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Eye Contact is the Morse Code of Love

15 Nov
Author: Bagande

Image via Wikipedia

I’m a people watcher.  I love going into restaurants and watching couples interact. It’s often a telltale sign of the type of relationship they have.  For instance couples that hardly speak a word to each other during the entire time that they are eating, I often wonder how long they’ve been married.  Or when I see a couple that when seated at a booth, choose to sit next to each other rather than across from each other, I wonder if they just started dating.  One of Dr. B’s favorite sayings is, “that’s an outward sign of an inward condition.”  Which I truly believe holds true for married couples.  Have you ever been at a party or social gathering and know that a couple came together, but they limited interaction doing the entire event?  Do you pick up on those types of signs?  I often wonder if as time goes by, do most couples lose the fire, or do the sparks begin to fade?  Maybe they just aren’t in love with each other anymore…

A study that was published in Journal of Personality and Social Psychology in 1970 titled: Measurement of Romantic Love determined that the way to tell if a couple is in love is to watch their eye contact.  It was stated that:

Normally two people in conversation give each other eye contact anywhere from 30-60% of the time, but couples who are in love look at each other 75% of the time during conversation and are slower to break their look away from each other when interrupted.

Speaking from past experience, it makes perfect sense. If you don’t like someone, much less love them, you surely don’t want to be around that person and you’re not going to staring into their eyes.  Things like eye contact, holding hands, packs on the cheek, pats on the butt… those little things hold a lot of meaning in a relationship.  Each couple has their own little’ intimates’, which is what I call those physical interactions that keep you feeling connected to your loved one.  Your own Morse code of sorts.

What signs or ‘intimates’ have you witnessed in a short-lived or lasting relationship?  Do you and your loved one have a Morse code?

Natasha

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5 Steps To Avoid A Holiday Blowup

9 Nov

The holidays are fast approaching.  In 14 days Thanksgiving will be upon us. As most of us experience, especially Newlyweds, the holidays can cause stress and strain on any

A metaphorical visualization of the word Anger.

relationship.  Whether it’s an old family dispute, inviting in-laws into your home, or cooking for a house-full of people holiday stress is sometimes inevitable.  Unfortunately, stress doesn’t come and go unnoticed, with stress comes anger, blow ups, and hurt feelings. Most women are masters of holding back from their loved ones when they are hurt, angry, or irritated.  But, it has been scientifically proven that it can be harder for men to calm down than it is for women.  Which may cause a person to explode at the wrong time, such as sitting around the Thanksgiving table. The key to avoiding this holiday horror is to not let those feelings fester, by telling your loved one how you feel.

Dr. Nancy Zapolski, a psychologist states that the key to telling a loved one you angry is to remember that “The intention is not to get something off your chest or to dump something on the other person,” she says. “The intention is to restore the affinity and the love in the relationship.”

So how does one go about doing that? Back in April I read an article on Wall Street Journal.com, Friendly Fight: A Smarter Way to Say ‘I’m Angry’.  I thought the steps outlined in the article would be the perfect approach to take in order to avoid a holiday blowup.  Here are 5 steps:

1. Calm down. Take a walk, or get some sleep, to get perspective and allow your emotions to cool. Think about exactly what disappointed you. Ask the other person to talk. Say, ‘When is a convenient time?’

2. Acknowledge the difficulty of having this conversation. ‘This is hard for me to say, and it may be hard for you to hear.’ Saying this out loud will make your words less threatening and defuse the other person’s anger and their possibly defensive reaction.

3. Say ‘I,’ not ‘you.’ Don’t say, ‘You did ___ wrong.’ Say, ‘I felt hurt when you did___.’ ‘When you accuse someone, they have to fight back,’When you share what you feel underneath, it gives the other person some room.’

4. Find out why. Ask for the other person’s point of view. Say, ‘I know you probably didn’t mean to hurt me. Why did you do it?’ Really listen to the answer.

5. Say everything. This is your chance to put it all on the table and talk about how you can change the situation in the future. ‘Could you please do this differently next time?’ A hug wouldn’t hurt.

Enhanced by ZemantaWhat do you think, will they work?  How do you express stress or anger?
Natasha

The Power of Gratitude in Relationships

18 Oct

A four-year research study found that gratitude contributes to a mutual process of relationship maintenance, in which each partner’s maintenance behaviors, perceptions of responsiveness, and feelings of gratitude feed back on and influence the other partner’s behaviors, perceptions, and feelings.  In other words when a spouse felt gratitude towards the other, and they expressed that gratitude in some external way, this outward expression produced and influenced the other spouse’s feelings and behaviors of gratitude.  This process between the two spouses was like a continuous feedback loop because gratitude motivates partners to engage in relationship maintenance.

Feeling gratitude without expressing it, is like wrapping a present and not giving it.

After reading this article, I started thinking about my relationship with my husband.  I examined my acts of gratitude and relationship maintenance.  I believe I am consistent and sincere when I express how much I appreciate him and everything he does for me.  I am conscious of my behavior simply because my husband constantly shows me gratitude and I want to do the same to him.  Actually he is good at showing everyone (who deserves it) gratitude.  Anyone that knows him will attest to that. Based on this research, I’m sure that I conscientiously show him gratitude in many ways, because it is a natural response to his gratuitous behavior towards me.

So, the next time someone does something nice for you, don’t forget express your gratitude…it’s as easy as saying Thank You!

Marriage is Like Running

3 Oct

As long as I can remember I’ve been a runner.  As a child I loved running and racing, and now as an adult I couldn’t imagine enjoying anything more except for being married.  Running is hard, very hard a times.  It’s much more mental for me than most would believe.  The night before, I mentally set precedence for the mileage I will run the next day.  If I’m feeling tired, then I mentally calculate how I will feel the next day during my run, and thus set a mileage goal.  The same goes with being married.  I decide if I want to get an attitude about something, or if I want to approach my husband as an adult and tell him what’s bothering me…it’s all mental.

Sometimes, I will have my mind-set on something, like what I think we should or shouldn’t do as a couple.  Then a funny thing will happen, just like during a run I realize, I have sold myself short.  Instead of only doing 3 miles, I feel good enough to continue and push through to 5 miles.  Instead of being one tracked and thinking I know best all the time, I realize I have actually limited our growth as a couple because I was too stubborn to see past me.  During those times, I reset my thinking to that which is essential to our goals as a couple and my growth as a wife.

So you see, for me running/marriage are both very similar.   They are repetitive, pleasurable, and with practice you get better over time.  Running/marriage feel great on good days, sometimes painful on those occasional ‘not so good’ days, and just right on those ‘in between’ days.  But I stay focused and continue to progress as a wife and as a runner, because they are a part of who I am, what I love, and what I believe in.

Enhanced by ZemantaWhat aspect of your life do you believe is similar to marriage?

Back to Blogging

8 Aug

When blogging began to feel like a job, meaning I began to stress about finding subjects talk about, comments counts, and track backs, I decided to ‘quit’.  During my blogging hiatus there have been several events that have occurred, that have altered the course of this newlywed’s life, such as: selling our house, the death of my father-n-law, and our decision to become debt-free by year-end. These events, culminated with other, others have opened me up to many different experiences, for which I will forever be thankful.

Life as Mrs. Williams has been wonderful!  We celebrated our one year anniversary on May 28th, and it was (for lack of a better word) awesome!  My husband is the best! He continuously inspires me to be the best wife I can be.  He encourages my latest obsessions and passions with genuine interest and enthusiasm.

I want to thank the many people who reached out to me via email and or Facebook to make sure all was well in my life.  I really appreciate your thoughtfulness and kind words.  How cool it is for people you have never met to show care and concern?  Wow! has the world changed…for the better.

I’m looking forward to blogging about my latest adventures, projects, and passions, so stay tuned….

Facebook “Friends” and Divorce

1 Feb
Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...

Image via CrunchBase

A few weeks ago for class assignment, I was researching the percentage of divorces that were attributed to Facebook.  I was designing a study to measure the correlation between divorce and Facebook use.  I found several articles here and here about the link (or possible link) between Facebook and divorce.

The article in the Telegraph states:

The most common reason seemed to be people having inappropriate sexual chats with people they were not supposed to.

Flirty emails and messages found on Facebook pages are increasingly being cited as evidence of unreasonable behaviour.

I was wondering if this is actually true?  Is the average Joe or Jane actually using FB to cheat?  If I were putting together a web-survey here are a few questions I would include:

Do you know anyone that divorce or even broke-up because of Facebook?

Was the inclination to cheat already present, and Facebook added fuel to the fire?

Are women more likely to cheat using FB as opposed to men?

Is there a link between the number of “friends” and the cheating? (ie. the more friends a person has, the more likely that person is to cheat)

What do you think, what’s your opinion on this topic?

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His Needs: The Top Five

28 Jan
Cover of "His Needs Her Needs"

Cover of His Needs Her Needs

Two weeks ago I blogged about Women’s Top 5 Needs in a Relationship according to Willard Harley’s book, His Needs Her Needs. This week it’s the men’s turn. We all know marriage is a two-way street. It’s not take, take, take.  There is a ton of giving involved too.  But giving in vain is fruitless.  You have to know what your spouse needs.

While reading through the book, I was surprised that need #2 and #4 were listed in the top five. But, Dr. B wholeheartedly agrees, what would your husband say?   How does Harley’s top 5 compare to your husband’s?  Have you talked about his needs?  Here is Harley’s list:

1. Sexual Fulfillment: It goes without saying, men need a frequent sex life.

2. His  wife to be a recreational playmate: Husband’s would rather have their wives along doing recreational things that they enjoy, just like in the beginning of the relationship. (Remember those relationship building dates you would go on such as hiking, biking, or watching a baseball game?)

3. Have an attractive wife: Men are visually oriented (nuff said)  Keep it tight ladies 🙂

4. Domestic Support: A man desires order in his home, it helps simplify their lives so that they can focus on working to support their families.

5. Admiration: Men long to be admired my the opposite sex, it inspires them.

How Marriage Works.com does a great job explaining each of the needs for both men and women.

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