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What happens when your energy is focussed on avoiding pain

We are designed to avoid pain.  Therefore very often we focus our energy on this one important aspect of our lives.  Avoid pain whenever possible. The problem with this, within a relationship, is we forget about gaining pleasure. Many people in pain will do anything to avoid more.  This is quite understandable.  Their actions though can be destructive.  Their behaviours can change drastically as they close themselves down to 'keep themselves from feeling more pain'.  This stops them from … [Read more...]

Who Taught you about Relationships?

We learn from those around us and those trained to teach us.  From our teachers in our early years we learnt how to read, write, and add up etc We also learnt from others around us.  Our parents.  The parents of our friends.  Our friends. We continue to learn every day.  Be it when we take up a new hobby or within the work environment when we are taught new skills. We rely on experts to care for our needs - doctors, dentists, even pilots to take us on our overseas holidays.  All these … [Read more...]

How do you get from pain to happiness

One of the frequent questions I get asked by couples is how do we get from pain to happiness.  What did we do to end up here? I see many couples and individuals who tell me one thing only to focus on the opposite. "I want to be closer to my partner" "I want to let go of the pain" "I want to stop the arguments we keep having" They then rerun past arguments; accuse their partner of a variety of failings and so give themselves more pain and move further away from the happiness they … [Read more...]

All relationships need growth

In today's post I want you to think about this question: Have you planned for future growth? What does your future look like for you? By this I mean your future with your partner.  Your future in your relationship. Do you have a dream for your future? When you first got together did you have a plan beyond getting married (or just being together) and maybe having children? If your answer is Yes  - then my next question is "Are you still following your plan for your future?" If your … [Read more...]

Why raking over the past is not a good idea

A number of clients who seek my help arrive wanting to go over and over what's happened in the past - sometimes in minute detail.  What has happened is important but repeatedly raking over past arguments or other negative events will only trigger the emotions you felt at the time. We all attach emotions to our memories - emotions help us remember events.  So bringing up past negative events will trigger the same negative emotions.  Resentments get stacked and emotions escalate. Raking over … [Read more...]