Updated: Jan 15, 2022
By Carleen Saeger, M.S. OTR/L, Wellness Coach
The theme of the week with my wellness coaching patients was relationships. Healthy, loving, and intimate relationships with our partner are an integral component of our health and well-being.
If our relationship with our partner is compromised it negatively impacts so many other areas of our well-being! Trust me… I’ve lived it! I feel you.
Even though science is now discovering a continuum between the gender polarities… for those of us with a partner on the way other end of the gender continuum, the struggle is real!!
We also know the male brain is just wired differently than the female brain. (Check out this psychology today article to nerd out on this topic 😉 https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/so-happy-together/201904/male-and-female-brains?amp ).
But there are a few things that we can do to strengthen our relationship with our partners.
✨Real talk✨ My husband and I have each learned some of these lessons the hard way in our former marriages and are still refining them together. Relationships take work. A lot of work (especially when you suddenly have 5 kiddos and 2 dogs that also require a lot of work and emotional energy!). They also require you to set your ego aside and be vulnerable…which can be super uncomfortable. Ugh.
But, the trade off is priceless and results in a relationship more incredible than you’ve ever dreamed of (or at least one that’s pretty darn good!!).
A few key themes came up this week:
Communication is the key to success. We cannot expect our partner to read our minds or assume our needs (even though it would be nice!!)! Girl, if you want it you gotta ask in all departments, if you know what I mean (in a kind and non threatening manner 😉)
Time! We need to spend time together. And not just sitting in the car time… like actual valuable quality time. How many of you still make an effort to go on actual dates with your sig other? If not, try planning ahead, securing a babysitter, and taking turns deciding what to do… however extravagant or simple, such as a date at home. Make. The. Time.
Listen To Each Other
In a world full of distractions - technology, busy schedules, kiddos, and a to do list a mile long - it’s easy to half listen and half not during conversation. Try setting down your phone or pausing the show, making eye contact, and truly actively listening to each other.
Work together as a team and acknowledge the contributions each person makes. Thank them regularly. Even better…Set a regular family business meeting time where you and your partner discuss family business, to do’s, and make a plan… together…as a team.
You gotta take care of you. You each are coming into this relationship. But it’s not a “two halves make a whole” sitch. It’s a two people bring their whole and complete selves together to be one amazing badass unstoppable team. So, no more passing blame. No more trying to change your spouse (it won’t work). But, what you CAN do is improve you. Work on you and take care of you. Then bring your best and most authentic self forward to the relationship!
Set your boundaries. Discuss your boundaries. Respect them. And trust your person.
How often are you intimate with your partner? How often would you like to be intimate? What time of day do you prefer? What do you like? The questions go on from here… The first step is to open up the convo with your partner and share. Set time aside to talk about it and make the time to do the things. And let’s be real… for most men… sex and intimacy is top priority 😉 Make it a priority!!
Now it’s your turn… share in the comments your top tip for the rest of us. What’s your key to relationship success??
✨If you or your partner are majorly struggling, please take the initiative to see a therapist. Do not wait. Just go. There are also apps than can help open communication such as Paired.
➡️I’m also here to help… message me or email Carleen@EmpowerLivingWell.com