The number one reason behind many perspective clients (mostly brides) not attending premarital counseling is their fiance doesn't want to. You cannot make someone do what they don't want to do, but in this case you really should try. The benefits vastly outweigh the costs, especially when you book with me!There are so many reasons to attend premarital counseling. Two that are my favorite: an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure, and investing in your relationship through counseling is a sure fire way to prove your commitment. Let's not beat around the bush. Here are the things to put in front of your lovey so that he can get on board.
1. Reduction in Marriage License
Money is such a motivator in many cases. In the state of Georgia you can get your marriage license down to $27! The original price varies by county, but who doesn't love a discount? I know what he is going to say. "But we have to pay for premarital counseling anyway, so the price doesn't matter". He is somewhat correct. Here is where I make my plug. My prices are some of the lowest you will find in the Metro Atlanta area, period. It isn't because I am inadequate or the quality isn't good. I keep my costs down by offering sessions online and in your home, so I have no building lease/rent to pay. Also, I want to make premarital counseling affordable to everyone. The well off aren't the only ones who should reap all of the benefits of relationship education.
2. Learn how to Argue
I am not going to give away all the wonderful gems that you learn in session, but learning how to argue in a healthy manner is key for a long lasting, enjoyable relationship. Disagreements, arguments, bickering - whatever you want to call it - is going to happen. Couples have to know how to respectfully disagree with one another and leave the conversation with a solution. And in those times where a solution cannot be reached, both parties should at least feel heard and valued.
3. Plan for the Future
This is the perfect place to go over expectations about marriage, children, family traditions, and many other things. Most couples are surprised at what aspects don't line up with their perfect image of the future. You may have had some semblance of a conversation about these topics, but the thing about meeting with a professional is they know the things you haven't talked about.
Because you don't know how to argue, discussing such hard hitting topics can get real heated, real quick. I will be there to help you navigate discussing various topics and practicing strategies to listen and be heard. When you have someone holding your hand along the way, it makes it easier to do on your own.
5. Discover New Things About Each Other
Every couple I have worked with has learned something new about their partner. Whether they had been together for two years or five, there is always something new to learn about your significant other. Why? We are human, that is why! Humans are evolving, ever changing creatures. Our experiences continue to mold who we are day-in and day-out.
I hope these help convince your fiance to take the plunge. I offer a la carte sessions for this very reason! Do one session and see how you like it. I promise you'll keep coming back. :)
No, I am not talking about our good ole friend Karma. I am talking about The Law of Attraction. What you focus on is what comes to fruition. It is all about the cosmic pull of your energy source. Or maybe it's not, I'm not quite sure on that. What I am sure about is the premise of The Law of Attraction, which makes total sense. For example, while I was pregnant I focused on all of the things I didn't want to happen during my labor (water breaking before actual labor, baby being backward, labor lasting FIVE ever, etc.). Guess what? ALL OF THOSE THINGS HAPPENED!!! Instead of focusing on what I did want, I used all of my energy on the things I didn't want. What if we stopped worrying about the bad and started preparing for the good?! The way The Law of Attraction works, even if we aren't being intentional about what we focus on, we will inherently concentrate on something. And then that something will happen anyway, whether we are being deliberate or not. So let's be intentional!
Let's focus our energy on the positive in 2019! Better yet, let's focus on the positive for a lifetime! Stick words or phrases of affirmation around your living space; in your bedroom, bathroom, living room, kitchen, front door, on your steering wheel! Regularly seeing these positive signs will keep them in your subconscious.
Create a vision board! Take the time to sit down with a poster board and a pair of scissors, some great quotes printed from the inter-webs, colorful sharpies, and some cool magazines. In fact, every year my husband and I create something similar using a cork board and post-it notes. This is an exercise I stole from one of my sessions I do with my clients (it also happens always to be their favorite session).
I know that being a chronic negative thinker is a thing. In college, I had terrible bouts of anxiety because of all my negative thinking. It really does spiral out of control when you get that one pesky negative thought. It snowballs into a mess of terrible, untrue, disturbing thoughts. I ended up downloading an app that would randomly buzz with positive affirmations and beautiful quotes that interrupted my dark cloud. Words are so powerful and yet we take their importance for granted.
Try out a few of these gems for the next thirty days and see if your mood and mindset doesn't change. Actually, I read somewhere that habits are created after 66 days. So starting today, I will be posting a positive affirmation on my Instagram and Facebook for 66 days, with the last day being Monday, March 18th. Let's challenge ourselves to better thinking.
What are you waiting for..? Follow me!
Facebook: Better Together 365
My alarm goes off at 8 a.m on a Tuesday morning, and I am off to the races. Wake the baby, feed the dog, feed the baby, pump more milk while entertaining the baby and checking emails. Text sister and friends while scrolling Instagram and skimming other social media. Put baby down for a nap. BREATHE. Open the bible and finally attempt to block out all distractions.. but of course, I have the baby monitor up.
In a world filled with distractions, focusing becomes almost impossible. Between social media tugging at your attention, sustaining a social life, going to work every day, working on your passion, committing to nurturing a thriving relationship, and getting those three square meals a day (ha!), you have a lot screaming for your attention. Some say apps are the issue. Funny enough, there are an extreme amount of apps created to help you block other apps from distracting you! We can blame it on many things but let's be honest, it is easy to want to be entertained and feel "connected'". But in the sarcastic words of the witch from the amazing play (later turned movie) Into The Woods, "... what really matters is the blame, somebody to blame".
WHO CARES WHY! Let's just figure out how to fix it. Like the first step for many things, one must admit there is an issue. It is the first week of January, and we have all made goals for the year, some grandiose and others minute. No matter the size of your goal, you have to have time to work on it. Where do you get the time? Do you wake up early? Do you go to sleep later? Maybe you flake on some events that you really don't want to go to anyway, but now you have a reason because "you're bettering yourself". (too close for comfort? sorry). Here is a list of things you can do to focus.
1. TURN OFF YOUR PHONE
I promise you the number one source of your distraction is that handy dandy cellular device. Al Gore did not create the internet so you could be unproductive. TURN. IT. OFF. I am one of those people who cannot turn off their phone for various reasons, so proceed to number two if number one just isn't for you.
2. DO NOT DISTURB
Place your phone on do not disturb. This is available on just about every phone. You can set some people as favorites if you have to get their calls or texts the first time they're sent.
3. SET BOUNDARIES
As someone who is home every day, people assume that I am always available since I don't have to clock in and out of a job. WELL, THEY ARE WRONG. You have to let other people know that you are working on X so you cannot be disturbed. One good way of knowing someone truly needs your immediate attention is ignoring the first phone call. If they call again, then answer the phone with, "Hey I am busy. Do you need something?". Do not ask them what they want, because if it is a want, then it's not important enough to be interrupting your focus.
4. CREATE A SACRED SPACE
If you have the space for an in-home office, then use it! Go sit in your guest room. Go to your basement. When you are in this space often enough then others will recognize it as your zone time, the time where you are in your zone and cannot be bothered. If there is nowhere in your home, then get out of the house. Go to the library or maybe even a coffee shop. BE WARNED, if you are going to a public place then people watching may ensue. In that case, go to number five.
5. PUT IN HEADPHONES
When I have in my headphones, I am transported to another world. Sometimes I listen to music that I know puts me in good vibes or sparks my creativity. When I must truly focus, I play music in another language. I can feel the beat, but I have no clue what they are saying, so I don't get lost in the lyrics.
There are so many other ways to increase your focus, but I highlighted these five because they are a guaranteed way to start seeing results. Try implementing them tomorrow, or even better yet, TODAY! Let me know how it increases your focus and/or boosts your productivity. What other tricks do you use to focus?
The holiday season is notoriously known for its hustle and bustle, and it can become hard to connect with our loved ones the way that we feel we are supposed to. The season is filled with the joyous gatherings of family and friends, but the stress looms. The stress to get EVERYONE a present. The stress to spend real money on said present. The stress to see everyone and go everywhere. You have your partner's family of origin, your friends, your own family of origin, and then the family you've created! Who really gets priority here?
The answer... you! Running yourself ragged at the expense of others this holiday season doesn't make you anything but tired and spent once the new year comes around. In order to be there for others, you actually have to start saying no instead of yes. You set the stage for how the holiday season will be experienced. If you are constantly putting others ahead of yourself then you will enter into the season as the Grinch, resentful towards others because you're taking care of them, and so are they. Who is taking care of you? Well... it's supposed to be you!
This blog post is inspired by Kristin Maneiri's on The Gottman Institute titled, How to Stay Connected as a Couple Through the Holidays. The first thing she says to do is block out white space, meaning set time aside on your calendar for you. Notice how this is all about YOU! You need to take care of you before anyone else. We always hear the analogy about putting the mask on yourself, but I promise it is repeated so often because it is true. Taking time for yourself has to be intentional. You have to stop saying, "When I get time I will...". News flash: YOU WILL NEVER GET TIME. Especially not during the holidays. During this time, don't reach for your phone and get stressed out by social media. Listen to a podcast, veg out on some Netflix, or lay back on the couch and just breathe.
Click on the link below to read the rest of Kristin's article on staying connected as a couple during this busy time.