17 Ways to Make Your Relationships Great pt. 4

For the past few weeks, we’ve been giving you some of the ways we’ve discovered that help create and keep a great relationship.We’re not just paying lip service here and reciting what we think will work or what looks good on paper. We know that these work because we practice them in our own lives.

You probably have heard of Melissa Etheridge and recognize her as a “rock star” and creator of many top hit records.

Whether you like her or her music, we think she’s a changed woman who has much to teach us about the things that matter most.

For the past few weeks, we’ve been listening to Melissa’s album “The Awakening” and this CD has made a big impact on our lives.

It’s the story of her ‘awakening’ after her bout with cancer. Among other things, she awakens to the idea of how important love is in her life and in the world–love for herself and love for others.

In this article (below) and in the articles we’ve sent you in the past three weeks, we’re offering some ideas that will hopefully awaken some part of you to a desire and focus to create more love, passion and connection in your life.

When you read these ideas, you may be thinking that there’s nothing new here.

There isn’t really. We are sharing them with you because even though they may not seem new, not many of us are doing these kinds of things we talking about below on a consistent basis.

We’re offering them to you now (in this article) so that you can open yourself to giving and receiving more love in your life.

In short, see how each of these ideas might work in your life to help you create more of what you want.

1. Be more curious.
In our way of thinking, curiosity didn’t “kill the cat”(or the relationship)–assumptions did!

One of the biggest ways people separate themselves is by making assumptions without first asking for clarification when they don’t understand or even when they think they know what another person is thinking.

We think we know what another person is thinking but we don’t really know because he/she is looking out at the world in a totally different way than we are.

Here’s what we think being curious means…

It means stopping yourself when you find that you have assumed or jumped to a conclusion about why a person said or did something that bothered you.

It means asking the other person something like…”Tell me more about…”

It means not weaving your own story and assigning meaning to what another person says or does.

It means staying in neutral. It may not be easy to do with some people but just start practicing.

2. Set goals in other parts of your life.

What we’re talking about here is renewing passion in your life–finding something that excites you and that you like to do.

What have you always wanted to find out more about that you keep putting off that you say you’ll get to some day?

Susie loves to dance but keeps putting off trying tango lessons. So her goal is to take an introductory tango lesson in the next two weeks.

You goal might be to move your clutter out or to learn photography or even to travel.

Ask yourself what would make your heart sing and then don’t wait to do it.

3. Find one new (or old) common interest, desire, goal, activity or cause to share with your partner or a friend.

It’s no secret that one of the important elements to a great relationship is sharing time and interests. When our lives take us over (and we hear that phrase a lot), we tend to stop doing the things that have helped us keep our connections with
each other.

We forget how to enjoy each other’s company, whether it’s doing something or just “being” together.

What would you like to do together that you haven’t been doing lately? Maybe it’s something new that you haven’t tried yet?

Maybe it’s something simple like eating a meal together without distractions or taking a walk together. Maybe it’s planning and planting a garden or learning to scuba or ski.

Whatever it is, do it in part for connection.

4. Learn to breathe.

Of course we all know how to breathe or we wouldn’t be here. What we’re talking about is learning to use your breath a bit differently.

When we are stressed, we quit breathing altogether or take very shallow breaths. When we’re in that state, we’re certainly not at our best. We can’t think clearly and we tend to react from old patterns instead of from our hearts and from love.

So where can you begin to use the breath in more powerful ways than simply keeping you alive?

You can begin by taking a deep breath or several breaths to not only calm yourself but also to create a pause when you get triggered or are in the middle of an argument.

During your love-making, you can experiment with breathing deeply which not only heightens pleasure but helps create a deeper connection.

You can practice breathing more deeply when you are wanting to be more creative–or even wake yourself up when your senses seem to be dulled.

The idea is to use your breath as the wonderful gift that it is to more consciously create what you want in your life.

5. Have more fun.

We would certainly be remiss if we didn’t include having more fun in our list.

So our question to you is this…

What’s “fun” to you?

Is it being with others, doing something that you all enjoy? Is it being with your loved one having a quiet evening at home snuggling on the couch? Is it playing with your children or grand children? Is it learning something new that you love to do? Is it laughing at a silly movie?

Whatever it is, decide that you are going to do more of it during this year.

If you do, you’ll find that your life and relationships become filled with love.

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