As I write this, I am enjoying a holiday in Western Australia. (‘Ahhh’, you say with just a hint of envy,’I so need a holiday’). Whilst I appreciate the opportunity to have an extended break from routine now, it took some effort to leave work behind (can you believe it?). I feel very passionate and absorbed in my business which drives me to keep pursuing growth and excellence. Now almost mid-way through my holiday break, I wonder why I found it so hard to come away from work. I feel relaxed, I am enjoying spending time with my husband and I am surrounded by the Australian bush landscape in all its vastness and beauty.
Relationship repair begins at the place where, you turn towards each other again and recall your past relationship, reflect on your present relationship and reinforce your future relationship.
Recall your past relationship
By sharing happy memories, the feelings you experienced at the time such as happiness, warmth and love, are evoked and experienced in the present, serving to reinforce your couple connection. These moments offer an invitation for you as a couple to revisit and reflect upon the goals you have achieved as a couple, acknowledging disappointments, grieving loss together and reminding each other of the challenging times that you overcame together.
Reflect on your present relationship
Frequently as time progresses, couples become distant from each other due to the responsibilities and demands of life; children, ageing parents, heavy work loads, commitments to various community groups, financial concerns, and unexpected illness are just some examples of the numerous demands that compete for your attention. Couple relationships frequently lose their way as a result of neglect, making it vulnerable to serious long-term damage. Having time to relax, have fun together and reconnecting around shared memories facilitates a safer and calmer space to share ‘who we are now’.
If your couple connection has weakened over a period of time, it is easy for the conversation to take on a negative and blaming tone. Agree to reflect upon the strengths of your present relationship. Taking the time to write down and compare your priorities is a helpful way to stimulate conversation around individual needs verses shared needs and what each of you would choose to do differently to nurture the couple relationship. Make a pledge to listen respectfully to each other and explore how, as a couple, you could have a ‘win-win’ situation. The answer may take time to emerge, so learn to be patient with the process and expect that you may have a number of conversations over this before you come to the solution.
Reinforce your future relationship
When was the last time you dreamed together? Remembering the dreams you once shared as a couple evokes feelings of hope, optimism and anticipation. This has the potential to be a fertile space for new possibilities to emerge, injecting renewed energy and hope into a formerly uninviting future together.
- Intentionally choosing to schedule quality time and a ‘safe’, inviting space where you can learn to ‘turn towards each other’ underpins this three-fold formula for relationship repair. Regular weekly ‘dates’, monthly day retreats, extended vacation periods; whatever your particular lifestyle allows, these are all opportunities, not only for relationship repair but also for ongoing growth and relationship wellbeing.
Are you trying to repair your relationship? Contact Colleen on 0434 337 245 or Duncan on 0434 331 243 for a FREE 10 minute consultation on how we can best help you or book online now.