Marriage & Relationship Advice
Universal Laws for Relationships
The Law of Forgiveness - A successful relationship requires forgiveness. The act of forgiving can release both of you from the pain of the offense, and allow the relationship to grow on from there.
The Law of Empathy - Empathy does not mean that you agree with how another person views the world, nor does it mean that you see the world in the same way. Empathy does mean the unique skill of being able to see the world through the eyes of the other person.
The Law of Automatic - The late columnist Sydney Harris said: “Almost no one is foolish enough to imagine that they automatically deserve great success in any field of activity; yet almost everyone believes they automatically deserve success in marriage.” I remember thinking that since I have this license that says I’m a marriage and family therapist, I knew how to “do marriage.” Boy, was I wrong.
The Law of Resources - I’ve heard so many of my older clients say some version of this: “I wish we had the same resource available when we got married that are available now.” So don’t take your current resources for granted. Read a book, go to a seminar, listen to a tape, see a marriage therapist. Use your resources.
The Law of Coaching - Great teams have great coaches. Find a coach for your relationship. A coach can be a professional marriage coach, a mentor couple, or a couple you know that has a relationship that you admire.
The Law of Conflict - As I’ve said before, conflict in marriage is inevitable. It’s how, and if, you handle the conflict that makes the difference.
The Law of Resolution - Successful conflict resolution can be achieved only when you put the relationship over the conflict and the need to be right.
The Law of Service - So many times, we go into marriage thinking about what’s in it for me. If you really want a radically good marriage, commit to serving or outserving your partner.
The Law of Differences - You may have noticed by now that your spouse looks different than you. You also may have noticed that they think, feel, and perceive the world differently than you. The important thing is to understand, appreciate, and work with the differences.
The Law of Vision - There is a proverb that says “without a vision, the people perish.” The same can be said about many couples. Most people go into marriage and just sort of make it up as they go along. What kind of relationship do you want? What kind of couple do you want to be? How do we want to handle conflict, money, planning for the future, etc? Asking these questions, and many others, will get you started on your “relationship vision.”
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