5 Simple Ways of Reconnecting with Your Partner

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happy-couple-uk-blog-relationship-adviceOften we become so overwhelmed by the flying tempo of life that we forget how caring and attentive we should be towards partners. Often it is hard to stay on top of your own life let alone following what’s going on in our spouse’s life. It doesn’t make you a bad person if you forgot your partner had an important day at work, or was going on a business trip in couple of days. We are humans with our own moods and feelings, and it is not easy to keep up with everything, while still staying a loving and mindful partner.

So, what’s the difference between happy couples and the rest of them. Why some people stay seemingly happy and engaged which each other while other being dragged further and further apart.

It is very simple. Happy couples don’t differentiate between your life and mine, they focus on WE instead of I. What it means is you have to stay involved in your partner’s life in a very delicate and positive manner, being supportive, ready to either share a disappointment or delight in their life. When times get tough you should be there to offer a shoulder to cry on, when anything great happens you should be there to celebrate together no matter how insignificant this might seem at first sight. Sounds very simple, right? Yet, many couples seem to live a separate life after a few years into marriage/ partnership, ignoring that every little detail matters. Because it creates an invisible, but very strong connection between the partners, which provides a feeling of safety and stability in their relationship.

If you feel your two are on edge of losing this connection, here are a few tips as a reminder of your significance to each other:

– Make sure you know what is going on in your partner’s life, what stresses he or she has to deal with, be up to date with their events at either work or private life like hobby or social activity of theirs. It is easier than you think, for example, you can keep reminders in your phone’s calendar! Or, if you are at that stage already – create a shared calendar for you two where you can see what’s upcoming in each other’s lives.

– Remember all significant people in their life (not talking about family, those you should remember by default 🙂 ) – close friends, colleagues they cannot stop talking about or an annoying boss. It would be nice if every time your partner mentions someone in a conversation, he or she doesn’t have to explain you, who that is.

– If you don’t know yet – get to know what’s your partner’s favourite meal or restaurant, favourite movie, hobby or preferred time spending, favourite flowers (for her) and so on. So next time when you want to make anything special for them, you have plenty of options to choose from!

– Keep the happiness journal or positive emotions account. Remember what makes him or her happy. And whenever needed – add a point to this account. It is not a competition, but to make a happy couple you both should first – know how to give and only then – accept something in return.

-Be aware of one another’s aspirations and dreams. I already highlighted the important of being together on a journey to your biggest achievements (never give up your dreams). You need to know who your partner wants to become, and reassure them you’d love them even more when this happens.

Stay connected and be a truly happy couple!
Olga happycoupleuk.com

Allowing Little Surprises and Big Dreams to Come True

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Happy-couple-uk-relationship-coach-romeRaff and I have always been of an opinion that life is there for joy and pleasure and not for stress and frustration. To be completely honest, Raff has lived by this principle all his life, but I have only learnt from him in the recent couple of years. Apparently, life appears to be much easier than I’d always imagined, and living in ”today” is not such a bad habit in the end. I am not saying we don’t care about the future, even the opposite – we plan more accurately than ever and make everything we want happen, while avoiding anxiety and fear of disappointment.

I used to think life was unfair when I didn’t have everything I desired right there and then. While now I know that I am already doing everything to get that what I want, therefore I don’t need to worry, because I will definitely get there one day, just need some patience.

Applying this approach to life, we like making our married life more fun and adventure, we try to make sure each of us receives what he likes the most (or as least 4 times a week if you know what I mean 🙂 ). Sometimes compromise is easy to find, but at times, we might need to try harder.Happy-couple-uk-relationship-coach
Our recent trip to Rome proved to be a great deal for both of us. We planned it a few months in advance and I was so looking forward to it, or better say we both were looking forward, but just to two different things. Raff was getting what he likes most – plenty of Italian wine and food, and I had to go to my favourite Italian band’s concert and practice Italian language.

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It was a very short 2 days trip, that’s why we agreed on all the places we would go to and how we’d spend our time and, as the result, we both got the most out of this trip! Even though slightly tiring, it was a fantastic dream coming true and we are happy we allow such mini-breaks from the usual environment, because it makes life what it is – variety, freedom, amusement and discovery.

What about 150 flavours of an ice-cream! 🙂

Happy-couple-uk-relationship-coachOlga happycoupleuk.com

How to Make the Right Love Choice? Stop Living Your Stories and Take Action Now!

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Happy-couple-uk-relationship-adviceWe all have stories we tell ourselves. Whether positive or negative, they affect our life without us even realizing it. Very often I hear – “Oh, there are just not enough good men out there!”, or “Or girls are mean and nagging” or “No one would ever love me, I am just not good enough” and so on. This might come from our history, life perception, or in worst case scenario – from our social circle’s opinions about us. Too often people make premature judgements and bring up their “clever assumptions” not knowing how hurtful or even damaging it can be to the other person. For example, my grandmother used to tell me I would never get married because I was left-handed. It was an old belief in Soviet Union that all people must be equal, i.e. in my case, write with right hand! Not going into detail how ridiculous this was, but I truly believed for a long time that this was an issue on the way to my happy future. I thought I only had to look for a left-handed boy so he wouldn’t think I was odd. But there weren’t many of them around, so it seriously limited my choices of a life partner (at 15 J). Luckily enough, being a smart girl, I didn’t believe that for too long. But one story was quickly replaced by another. I put another stamp on myself called “slightly overweight” (relatively popular among girls I shall say). For a long time I told myself I had no chances in love life because of this. Being happily married for 3 years now, I am glad I screwed all my stories and eventually became a great believer there was more for me in this world than I could see.

Watching this video yesterday reminded me of all my friends, who still nurture their stories and as the result fall deeper and deeper in the acceptance of loneliness and settling with their fate. While, all what’s needed is action. In her talk, Amy Webb proves there is no shame in trying too hard or expecting someone to love you for who you are. There is nothing wrong with finding what suits you. In fun and, in a way, academic approach she shows how she found the one she wanted to share her life with and create a happy healthy relationship. It demonstrates again, the better you are aware of who you are looking for, the more chances you have to create a true connection with this person, and then build a happy future together.

Society sets too many limits and idealistic beliefs in our minds. That if I haven’t met “the one” till the age of 30, I’m probably never going to. Or, if I don’t get married in university, my life would turn in home-work-home hell and then it will be too late (this is also one of my long lasting stories form the past). What a nonsense. There are always ways to make yourself happy; you just need to do something about it. You are the only one responsible for your success as well is failure in love. And the longer your procrastinate, telling another story to yourself, the harder it would be to break the habit of loneliness and disconnection.

So, stop your inner dialogue right now and take the first step!

Olga happycoupleuk.com

5 Secrets of Effective Communication for Couples

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Happy Couple Romantic Gifts for couplesAs people meet and fall in love, they go on dates, get to know each other better, cannot live a day without being together. It seems, yes! here is the one I’ve been looking for all my life and he or she understands me like no one else. However, once they get married or start living together, all of a sudden some problems start arising. And, ironically enough, communication becomes one of top problems in long term relationships.

Why is that two people who are in love and were certain they found a soulmate, cannot talk to the same beloved person without anger, frustration or disappointment. Why they start criticising each other, making fun of each other’s insecurities and complain to their friends that married life is far from what they expected.

In many cases, all comes down to unwillingness to accept an alternative point of view. People are selfish by nature and admitting their mistakes is a painful hit for their self-esteem. Even more so, some people accept their opinion as the only right one and existence of any other one in this regard might take them by surprise.

Only when couple decides to share a lifetime together, they come to realise this is where the real challenge begins. To find the right person is only half of the path, but “happily ever after” involves way more than that. For marriage to thrive husband and wife have to build a rich understanding between each other as a base for their further growth as a couple. Therefore, they need to learn to avoid common patterns in their communication and be attentive to each other’s needs.

  • Complain but don’t criticize. It is expected to have some level of discontent when two persons have different approach to handling life situations, but it is important to recognize it, discuss it together and find a solution. Rather than falling into a wave of criticism of one another and making the situation only worse.
  • Understanding first, solution second. It is tempting to jump in with conclusions when your partner tries to explain the problem to you, but instead demonstrate your understanding of her arguments, and only then try to offer an advice.
  • Don’t turn into defence. Every time you have an argument, make a notice of your language – do you try to defence yourself from your partner’s complaints? Has this approach been effective so far? Well, it is not. The more defensive tactic you use the more it looks like you try to accuse your partner in the problem instead.
  • Sarcasm doesn’t help anyone. Relationship is already delicate enough to make it unstable with another attempt of the power demonstration. Sarcasm only proves your insecurity and cry for attention. There is no place for it where love and deep respect of each other are basics of the relationship.
  • Compromise and negotiate. The core of couple’s satisfaction in communication is not in pointing on each other’s faults and try to change them, but in negotiating and finding a common ground in order to conform each other. The secret here is to stay open-minded to your partner’s suggestions and then decide what suits you two best.

Olga happycoupleuk.com

Why Are We Staying in the Non-Working Relationship? Stop Coming Up With Excuses!

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thinking womanWhether your partner doesn’t show up to a date, forgets about your birthday, or has no time for you at all, stop coming up with excuses of his busyness, tiredness or whatever it might be. He or she is just irresponsible and not attentive enough therefore is not worth your pain.

There is no reason for you to fall a victim to the circumstances and accept someone treating you worth than you deserve. Most of the time people with lower self-esteem or many failures in the past relationships are ready to sacrifice anything for the next one to work, even if it means letting yourself down and agree to much less than they were dreaming about.

We think we know our partner well enough and believe in him, in his future improvements and successes, but time flies and nothing changes. You hear the same stories and promises, keep fighting about the same issues, and it looks like a never-ending cycle. While the thing is, we often mistakenly fall in love with our partner’s potential but not with the reality. We convince ourselves that he is capable of much more than he does, and maybe he indeed is, but he doesn’t want to do anything about it.

There is no such thing like “changing someone” until he wants to change himself. Many people, and more so women, tend to overlook this unfortunate fact and assume their love and care would make wonders happen. While it simply is not true. We are who we are and we want to be loved for this, and not for what we might become one day. It works both ways – you don’t want to push someone in the direction they don’t want to go as you don’t want to be pushed.

However, growing together, working on your self’s and relationship’s development is something different and does work if both partners are fully committed to it.

But, before making a commitment to another person, make sure you are in harmony with yourself, you have healthy self-esteem, ambitious future and appetite for life. As firstly, you have to learn how to be in love with yourself and then fall in love with someone else.

Olga happycoupleuk.com

How to Organize a Romantic Evening Without Leaving Your House

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Romantic bathroomAfter a long day at work relaxing is more than in demand. Every now and then we need to reward ourselves with an indulging treatment. Taking hot tub is one of my favourites. Since I remember myself, I’ve always loved to spend an hour in a pleasantly warm water, drawing off tiredness and stresses of the past day. It helps dispel all worries and re-connect with your inner world, while also pampering your skin with softness.

Raff and I have a special connection to bath, as this is where our story began. Crazy enough, we took hot tub together at our first date. Don’t ask how it happened, not that we smelt bad or anything like that, but it was just somehow natural and felt right at the moment. Since then we keep it as our little tradition, we often take bath together, using this time to discuss our worries and problems, plans for future or reviewing the past.

Usually Raff takes care of the romantic side of the evening. He comes up with the new ideas from time to time decorating our bathroom in the most pleasing way possible. Candles all around, roses floating at the surface of a bubbly warm water.

Romantic-Bathroom1Moreover, he usually does it in time for me being back home, so I can never resist any of this. We sometimes top it up with a bottle of wine, which makes an experience even more enjoyable.5321605441_e8f4e88394_zAnother recent discovery of ours is a bath pillow. It is amazing! Why I never knew about its existence before. In childhood, I used to see them in the movies, but never came across one in the shop. Now we have one of those and it makes such a difference to a comfort of lying in the hot tub.pillow+romanticIf you haven’t tried anything like this with your partner, I definitely recommend you trying. Hide from an outside world and use this romantic time to re-connect with deep feelings to each other.

Olga happycoupleuk.com

Summer is Coming. Time For Joy and Play in Sunshine!

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couple-girl-grass-kiss-lightBeing an organized person, I rarely let any spontaneity in my life let along our family life. Usually all weekends are planned months in advance and it is even hard to squeeze a long Sunday sleep in. However, last weekend I was yet again reassured how nice it is to let go of any plans, appointments and rush, and do whatever I feel like in the current moment, depending on my mood, the weather outside or anything else affecting me right now. I might decide to do nothing at all if I wish so. What kind of freedom is that! No pressure, no obligations, no regrets! Loving it.

Taking about the weather, London is a unique place where sun is almost a treasure. It doesn’t shine very often but if it does – you better make sure you enjoy it outdoors. Whether it is a picnic with friends or quiet book reading at the park bench, or even lunch outside of the office during a working day. All counts!

I cannot say Raff and I are very active people. We love all kind of activities but have no outdoors hobby or passion in particular. I was always jealous in a way of the couples who climb mountains together, run marathons or cycle for miles across the country. On another hand, I am happy we are in this together, meaning we both agree being lazy and prefer “mild” approach to our free time spending. Therefore, when we choose to do anything slightly more active than usual – it is pleasure and excitement for both of us.

Last weekend we went on a bike tour of our neighbourhood. Shame on us, living in this area for a year, we haven’t explored it yet in details. It was too far to walk, maybe… 🙂 Finally we dusted off our bikes and spend the whole day cycling along the canals and Thames, stopping in a couple of parks and enjoying the sun. Obviously, now we decided to do it more often! Let’s see where it takes us.20150516_172609

20150516_17225920150516_17231420150516_173248A couple of weeks ago we ended up walking around London in search of mini-statues of Shaun the Sheep. A bit too childish – that’s my part, I need to reconnect with my inner child, you know 🙂 With a few beer and cocktail stops, this trip turned into a fun adventure we both enjoyed and felt silly about.20150509_132202

The point is whatever it is you prefer doing, your own style is what matters. It builds up your family individuality with your own little traditions and habits that make married life more joyful, relaxed and sustainable.

How Not to Give Up On Yourself in Relationship

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relationship-breakupWhen we become involved in a relationship, we naturally change or adopt our behaviours to our partner’s ones. These might be small habits like eating take-away on Friday night or sleeping longer on Sunday, or more serious decisions like giving up smoking or learning new skill together. As relationship evolves partners exchange their behavioural attitudes and become more alike with time. Most of us would have seen on a friend example. He or she gets involved with someone and becomes a completely new person, acts differently, picks up new interests, often even dresses differently, and in many cases doesn’t spend as much time with “old friends” any more. This pattern may continue until you lose your friend to a new boyfriend or girlfriend. Most people don’t realise how and when they start living someone’s life and not their own any more. They fall under influence of their partners so easily giving up their own interests, ambitions and desires, and more importantly the right of being who they are. It continues to the point when they are not in charge of their own decisions anymore and follow the flow or life without acknowledging where it’s taking them.

Unconsciously vulnerable and insecure people become involved in so domineering type of relationship in search of protection and care, which they are not able to provide for themselves. They don’t realise how losing their power might turn up into a completely dysfunctional existence in dependence on other person.

If you are in such relationship, it is never too late to wake up and take back that control of your own life. Ask yourself:

  • Why are you with this person?
  • What are your feelings towards this person? You might be mistaken love with childish search of attention and protection.
  • Does he or she play a role of your rescuer rather than an equal partner?
  • Does is feel like she or he is always superior to you?

And I am not saying your partner cannot be better in certain ways than you are, but your attitude towards each other should remain as to equal persons willing to grow and learn from each other, rather than control and surpass one another. Therefore, the first and most important thing to do before becoming involved in any relationship is to understand yourself, what is it you need from life, what desires you want to satisfy and how your partner can complement you in this, but not replace all of this altogether. You should not be trying to run or to hide from your own life, filling in the empty space with another relationship. You should find your way of happiness and fulfilment while you are single and then enter in relationship that will make your life brighter, more intense and adventurous, rather than expecting someone to come and make you happy.

Olga happycoupleuk.com

Do You Understand Me? The Biggest Difference Between Man and Woman!

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couple-fighting-on-couchIf you were ever wondering why he is not able to do this, or why she is not able to do that, you are probably like most other people struggling to understand the gender differences in making life decisions. Men think that women never know what they want, and women are of an opinion that men are limited in their choices and try to search for solutions when they are not needed. Here are some typical situations when it takes her ages to buy that pair of trousers, or she spends 2 hours in the shop and then declares there was nothing worth her attention, time is wasted, he is mad. On the other hand, he just tries to watch TV (by watching TV we mean blankly flicking through the channels), but she won’t stop talking “you know, today I had this meeting, and it didn’t go well and everyone teases me now”… and on and on and on. But, he doesn’t seem to hear a word of what she said and then proclaims – “well, you can tell them all to go to h*ll. And now leave me alone, I am watching TV”. In fact, none of them was either heard or understood. Repetition of those situations make spouses feel further apart and abandoned with their problems. Whereas if we spent more time educating ourselves about the other gender, most problems could be easily avoided and each partner would receive needed share of comprehension and appreciation from the relationship. Acknowledging and accepting our differences is already a big step to functional communication with our partners.

Try to observe and look at the world with your spouse’s eyes. You might find it very interesting to explore and perceive an alternative point of view. Accept a possibility of learning from your significant one, it can do no harm to you, but might make your communication wiser and you two more approachable for one another.

Commonly, men think they are the ones who apply logic to any situation. While not all of them are aware of what’s going on in women’s analytical mind. While women have managed to bring the skill of the inner dialog to a mastery level – “What if he doesn’t call me, shall I text him now or wait 20mins, what if he thinks I am not attractive, what is wrong with me all the time, why no one likes me, my boss probably thinks I am silly”… Sometimes I wish I could switch this inner voice off! We tend to over-think so many unnecessary things, that it is painful how many nerve cells we could have saved if we didn’t worry about at least half of these situations. However, it is part of being a woman. This is who we are and we love discussing it with girlfriends over a glass of wine, talking 5 hours in a row and still leave with a feeling that we missed something.

On the same matter, men cannot understand why our stories take so long if the essence can be explained in one sentence. I told Raff a million times not to interrupt me in the middle of my story saying “and…?” It ruins the whole pleasure. I don’t want just to say the point, but I want my listener to taste the story, to feel part of it, and then I might get to the point. But, many women’s stories don’t have a point really, they often put more focus on the narrative, rather than actual conclusion.

On another hand, men either don’t talk about their problems, or talk about them in a very rational way – the problem, possible solutions, the decision made. Done, all clear and no feelings involved. Only when they don’t know a solution, they would need time to think about it, Alone! Or face-to-face with their TV, but no women around. This also helps them to deal with the stress and calm down. So, ladies, remember to give them this space and let go of any worries that he either doesn’t trust you or doesn’t appreciate your opinion. He would share once he feels a winner in that situation. Just give him time.

The list of differences between us is indeed long, but it comes down to an important point – women see the world through feelings and men – as a sequence of situations, which require solution. That’s why our reactions on the same situations are different, we handle issues differently and have different communication styles. As both partners become aware and respectful of those differences, they can build a more loving and trusting union.

Olga happycoupleuk.com

How to Never Give Up Your Dreams and Still Build a Trustworthy Relationship

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It is common to think that dreams are mainly a childhood prerogative, while adults operate only with known facts and circumstances. We forbid ourselves to dream high, believing that it is safer to be down to earth with no risk involved whatsoever. In many couples, it becomes a taboo to discuss anything of that matter. As people tend to be critical and often sarcastic about their partners’ fantasies. Therefore, even if person envisions any bright future for her idea or intention, she keeps it for herself or forgets about it altogether. Usually unsatisfied couples try to constantly disapprove and challenge each other’s aims, making all effort to almost deride one another’ hopes. Which leads to further emotional distance between them.

Nothing else hurts our feelings as much as our partner’s disbelief in our abilities. As when we love, we want to make our significant one a part of our dream. We are motivated to achieve more and be able to share it with the loved one. Thereof when this intention collides with our partner’s condemnation, we might become victimized, lose confidence and feel miserable.

However, if you took time to fully discover your partner, made sure you knew his or her convictions and deep beliefs for life, your further relationship would be built on thorough respect and trust and your belief in each other would be beyond any measures.

Surprisingly enough, most couples do not discuss their deep dreams and only realise they have something in opposition when conflict arises. Whereas loving relationship is the safest place to talk about couples’ deepest hopes and desires. We should learn to let go of any criticism or dubiety, and make sure we understand and respect other person’s perception of life and aspirations.

As we all come from different backgrounds, our history often defines contrary beliefs and wishes, therefore being respectful and supportive of one another’ potential is essential in relationship. The happy couple makes helping each other realise their dreams a main target of the relationship. Where neither or them attempts to manipulate the other to give up their dream.

Olga happycoupleuk.com