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How to Increase Motivation When You’re in a Slump? PART FOUR

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CONTINUED. . . .

9. Cherish Past Victories

Most people don’t chase their dreams because of fear. They don’t think that they have what it takes—talent, resources, connections—to accomplish their goals. The best antidote is to relive your own victory story.

Think back to a time where you did something that you previously hadn’t thought possible. Maybe you earned a promotion, got an A in a class, or gave a public speech. If it’s been a while since you stepped out of your comfort zone, go back to your childhood.

Remember how you learned to ride a bike when you were scared, made a new friend, or asked someone out even though you were shy. We’ve all overcome fear in the past. Let’s not forget it.

10. Jot Great Ideas Down

I’m sure you have dozens or possibly hundreds of great ideas each day. But life is a constant stream of distractions. We often forget about these ideas before we can give them a second thought.

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How to Increase Motivation When You’re in a Slump? PART THREE

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CONTINUED. . . .

6. Create a Bucket List

In the 2007 film The Bucket List, two terminally-ill seniors played by Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson decide to live their best life before kicking the bucket—think sky-diving, traveling the world, taking a safari.

Sure, many of these things are out of reach in 2020. But there’s still plenty of life experiences you can check off. It’s a fantastic time to learn a language, practice photography, or get your start in amateur film-making. You can write that book that you’ve been putting off for years or train for next year’s marathon. You might rent an RV and explore the backroads of your country. The possibilities are endless.

7. Listen to Music That Moves You

There’s never been a better time to go deeper into your favorite genres of music or to branch out and explore something new. Start with a “Best of” list, like the Rolling Stones 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.

Websites like Soundcloud and Spotify’s Discover feature for finding new artists. Genres like classical music help people focus and inspire their creativity. Most importantly, they can help you get out of a funk and back to being productive.

8. Start a Gratitude Journal

Let’s take some lessons from this horrible pandemic—a simple but profound one: just appreciate everything that we have.

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How to Increase Motivation When You’re in a Slump? PART TWO

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CONTINUED.. . .

3. When you’re hurting, the best thing you can do for yourself is to help others. It’s counterintuitive, but it’s true.

When you focus externally on making a difference in the lives of others, it provides you immense satisfaction, which can also increase your motivation. These acts of service make your problems look and feel smaller. Most importantly, you feel more empowered to overcome any challenges you face.

Try this: Go to volunteermatch.org and find a charitable opportunity that is meaningful to you. I promise that giving back will lessen the weight of your problems.

4. Call Your Most Positive Friend

We’ve all heard the adage, “you are the sum of your five closest friends.” It’s true because what our peers say affects us.

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How to Increase Motivation When You’re in a Slump

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Here are ways on how to increase your motivation when you’re in a slump.

1. Unplug (but for Real This Time)

You won’t hear that much in the blogosphere where eyeballs mean dollars. But if you’ve stared at a computer screen for the last ten days, pause for a moment and change your surroundings. That work email or application can wait for a moment. Take your lunch to a park, or go for an urban hike.

Listen to the sounds of nature. Smell the plants and flowers. Feel how the wilderness teems with life. Focus on being entirely in the present moment, and you’ll realize the world didn’t suddenly end in 2020.

2. Put Some Motivation in Your Ear

If you’re stuck in a slump, I’ve found that all it takes is one rousing speech to change your mindset. Changing your mindset is a great way to increase your motivation.

 The right motivational content at the right time can transform your attitude. 

3. Give Back to Others

The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others. –-Mahatma Gandhi

When you’re hurting, the best thing you can do for yourself is to help others. It’s counterintuitive, but it’s true.

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Lack Of Motivation PART THREE

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Types of Motivation

In addition to the motivation engine, there are other steps you can do to permanently boost your motivation.

9 Types of Motivation That Make It Possible to Reach Your Dreams: Let’s take a sneak peek at 9 types of motivation that you may have never have thought about before.

  1. Intrinsic Motivation — You want to start a regular program of running and swimming to help boost your health and fitness. However, your intrinsic (inner) motivation might be that you want to boost your self-confidence. It’s this ‘hidden from others’ factor that will keep you motivated to exercise.
  2. Extrinsic Motivation — Your team at work is close to achieving its targets, but there is a final push needed to make this a reality. Instead of having to rely on your inner motivation, in this example, you’d likely be powered up by the thought of your team and company achieving their targets.
  3. Reward-Based Motivation or Incentive Motivation — Your partner tells you that if you’ll clean the house, they’ll cook a delicious dinner for you. If cleaning isn’t your thing, then you’d probably do what you could to avoid it. But with the incentive of a reward of a tasty meal, you’ll probably find the motivation to get the job done.
  4. Fear-Based Motivation — Life isn’t as safe or secure as most of us would like. Unfortunately, there is always the chance that people are trying to take advantage of us or out to steal our personal belongings. The latter example might deeply concern you, causing you to spend time and money buying and fitting an intruder alarm at your home. While you might not consider fear a positive thing, it can be, if you turn it into a strong personal motivator.
  5. Achievement-Based Motivation — Depending on your chosen career path, you may have had to achieve certain qualifications, perhaps including graduating from a degree course. Knowing that your qualifications would open doors to your career, would have been a major motivating factor helping you to pass your course.
  6. Power-Based Motivation — If you want to change the world (or at least some part of it), then you’ll be able to call upon power-based motivation. Essentially, if you need to be a leader and a visionary you’ll only be able to succeed with a thirst for power. Now, this could be a negative (think of dictators), but it could also be very positive (think of Martin Luther King, Jr.).
  7. Affiliation Motivation — If you’ve ever been part of a sports team, you’ll have seen affiliation in action. It’s that special team spirit that motivates each player to perform their very best. Work can be the same too. You just need to make sure you’re part of a harmonious and supportive team.
  8. Competence Motivation — If you dislike not knowing how to do things (or how to do them well), then you’ll naturally be driven by something called competence motivation. For example, you might need to do some DIY work around you home but realize that you lack the necessary skills. Instead of giving up, however, you spend sometime online looking at articles and YouTube videos to learn the specific skills and techniques you need.
  9. Attitude Motivation — Imagine trying to tackle a big goal such as learning a new language by starting off with a negative mindset. Your defeatist attitude is likely to lead to just that — defeat! But now picture the same scenario with your mindset switched to positive. With this hopeful, go-getting attitude you’ll have the motivation to start learning and speaking the language of your choice.
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Lack Of Motivation PART TWO

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CONTINUED. . . .

There are many reasons for losing your motivation. Here are just a few of them:

  • You may not be aiming high enough
  • You may be suffering from procrastination
  • You may be unsure about what you really want
  • You may be letting fear control your mind and actions
  • You may be feeling overwhelmed with the amount of work and responsibilities you have

Even if only one of these motivation blockers is active in your life, it will be enough to derail your chances of success.

What can be done to fix these problems?

7 Reasons to Dare to Dream Big: If you’re used to aiming low and staying within your comfort zone, then you’ll be missing out on the power of setting big goals. When you push yourself by aiming higher, you’ll conquer fear, wipe out regrets and begin to write your own life story. As an added bonus, as you achieve more — you’ll be rewarded more too.

How To Stop Procrastinating and Get Stuff Done: Whether at home or work, if you find it hard to get started, you’ll always find yourself falling behind. Procrastination is a bad habit that you must learn to break if you want to achieve big things in your life. Some simple steps you can take to defeat procrastination are: commit to starting a task for at least 3 minutes (read more about this in this article); create daily, weekly and monthly to-do lists; and reward yourself when you complete your tasks.

Create a Vision for the Life You Want: If you don’t know what you really want in life, then you’re likely to drift through life and just get by. But when you know your passion and find your purpose, you’ll be driven and hungry for success. This is vital for your big goals, but it also impacts everything else you do. You can start the process of discovering your life purpose by spending some time thinking about this question: “What would my ideal life look like?”

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Lack Of Motivation PART ONE

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If you’re like most people, you probably find it a struggle to feel motivated. And even when you do manage to get going, you quickly lose your momentum.

Fortunately, there are many tried-and-tested techniques for not just temporarily boosting your momentum but — for permanently transforming it.

In this guide to regaining and generating motivation, you’ll get to discover Lifehack’s ultimate formula for making your motivation practical and systemic. You’ll learn how to take back control of your circumstances and put yourself firmly in the driving seat of your life. With motivation on your side, you’ll become more confident, determined and proactive. You’ll also become much more successful than you currently are.

So, read on to see how you can build a motivation-generating engine that will propel you forward everyday on autopilot.

Why Do You Lose Motivation?

There are many reasons for losing your motivation. Here are just a few of them:

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10 Tips to be More Grateful in Life PART THREE

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CONTINED. . . .

7. Watch your words.

You can feel more grateful in life if you are using more positive and more enlightening words. Words that stress you and make you feel worthless should definitely be eliminated.

 

8. Appreciate what you have right now. 

The happiest people are those who are contented with what they currently have, not with what they lack. Apply an abundance mindset in your way of thinking – every action begins with the mind, after all.

9. Acknowledge the past, but move on. 

I’m not saying that you should ignore the past, naturally. That’s impossible. What I’m saying is that you should be aware of your past mistakes, past heartbreaks, past failures and past frustrations. Use them as stepping stones. Acknowledge the fact that they did happen in the past and utilize the lessons you learned from them in the present so that you won’t experience them in the future. Be more grateful of the bad as well!

10. Help other people and touch their lives meaningfully.

There really is nothing more rewarding in this world than helping other people improve their lives. This activity doesn’t only make you feel great about yourself – it also makes you value what you have in your life. Go on and sponsor a child’s education. Give your old clothes and books to a charitable institution. Donate your time and offer to teach children for free once a week. Hold feeding programs with non-profit organizations.

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10 Tips to be More Grateful in Life PART TWO

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CONTINUED. . . .

3. Immerse yourself with inspirational thoughts and motivational quotes. 

Your feeling of gratitude is a direct manifestation of your environment. If you feel more driven, more passionate, and more alive, you are also bound to appreciate more, live more, and be more content.

 

4. Make your own Gratitude Board.

You’ve heard of Motivation Boards, Disaster Boards and Dream Boards, so why can’t you have Gratitude Boards as well? Instead of posting your dreams and your disasters, it’s better for you to post the ideals that you feel grateful for. Just a hint: focus more on people and experiences rather than on materialistic stuff that don’t necessarily last very long.

5. Control your thoughts.

Of course you have the power to control what you’re thinking of! Consider this exercise, for example: if you find yourself thinking more and more self-entitled, stop. If you find yourself repeating negative junk, stop. And if you find yourself comparing yourself to other people, stop. You are given consciousness. Make use of it wisely.

6. Always resist the temptation of comparing yourself with other people.

As humans, we have the natural tendency to compare ourselves with others with the hope of attaining satisfaction. Right now, I’m telling you that this activity does not help you feel to be more grateful in life. It does the opposite! You will always be meeting someone richer, more attractive, more successful and more intelligent than you are. Comparison will just rob you off your self-worth and make you feel inferior to others! Don’t do it, please.

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10 Tips to be More Grateful in Life

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To be more grateful in life means that you are also allowing yourself to be happier, more contented and more satisfied with everything that has been going on around you. But with all the stress, all the disappointments and all the anxiety around you, I bet you ask yourself this question all the time:

“How exactly can I be more grateful with my life?”

Well, my dear friend, I think I have ten tips to help you with this particular concern. Here they are:

1. Learn to live in the moment.

Life is a wonderful adventure filled with enriching experiences and endless possibilities. Don’t just go through the motions of repetitive activities and boring tasks. No! Being a mindless zombie can make you more likely to take things for granted. Instead of doing something just for the sake of doing it, actually make an effort to savor the experience. You’re supposed to attend a conference? Absorb it. Babysit your niece? Savor the moment. Eat a 15-minute lunch? Taste each bite.

2. Make an Oath of Gratitude.

Being aware of your goal to be more grateful can help you look for things to be really more grateful for. Gratitude is a conscious decision. You have to practice it consistently.

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Anger Styles: What They Reveal About You Part SIX

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CONTINUED. . . .

6. The release of anger.

There are times when you feel a surge of anger, yet wisdom reveals that the emotion needs to be left unspoken.  Not every agitating circumstance has to be addressed.  You can acknowledge that although anger can have a constructive function, there are times when other personality traits need to be given utilized.  This allows you to appeal to higher priorities. 

The release of anger requires discretion as you determine that sometimes the greater good can be served as you simply accept life’s imperfections.

The release of anger can be displayed in many ways:
  • Showing tolerance toward others’ differences
  • Being patient
  • Choosing forgiveness as a means of finding personal peace
  • Accepting others just as they are
  • Knowing when not to press a point
  • Choosing to be decent even when others have not acted decently toward you
  • Staying out of fruitless debates or arguments
  • Acknowledging that life is not always fair
  • Dropping the requirement that others should be ideal
  • Choosing kindness as a means of finding influence.

By choosing the release of anger you recognize your personal limitations, and that people will not always fit your mold.  You recognize the inevitability of human error. And instead of having to correct all wrongs, you make allowances for human fallibility.

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Anger Styles: What They Reveal About You Part FIVE

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CONTINUED. . .

4. Assertive anger.

Remember, anger can have a constructive purpose.  When misunderstanding has occurred, when a person has wronged you, your anger can prompt decisive and

corrective action.  In self-preservation you can speak and act in ways that let others know of your desire to be respected.  The assertive style of anger is typified by open efforts to address problems while at the same time choosing to maintain dignity toward the ones being addressed.

Assertive people feel no need to belittle others in the process of managing tensions.  They can be firm, but also respectful.  They can maintain strong principles without having to invalidate others’ principles. 

Examples of assertive anger would include:
  • Knowing when to say no
  • Being straight-forward in communication
  • Speaking with a clear, concise voice
  • Showing concern even as problems are addressed
  • Demonstrating confidence when others disagree
  • Being known as one who can and will follow through on responsibilities
  • Standing firmly when others are clearly irresponsible or uncaring
  • Holding to correct standards without being demeaning
  • Responding to resistance with calm resoluteness.

By choosing the assertive style of anger, you recognize that you deserve to be heard, and that preserving personal convictions is an act of responsibility.  Yet you can also maintain a sense of modesty as you make room for the needs and perspectives of others. 

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Anger Styles: What They Reveal About You Part FOUR

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CONTINUED. . .

3. Passive aggressive anger.

Some people have decided that there are times when the openly aggressive style will create more problems that it will solve, so they instead become stealth with anger.  Feeling aggressive, they still harbor disdain, but they communicate it in more hidden means that allow them to be less exposed. 

People inclined toward passive aggressive anger have concluded that “less is more,” in the sense that they can preserve personal needs while revealing little about their vulnerabilities.  They like keeping others guessing because it is its own form of power.

Passive aggressive anger is displayed with these types of behaviors:
  • Being evasive in general
  • Shrugging, then giving “I don’t know” responses
  • Promising one thing, then doing something quite different
  • Procrastination, laziness
  • Sabotaging others’ plans
  • Being unreliable
  • Refusing to prepare for tasks, assignments
  • Making lame excuses for poor behavior
  • Giving the silent treatment, withdrawal as punishment
  • Prioritizing play or frivolity when other matters need attention
  • Giving half hearted efforts
  • Being wasteful, even after requests are made otherwise.

Often passive aggressive people can feel rewarded for their style of anger since it generates much strain in others.  It can feel empowering. 

What passive aggressive anger reveals about you:

People inclined toward passive aggressive anger reveal low levels of trust toward others.  They have concluded that being self-disclosing is too risky, that others will use information against them.  That is why they have become clandestine.  They have little optimism that conflict can be managed cleanly, leaving them with little incentive to share personal matters clearly.

These individuals operate with a fear of vulnerability.  The less that is known about them, the better.  They still have aggressive impulses, but they have chosen a conniving manner of self-preservation.  Beneath it all is a quiet sense of entitlement that they should be above others, even as they reveal little about how they truly struggle inwardly.

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Anger Styles: What They Reveal About You Part THREE

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continued. . .

2. Openly aggressive anger

Usually when people think of anger, it is the openly aggressive style of anger that comes to mind.  That is only natural since it is the loudest, most boisterous way to communicate the emotion. 

While the aggressive person is in a self-preservation mode, it is handled in a manner that shows little regard for the others involved.  The reason for feeling angry may actually be valid (although sometimes it is not), but the delivery is so disruptive that the appropriate message gets lost. 

Openly aggressive anger can be displayed in these ways:
  • Being critical or bossy
  • Speaking dogmatically about your beliefs
  • Being forceful and pushy
  • Shouting, using a raised tone of voice
  • Blaming, accusing
  • Going into rants or long lectures
  • Displays or threats of physical force
  • Being blunt and insensitive
  • Complaining and griping
  • Bickering and being snippy
  • Cursing, name-calling, insulting
  • Interrupting, refusing to listen
  • Pushing an agenda that others will inevitably resist.

By using the openly aggressive style of anger, you can illustrate a strong belief that others cannot or will not make good decisions without you being overwhelming.  It implies a lack of confidence that people will coordinate life with you if you just leave them to their own devices.

TO BE CONTINUED. . . 

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Anger Styles: What They Reveal About You Part Two

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CONTINUED. . . . 

FIVE DIFFERENT MANAGEMENT STYLES

  1. Suppressing anger

The suppression of anger represents an attempt at temporary pain avoidance.  When you suppress anger you have weighed the potential of an undesirable power struggle, and you have chosen the path of least resistance.  You might even have drawn the false conclusion that if you do not address the anger-producing problem, it will just fade and go away. 

The suppression of anger can be handled in many ways:
  • Withdrawing physically from a problem
  • Saying “I’m fine” when you are not
  • Appeasing in an effort to make the problem disappear
  • Being too low-keyed in your exchanges
  • Succumbing to the controller
  • Shying away from controversial topics
  • Letting legitimate frustrations pass without saying a word
  • Smiling, pretending not to feel the resentment that resides inwardly
  • Acting as a team player even as you disagree with the rules of the moment.

Suppressors make the false assumption that follows the “out of sight, out of mind” philosophy.  They can presume that if they keep their emotions hidden, they will disappear.  In fact, the suppression of anger virtually guarantees a build up of other problems like resentment, depression, and anxiety.

2. Openly aggressive anger

TO BE CONTINUED.. .

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Anger Styles: What They Reveal About You

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Do you ever have moments of anger?  Of course, the answer is yes, in the sense that each person feels this emotion at some level, and there are multiple types of anger styles.

Let’s not stereotype our understanding of anger by presuming that it only involves rude, mean-spirited communication. Yes, people often misuse it that way, but it is much broader than that. Included in our identification of the five anger styles are reactions of frustration, annoyance, irritability, agitation, impatience, and so forth.  It is a broad based emotion with many manifestations.

Anger is part of your personality’s alert system, and it is triggered by the need to preserve oneself. 

Specifically when you feel angry, you wish to preserve:

  • Your worth as a human:  “Would you please show me respect!”
  • The legitimacy of your needs:  “I want you to regard my needs.”
  • Your primary convictions:  “I have beliefs that define who I am, notice them.”

It is well and good that you might feel angry, but as you acknowledge the emotion, you can go deeper by also asking,  “What does my use of anger reveal about me in general?”  Unfortunately, many people are not disciplined with their anger, and it is little more than a force for disruption.  Others, fearing what might happen as they express anger, allow insecurity and pessimism to prompt coy or devious expressions.

But let’s hold onto the notion:  With all anger styles, you have choices.  You can choose to let it run its course negatively.  You can let it eat away at your inner self, resulting in an unhappy manner of living.  Or you can choose to blend your anger management in with a constructive manner of life.  Where do you want to go with it?

Once your personality registers anger, there are five different anger styles that you can choose. 

Let’s examine the five anger styles, noting along the way what these anger styles reveal about who you are in that moment.  Becoming self aware, you can be poised to handle anger in ways that enhance, rather than diminish, your quality of life.

TO BE CONTINUED. . . . .

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How to Make Tough Decisions as a Couple PART FOUR

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CONTINUED. . .. 

Decision making builds strong relationships

 A good deal will have both of your dreams in it. That’s important, because it means you’re both fully in. You never know how a move like this is going to work out. If it goes well, you both share the satisfaction. If not, you share the blame.

A good deal will have both of your dreams in it.

One sign of a good deal is that in the end, neither of you got everything you wanted. The final result didn’t look exactly like what either of you originally had in mind.

But hey, isn’t that the case with anything creative? Eventually you have to face reality. And in a couple’s relationship, reality often takes the form of the person next to you in bed.

Sometimes life brings you to a fork in the road, where no compromise is possible. When that happens, assume you’ll need to do some serious deal-making—as if your relationship depended on it. Which in fact, it will.

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How to Make Tough Decisions as a Couple PART THREE

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CONTINUED. . . .

A better way to make tough decisions as a couple

The good news is there’s a much better method. There are three steps involved.

Step One:  Let’s make a deal

In business, this would be a no-brainer, right?  You’d never ask someone to give you something you want for free. Instead, you’d find out what their price is.  

In marriage, it’s the same thing. The main question is: What’s going to motivate the other person to do a deal?

Let’s see what happens when Marnie tries this approach.

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How to Make Tough Decisions as a Couple PART TWO

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CONTINUED. . . .

Mistake #2 - Suggesting there's something wrong with your partNer for disagreeing

The second thing that doesn’t work is to suggest there’s something wrong with your partner. Otherwise, they'd see it your way. If only they were less anxious, less obsessive-compulsive, less oppositional, less stuck in their ways, or less damaged by unresolved childhood trauma. Then they’d surely agree with you!

A lot of people get sent to my office for therapy by their spouses for just this reason. Believe me when I tell you, it doesn’t work.

A lot of people get sent to my office for therapy by their spouses for just this reason. Believe me when I tell you, it doesn’t work. It usually just leads to a lot of bad feeling.

Mistake #3 - Appealing to your partner's love

The third thing that doesn’t work is to appeal to your partner’s love and insist that if they really love you as much as they say they do, they’ll give you what you want. Almost every couple tries this.

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How to Make Tough Decisions as a Couple PART ONE

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Some classic zero-sum problems for couples involve whether or not to move—often for one partner’s career—and whether or not to have another child. But there are lots of others.    

For thirty years, I’ve watched couples struggle with zero-sum problems. Some more successfully, and some less so. Today, we’re going to talk about what works, and what doesn’t, when you’re faced with one of these situations.

Three ways not to make tough decisions as a couple

 First, let’s talk first about what doesn’t work. There are three main approaches that don’t work. Unfortunately, most couples try all three:

Mistake #1 - Trying to convince your partner they'll be better off

The first mistake is to try to convince your partner that they’ll be much happier if they do things your way. In Marnie’s case, this might involve demonstrating to Tom all the wonderful things about the neighborhood she'd like to move to. Wouldn't Tom be better off there? 

No one likes to be told they’ll be happier if they just do things your way.

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