Source: bngdesigns/Pixabay Valentine's Day evokes all kinds of feelings in people, often those drawn from childhood memories or internalized from commercial messages. To take another look at the complex emotions involved, read my recent post on "Life, Refracted" at PsychologyToday.com
Source: BattershellTactical/Pixabay So often our early experiences interfere with responding to others in a fully open way, free of distortions or interpretations that have little or nothing to do with their intentions. Similarly, our emotions can cloud and misdirect our responses to the gifts of others. To consider how we can best receive offerings from those we love, read my post from "Life Refracted" on PsychologyToday.com by clicking here.
Source: Olichel/Pixabay Understanding the motivations of those who may threaten a love relationship is one thing. Common motives are described here. Identifying behaviors through which those motives are expressed is a separate task. To review a list of behaviors that can undermine the integrity of a couple, create conflict within it, or derail one partner with resulting damage to the couple relationship, read my post from "Life, Refracted" on PsychologyToday.com by clicking here.
Source: geralt/pixabay Life does indeed have negative experiences and too much negativity can challenge our relationships. The good news is that negative experiences can be transformed. Consider taking a new look at moments that have nothing to do with us, times we misunderstand one another, our underlying assumptions, and ways in which we may assign blame. To read about these examples and some ways to approach them, read my post on PsychologyToday.com's "Life, Refracted" by clicking here. [...]
Source: amarpreet25/Pixabay Conflict between two people is inevitable. When conflicts of time and place, demands, priorities, power, planning or how much closeness is optimal erupt, sensitive responses can build understanding and increase faith in the strength of the relationship. To read 52 Ways to Show I Love You: Address the Conflicts in "Life, Refracted" on PsychologyToday.com, click here.
Source: StockSnap/Pixabay The times we live in and the roles that we play change how we share precious moments with those we love. Among those are the meals that we share. To find some thoughts about our own need to adapt and ways in which we can do it, click here to read my post from Psychology Today's "Life, Refracted" blog.
People can sensitively show love by accurately understanding the many meanings of silence. Before they can respond with love (the topic for next week), they must be able to distinguish among silences that are active listening, time for reflection, avoiding creating distraction, an invitation to communion, attention being elsewhere, delaying confict, or expressing anger. For details, please visit the latest, "52 Ways to Show I Love You: Identify the Meanings of Silence", by clicking here.
Source: sathyatripodi/Pixabay When a person is dependent - young, old, ill, disabled - or fragile or simply in need of outside help, providing the care that they need can show through actions in a resounding way. At one extreme, it reflects "Compassionate Love", that altruistic and selfless behavior in which someone else's needs can take precedence over our own. To read "52 Ways to Show I Love You: Caring and Caregiving", click here.
When we expand our couple's embrace to include those we love beyond it, we can bring more joy into our own hearts and those of others. Doing so may have challenges but the efforts are always worthwhile. See what I wrote about "Expanding the Circle" on Life, Refracted, by clicking here.
When you take the time to listen to and consider a loved one's point of view, you show them respect and love. Types of psychotherapy developed over the past fifty years have increasingly stressed the value of changing perspective. But just as shifting how you think about something can enhance your own well-being, it can enhance understanding, appreciation, and intimacy in a love relationship. To learn more, read "52 Ways to Show I Love You: See a Different Point of [...]