Can you have too much togetherness? After a year of pandemic restrictions that kept many couples cooped up together for months, some have discovered that minor annoyances loom larger. Couples have had to negotiate their roles and responsibilities more intensely than ever. This has put quite a strain on some relationships. Pre-existing problems have been amplified, but so have the strengths. How can we prepare for better post-pandemic relationships?
Principles for Creating Better Relationships:
To bring out the best in each other, you have to learn to work as a team. Since relationship problems have been created together, it takes teamwork to figure out how to solve them. It is a good idea to learn how to capitalize on your differences; utilize the strengths of each person to improve the function of the team as a whole. How can partners accomplish this?
Making Arguments More Productive:
Two different people with different perspectives are going to disagree from time to time. How they do that can have a major impact on their relationship. Some individuals grew up thinking that being right is more important than anything else, possibly even more important than their partner’s feelings. Others fall back on blame, shame or guilt when they start feeling defensive. Needless to say, such arguments are not likely to be productive. But with just four words (so long as they are sincere), you can turn the argument into a discussion. The words: What do you think?
Getting in Sync:
How do you demonstrate love and respect for your partner even when you are annoyed? It can be challenging. However, there is one simple technique that might be surprisingly effective. Go for a walk together. You don’t have to talk, just walk, and you’ll find your steps become synchronized. Arriving home, you’ll feel better. Then you may feel ready to do something for yourself that you can feel proud of. Envision how you want to create successful post-pandemic relationships.
This Week’s Guest:
Dr. Peter Pearson and his wife, Dr. Ellyn Bader, founded The Couples Institute in Menlo Park, California in 1984. They have co-authored two books: Tell Me No Lies and In Quest of the Mythical Mate: A Developmental Approach to Diagnosis and Treatment in Couples Therapy (now in its 19th printing). Their website is https://www.couplesinstitute.com/ Dr. Pearson specializes in coaching couples who desire to become a strong team to realize their professional and relationship goals.
Listen to the Podcast:
The podcast of this program will be available Monday, December 27, 2021, after re-broadcast on December 25. The show can be streamed online from this site and podcasts can be downloaded for free.
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