- Bretta Durham
Repairing Relationships-Remembering This Is US.
Have you ever noticed how as seasons change opinions differ? Perceptions and preferences influence our thoughts about change.
In the beginning of any relationship we look for, and see, the new, the good, and maybe even the exciting.
What we like or dislike, things we care about, and even our own love languages play a part in defining what we view as “good” or even “good enough”.
Relational expectations and personal choices can also influence how we feel about changes in relationships over time.
As time passes and relationships further develop, we may more readily begin to recognize “differences”. Different is not necessarily bad. In fact, it is the differences that make each couple unique.
It is good to hear the truth of what someone knows about “us”. Recognizing and acknowledging the truth about relationships may also helps us work toward defining and redefining the foundations that can help sustain relationships better long-term.
In the exercise, (in the course book Loving Others) “This is US”, couples initially choose five words that describe or define them as a couple. The words are related to what they believe, see, or feel about their individual relationship.
After choosing words that they think or feel describe “us” each person shares their thoughts, feelings, and views about their relationship.
In the last part of the exercise, couples are also challenged to look toward the future. Individually, each person looks through the list again and finds a word/concept they would like to be a part of their relationship. Again couples share, why they chose the word, what that word means to them, and can further communicate about the future of the relationship together.
In essence, what is in our mind (what we think) and what is in our heart (what we feel) directly relates to our personal beliefs about the “good” in or of our relationships.
Words can help define our level of commitment. Open and honest communication further helps us to express the importance (the value we see) of a relationship.
As time passes, we may settle into a perceived normalcy in a relationship. But in all relationships we have the ability to be intentional in our efforts to work toward building “better” together as change continues to happen.
Making a choice to intentionally (year after year) look for and see the good of “us” as friends, family, and especially committed couples reminds us of the value we place on those relationships.
Our commitment to take care of and protect what we value also requires effort, both individually and collectively. Relationships with friends, families, and especially couples can, and do, grow and change further defining and redefining this is “us” over a lifetime.
The self-guided course book mentioned above, Loving Others, is available. Opening and reopening communication, evaluating priorities, learning how to love one another better, establishing or reestablishing who you are as a couple, and planning toward a better future together can be possible when two people are committed.
To learn more visit the website http://www.RealLifeRelationships.org on the site you can also find more information about the book Love Forever and the self-guided course books Loving Others, Loving Yourself, and Reconciling Through Love.