start changing your life if you’re not happy, not insisting he becomes someone else. You will be so much happier.
  • Are you just drifting? Have you stopped doing things together? Just as you drift together you will start to drift apart as time goes on. Start doing things together, household chores, hobbies, sports, coffee, walks, plan future goals and try something new. I find so many couples stop doing things together as soon as they get married but this is vital to keep this closeness.
  • Your partner comes before the kids – he will be around a lot longer than they will. Now you have children it means your relationship is even more important as your little ones are counting on you as well. Children grow best in a stable environment and that comes with having a solid relationship so make it key that you don’t lose sight of his needs amongst the children’s pleas. This message was a lifesaver for me.
  • Think your way to a better marriage. When your husband/partner annoys you don’t start spiralling down into the usual negative pattern of thinking ‘he’s hopeless’, bring to mind something positive about him, one specific thing.  You are forming a new habit, a new way of thinking – positive brainwashing!

No-one is perfect or ever will be, so don’t look for perfection. Think of the positives in your partner, build a great picture of him in your mind; refocus on yourself building you up, fulfilling your needs, and forget changing anyone but yourself and miracles will start to happen. That, I can promise you.

Come and join our thriving FB group full of supportive, wonderful ladies – ‘Let’s Talk Relationships & Life’

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Language of Love

Tidal Waves

 

Tidal Waves of Grief seemingly come out of nowhere

I have to admit sometimes I am given a hard time for having my phone in my hand at gatherings and events. People say put your phone down! and yes I can be guilty of scrolling, but I will also say I have a desire to capture special moments.

Today a Facebook on this day memory popped up and Holy Tidal Wave!!! 

The memory was my daughter Shayna’s 4th Birthday celebration at the beach, I captured so many precious moments this day of my babies Nico and Shayna.

I am so thankful to have these memories in tangible form, I could never have imagined that just 36 days after these photo’s were taken my Nico would make his journey back to light and back home to God.

Looking back on a soul level I feel we both somehow knew our time here in the physical together was coming to completion, when I think back I can replay the moments we shared where our souls knew and honored our connection and assurance that although our relationship would soon change, it would never end.

We would keep our soul connection for all eternity and that our work that we had both come forth to do here in the physical would continue, and that Nico would just be guiding me from the spiritual realm as if he was just in the other room, but still focused on me, loving me, guiding me, protecting me, I just wouldn’t be able to see him in human comprehension.  

I look at the photos from this day of celebration and I have no doubt my little man was preparing me for the day he would depart. He felt I was in good hands and would now be okay and strong enough to continue my souls purpose. This kid had been through it all with me. 

He came in to my life at such a turbulent time when quite frankly I was living fast and loose and making reckless decisions.

I have no doubt he choose to come forth to be my son, to take this physical journey with me to awaken me to my souls work, to help me remember who I truly am and what I am really made of, and the power I hold to LOVE. 

Today these photos popped up on my Facebook memories and hit me like a tidal wave crashing right in to me, the more I replayed this day in my heart and mind the bigger the tidal wave grew and came over me so hard it just knocked me right down.

Tears were flowing my heart was breaking all over again as if it just happened,  the moment I felt and heard his last heartbeat was happening right now, the gut wrenching pain, it’s so hard to even explain in words, there are no words, so I won’t even try. 

The one thing I do know and I can try to explain is that there is great LOVE here for us and where we go back to once we complete this physical journey, Love helps us heal, love carries us, love helps us to continue each and every moment missing our loved one, in my case my child, my sweet precious Nico, my person, my baby boy. 

His love for me to come forth and take this wild ride with me blows my mind daily, I feel so honored he choose me. 

The waves come out of nowhere and knock you down, I won’t lie and say this becomes easier, for me it hasn’t.

The pain is always present, I have to choose each day to love anyway, to love and heal myself so I can go out and love and help others heal themselves. I believe this to be my souls work and that in my worst pain of my life, I can turn my experiences with my son in to my greatest gift and help support others in their time of need. I have no doubt this is all part of my expansion, and why I came forth as well. 

 

I have endless appreciation for this amazing being that came here to teach me, to trigger me, and most of all love and awaken in me my souls purpose to BE the LOVE.

 

I am so thankful such a galactic being choose me, and continues to guide me always, when my heart is open to hear see and receive his love and guidance.

 

I hope that by sharing my own pain, my own journey back to my light, I can help be the light that leads you back to your own light and pure LOVE 

 

With love and light 

Jennifer xo 

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Language of Love

A call out to all Women

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A call out to all Women

Its time to stop the separation

Its time to stop the judgments and the criticisms

Its time to stop the wounding of each other and ourselves

Its time to tend to this big pus filled Sisterhood wound we have, as ultimately its slowly killing us

As women we are trying to be everything to everyone, trying to show we can do it all ourselves. Hiding the fact we are struggling, hiding the fact many of us feel like failures. We are getting sick and most of us don’t even see it. Adrenal issues are rapidly growing in our women and we are pushing on so hard that many don’t even see it creeping up as an epidemic.

I certainly didn’t see it until one day running a massive gala dinner for my major client I almost had a heart attack and I didn’t tell anyone! I was unable to move and in fear for my life but rather than tell anyone I sat text messaging my staff what to do to keep the event running. Why on earth did I do that? I thought I would be seen as weak and I would lose my client if I admitted I was sick, plus I thought I could do everything myself! Lets be honest here I was also scared that the women from a competing company who were in attendance at the event would see my weakness and steal my client.

We have forgotten that we used to band together as Sisters and support one another. We used to parent together, cook together, share remedies and old wives tales. We even used to spend time in the red tents together once a month as we bled together and performed healing rituals. If Sisterhood was not so deep in wounding I could have asked these women for their help and support and know that they would band together with me and not compete or steal.

We are trying to do it all alone. Often showing a strong face to the world when really we are struggling.

It starts when we are pretty young – we begin to judge ourselves and judge other women. We constantly compare ourselves to each other. “She’s prettier than me, she looks terrible in that dress, she’s a slut, I’m not as good as her, does my bum look big in this, I bet she can get any man…….and so it goes on around and around in our heads for most of our lives. I know for me it used to be all consuming to the point of ruling many of my decisions. I would spend crazy amounts of money to ensure I was always wearing the best clothes and putting on the best public face, in the hope that would show I was worthy of being successful in business and worthy of attracting a good man.

This judgement, competition and shaming is coming from a deep lack of self worth, a lack of self acceptance and being taught to put everyone else’s needs ahead of our own. We are not encouraged, nor are we taught to deeply love ourselves. So if we haven’t learnt to love ourselves – how can we love our Sisters?

We constantly compete against each other to get the best jobs, get the best man, be the best parent, put on the best party, cook the best meal and look the slimmest, most best dressed woman. Wow it’s exhausting!

Recently my biggest fear in Sisterhood was played out in a painful turn of events.

I went to a retreat and I met a lovely man there, one thing led to another and we spent a couple of beautiful intimate days together. The day after the event he stayed in a house with one of my Sisters from the event. I feel I probably don’t even need to say more as I know many of you will be feeling the contraction even at the thought. So needless to say she was all the things that I think I am not and the fact that they ended up together was a knife in the heart to the part of myself that feels I am not enough, not worthy.

I share this story because it is the perfect example of the Sisterhood wound that is playing out in the shadows everywhere! Its stopping us from fully loving ourselves, fully loving our Sisters and the piece you may not see is that its stopping us from loving our Men! (More on this one in the next post)

So if this Sisterhood wound is stopping us from having deep friendships, hurting our men, stopping us from truly loving ourselves, which is stopping us from being able to truly love others. Plus it’s making us sick and causing us to feel deeply alone and unworthy. I don’t really see many positives here do you?

What a mess we have ourselves in.

Its time now to create deep connections with our Sisters. Its time now to drop the competition, drop the judgements and come to a place of Love.

The key I have found to healing these wound is the path of Self Love.

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Language of Love

Reflections on Birth

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Today is March 20 – first day of spring, first day of the first day of my daughter’s life. I remember it so well. She was already a bit late – I’d thought I’d have a St Patrick’s day baby. But no. She didn’t come.

I remember the moment I realized I was pregnant. I was terrified and thrilled in equal proportions. My dear college friend and her husband had just been visiting us in Durango CO for a few days. We all talked about wanting to have babies. I think we all decided we wanted babies, but the timing wasn’t exactly right. Mitch really wanted on, Mary wanted to wait; I really wanted one, my husband at the time wanted to wait.

Within a couple of week, called Mary and told her I’m pregnant. She replied, “Me too.” Isn’t that crazy? It was for me. Our babies were born about a week apart.  At any rate, I remember thinking, my life is going to change and I’m so excited.

I knew she would be a girl, I knew her name would be Amie, (French for friend). I loved being pregnant! I loved the feeling of creation happening right inside of me. I loved feeling her move and dreaming about holding her in my arms. I loved like I’d never loved before as I prepared for her to arrive on the planet.

Even though she was a bit late in coming, I was still working, trying to complete a project before she arrived. I was a computer programmer for Ft. Lewis College in Durango, CO at the time. I was the only one on this project and I was so close to completing it, but there was a little snag, right at the end. I stayed late that day to work through it and was the only one in the office when my water broke.

I called my husband and we began the journey to parenthood, one that would arrive before the night ended!  What a moment! It was profound in so many ways. One moment I’m pregnant with this baby and the next I’m holding this little life in my arms. Looking at her; holding her, smelling her newborn scent. Oh my heart is so full that it is leaking out of my eyes.

If you are a parent, think back to the first moment you held your first child. Take a moment to rekindle the feelings and especially the wonder and love.

As I reflect on my daughter’s birth, I also reflect on the birth of my first granddaughter, Jaedyn. She will be 8 on March 29. I was there, I was honored to be with Amie and her husband in the birthing room. I so wanted to be part of this experience. I was living in Austin, TX and they are in the KC area. I got a call late one evening, 10:30 pm on a Saturday evening. I was getting ready for bed, preparing for the Sunday Services. It was Amie. She said, I think my water broke. I asked, did it or did it not. She said, yes.

I jumped in the car and started the 12-hour drive with my son. I got on the phone and asked a friend to cover the Services and we drove all night. From the moment, Amie told me she was pregnant, I felt this baby. I already knew her.  I wanted her to wait for me.  I made it, I was there when she arrived and I even got to cut her cord. Oh my, my heart broke wide open again. I felt a love like nothing I’d ever felt before. I was immediately catapulted from parenthood into the realm of grandparenting, and it is the very best ride I’ve even been on.

Love is love and I love; then there is the love for a baby child and then there is a love for a grandchild. Holy cow! If you are a grandparent, you know what I’m talking about. It’s like the love you have for a child all of a sudden get multiplied with the birth of their child.

This morning I’m in memory, as I honor and celebrate my daughter’s life, from the moment she was born right up to today – her 32nd birthday. What a journey we take on this planet we call earth and this thing we call life. There are ups and downs, there are twists and turns.

Birth is a beautiful thing, but it is only the starting gate. Birth is the beginning of a journey on this planet. We can recall the Births of our children and grandchildren, but also consider birth of anything new; a project, a business, a program; a book.

Creation is amazing. Creation is beyond our infinite imaginings. Creation is what will bring us home; it is what gives us hope in the darkest hours; and illuminates our wildest dreams. Creation is greater than anything we can do or think or be.

On this, the first day of Spring contemplate birth and creation; be it a child or business or project. Contemplate all the miracles that comes into play by bringing creation from an inkling of an idea into fullest form. Reflect on what has been created in your life; that which you love and that which you would like to change. Reflect on the power that you have within you – not in and of yourself, but along side of you, that is Creation wanting to birth something new in you.

May you be love, loved, and loveable. May you plant seeds of loving kindness and compassion. May you be touched by the wonder and awe of creation and birth. May you be blessed by the fruits of your creation today and always.

For my daughter and granddaughter (and other family, too) I love you to the moon and back. I’m so glad I was part of your creation and birth and life!

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Language of Love

Do You Love Your Phone More Than Your Husband?

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Can you believe the title?

How much do you love your phone? Could this possibly be you? Let’s face it, who hasn’t a smartphone these days and who doesn’t rely on it? The minority. Research tells us that if you are emotionally attached to your smartphone and rely on it every waking minute, it may be harming your relationship and that it is possible that your phone is becoming the ‘third wheel in your relationship. For me, I’ve had to really seriously look at my business and my life as I am in danger of this happening – a scary thought.

Living in a society where we spend less time than ever with our partners we are actually making life that much more difficult for ourselves by committing so much time to our smartphones. If your phone is beginning to interfere in your relationship, even in a small way, it could seriously start eroding the quality of your relationship. If this behaviour continues over time and you are unaware of what is happening you will become less satisfied with the relationship and unhappier in life in general.

Some of us are spending more time on our phones than being with our loved ones scrolling through social media, checking emails and updating texts. And if we can’t use our phones we become panic stricken, angry and stressed out. And there are even some women who admitted it would be harder to be without their phone for a week than their partner.

So what is actually happening here?

We are allowing technology to interrupt our conversations, interfere with our intimate relationships and hinder our activities, which in turn will impose a huge negative outcome on our relationships. What appears to be a ‘crazy statement’ is actually too close to the truth – ‘These smartphones could end up ruling our entire lives if we allowed this to happen’.

The problem is all this has happened so fast we haven’t been able to catch up and set boundaries. We have to have our phones with us wherever we go; even in the bedroom and the bathroom. We feel ‘naked’ without it and this phone can ‘protect’ us from harm.

I knew had to take charge of my phone and my relationship as I resonated so much with all of this. As I run my entire business from my phone it is of utter importance to me…….but at what cost? That’s the key here – what is your smartphone costing you?

Your smartphone could ruin your marriage – here is how to keep it from ruining yours:

  • When you’re with your husband and he needs your focus, keep your phone on silent. If you do need to check it, tell him and give him an explanation as to WHY you need to.
  • Don’t get defensive towards him if he gets annoyed that you’re spending too much time on your smartphone. It’s his way of saying ‘I want to connect with you in person’.
  • Don’t criticise him if he says, ‘You never pay attention to me anymore! All you care about is that Facebook!’ Criticism is a form of judgment and will lead to an argument which will start to put up a barrier between you.
  • Talk about it – ask him if it’s a problem you being on your phone as much as you are, don’t ASSUME it’s ok just because everyone else does it.
  • Set the boundaries – now things are out in the open it’s much easier to set some ‘rules’. This will really help you to protect yourselves against potential conflict and you will both understand each other’s expectations.
  • Be mindful as you go about your day and not detracted by your digital world – ask yourself do you really need to check that message immediately, distracting you from being in the here and now?
  • How can you be intimate with your partner when you are constantly being diverted by the pings and alerts reminding you of the flow of messages arriving on your smartphone? Start talking to the person who you are with and not through social media.
  • Remind yourself that all relationships are built on give and take and by constantly using your smartphone you could be losing sight of this, allowing yourself to become attached to strangers online, lose connection with the real world and actually start to depend on a virtual world altogether.

I hope some of the above points help to put your relationship with your phone into perspective; they certainly helped me to gain a healthy respect for my husband and my smartphone.

The impact of these measures have been profound and we’ve naturally incorporated these boundaries into our daily lives so we stay on track:

  • We don’t allow the smartphones on in the bedroom after 10 pm
  • No phones are allowed at the table whilst we are eating any meal
  • During conversations with each other, we put our phones away
  • We are open and honest with each other regarding the use of our phones ensuring we both understand how important we are to each other and also the impact our smartphones can have if we let things slide.

My smartphone is still a huge part of my life and business but I now have balance in all of my relationships, technology and life. Having been married over 28 years to Ian the smartphone is a relatively ‘new issue’ in our lives. Thankfully through recognition and healthy boundaries, we have developed a deeper relationship and understanding together by communicating openly in person and not through social media.

Take the ‘Relationship Quiz’ today and find out how healthy your relationship is. Come and join our wonderful, caring Facebook group and let go of the hurt & pain in your relationship in a non-judgemental space – ‘Let’s Talk Relationships & Life’.

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Language of Love

Do you find yourself in conflict in important relationships?

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Do you sometimes feel like you’re talking English, while your partner is talking Spanglish? Maybe not your partner, but a parent or another person close to you? Do you feel like it doesn’t matter what you say, it’s interpreted in a totally different way?

We all have those conversations where we come away thinking what the hell just happened there? How did a simple conversation spiral so out of control? Why do I feel so bad right now? That totally took me by surprise.

All relationships signify a connection between self and others, between mind, body and spirit, between one relationship and another, between networks of relationships and in different contexts. How we perceive and receive these relationships and all communication that exists within them can vary massively depending not only how we’re feeling in that moment but also on what we experienced growing up.

Transactional Analysis (TA for short) is a model of people and relationships that was originally created by Dr Eric Berne in the 60’s. When you start to understand this model it can also help you to understand any conflict that occurs in your relationships with others. Understanding the conflict is the first step to being able to sort it out and learn a better way of communicating – let’s face it, who doesn’t need that in their lives!

TA is based on the notions that 1) we have three “ego-states” to our personality and that 2) these all interact with each other in “transactions”.

All of us have internal models of parents, children and adults, and we switch between these all the time with others and even with ourselves (ever hear your mums voice in your head telling you off for something even though you’re an adult?)

The first ego state is that of the Parent. We can either play the nurturing parent (seeks to keep the child safe and content), or the controlling parent (can be critical and wants the child to do what they want them to do). These can show transferred values or beliefs from our parents that were passed down to us.

The second ego state is that of the Adult. This is the “grown up”, rational person who speaks with assertiveness and in a rational way, using neither aggression or control, and is usually our “ideal self.”

The third ego state is the Child. There are three types of child we can play – the Adaptive Child who reacts to the world around them, either by rebelling or by moulding themselves to fit in; the Natural Child who is open and vulnerable and who is not yet self-aware and makes sounds rather than words; and the Little Professor who is always curious and trying out new things.

When two people communicate, there is a transaction. Conflict is caused when there is an unsuccessful transaction and we are not communicating on the same level. These are the games we play.

For example, it’s normal for a parent to speak to their child from the role of the parent, and for the child to speak back from the role of the child. Two adults are on the same page when they both speak from their adult roles. However, often in relationships where there is conflict, the two adults are not necessarily speaking from adult roles. One may be speaking to the other as if they are a child, therefore they are assuming the role of the parent. If one person speaks to the other in an aggressive and controlling way, the other individual may naturally assume the role of the Adaptive Child and either rebel by lashing out or walking away, or by being submissive and sinking into the situation to try to calm it down. This leads usually to hurtful words and behaviour from both sides which causes an ongoing disturbance in the relationship until it is resolved by communicating like adults.

 What we are striving for in our communications as adults is the Adult to Adult style, where we are both our best selves and speak in an assertive way free from control and aggression. This is called a Complementary Transaction.

Can you see any situations in your life where you are assuming the wrong role in a relationship? I used to play out the role of parent or child in difficult relationships until I learned about TA, and it transformed my relationships. Have a think about where this may be happening for you, and how you can change it by communicating in a more adult way.

Are you ready to stop struggling through life? Are you sick of feeling like you’re stuck in survival mode? Come and join my other members who are also on their journey.

Until next time 🙂

Carly xx

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Language of Love

Love? Or an Abusive Relationship?

Love- or anAbusive Relationship-

There are 7 Warnings Signs that you are entering the danger zone. You are being swept off your feet but it’s not to a fairy tale castle. It’s to a world of pain and hurt.

Intimate partner abuse starts at dating. The first or second date you have with someone is the best predictor for the type of relationship you will have in the future.

These are the warning signs that I wish I had paid attention to when I started dating the man. These are the warning signs of an abusive, mean-spirited man. They seem like love, attention, and devotion but they are truly signs of possessiveness, extreme jealousy, isolation, domination and control.

In the beginning I could have used the power of my voice to say “There is no way in hell that I will allow someone to treat me like a piece of crap.” That would have ended the relationship before I was subjected to intense emotional and physical abuse. But I was desperate for love and he fed my need.

These signs speak to our lack of self-confidence and because we meet someone who pays extreme attention to us and speaks of their undying devotion and love, we fall into their trap. Lack of self-confidence causes us to stifle our real authentic voice and we don’t stand up for ourselves, our time, our world and our independence.

That’s how I got caught and trapped. My self-confidence was so low because of child abandonment issues that someone saying I want to spend every waking moment with you was wonderful and I fell fully into the trap. If I had been self-confident,I would have used my voice and said that’s sweet but you’re stifling me and making me feel anxious and nervous.

These signs happen while you’re dating and when you experience any of these signs or any behaviour that makes you uncomfortable, run the other way. Do not make excuses or think it’s sweet or cute. Run.

  1. Love — the word gets thrown out around the second time you’re together. He loves you and couldn’t imagine life without you. He can’t stand being away from you for even a single minute. It sounds romantic but it’s exactly the opposite. Run as fast as you can. It is not love he is talking about. It’s possession.
  2. Look After You — all I want to do is look after you and your kids. That’s all I live for now that I’ve met you baby. Do you need someone to look after you? And what does he mean by look after you? Does it mean you will only have him in your life or will you be allowed friends and family? Be confident in your ability to look after yourself and say no thanks, I’m good. Keep a tight hold on your independence.
  3. Pretending to cry because he’s going to spend a day, night or an hour without you. Classic manipulation. You know you want to go out with your friends or stay home alone or visit your mom — Do That! Do not give into his crying for your attention. He will cry then argue then attempt to make you feel guilty for leaving him when he is so devoted. This is a serious danger sign. Let him go. You want a partner where you can live your life and keep it separate.
  4. Let Your Friends Go: Telling you that others are deceiving and manipulating you and you want to avoid them. This is classic pot calling the kettle black behaviour. If you’ve known your friends since kindergarten and you feel comfortable telling them your deepest, darkest secrets, keep doing it because those are your friends and they hold a special place in your life. This is the first step in isolating you so he can control your every move. Not the kind of guy you want. You want someone who wants you to have friends, fun and family.
  5. Anticipatory Fear: You feel on edge when it’s time to see him, you don’t know why but you feel like something is going to happen that is not good. When you truly love each other, you anticipate joy when it’s time to see each other, not fear, anxiety or nervousness. Move on from anyone who makes you feel scared to be around them.
  6. His Expectations: do you wonder if you can meet his expectations? Especially the silent, unspoken ones? He wants you to dress a certain way or behave a certain way that is not you. When you meet someone and they immediately want to change you, it’s time to move on. Be with someone who loves you just the way you are, quirks and all.
  7. SEX. He will demand, take, coerce, or manipulate you. You find yourself having sex because you felt you had no choice. You didn’t and you’re correct. He drops by late at night claiming to be missing you so badly which is really code for all the other girls turned him down. That is not love or respect. Sex is mutual and not a tool to hurt, harm or make you feel guilty or ashamed. This is a guy you want to say goodbye to as fast as you can.

These signs are all creepy and leave you feeling uncomfortable and you start questioning yourself and your choices. Right then is when you stop the relationship. When you find yourself worried or wondering what he will think of you or if he will approve of your clothes, your hair or your friends, or if he will demand sex or make a scene in public, you are not beginning a loving relationship built on mutual respect and love. You are entering a nightmare of verbal, emotional, mental and quite possibly, physical abuse.

If I listened to my gut and had the confidence to speak up, say no and know my self-worth, I would not have been his punching bag. I would have moved on right away. You can too. Pay attention, know the signs, free your voice, say no and walk away.

Are you beginning a loving relationship? Or are you entering the danger zone?

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