Monthly Archives

December 2008

Communication

Let’s Start a Relationship Revolution

When it comes to marriage the only thing that matters is that you choose someone you can relate to and love out of authenticity not out of expectation.

With roughly half of all marriages ending in divorce – often bitter – and with both emotional and financial consequences for both parties and any children, we though it was time we gave you some info and techniques that will help you and your relationships.

You need to communicate. You need to plan. You need to be you. Don’t expect your partner to rescue you or make your life better. Marriage is a commitment by both partners to work towards a common goal. Our Team hopes you put some of our experts’ tips to good use.

Relationships

Relationship Revelations

Aha…new love. There is nothing more intoxicating than the blissful feeling of new love. The future looks bright and hopeful with this new love in your life. Life has prepared you for this moment of commitment – right? No! Maybe! If you are unsure about being ready for this life changing event then read on and make sure you are prepared for the happily ever-after life.

The happily ever after dream…but, what is really in store for this new formed couple? Why is there so much doom and gloom? Well the stats say that almost half of marriages today will end in divorce. But does this need to happen to YOU? We say NO!

The top three rules to making a “happily ever after” life.

Rule #1. Have fun! Your getting married and you are probably having fun in the relationship. Great, remember this time in your life together and most importantly keep the fun in the relationship. The ‘fun’ might change as the years go by, but ‘fun’ is a key building block to a long healthy relationship.

Rule #2. Listen !! We mean really listen. When you are listening find a way to hold your partner important. Not more important than you, and not less either. When you hold each other important in any discussion you are really listening for your partner’s different view point. It’s really quite amazing what you might hear… even when you think you’ve heard it all before or you are so sure what they are going to say or do.

Rule #3. Don’t judge…Evaluate your relationship before marriage and in your marriage. Evaluating improves your chances for long-term success. There are three key criteria in particular to assess yourself, your general preparedness for a long loving and enduring marriage. These three key evaluation criteria are; 1. you, as an individual – your traits and skills to handle conflict, related stresses and communication, 2. you and your partner’s abilities to communicate with each other and 3. the situation in which you and your partner are currently influenced by, such as family history and significant role-models in your life. These three factors can predict marital dissatisfaction, satisfaction or long-term success of your relationship.

So, to help you and your partner, here is an exercise to assess your compatibility and competency to endure the relationship hurdles:

  1. List yours and your partner’s five most fun activities – any similarities?
  2. Discuss how well you know your partner as well as your own likes and dislikes.
  3. Look at how familiar you are with your partner’s current life-stressors, such as finances, job or career, weight and fitness, passions or interests, relatives and family commitments etc.       Shock or surprise by any of the answers?
  4. Understanding the expectations of each other. How accepting of the situation are you? Are you flexible, willing to adjust and adapt? If your partner didn’t change, could you live with that?

You can Beat the odds! Blair and I consistently heard from family and friends “don’t work together if you are married – that will only spell failure”. Absolutely no one around us had anything good to say about a husband and wife successfully working together, but here we are twenty-two years later in marriage and twenty years as business partners, we are still alive and well and in love!

There is lots of hope for any of you who believe – in yourselves and each other!


 

Blair and Melissa have been happily married for 22 years. Aside from being husband and wife they also run a business together, Results Now Inc. a coaching and training company and have done so for twenty years. Blair and Melissa live in Edmonton, Alberta with their two beautiful daughters. If you wish to learn more about Blair and Melissa’s training, you are welcome to contact them at 1-888-663-2047 or visit their business website at                                                                     www.resultsnowinc.com.

 

 

 

Relationships

Bliss After ‘I Do’

There was a moment, standing amid mountains of boxes and crumpled up newspapers that both Dave and Kate realized the honeymoon was definitely over.

The newlyweds who had just returned from a week of unadulterated bliss beneath a tropical sun, were still unpacking in their new apartment. Kate was deciding the layout of the kitchen, when Dave announced it was time to go to bed. “What?” exclaimed Kate, with a heavy box in her hands, “now?!”

It suddenly occurred to them that they’d never discussed bed times, or how Dave was a morning person. Kate by contrast, was a night owl who loved being up until the wee hours, reading or working on various projects.  She wanted to finish the kitchen; they were on a roll.

A discussion ensued, which would have put Spencer and Heidi (The Hills) to shame, all about schedules, priorities and, well, sleep habits.

Most couples discover soon after the wedding flowers have dried and the tuxedos have been returned that reality inevitably sets in. 

Turning the bliss of planning the biggest event in your life into a long-term, statistic-defying relationship takes a lot of work. Any couple will tell you, some days seem longer than others.

Before tying the knot, consider addressing the following points, which will help you stay happily married.

  • Be honest with yourself. Are you clear about why you’re getting married? Are you using marriage to escape from something in your life?  If you are getting married to leave home or avoid an unhappy family situation, you might want to re-examine why you’re really making such a big commitment and if it’s for the right reasons.
  • Sure you think you know your partner, but how well do you really know the person you’re committing your life to? Past behavior is a great predictor of future behavior. Knowing your partner well enough to have confidence how they’ll act in the future will certainly give you peace of mind before you say “I do”. You don’t have to hire a private investigator to get the low down, just ask.  Make some time in all of the busyness from the wedding for just the two of you.
  • Make an effort to get to know your spouse’s family and friends. Your future together will include a number of new people.  Have you met the important people in your future spouses’ life?  Have you introduced the people who are most important to you?
  • Learn to fight smart. If you aspire to be one of those imaginary couples who say they don’t fight, try a little reality check and actually learn how to fight properly. Understanding your partners’ conflict style and how to deal with conflict when it occurs will make a huge difference, when you have differing opinions.
  • Are you fitting time in to plan your marriage amongst all of the wedding plans? Taking a marriage preparation course will help you make the transition from happy couple to happily married friends and lifelong partners. A good marriage preparation course will help you discuss your values and beliefs, so you understand each other well and have a solid foundation for the future.
  • Have you left time to play? When couples get stressed, they forget some of the finer points about what brought them together. Schedule some play time scheduled before and after your nuptials.

Weddings are exciting, but marriage should be when the real excitement kicks in.

For Kate and Dave, learning how to respect each others’ styles was key to avoiding silly conflict. They’ve now been happily married – and sleep compatible – for eighteen years.

Marriage is one of the biggest personal investments you’ll ever make in your life. Make sure you’ve researched properly, asked the right questions and evaluated, and you will have a happy return on the deal.

Calgary Counselling Centre offers a Marriage Preparation Course that asks the right questions, helping you and your spouse start off on the right foot.  Marriage doesn’t necessarily bring you closer together; our Marriage Preparation Program does. Visit Calgary Counselling to register.

 

Money

Until Debt Do Us Part; Crash Cash Course

The financial discussions that you have before the wedding could be even more important than the wedding itself! Most couples fight and split due to that little thing called MONEY. If you have not taken the time to fully figure out how you’re going to manage your cash after the big day, then you’re in for some rough times.

Are romantic fairy tales dancing through your head, wedding bells ringing in your ears? While many couples get caught up in the excitement of planning their wedding, some forget to discuss the fundamentals of everyday life. Household chores, child rearing, even who picks up after the dog seems to take a front seat to financial planning. Often arguments over money lead to separation and even divorce. So if you haven’t taken the time to open up the lines of financial communication, make sure to do it soon.

Discussing money is the big scary conversation that most couples avoid and even dread to have with each other. By now you know your fiancé emotionally, even spiritually, but what about financially? Are you fully aware of each other’s spending habits, or debt situation?

We are all expected to be great at managing our money by the time we are adults, although very few of us are taught the proper and most effective ways. A limited understanding of money management often results in feelings of guilt, shame, frustration, and even anger. Some deal with this by leaving it for their partner to take care of, others just go shopping and say they will deal with it later. Avoiding the problem won’t make it go away; it will only get worse. This will eventually snowball out of control and suck you and your partner in.

Here are some quick questions that will get you started on your journey to financial freedom as a couple. Write down your answers separately and discuss them with your partner once you’re both finished.

If you had the money to do anything in the world, what would be first thing you would do?

How do you spend your money each month?

What have you always wanted but can’t afford?

Is there something you should be saving for but aren’t?

Do you like your current love nest or do you want to upgrade?

Have you been putting anything off due to money? (celebrations, trips, gifts, renovations)

Do you know where your partner spends his/her money?

What have you noticed about your partner’s spending that bothers you?

Take the following quiz to see where the two of you stand when it comes to spending.

Check which applies to… Definitely Him/Her Ok that’s me
I always look for the least expensive gift.
I can’t resist a bargain.
I don’t feel capable of handling my money.
I don’t know exactly how much I owe on my credit cards.
I don’t know how much money I have in the bank.
I have a hard time saving.
I lose valuable items.
I love having lots of money.
I love to shop.
I miss paying my bills on time.
I put off buying because I’m sure I can get it cheaper.
I’m afraid I won’t have enough money.
I’m always broke.
I know my credit rating.

Now that you’ve gotten a few things out in the open, it’s time to look deeper into both of your financial histories and explore your financial situation. Discuss things such as debt load, net worth, and monthly expenses; after that it’s budget time. A well thought out budget can not only cut down on squabbles but if planned correctly allow for extra indulgences that both of you are okay with. Once you have everything in order and are on the same page, contact a financial advisor. Advisors have access to great savings tips and can help get you started in the right direction.

Make a point to write down and review your spending on a regular basis as a couple. This will help pin point any areas of weakness or improvement for the two of you. Mostly importantly it will keep you on track and aid in avoiding overspending.

By keeping your finances in order you can focus on each other and your new marriage. If you are not comfortable with money management it’s ok to ask for help. Tell your partner how you feel and perhaps seek out a simple cash management course to beef up your knowledge setting you toward marriage bliss.

 

Jason M. Currey, Senior Financial Consultant

The Healthy Retirement Group Inc.

www.healthyretirement.ca

 

Relationships

Tips for Maintenance

Darren Jacklin offers 25 date night ideas to keep your relationships invigorating. From the most simple evenings at home to an elaborate surprise getaway, there is no limit on the ways to express your love.

From my experience, women want to feel radiance, light and energy in their lives. So after you are married, it’s critical to keep the romance and yumminess alive.  A simple way to do this is to schedule date nights and surprises into your calendars, especially if there are children involved.

  1. Guys, try saying this sometime: “You’ve got one hour to pack your bags. Don’t ask me where we are going, but we’ll be gone for the weekend. Everything is taken care of. Just pack your bags, and leave the rest to me. I’m going to give you the best weekend you have ever had in your life so far. “
  2. Volunteer for a worthy cause together. Hand out food at a homeless shelter, go and visit a senior citizens centre or children’s hospital, organize a fundraiser for a non-profit, or work at an animal shelter. You’ll spend time with each other, but you’ll also make a difference and help others.
  3. Go to a club and dance all night like you did when you were single – but this time dance with each other.
  4. Go for a walk at a nearby park together. Throw some coins in a fountain and make a wish.
  5. Make passionate and playful love and go all out. Wear sexy lingerie, send each other naughty text messages beforehand, light candles, throw rose petals on and around the bed, use edible body paints – whatever you must do to take the romance up a notch. It will be a night to remember.
  6. Get a couple’s massage at a spa. Relax and enjoy each other as you both get nurtured and taken care of for a few hours. This is a great way to bond with your spouse.
  7. Be a tourist in your own city, town or neighborhood. Go to one of the major sites like the museum, art gallery, park, or heritage site and take photos. Pretend you’re seeing this place again for the first time.
  8. Go pick a neighborhood and walk down streets that you have never been down before until you find a new restaurant or cafe.
  9. Plan a romantic vacation a year from now and then drop hints to your spouse about what you are going to do to them when you get there.
  10. Dress up and go out to a dinner theatre or comedy club. Afterward, check into a hotel and let your imagination run wild.
  11. Go on a wine tasting.
  12. Make out like teenagers on the couch.
  13. At your favorite local pub or bar, order a bottle of wine or champagne and flirt with each other all night long. If you’re into role playing, you could even take on different personas for the evening and act like you’ve just met. Stay in character until you get home and then delight in the benefits of marriage.
  14. Go for a day-long hike.
  15. Take a dance lesson together.
  16. Go on a dinner sunset cruise.
  17. Look at an open house, ask the realtor to give you a bit of time, and then dance together in the room where your bed would be.
  18. Get decked out and go out for dinner.
  19. Have a picnic together in your own living room or backyard.
  20. Turn off the television, radio, computer, cell phones, take off your wrist watches and all other distractions, and tell each other what you appreciate about one another for at least one hour.
  21. Go watch a sunset together.
  22. Go to a drive in movie theatre.
  23. Bubble bath for two with candles, champagne and chocolate-dipped strawberries.
  24. Make a finger-foods-only dinner and feed each other.
  25. Create a scavenger hunt around the house with little dollar store prizes or messages of love.

Darren Jacklin

Darren Jacklin is called a Mega Manifestor. Tell Darren what you really, really, REALLY want in your personal or professional life and he can show you how to get it!  For more than a decade, Darren Jacklin has dedicated his life to discovering the most advanced principles for producing accelerated change. A world-class professional speaker, corporate trainer, and author, he has motivated and inspired personnel from more than 130 Fortune 500 companies, as well as high school and professional athletes from more than 36 countries. His goal is to increase performance and production and to achieve more rounded, successful lives through a cooperative environment. Darren is in high demand internationally and also appears regularly on television and radio talk shows.  For more information on Darren Jacklin, visit   www.IdeaPartyEvents.com

Relationships

Relationship Revolution Sparked by Love

DO focus on what you want in your life, not what you don’t want – remember the law of attraction. You have the power to create the relationship, the life, and the love of your dreams – even if the world around you seems messed up, don’t lose your focus.

DO imagine that what you dream of is in your life now, and feel grateful for it now…and after that think of 10 more things to be grateful for and then ten more, always be grateful for your partner or some aspect of your relationship.

DO have fun. Life is about being happy. Don’t wait until you have this, or that…Don’t put off happiness. Live in the Now. Enjoy Life Now. Those little happy moments add up big in the happiness quote.

DO seek to discover the truth about the meaning of your life. The answers are there if you look for them. Awareness and peace of mind and soul are high on the vibration’s list.

DON’T give away your power to people. Take responsibility for your life. If things aren’t going as hoped in your life, re examine your deepest beliefs. Swap limiting beliefs for empowering ones.

DO watch movies that will make you feel good and energize you. Listen to music that fills you with positive emotions. Read books that empower you. (Control the input to your brain, and you’ll control your output).

DON’T watch the news on television. It is filled with negativity which lowers your vibrations. (Why is 95% of all news all the time focused on bad news?) If you want to keep abreast of current affairs search the internet for independent, unbiased news. Seek the truth. Trust your intuition. This will also help you give you a much more balanced view of reality. There’s lots of good news out there if you’re willing to look for it.

DO help other people. Join a group that helps humanity. Forgiveness, compassion and understanding are good vibrations. So share that spirit and spark of energy that comes from within.

DO use tools and strategies to help you achieve higher levels of consciousness, such as meditation, yoga, exercise or simply a few deep breaths.

DO get a pet! According to Power vs. Force, a purring cat vibrates at 500 (anything over 200 is Good)…my pet dog Angus & Perkio must vibrate at least 800 with their loving licks and devotion!