Marriage counseling

Top 10 Ways To Have The Best Holidays Ever! 

The Christmas holiday season will soon be upon us. And with it will come the hope that this one will be truly magical. However, many of us quickly get bogged down in busyness, stress and old patterns. Here are 10 ways to turn that dynamic around and get that holiday magic back again.

  1. Give yourself a break. Perfection-even perfect happiness-just isn’t possible. Let your best be good enough. Make a budget for both your time and your money-andstick to it. It really is the thought that counts.
  1. Make conscious decisions. Get clear about what you really want to do over the holidays before compromising with others. If you don’t have a clear plan and clear intentions, it’s easy to get swept along by others’ desires. Even if you do compromise later, get yourself clear first.
  1. Shorten your to-do list. What do the holidays really mean to you? For many, it’s about family and friends and spirituality. If an action or to-do item doesn’t add to your holiday spirit, scratch it off.
  1. Say no when you want to. It’s very liberating- I promise! Try it and see- it sounds simple, but too often obligation trumps desire. When faced with options, choose the one that would make you happier.
  1. Limit obligatory activities. If you can’t avoid certain events, limit the time you’re there.
  1. Take good care of yourself. The old standards help keep stress at bay: eat healthfully, exercise, drink lots of water, and breathe deeply. Schedule time for relaxation and fun.
  1. Start early. To avoid a last-minute frenzy that can bust your budget, start shopping or making presents now.
  1. Ask for help. Reject any notion of martyrdom. The burden of preparations should not fall upon one person. The more specific you are in your request, the more successful you’ll be.
  1. Establish new traditions. If you have experienced a major life-changing event, such as a death or divorce, consider doing something you’ve never done before over the holidays, such as travel to another country or take a cruise.
  1. Get support. If a glorious holiday season feels completely out of reach, you may experience the holiday blues. Many people do.Don’t beat yourself up for feeling that way.

Reach out for the support you need.

 

By Sylvia Cochran

Are you combining your spouse’s children with yours this Thanksgiving? His/Her, mine and ours is not always a recipe for blissful success.

Instead, there is a good chance that underlying emotional currents will make this Thanksgiving meal memorable for all the wrong reasons. Celebrating a grace-filled Thanksgiving takes a lot of effort on your part — but it is well worth it.

Recognize That You Are the Norm – The University of Houston reveals sobering and enlightening step-parenting statistics. Figures show that 50 percent of youngsters are currently raised in blended families. This dynamic is quickly eclipsing all other types of family setups. A somewhat surprising statistic points out that over 50% of second/third marriages that end in divorce are caused by the children. It is clear that children have a lot of influence on family dynamics. Holidays — including Thanksgiving — are prime time for stress and strife.

Recognize Why Kids Can’t “Just” Fit In – There are feelings of betrayed loyalty and the fear of betraying a biological parent’s allegiance. There are new family members to get to know and adapt to. Competition between half siblings is common. Thanksgiving traditions vary. Holiday customs are different and beloved tasks may go by the wayside in a new family.

Recognize That Taking Vows United You and Your Spouse, Not You and the Children – You new wife may have promised to love, honor and obey; your new husband may have sworn to cleave unto you until death do us part, but your step children have taken no such vows. They are simply along for the ride. Do not expect them to live up to your vows — after all, they were left holding the bag the first time around. If your spouse is a serial-marriage partner, there is even less of a chance that the children might willingly give their hearts.

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Couples and Relationships: Keeping the Spark Alive

Relationships can grow stale over time, especially when you have lived together for years. Keeping the spark alive is no easy task and can be a huge stumbling block for couples in a relationship. You may feel unattractive to your partner from extra weight or wrinkles gained over the years, but looking good, while maybe helpful, is not what keeps passion alive – a true connection, loyalty, and love are what fuel the flames in any marriage. Here are 3 tips for keeping the spark alive in your relationship.

Some Like It Hot

Keeping the passion alive requires effort. Go out of your way to create a clean and harmonious home space for this is the setting for your romance. Try to make sure all rooms are neat and free of clutter. Decorate with pinks, reds, and whites to spark some loving feelings in the air. When you feel comforted by your surroundings you are more likely to get in the mood. Make sure that you have a warm and cozy bed with clean sheets and pillowcases.

Date night

Making a weekly date night, or at least monthly time, to go out to dinner and enjoy yourselves is so important. If you don’t have the money, it’s good you’re here, have a date night at home. It’s great to sit down for a meal together as a couple, talk, and look into each other’s eyes. Use this time to plan your dreams, discuss your passions, or even plain old small talk will suffice. The concept is to carve out time for both of you to relax and enjoy each other’s company.

Between the sheets

Sadly a healthy sex life is something a lot of people lack. It’s important in a romantic relationship to share affection and yes, sex is important sometimes too. If you have to mark your calendar then do so. Spontaneous sex is always great but it’s not always necessary. Sexual relationships are good for the soul. Sex is a healthy function of the normal adult and a healthy sex life should be striven for in your relationship.

 

There are infinite ways to spice up your relationship and keep the spark alive. Your life together is much more exciting when passion is important to both of you. Create a safe and clean space, carve out ‘together time,’ and have fun. Contact us for more information about couples, relationships, and financial planning.

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