Avoid the next argument with these simple tips for diffusing a disagreement.
How do we know the difference between a rough patch in an otherwise healthy relationship, versus the emergence of toxicity?
You have a right to feel what you feel. You have a right to be loved, respected, and feel in control of your own life. Your partner does too.
While it may be impossible to try and change them, there are things you can do to help yourself when dealing with them.
It’s okay to move on and focus on what is working for you, right?
Learn to begin working through baggage of past betrayals, in order to be able to move forward and trust again where it is deserved.
Learn to break the pursue-withdraw pattern and replace it with a cycle that’s supportive, loving, and nurturing.
The hardest part of implementing parenting strategies that will work is to be consistent with them.
We all hit a point in our relationship where we’re out of the honeymoon phase and may feel like we are stuck in a rut. Sometimes life gets busy, and you don’t set aside time for your relationship. It’s okay; this happens to everyone. So how can you connect with your partner again and regain that spark?
How can you be assertive, respectful, and firm without incurring the dreaded title of Bridezilla?
I am fairly confident I am not the only one who feels a bit of excitement/relief when a plan with a friend gets canceled.
This is not because I don’t want to spend time with said friend, but it means I don’t have to socialize, can stay home and snuggle my dog, and don’t have to feel guilty that the plans didn’t work out.
However, when the time comes and I am the one who wants to cancel plans because I simply don’t feel like socializing, I automatically feel a sense of guilt take over and my thoughts begin to race. Will they be mad? Do I seem unreliable? What if I miss out? What if they choose to not make plans anymore with me?
He’s been gone a long time. So long that you can’t even remember the span of time, the days and weeks that he has been gone. Maybe you don’t want to know because it’s more final to know that number.
It’s too hard to accept that there have been so many mornings where you have woken up and he hasn’t, so many storms you couldn’t text him about, so much news that he doesn’t get to hear, or so many texts he never got to send that would make you feel better about losing him.
So, you’ve found the person you want to spend the rest of your life with. Congratulations! After you become engaged, life can feel surreal and be overwhelmingly happy. Then comes thinking about who you will invite, the venue, the food, and the money. It can begin to look daunting, and suddenly instead of wedding bells in the distance, all you can hear are anxiety sirens.
So how can you plan a wedding that doesn’t cost you your mental health?
First off, remember why you are getting married. For most people, it’s to spend the rest of your life with someone you love. At the end of the day, that’s all that matters; that you two can get married and be happy. But for everything else that comes with a wedding, here are 5 tips to help you stay sane.
Maybe you’ve known for years that your child is transgender, and you’re now looking for more information to navigate the teen years. Or, maybe your teen has just come out as trans, and you are feeling a little lost and curious about how to best support them. This article offers some key definitions and tips for loving and raising trans teens, and also provides a suggested list of books you may find helpful.
On the eve of Valentine’s Day, do yourself a favour and take a hard look at your expectations, because you may be causing unnecessary suffering.
I once got upset at a boyfriend because he took me to a carnival and couldn’t win me one of those huge stuffed animals. I couldn’t figure out why I was so upset. I went silent around him until he got upset at me and had to defend the fact that those games are rigged and why in the world was I so bothered by it. Then I realized that movies have conditioned me to believe that it was a rite of passage that your boyfriend will win you a huge teddy bear at a carnival.
Technology seems to be dominating our lives today. Whether it is your cell phone, computer, PlayStation, TV, or anything else, we are always surrounded by it.
Don’t get me wrong, I love watching Netflix and checking Facebook; I’m not a technology hater. However, I have noticed that a common theme among people today, myself included, is that technology is beginning to interfere with our relationships.
If you were to add up the time you spend using technology throughout the day, you would probably be surprised by just how often you’re on it. Many people can’t even make it through a meal without checking their phone. When we see everyone else checking their phone, we then feel compelled to check ours. Instead of talking with each other face-to-face, we bury ourselves in our technology.
When we are continually using technology in the presence of others, we are ignoring them. While you may be listening, to them it looks like you are more interested in what is on your phone than what they have to say. Remember how you have felt when you’ve been ignored. Were you hurt, angry, sad, frustrated? All of those are valid responses. While this may be annoying when you’re trying to have a normal conversation with someone, imagine if they are trying to talk to you about something important. Then it may feel like you are ignoring their feelings, or worse, that Facebook is more important than them. When this happens frequently, the person may just stop trying to engage with you.
This ultimately causes a rift in relationships - when we feel like we can’t express our thoughts and feelings because the other person is too busy being lost in technology. We end up burying these feelings which eventually can turn into resentment and anger. If these feelings are not dealt with, it can ruin a relationship.
How can we fix this?
According to the dictionary, communication is a means of connection between people. However, communication is so much more complex than that. It can be direct or indirect, it can be written or oral and there can be many subtleties, variables and factors. Communication is a difficult task for many of us. Sometimes we struggle to explain ourselves, or to have others understand our feelings or needs. Sometimes we might get angry or frustrated when trying to share opinions or perspectives with others. Sometimes we keep things to ourselves for the sake of keeping the peace. Do any of these sound familiar to you?
If so, don’t fret! The goal of effective communication is to minimize misunderstandings and overcome barriers in communicating with others. Luckily, I have some information to impart that can help you to communicate more clearly, calmly and efficiently—ultimately leading to strengthening your relationships with others.
Assertive communication is an interaction style which can help you to ensure things are fair, that you can express yourself clearly and confidently and can actually help to build your self-esteem! This approach to communication can make it more likely to have your needs met within an interaction as you are expressing yourself in a direct manner while also being fair to others.
Is it common for you to be disappointed or upset by what people do?
If you feel unfairly targeted, criticized, or downright disliked by others a lot of the time, there’s a good chance that you’re suffering a lot more than you should, because you’re taking things personally.
As it was so eloquently written about by Seija Grant in her “People are not against you, they are for themselves” article, we often forget that people are much more focused on themselves than on us, just like we are more focused on our own lives and feelings than we are on others. And that’s pretty normal. In fact, the more intense one’s personal suffering, the more difficult it is to consider the world beyond their own headspace.
To personalize something is to make it about, or for, you, like things engraved with your name on them, or the way a room can be decorated to make you happy by reflecting your own likes and dislikes.
But personalizing is also a way of taking a situation, running it through the grinder of our perceptions, assumptions, and beliefs, and then making it about US.
What is a boundary?
A boundary is an invisible border or limit where one person ends and the other person begins. Boundaries are defined by our own personal limits, values, beliefs, and life experiences. Sometimes when someone makes you feel uncomfortable or hurts you they may have crossed your personal boundary. Boundaries teach others how much they can talk with you, how much they can touch you, or how they can treat you.
Have you ever thought… Am I in a healthy relationship? If so, here is a guideline to help you find out. Keep in mind, not every box needs to be checked. This is only a list that can help you be reminded of some of the indications of a healthy relationship.
Ok…kidding, not an actual psycho, but you know what I mean. We’re talking about someone who is extremely challenging to deal with, who knows which buttons to press, and always seems to get involved in your business somehow.
I know it’s tempting to engage with their baiting behaviour, to take out your anger and frustration at them, to fight back or lash out. Let us help you by recommending some alternatives that will reduce the impact this person is having wreaking havoc on your life.
Here are some tips that may be useful:
This article topic was requested and I have been thinking long and hard about the meaning of this quote, and how to discuss it. I have recently come across examples of people making decisions to further their careers, or make steps towards their goals that as a side effect, harm others. When I say harm others, I do not mean bodily harm, but more of an emotional wound, relational injury or impacting others’ beliefs. Some of the sentiments related to this topic that have been relayed to me include: hurt feelings, breach of trust, and feeling as though they have been stabbed in the back. None of these things have a positive impact on a person, unless it is to increase their resilience. However, if you are one of these people who have been affected by another’s decision to better themselves, then I have some recommendations that you may want to try out to ease the pain.
I may start sounding like a broken record, but I truly believe we need more of this in our world: try on some empathy for size. What I mean by that is, put yourself in the other’s shoes. Can you see how they might have come to this decision? Do you think they intended to hurt you personally? Might this have been a once in a lifetime opportunity for them? Usually, this technique can help us to understand both sides of the story instead of being stuck in a one-sided loop, creating more resentment and anger towards the situation and the person who had ‘wronged’ you. Also, it is a great exercise to practice that may cause you to have a deeper understanding of the human psyche.
Another idea is not to take it personally. Of course, this is easier said than done. As humans we are hard-wired for survival…however, sometimes these reflexes work to our detriment. If a person has wronged us, we are weary to let them do it again by putting up walls to protect ourselves. Learning from our mistakes is a great thing, but not if it means closing yourself off to the world. Instead of keeping it to yourself, isolating, brooding, emotional stuffing, or passive aggressive behavior—try talking about it to someone you trust, increasing your positive relations with people in your life. However, there is a thin line. Some venting can be beneficial, but don’t become engulfed in the negativity--get it out and move on. Try to challenge yourself by coming up with a different way you may be able to view the situation, such as finding a silver lining, or a positive flip-side. Changing your negative thoughts to a more positive framework can go a long way in increasing your overall happiness.
"I was so good to him! I did everything I could to be a good girlfriend and now he seems so much happier with someone else. Am I broken? What is wrong with me?"
Do you remember building puzzles as a kid?
Sometimes you’d find two pieces that fit together so well that they had to be right. But…the pictures didn’t line up.
No matter what you did, they just didn't fit.
You'd look around the table, searching through a sea of other pieces that just weren't right, and you were convinced that the ones in your hand had to fit, out of necessity, out of a lack of options, or because you just wanted them to.
Every living person looks for connection. We all want to be understood; many of us long for that one person who will make us feel complete. And sometimes, just when you think you’ve found the person, they leave.
If they go off and find someone with whom they connect deeply, that does not, and SHOULD not, impact your value as a human being.
As much as you might have wanted the connection to work, it didn't. The puzzle pieces didn't fit together.
It's not a matter of someone being better or worse, valued, or valueless.
You’re not for them. And that’s okay. You fit better somewhere else.
Written for you, by therapists.
NWO’s source for all things relationships, mental health, wellness, and lifestyle: Kelly Magazine is a mental health outreach initiative created by Kelly Mental Health and supported by Kelly Mental Health Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the community in the area of mental health.
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