Top Divorce Indicator Prevention

contempt

Top Divorce Indicator Prevention

Want to know the top divorce indicator and how to prevent it? The top indicator is how a couple communicates. Does their speech build people up or tear them down? The University of Washington’s Professor John Gottman is the nation’s top expert on couple’s studies. After more than twenty years of research, he has found that the single most common indicator of divorce is when couple’s show contempt for each other. Contempt can be defined as negativity, sarcasm or a negative judgment regarding their partner. The opposite of respect is contempt. Additionally, there are four major statement that symbolize contempt. Whether the contempt is intentional or not is another matter. Your language plus a directive for instance is such language. “You should, You are, You’d better, You have to,” are examples. These kinds of statements are showing that the person is being judged and told what to do. It’s only natural then that they get resentful and defensive, not good emotions for a blissful marriage.

Universal statements are the next sort that reveal contempt. “You always, You never, Everyone or Such a” are often included in these statements. They show a person’s behavior or character in a negative light. Statements like “You always leave your socks on the bathroom floor.” “Everyone gets places on time but you.” “Everyone knows what a slob you are,” and so on. These statements hurt our partner in a few different ways. These statements only say what is wrong and shame the person they are directed to. Yet, they fail to say things in a positive light. And they don’t say how to make things right.  What is the solution to the problem? Also, this sort of logic is easy to pierce. If you say, “You never pay for anything.” The other person can just say, “I paid for dinner just last year.” This person gets a laugh and the statement has been negated all at once. Then there is invalidating feelings. If you tell someone they are blowing things out of proportion then you are invalidating their feelings. Instead, validate your lover’s feelings. Tell them you understand how they feel and why they feel that way. When you have a problem address the behavior and how it made you feel. “You didn’t pick up your socks and it made me feel like your maid” should be enough to drive the point home. Always talk to your partner with respect and expect the same in return. For more advice read, Communication Miracles for Couples: Easy and Effective Ways to Create More Love and Less Conflict by Jonathan Robinson.

Advice for Dating Over 50

Seniors-Dating

Advice for Dating Over 50

If you are over 50 dating can be a whole different world. Most people are independent at this age, perhaps with adult-age children who are hopefully out of the house by now. These are the divorced empty nesters. They don’t take any guff and know exactly what they are looking for. Today, it’s much easier than in the past because of the internet. But even then sometimes there’s no one that strikes our fancy. A lot of singles in this age group don’t want to be alone but don’t want to feel as though they are settling either. It isn’t easy but a lot of people get in their own way, too. Here is some advice for those dating over 50. First, consider the law of attraction. What you focus on in your life is what you bring into your world. If you are focused on the idea that there are no good men or women left then that is the situation you will dwell in. But if you are secure and happy, entering into each situation in an open-minded and lighthearted way then perhaps the right person will find you. That’s because this newfound positivity will sooner or later attract those who are also secure, open and happy, the exact type most of us would like to date.

Consider how you feel about dating. It often fills 50-somethings with anxiety. Sometimes we just have an unlucky streak. If that’s the case, it’s a good idea to put dating aside and later on try again. When you come back to it in a week or two with fresh eyes, take a look at your meeting and selection process. Consider reworking your dating profile. What does it say about you? Who does it attract? Perhaps freshen it up with a new photo, an anecdote or insight and then ask a friend their opinion on it. A lot of people at this stage are afraid. They’ve lost out in one or more serious relationships. They may be bitter or carrying baggage. Perhaps they feel as though they’ve been through the meat grinder and don’t want to do it again. This idea that there is no one of high enough quality is a projection we use to protect ourselves from certain fears about love, while also protecting our status. Here, it isn’t us that have the problem but the available dating pool. Sooner or later those that say these things start to sound like a broken record. It becomes a battle worn, thin piece of armor other minds can easily pierce. Instead, jettison excuses. Deal with whatever interworking makes you feel negative or reticent. Talk it out with someone and work toward a new perspective on your life and your love life, one that’s positive and edifying.

Dating at this age is not easy. We often run in the same circles. Start to break out. Explore new hobbies or old ones you put aside in the days of yesteryear when the demands of kids and career got in the way. Read articles and books about dating at this age. Attend singles events. Try a different website or app for meeting someone new. Pursue interests that are social through Eventbrite, Meetup, a local civic organization or a charity close to your heart. Network with friends and others to see if they know someone who is single that would be a good match. Those who are friends will have other friends who you might have things in common with. Another thing, don’t so easily cast others aside. Some people make their wants and desires in a mate so extensive that they price themselves out of the market. Everyone is imperfect. But judgment has to be set aside for an exploration of who exactly the other person is. A first date is like an initial interview. Often it tells you little of the person before you. Give it until the third date before you say no for sure. Some of the happiest couples weren’t so hot for each other when they first met. It takes time for anxiety to wane, understanding to grow and love to blossom. For more advice for those of the female persuasion pick up a copy of, The Winning Dating Formula For Women Over 50: 7 Steps To Attracting Quality Men by Lisa Copeland.

Fear of Missing Out (FOMO)

phone

Fear of Missing Out (FOMO)

We are connected to so many different people, venues and organizations through our computers and mobile devices that today people are overwhelmed with options. This is true of modern day “hookup” culture where young adults, spurning marriage and family planning for the extended education it takes to get a job in today’s market, cycle through one hook up after another, for fear of missing out on an amazing experience with someone new. But the problem is that they are never in a relationship long enough to form any kind of intimacy. Studies have shown that millennials are more frustrated and emotionally unfulfilled than previous generations. People of all ages now serially date. They cycle through one person they met online after another, fearing that they are missing out on “the one.” But with so many options, their standards skyrocket. The result? They are too picky and judgmental. They gloss over each date, never really piercing the surface and getting to know the real person deep down inside. Instead, they usually find a superficial reason to rule the person out and move on. So they may have found “the one” without even giving “the one” a chance.

Fear of missing out (FOMO) is now something of a massive psychological condition brought on by mobile devices carrying the internet. People veer to their Twitter while at work, diminishing their concentration on an important task. They check their LinkedIn while with friends, their Facebook while on a date, they even put their own lives at risk and the lives of others by texting or checking email while driving. Lots and lots of people around the world do this. And when confronted with how wrong that is, they just shrug.

Our fear of missing out has us glossing over what is really important in life, and that’s being there, being in the moment, savoring it and enjoying it. Alone Together by Sherry Turkle has a chapter on this phenomenon and The New York Times covered FOMO in an article by Jenna Wortham. There are singles who go on Facebook and feel bad when they see how happy their married or attached friends are. There are teens who lose sleep and are distracted from their studies constantly checking their social media to see who broke up with who, who is dating who and so on. The truth is, this is an impulse control problem. FOMO makes us hyper vigilant, always seeking for something better for ourselves. Most of the time, however, there isn’t anything on there that’s so important it should interrupt the real, offline life in front of you.

Being constantly distracted is no way to live life. Being constantly unsatisfied isn’t a great way to manage a love life either. Instead, limit your use of social media. Only check it at certain times of the day and stick to your schedule. When you feel the itch to check, notice something in your immediate environment that makes you feel satisfied: a warm smile, a delicious cup of coffee, a beautiful scarlet picture frame with a photo of someone you love. Savor the real world with all of your senses and you’ll soon see that social media just can’t compare.

Nurturing Yourself to Improve Relationships

Self-Love

Nurturing Yourself to Improve Relationships

Everyone wants a relationship that is kind, passionate, successful and fulfilling. But what is often ignored are the steps you need to take in order to get there. You have to work on yourself to be ready for the right type of person and relationship that can embody these qualities. Nurturing yourself is key in improving your romantic relationships. Studies have shown that those who practice self-love are more forgiving, honest, are clearer headed about their relationships, and make better partners overall. It makes sense. Clingy people smother their significant others. And those who export their happiness to someone else put too much pressure on their partners. You deserve to have the right relationship and to be the right person within it so that you can help it grow and prosper. The first step is to explore the relationship you have with yourself. Are you kind to yourself? Do you give yourself a break when you need it? Or are you often self-critical and have exceptionally high standards for yourself? The people we find ourselves attracted to and those partners we chose for ourselves are reflections of inner forces. If you judge yourself too harshly or lack self-respect you are likely to choose someone who embodies those feelings. If you are kind and loving to yourself and have a positive self-image that will spill over into the type of person you choose for a mate.

Now it’s time to improve the relationship you have with yourself. Are you eating right? Do you exercise? Take a vow to take care of your body. Get enough sleep. Take part in an exercise regimen you enjoy and can do regularly. Find a healthy way of eating that works for you and stick with it. Those who improve their physical well-being have less sickness, better control of their stress, enjoy a positive self-image and better self-esteem. Next look at how you think about yourself. Do you call yourself names in your head? Do you listen to that little voice that criticizes? Instead find ways to reverse those things. Consciously select phrases and words that encourage yourself rather than discourage yourself. Give yourself a break. Practice loving kindness. When you’ve had a tough day, or did something wrong don’t attack yourself. Learn to give yourself a break. Think about what words you say or think when talking about yourself or your life. You can use those words to uplift you or send you screaming down into the shadows. It’s up to you. Find ways to mitigate stress that are healthy such as yoga, meditation, spending time with friends or watching comedies. Lastly, look how you treat yourself. Are you good to yourself or not? If not, find ways to celebrate little victories, overcome obstacles and learn how to treat yourself right. If you improve yourself you will glow and the person you are looking for will feel it like a beacon and come find you. To find out more on this topic be sure to read Self-Nurture: Learning to Care for Yourself as Effectively as You Care for Everyone Else by Alice D. Domar and Henry Dreher.

Interracial Relationships Still an Uphill Battle

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Interracial Relationships Still an Uphill Battle

The latest polls show that Americans are far more accepting of interracial relationships than in the past, and many more young people are taking part in such relationships. Yet, this is still the exception, not the rule. Racism is still alive and well today. In the South, by and large, if a white man dates a black woman people still bat eyes. But if a white woman should date a black man, they become pariahs. Even in a liberal place like New York City where the controversial policy of stop and frisk, though hotly debated, was only repealed by newly elected Mayor Bill DeBlasio, himself the husband of an African-American woman. And a seemingly innocent Cheerios commercial portraying an adorable interracial couple spurred a string of racist comments on Youtube. What seems particularly shocking is a black-white relationship. Baby boomers, the generation who through protest, freedom rides, taking part on the March on Washington and other activities finally tore down the walls of institutional racism in the South, and repealed the second Jim Crow known as segregation. But this same generation often has problems with their children taking part in interracial relationships. They fear that the couple won’t be understood, that they will always struggle with hate, derision and racism. And if grandchildren enter the picture, they may face the same obstacles.

It isn’t only white society that doesn’t accept interracial couples. Traditional societies from East and South Asia and others have trouble accepting when their children marry outside their race. Black society often scoffs too for different reasons. Little reasons like the worry that the children’s hair won’t be right, and big reasons like the couple will always be fighting to validate the relationship, which gets tiresome. There is even a feeling of resentment of black women against women of other races who date and marry black men. The feeling is that there aren’t a lot of eligible black men and so the pool dwindles even further when black men date and marry outside of their race. Black women seem to be the last to cast a wider net, though it’s happening more and more often. Interracial couples still get stares. They still get racist comments. If one person in the relationship is white, he or she is confronted with their privilege in comparison to how their significant other is treated. Both parties are hit with questions, concerns and vitriol. We have a long way to go to be a post-racial society. Of course we’ve made great strides. But we must understand the society we live in before becoming part of an interracial relationship. That doesn’t mean not to date outside your race. It means to be prepared to love whom you do no matter what, and to be fearless in the defense of it.  For more on this topic, read Interracial Relationships in the 21st Century: 2nd Edition by Earl Smith and Angela J. Hattery.