Hey, men! Have you ever adamantly said something to your girlfriend or wife along the lines of, “You know I love you and appreciate you!”, only for her to wait for a beat and reply, “Thank you! But … why?”
Suddenly, you’re standing there tongue-tied, because like most men, you get uncomfortable when you feel vulnerable, and trying to articulate your deepest, innermost feelings can be rough.
It’s understandable for you to feel that way, but she’s still going to want to hear you say something romantic that tells her how much she means to you. — and one great idea too many people giving advice about dating, relationships and marriage forget is that there are so many creative ways to say “I love you” without necessarily having to come up with words of your own!
When it comes to transferring your relationship from sex partner to marriage material and a potential partner for life, you will have to dive deep and see if this man has the ability to be your future husband. Even though sex is usually the initial place where a man begins to connect with a woman, the both of you will have to make sure it’s deeper than the surface.
You will have to connect mentally, physically, spiritually, and emotionally.
You’ve been dating for what feels like forever, and at long last, you feel positive you’ve met “the one” — that perfect person you’ve been waiting to fall in love with for so long.
What makes it especially exciting is that the feeling is obviously mutual. They’ve been showering you with the gifts, affection, and love you’ve craved, and which you’d almost given up hope of ever finding.
Unfortunately, your friends aren’t so sure about your new relationship.
They may feel your new partner is really manipulating you and you don’t even know it. To see the 9 signs you are being emotionally manipulated, click here.
A timeout in marriage is a way to regroup, cool off, and think about how to move forward. “Take a timeout” is good marriage advice when you’re stuck in the cycle of arguing about the same thing over and over again.
Some important things to think about when you call a timeout are as follows:
1. When to call a timeout
You need to know the right time to call it.
2. When not to call a timeout
You can’t call it if makes the conflict worse.
3. What a timeout is not
A timeout is not a way avoid the issue.
4. What to do during a timeout
The timeout is a way to breathe and think calmly about the situation so you can move forward.
Have you ever used a timeout during arguments with your spouse? How did it work?
Keith Dent is a certified relationship coach and the author of In The Paint – How to Win at the Game of Love. If you like leave a comment, or reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are having challenges in your relationship and dating life.
Raising your voice does denote anger, but a healthier way of conveying that feeling is to simply say, “I am angry.” If you say what you mean and mean what you say with your spouse on a regular basis, then that statement alone will be treated with the seriousness it deserves.
So I would love to know. When was the last time you raised your voice to your spouse? Did you get the satisfaction you were looking for? Did the problem get resolved?
When a COVID Vaccine is finally found, how will it impact the world of relationships, dating, and Sex?
Will we go back to the invisible labor that women have had to do for so long behind the scenes that have been totally brought into the open for many families during this pandemic?
Will couples no longer rush to cohabitate, because the ability to experiment and form relationships has been severely curtailed?
Will Zoom dating and Zoom sex become the norm?
All important things to think about as cases begin to rise as the pandemic lingers.
What do you think?
Keith Dent is a certified relationship coach and the author of In The Paint – How to Win at the Game of Love. If you like leave a comment, or reach out at email@example.com if you are having challenges in your relationship and dating life.
Problems can arise in your marriage when a romantic partner makes a mistake, or treats you bad hurts you badly. In your marriage, can you forgive them while holding them accountable? Ultimately, the goal is to reestablish the relationship and prevent them from hurting you again. But, will forgiveness motivate them to “see the error of their ways”? Or, is holding them accountable the key to making sure the situation does not happen again?
Keith Dent is a certified relationship coach and the author of In The Paint – How to Win at the Game of Love. If you’re having difficulty forgiving and or holding your partner accountable, check out http://www.keithdent.com. If you need help NOW, drop Keith a message at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In a recent blog, Psychologist Jeffrey Bernstein said this, “In over 30 years as a psychologist, I have never had an adult look back at their childhood and complain that their parents were too understanding. And similarly, I have met many divorced people who still love each other but never really understood each other. My point is that many relationships have broken up and marriages have been torn apart not because the partners didn’t love each other but because they didn’t understand one another.”
So what do you do to better understand your partner?
Do you need help in this area?
Keith Dent is a certified relationship coach and the author of In The Paint – How to Win at the Game of Love. If you’re in desperate need to understand your partner better to strengthen you bond contact him at email@example.com.
Are you growing, but your partner and is resistant to that growth? If ther is resistant, it can create an impasse for you as a couple.
If you are growing as an individual, has your partner noticed and what is he/she doing to support you in your growth?
Growth in a marriage requires attention, effort, intention and strong communication. In other words, change.
Keith Dent is a certified coach and author of In the Paint – How to Win at the Game of Love. If you feel you need a change, but am not sure how to communicate that to your partner contact Keith at firstname.lastname@example.org
A Growth-focused relationships are all about encouraging each other’s challenges and dreams. With that said, how are you inspiring your partner to take on a new professional or personal goal? In what area does your partner have room to grow?
In the first episode of my podcast, Black Men Speak!, I discuss what we need to do to create a National Black Lives Matter Movement that’s sustainable and impactful and get the results we desperately seek to become a more equitable nation.
My guests include Eagleton Institute Professor, Saladin Ambar, Fox Sports Radio personality, Chris Broussard, and Educational Activist L-Mani Viney.
The coronavirus not only has been wreaking havoc with our health and our economy, but it has really done a number on our relationships. The social distancing that was put in place for the entire country has done two things. It has either isolated you from your partner thus creating further distance and anxiety, or the attachment has caused constant stress and has forced you to re-evaluate what you need from your partner.
Gentleman, if your relationship has taken a hit and you’re not clear what you need to do to get back on track, here are four things you need to do to back on track and help you understand what she needs.
Open Communication is the first step!
Open communication needs to occur regularly and frequently if you want to get back on track. During this crisis if you haven’t been communicating openly then it may mean to her that the relationship is coming to an end. If you want to start to regain a healthy relationship this is the first order of business.
Open communication will help you strengthen the respect you have for one another. It will also help you be more transparent with your partner.
Open communication will also help you avoid miscommunication because fewer things will go unsaid helping her to become more secure.
Honesty is still the best policy!
During this time being honest with your partner gives you a great deal of comfort. When she trusts you implicitly she can become your best self and vice versa. This will bring back the positive energy that will make your relationship thrive while reducing those future ups and downs.
Start taking responsibility for your part in the relationship!
Doing this can be a major game-changer for your relationship especially if you were not comfortable doing this in the past. By taking ownership of your actions you are showing you can be vulnerable which in turn can help her do the same. The best way to start taking ownerships is done in 3 Steps:
Understanding what you do affects her
One other thing is that you also have to stop taking the blame for things you didn’t do. It’s counterproductive to the two topics we discussed earlier, open communication and honesty.
If you are able to the first three things, her trust in you will begin to increase. Some important things that you will need to keep in mind are to make sure you actively listen to her when it comes to open communication because that is the main component.
If you have to apologize for your actions make sure to act on those words.
And finally, be patient don’t beat yourself up if things don’t get better overnight. If you continue to work on your relationship, once the coronavirus has subsided, you will be in a much stronger place.
By taking these four action steps now really repair the damage the coronavirus has done to your relationship. She will truly understand that not only do you physically fill her needs but mentally as well.
This Monday, February 24th at 10:00 AM PT, thousands of mourners will gather at the Staples to honor Kobe Bryant, daughter Gianna and the others that perished in the helicopter on January 26, 2020.
Are you still feeling the loss about the fact they are gone and how it happened?
We always seem to react strongly to the death of a celebrity especially when someone dies before their time, or when they are about to reach superstardom like Aaliyah for instance.
What was most troubling is that Kobe was on the verge of a budding second career that was about to make him more popular than he was as a basketball player. Kobe was known for applying this “Mamba Mentality which meant despite his success, he was still on a continued quest to be the best version of himself whether it was in business, as a parent, or in life.
Are you struggling in your current job, or how you would like to create your mark in this world and you would like to do whatever it takes to separate yourself from the rest of the pack. Here are 10 Ways to develop that Mamba Mentality.
Have a champion mentality. (Be Driven)
Do whatever it takes to succeed in the endeavor you are passionate about. You have to give 100% fully to that thing.
Study, take a course or read up on that thing you are passionate about. If it’s creating a podcast, get as many books, or watch as many videos on podcasting you can get. Talk to someone that has created a podcast in your field so you can hear the pitfalls.
Be a better leader
Having empathy and compassion for the people in your life personally and professionally. It will help you become a better communicator when you know the people in your life on a deeper level. People will understand that you are interested in their goals outside work. By acting as their coach or accountability partner, you build lasting relationships and a more loyal tribe.
Learn from Failures
In any given area, there are some landmines that you must avoid if you want to succeed. It’s your job to figure it out. If you do fall on one, how quickly do you get back up and go forward?
Be a Long Term Thinker.
The process of becoming great at something may not happen in a day, a week, a month or even a year, but if you keep working your passion and being curious about how to get better you will see results.
Challenge yourself to grow
Some of us feel we are already great at passion, so we don’t even think about trying to get better. Remember, change is constant. There are always new ideas being developed in your chosen passion. Seek them out in order to get better.
Kobe Bryant learned this quote from one of his HS coaches, “Don’t rest in the middle, rest at the end.” When a thing that we are the most passionate about gets challenging, we quit or put it aside to pick up later. Don’t do that. Figure out how to get going. If you need to talk to a mentor, or a trusted friend, do that. Everyone needs encouragement.
Nurture your relationships
Don’t always seek out people that can help you get to where you want to go. There is a point where you will have to reach back and help someone that has the same passion you have but just isn’t as experienced. Don’t hesitate to help them for fear they will take away your opportunities. There are more than enough clients, but there aren’t enough compassionate people.
Focus on One Thing
If you have many passions, decide which one you are going to focus on. You will have time to go to the next one. It’s hard to have the mamba mentality if you are trying to do several different things all at once.
If you don’t enjoy what you are doing, then why are you? When you find that thing you are passionate about, do that.
Even though Kobe Bryant died before his time, we can honestly say he lived his life on his terms applying the Mamba Mentality way. His legacy is leaving his playbook of life so you can do the same. And that is what made Kobe great.
Keith Dent is a certified relationship and leadership coach and the author of In The Paint, how to win at the Game of Love. To contact him for a consultation, email him at email@example.com
Texting is a perfect form of communication when it comes to daily interaction with your wife. First of all, it’s quick. So much so that 77 billion messages are sent around the globe daily. Secondly, you can also multi-task especially if some important thoughts come to your head when you are in a boring business meeting you can send it out. Third, it can enhance your relationship if you and your spouse have the same texting style.
One drawback is to avoid resolving conflicts and making important decisions over text. By not talking about these things face-to-face it can make things worse because you can’t read tone or body language from a text.
So if texting is an important mode of communication with your wife then here are 12 Do’s and Don’t in what women want to hear from you in a text.
Don’t Send a text that will spark a fight!
It will only escalate more when you finally come together because words can be misconstrued without tone and non-verbal cues.
Do Send a thinking of you text.
Your wife wants to know you are thinking of her and at some point during the day you probably are so why no let her know.
Don’t Send the Dismissive text.
The “K” text can be the powder for an explosive outburst from your wife. When she is expecting more of a response from you and all she gets is one letter it can lead her to conjure up what you’re feeling or thinking and it probably won’t be good.
Do Send the Your Right text.
Your wife wants to feel that she is heard and that her opinion matters. By sending her a text telling her “she’s right” lets her you were listening to her.
Don’t Send the Your Cray-Cray text.
Did this ever work when you were talking face to face and there wasn’t laughter at the end of that statement? Then why do you think it would work in a text? Don’t do it!
Do Send the What can I do for you text.
What’s great about this text is that it’s open-ended. It will let your wife know you will serve her in any way she needs.
Don’t Send the rambling text.
Especially if she asked about your feelings before you left for work and you said, “Nothing!” This could be a signal to your wife that you’re uncomfortable sharing your feelings unless you’re in front of a screen. Allow yourself to be vulnerable.
Do Send the Flirty text.
Sending that flirtatious text show desire. In marriage, it’s a part of the intimate relationship that can spark the chemicals in your brain and make your sex life more intense. Send these texts early and often.
Don’t Send the Not Now text.
If you’re busy then say so and let her know when you can text her back. The words “not now” will surely not go over well especially if full-blown text conversation with someone else when the two of you were out to dinner. It will send a signal that she isn’t a priority in your life.
Do Send I’m glad to share this journey with you text.
Because marriage is a journey there are ups and downs and your wife wants to be assured you’re along for the ride.
Don’t Send the ________ text.
The non-responsive text is a definite “no-no” If your partner sends you a text she’ll expect a response. By not responding it shows her you’re not as connected as she thinks. That way cause you to be moved to second place on the ICE (In Case of Emergency) list.
Do Send the let’s go out tonight text, the kids are taken care of.
Your wife wants to spend time with you, but she also knows that if the kids aren’t taken care of she won’t really have a good time. By not only planning what you are doing for the evening but also securing babysitting will guarantee the both of you will have a great time.
Texting is an easy way to stay connected to your wife at any time and in any place. Knowing the right and wrong thing to say in a text can enhance the communication you have with your wife avoid misunderstandings.
Keith Dent is a certified relationship coach and the author of In the Paint – How to Win at the Game of Love. If you need a consultation, contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org
Hey Single Men! Last night you may have met the one, but you know you will have to do something different to let her know your true feelings. Then you suddenly opened your Bank App and realized you might not have the funds to do so. So, are you going to still shy away from asking from taking your relationship to the next level romantically because you think you need a lot of money in order to take the woman you love out on the perfect kind of dates?
When it comes to romance in the winter, you don’t automatically think of Paris, known for its ambiance, rich culture and of course the food. You think about snow, fireplaces and ski resorts that keep you more inside than out.
A visit to Paris in the winter will change that mindset. I recently took a trip there. I was so exhilarated by all the sights and wonderful energy. I wished my wife would’ve come along with me to enjoy it. Not fighting all of the crowds was definitely a bonus. Here are seven reasons why Paris is a great winter destination for romance.
Visiting Paris by Metro
With over 302 stations covering 133 miles, it’s clearly one of the best ways to see the city. You can literally get off the plane and be in the beloved city in less than an hour. You can really discover the hidden gems of Paris traveling this way.
The Wall of Love
Getting off at one of those stops landed us at Abbesses Metro, sight of Le mur des je t’aime, or the Wall Of Love. The 430 sq. ft tiled wall features “I love you” 311 times in 350 languages. It actually took my daughter and I ten minutes to find the words in English.
The Love Locks are still alive.
A great romantic gesture in Paris was to place a love lock on the Pont des Arts bridge, but in 2015 the practice was banned, due to the sheer weight affecting the structure. It was awesome to see there was still a place to leave a Love Lock and just so happen to be located near the Basilica Montmartre.
The Louvreis a must visit.
It’s perfect for a day-long date. You can actually spend 3 or 4 days and still not see everything. Make sure you check out the Venus de Milo statue, or if you are short on time try to find all 17 artifacts that are featured in Beyonce and Jay-Z’s video “ApeShit.”
Visit Paris by Scooter
If you get tired of the Metro there is nothing more dangerously romantic than riding through the Paris streets on a motorized scooter. If you rent one and travel together, you can get from the Louvre to the Eiffel tower in about 20 minutes. From an intimacy standpoint, that’s huge.
The Top of the Eiffel Tower
Not only was it cool being able to go to the highest structure in Paris., but they make sure you culminate your visit with a glass of champagne and kiss once you get there.
The food of course
The food of course was just fantastic especially the croissants from Le Pain Retrouve, a bakery in Montmartre.
The French are so passionate about their food and wine. What was awesome was drinking Vin Chaud (hot-wine) out in the open on a cold winter’s night. There was just something magical about drinking it on the open.
There are many romantic places you can visit and I haven’t been to all of them yet, but if I get another opportunity to take a trip with my spouse during the winter I’ll choose Paris each and every time and these 7 reasons will make it that special.
In a recent article, Do Father’s Really Make A Difference, it’s clear that when a father and mother live together, the kids perform better in school, and have lower rates of delinquency and substance.
But, it’s not about just being present. The role model a father can play can help a child feel connected and learn lessons that will strengthen them.
So what are some of those personality traits that will do just that? Here are 14 of the best quotes that will describe the traits you need to make a difference in your child’s life.
Your kids will test you as they grow and mature. Having patience is essential.
You will even need Patience with yourself. Don’t waver when things get hard. Stay the course.
When you have values that are rooted in something higher than yourself it guides your decision making.
Having strong values not only helps you share yourself, but also helps you pass down your legacy to your children.
Being open-minded means you understand you’re raising children than yourself. Be able to teach as well as learn.
Being open-minded enough to express their own thoughts and pursue their own dreams and goals will help your children thrive.
Consistently showing love to your family is vital. Your kids will do better in school, be more empathetic and avoid risky behaviors.
The more love you show, the more love you will get back. Love is about being vulnerable.
Being loyal means you will be there no matter what, especially during the hard times.
When your family gets attacked by life, a loyal father must hang in there. It’s what makes the family stronger.
Relationships are built on trust and being honest. It’s not about being perfect, but you must do what you say you are going to do.
When you are honest with your children, they will feel safe and share their life with you. It’s what intimate relationships are built on.
7. Lead by Example
As the co-leader of the family what he does and the choices he makes will have a ripple effect throughout the entire family. Leading by example is about planting seeds.
Fatherhood is about being a role model. It will not only make your family happier and more stable, but it will also make the community and the world a better place to live.
If you’re a father, figure out which of these traits you are missing and work on them. Practice them until you can display them consistently and meaningfully with your family. You will be happy that you did and your kids will be happy too.
If you are stuck with figuring out how to incorporate some of these traits into your life and you need help contact me email@example.com.
This weekend there is another royal wedding. Prince Harry is marrying Meghan Markle. This is sure to be a royal wedding like no other. One reason is that Meghan was born in the United States and two she is of mixed race. Folks are already fascinated to see if there will be any more interesting things that happen during this event. This wedding has created a lot of hoopla and fanfare as England and the world prepare for this event.
Even though this event has already been highly publicized, this is only the beginning of the type of media coverage they will receive during their marriage journey. Prior to the wedding the couple has also been receiving pre-marital coaching in order to help them navigate through all of the challenges they may face.
As a relationship coach, if given the opportunity there are 7 important topics Meghan would need to understand going into the marriage.
Think about any media event and multiply it by 100. – The coverage and the excitement over every move in your marriage will be covered. I know you are used to some of it during your time as a celebrity, but it’s even bigger. Lean on Harry when you begin to feel overwhelmed. He will help you navigate these challenges.
Remain independent – You have built a career for yourself as well as a platform. You your new title to make some of the changes that you have only dreamed of.
Utilize the 3 C’s (Communicate, Compromise, Compassion). Marriage in general is challenging enough, especially in the early years. Understanding how to best communicate, compromise and how to show compassion can go a long way to getting through the bumpy episodes.
Remember, he chose you! Prince Harry had the opportunity and the access, he chose you to be his wife over everyone. This was different than his father, who was ultimately in love with his current wife Camilla. This is important, especially when the paparazzi or just the haters try to put a wedge between the two of you.
Show Respect – This will be a key component to the success of your marriage. Men always want to feel like they are respected even if he is a prince or a pauper. We tend to think that respecting him in public is sufficient, but don’t forget to respect his abilities, his judgement and his voice. There is no quicker way for a man to fall out of love if he doesn’t feel respected.
Enjoy the journey and be present. – Part of being present is doing one thing at a time. You will easily get sucked into many engagements for the royal family and will forget other things. Understand that sometimes, you will have to say NO. It will be up to Harry to understand and protect your need for your time. According to Michael Formica, psychotherapist and author of 5 Steps for Being Present states that being present is, in a sense, a meditation without meditating. The stillness here, though, comes from action – breathing, attending, witnessing, releasing and breathing again.
Doing these things early in your marriage, Meghan will help you stay on the right track. Stay Tuned for tomorrow as I provide the 7 tips on What Harry Must Do for His Marriage to Thrive.
Keith Dent is a relationship, life coach at Strive2Succeed Coaching. He is the author of the In The Paint: How to Win at the Game of Love and his work has appeared on sites like The Good Men Project, MamaMia, and The Real Dad’s Network. If this is you and you feel you are having trouble telling your partner about that you are cheating, contact me via email and let’s have a chat.
Every one has to fall in love with a narcissist one time in their life. It’s the best way to experience the total emotional spectrum in a relationship. It will provide everything from the opportunity to be charmed beyond your wildest dreams to eventually getting to the point where you can no longer stand this person.
So what are the steps to finding the narcissist of your dreams?
Step #1 – Make sure you are always dressed like a million bucks
A narcissist believes life is always about him. His appearance will be impeccable when your eyes meet. He will also be very quick to flatter your beauty and intellect because he is envisions the two of you together. So make sure the hair, clothes, nails, etc. are on point.
Step #2 – Be empathetic
Since a narcissist has no real empathy for anything or anyone he will be drawn to the mere fact that you can show that type of emotion towards them.
Step #3 – Let his shame tug at your heartstrings
Most of the time when you are with him everything will be perfect. But be on guard. There will be a few times when he lets his hair down and talks about his shame. Be prepared to have it tug at your heart. Let me caution you, don’t try to help him acknowledge his shame, though. It may result in a fit of emotional rage.
Step #4 – You must have a fond appreciation for actors
Your narcissist man will be able to emulate anything you want them to be. If it’s a family man, he will dote on his kids and spoil them in all the ways that make him look good. Don’t worry about disciplining them, that will be your job.
Step #5 – Be prepared to move on
No matter how rocky the relationship will be and just when you think your relationship is about to turnaround, he will be out. According to an article in Psychology Today The narcissist loved being in a relationship—but only on his terms.
In the end you will gain clarity on the fact that your narcissist lover has severe emotional issues that you will eventually walk away from so the emotionally healthy one can find you.
Ladies! Has your frustration returned now that Valentine’s Day is over and your husband is back to chillin’ on the couch watching countless hours of sports.
Do you ever wonder what is it about sports that men love so much? If you are still befuddled by this question the next time you get in your car and go to the store, turn on your local sports radio station. You will hear grown men so excited and passionate about getting their point across about a sports moment that happened days before sometimes even years. These men will wait up to 30 minutes to make sure they do so.
Men love sports because it’s fun, spontaneous, thrilling and exciting. Isn’t that how you want your marriages to be? Often times it’s the opposite, boring, and predictable.
So what do you have to do to win at the Game of Love? Here is a 6-step game plan to get your marriage back on track.
Have a powerful slogan
Every season, teams that excel have powerful slogans to remind them of the goal of winning. In 2017, the Cleveland Cavaliers slogan for the playoffs was “Defend the Land”. So as a family you should come up with a slogan that defines who you are as a family and reminds each other why you are commitment.
Constantly reminding him his importance on the team.
On any given team, there players that don’t get a lot of credit, but are the essential to winning and losing. Your husband may be that guy. He may not be overly flashy, or the life of the party. He just gets the job done. You should remind him that his role is valuable and vital to your success as a couple.
To stay at the top takes work.
Your wedding with all the pomp and circumstance is like the ultimate championship game. Staying on top takes work, so you must challenge him not to get complacent. Treat your time together like practice where you learn new things about each other and make it routine.
Know when to call a time-out?
In any given game, you can feel the momentum shift to the other side. The coach will call a time-out in order for the team to rest, re-group and reassess the game plan. You should do that in your marriage, especially if you feel the momentum shifting and it’s inevitable that they will. If you see your husband starts to become disengaged, no energy or just plain angry, or you aren’t happy. Don’t be afraid to call a time-out. If you let things go, you may lose.
Treat sex like a game.
Sex to a man is like a conquest. Treat it like one. In the bedroom, men feel great when you enjoy sex just as much as he does. It makes him feel accomplished. Overtime it gets harder and harder to set aside to enjoy this part of marriage. Do things like trash-talking (i.e. flirting), putting on your best outfit and creating a build-up to the main event.
Treat the kids like the rookies.
Your kids are just like tiny adults. They are going to need to understand the family slogan in order to thrive and excel. As co-captain of the team it’s the responsibility of both of you to give them the tools they will need to be successful. Make sure you challenge them, give them a voice and most of all have fun.
Working as a team is never easy. It takes commitment to a desired goal, discipline, motivation, trust and a few lucky bounces of the ball. By treating your marriage more like a game, your husband can truly understand the importance of his role and will work to win.
Keith Dent is a relationship, life coach at www.strive2succeedcoaching.com . He has appeared on sites like The Good Men Project, MamMia and The Real Dad’s Network and is the author of the In The Paint – How to Win at the Game of Love.
Did you know this past January 8th, the first Monday of the New Year, is considered “Divorce Day.” It’s the day where individuals that already cracks in their relationship inquire about divorce because the holidays are now over.
Even though most individuals that are ecstatic to no longer have the albatross around their neck, some of you after a few days of singleness are contemplating your decision.
Defense is the action of defending or resisting attack. Yet, as men, we often feel that we don’t need to be on guard for anything especially when it comes to marriage.
On the other hand, women not only are they on guard for the things that happen in their marriage, they are on guard about everything that happen in their lives.
Men, for those of us that watch and understand sports, we know that defense is very vital important part of the game. It’s the only way you win. We all know the phrases, “A good defense beats a good offense.” “Offense wins games, defense wins championships.”
If a fruitful long lasting relationship is what we desire, then we must realize that at some point our relationship will come under attack. In order to win, we must apply these 10 principles to ensure our marriages last.
Defend against not knowing your spouse
So we must understand your partner’s strengths and weaknesses as well as your own. Pushing and encouraging your spouse to be great can be very difficult if you don’t know your own. Marriages can be challenging when you are constantly focusing on your partner’s weaknesses.
Defend against not supporting or protecting her freedom.
We must understand that even though we both need and enjoy our spouse and vice versa, it’s also important for us to maintain our individuality. In particular, we need to feel like the decisions we’re making are truly coming from us. According to John Knee in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, when people feel forced or coerced into making choices — like they didn’t have any real choice in the matter — they’re less happy and less fulfilled. And, as you might have guessed, that lack of happiness is problematic for relationships.
Defend against not voicing your wishes, desires, fears and dreams.
We must understand that we have needs, fears and desires outside of our spouse. Our partners will never fully deeply understand us if we never voice them. It’s that lack of deep connection the leads to our relationships ending.
Defend against sacrificing your needs out of obligation just to make her happy.
Once you figure out what your needs are, discuss with your partner how your needs can be met. This can be easier said than done because your spouse will have her own needs and it may come in direct conflict with yours. So be aware that fulfilling your needs will involve difficult sacrifices on her part.
Make sure that when you do make sacrifices you do it only with love and care, and not with reluctance or resentment. If can’t make sacrifices for the right reasons, it’s probably better not to make the sacrifice at all.
Defend against not being there for your spouse when she needs you.
Your partner will rely on you the most for support. If you aren’t there when she is distressed or that soft place to fall, she will find someone else to do it. Rather it’s other women or another man. Then she will begin to think. What does she need you for?
Defend against not nurturing her goals and ambitions; supporting her through misfortune and celebrating triumphs.
Your partner wants to feel support when it comes to taking risks. There is nothing more secure when your partner can go out and conquer their goals, and there is a cheerleader pushing them and congratulating them.
Defend against a boring, passionless marriage.
It’s no secret that couples are happier when they engage in new, interesting things together. You are basically telling your partner that you promise not to let your relationship fall into a rut. We’re going to keep dating each other, keep travelling and exploring together, and keep sharing novel and interesting experiences with each other for the rest of your lives
Defend against bailing when times get tough.
This is where the better or worse come in; in other words, to stay committed to each other. When a couple sees themselves as a permanent partnership, their perspective on problems tends to shift from being about battling against each other to being about “ride together or die”. Having this type of commitment helps people to stop treating conflicts as all-or-nothing, instead keeping the wellbeing of your partner and your relationship in mind. Acting as a team, puts you in a better position to face challenges together.
Defend against callousness and unfairness because, you are a team now and for always.
In other words your marriage isn’t about carefully keeping score to ensure that we’re each contributing to the relationship fairly and equally. Instead, you’re promising to always strive to contribute what you can, based on the needs of your partner. You have to trust that your respective efforts will more or less balance out in the long run.
Defend against taking your marriage for granted.
When you appreciate your partner, you’re happier and more committed to the relationship. When you express gratitude to your partner, they feel more appreciated, and that makes them just as happy and just as committed. So promise to never take each other for granted, but rather to appreciate what you have and express early and often.
These ten things are the best defense to the offensive attacks that can ruin your marriage over the long haul. As Osho says, “The fully matured man has no fear defense; he is completely open and vulnerable.”
Keith Dent is a relationship, life coach at www.strive2succeedcoaching.com . He has appeared on sites like Your Tango, The Good Men Project, MamMia and The Real Dad’s Network and is the author of the upcoming book In The Paint – How to Win at the Game of Love.
Finding Love on Tinder is minefield that most people don’t want to enter.
If you are lucky enough to meet a nice guy, have meaningful conversations that lead to, casual dates, and a few hookups, it has a chance to develop into a relationship.
Love is an entirely different thing. You want to be clear that this relationship you are building is something that can become sustainable. Click here to read the 7 signs that his feelings for you is turning into something more.
I always thought raising a teenage daughter would be challenging. From empowering her to be the best she can be to making sure she doesn’t get hurt by some boy or man. I had a lot to worry about.
I was wrong. Raising my two boys has been the hardest most frustrating thing I’ve ever done. From possibly being harmed by your own peer group, to doing something drastic to affirm you are the young men you say you are. Let’s not forget the daily arguments reminding them to pick up after themselves, I constantly struggle with the fact that I might not be the best man for the job.
To read more about why raising boys is hard, click here.
Is your love catered to her tastes? It’s common to give love the way we want to receive love. But your love language probably doesn’t match hers. If you are not sure if yours match, here is a way to find out.
If you would rather be more direct, ask this question: “Honey, do you feel the depth of my love? Not do you know it, but do you feel it? If not, how can I nourish your soul?”
Do you realize your love is crucial to her survival? It’s no secret many women feel malnourished by their husbands. Their closets may be stuffed with clothes and pantry stocked with food, but their souls are famished for attention and craving emotional sustenance from the one who promised to love them until “death do us part.”
In a new memoir, “It Takes Two: Our Story, Property Brothers star, Jonathan Scott, isn’t shy about how he contributed to his divorce.
He states that “I think when you are young and you don’t really know what you want in life, you can commit to something and think at the time it is right.”
Most people give many reasons why they get divorce from infidelity, not having the same vision, to loss of intimacy, even finances. One thing is clear, we usually will blame the other person for the reason our marriages fail.
In #LOVETOPICTUESDAY, if you are one that has been divorced how did you contribute to the demise of your marriage? What tips could you give others that are on the verge of ending their marriage?
If you are unsure of the direction of your marriage and you need clarity, please contact me for a free 30 minute consultation at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can you believe that even though you are married, you might not be meeting your partner’s needs?
For example you might assume that you are no longer have to check-in with your spouse every day, since you go to him or her. On the contrary, you might have to do it more because other distractions like work and kids can keep you from really connecting. And if this is one of your partner’s core need, this can really cause friction in your marriage.
So if you want to know if your partner’s needs are being met here are FOUR questions that you should ask to get the dialogue going?
What are your partner’s 3 basic core needs?
According to Willard Harley, author of His Needs/Her Needs, failing to make your partner happy is one of the main sources of conflict within a marriage. Most successful couples don’t get married because the sex was so incredible they needed it all the time, or they knew they would be financially set for life. People get married because they feel their partner will meet their most important needs. If you don’t know what they are, then you should ask.
What are your needs?
This is important because if your needs aren’t being met, you surely aren’t going to meet your partner’s needs. If you are without your needs being met, then you resent your partner for it. Make sure you are clear on what you need and communicate that to your partner.
Are you ready to meet their needs?
This may involve some adjustments on your part. Let’s go back to the check-in example. If you have a very busy schedule, you will have to be strategic on how you show your partner that his/her need to hear from you is being met. You may have to carve out time on your calendar or be creative on how you check in. The question you want to ask yourself, “Is this person important in your life and will you do what it takes to make them happy?”
Will your partner meet your needs?
If your partner is tuned in, he/she will make sure that your needs are met. If not, you will need to have a frank conversation before go elsewhere to have your needs met.
If you feel your needs aren’t being met, but you are having difficulty talking about it, please contact Strive 2 Succeed Coaching Services for a free consultation at email@example.com.
We as a society may be consumed by Infidelity because couples have a difficult time answering these questions that are about to be examined in Esther Perel’s new book The State of Affairs. The book goes on sale this Tuesday.
Are we still passionately in love with our spouse?
Are there some fulfillments that even a good marriage can’t provide?
Do erotic desires sometime trump emotional needs?
Is it okay to love more than one person?
Are we a nation that can no longer be monogamous?
These are just some of the questions that are affecting our ability to step beyond the boundary of marriage.
What other challenges do you think we face as a society?
It’s happened…you’s a married girl (ala The Color Purple)! Your teenage dream of finding the right man and being dressed in white to walk down the aisle to meet “the one” Cory A. Jones happened. I am currently 42 years old and have so much to tell you that will give you peace in your heart and mind about what to expect about marriage.
Remember when you conceived at age 15 and had a son at age 16? Remember when you thought your life was over when his father left him? Remember when you thought you were unlovable because who would love a girl who had a baby? Well, you met THE ONE who dispelled all those lies. You met THE ONE who gave you value and worth. You met THE ONE who gave you purpose. You met THE ONE who has great plans, gives hope and a future. You met JESUS! He is THE ONE who has never failed you, never left you and never forsaken you.
It’s because of Him, that you started to know who you were as a woman, mother and a potential wife. He’s the one that made the connection between you and Cory A. Jones, your now husband who you met at the worst job you two ever had. He knew who you would need to be beside you and be the father and step father of your children. He would also be the one to dispel the lies about what men do. You know. Those thoughts about past experiences that men will leave, men cheat, men are selfish, men leave their children, and on and on. He’s a good one, D. He will represent sacrificial love to you in good times and bad. He is generous and will shower you with gifts and heartfelt cards of encouragement (even though gifts aren’t your primary love language, you like it 😀). You’ll know that he’s the one not on day one but as years pass and good times and trials come, Cory will show you that he is not what your father did and he is not what your exes have done. He becomes a Godly man who yearns to grow in the Lord and seeks His wisdom on how to lead himself and his family. You should learn to accept that early on.
You’ll learn that marriage isn’t easy. It will take daily work of prayer, reading, counsel, and introspective analysis to continue to heal from past wounds of your father and past relationships so you two could conquer the future together.
When the going gets tough…
⁃ Keep fighting
⁃ Keep praying
⁃ Keep worshipping
⁃ Keep speaking life over yourselves
⁃ Keep loving
⁃ Keep the faith
⁃ Keep learning
I know you’re dating Diana J. Novoa right now, and you will soon propose to her. Spoiler alert, she will say yes but the words coming out her mouth will be delayed for some reason (lol). Your Princess from Queens will in fact become your Queen from Queens (NY), your best friend and the love of your life. There’s some things you should know
before you say “I Do” and I hope you’re sitting down…lol.
In all seriousness…you’ve picked a winner. When you lose your job after the tragic events of 9- 11 and the financial company you work for lays off a great number of you’ll, your lady will stand strong. Although you’ll were planning and saving up for a wedding, her faith and commitment to helping you get back on your feet did not waiver. When you decided to take a low paying assistant job at a record company instead of focusing on the level of pay you were accustomed to, your woman did not flinch. She just found a way to make it work. She knew your desire to break into the music business and was totally on board. You married a strong women of faith. Which is one of her best qualities. She assesses a situation and tries to figure it out. She’s a real team player and it will teach you that she can be trusted to battle adversity, she will not fold when things don’t go exactly as planned. I know that’s one of your concerns. You want a battle tested warrior chick. You’ve seen what your mother had to endure and toughness is a quality
you really appreciate. Diana has a “can do/will do/by any means necessary” attitude.
During the first 15 years of your marriage the bond just continued to grow stronger. You guys have a, we’ll figure it out, lets see what the Lord has to say about attitude and your marriage received many compliments over the years as one that looks really strong and united.
Honesty is huge for you. I know you cling to the fact that your mother was a super hero on the outside and was tormented on the inside. There were so many things you didn’t and couldn’t understand growing up. Your mother dealt with a lot of pain, heartbreak, unmet expectations and a general lack of love and support being the youngest of three. So as time went on and the armor started to crack, it was a real emotional roller-coaster for you. One that manifested itself into not trusting women. In not trusting women, you would leave any relationship at the first sight of difficulty. But establishing a friendship with Diana, you were able to get to know who she really was minus the pressure of dating, which I refer to as the dating hoax. The dating hoax is when you put on your “best face/image/mask” for the interview. Dating can seem like a series of intimate interviews. But since you started out as friends with Diana, you established a
foundation of truth, because no one was ever trying to impress the other. There was no need to, we had no ulterior motives. We laughed, gave each advice and genuinely wished each other well. Rest assured you guys are still friends, you like being around each other and you’ll focus on being honest (not mean) and appreciative of how God wired each of you. You’ve grown to appreciate Diana’s love of family and being around people. She even convinced you to open your home to hosting a life group (bible study) and marriage mentoring group. You’re not antisocial but you do appreciate a quiet night of watching a movie over hosting families and their children, cooking, cleaning, facilitating a bible study which requires hours of study before your guest arrive. But you learned to love hosting, I know, I’m surprised as well.
Love will stretch you Cory, because when done right, it’s not easy. You will find that Love is not what you want to give, it’s giving what the other needs, but in a sacrificial way. You will have some problems in this area until you read, The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman as well as studying the word of God, specifically 1 Corinthians 13:4-7.
Biblically, love is patient and kind. You’re kind but not particularly patient. That’s the New York City in you.
Love is not jealous, boastful, proud or rude. You struggle with the proud part, you will have to be more vulnerable. Keeping stuff in won’t work. The “tough guy/whatever/it’s all good” thing in marriage is a trait you must lose.
You’re not jealous, certainly not boastful and not knowingly rude. That pride is a deal breaker though; and I know where it comes from. You needed a certain swagger to keep your head up in your childhood to preserver. But as a born again Christian you are a new creation.
Love does not demand its own way. You certainly expect your own way, you will feel at times because of what you do, you expect to get your own way. You will have to work through that and not be so presumptuous.
Love is not irritable and keeps no records of being wronged. That is and has not been easy for you. You’re a score keeper, that’s why you love sports so much. Cory, you will sometimes keep score and that will cause you to believe and expect returns on your investment, for lack of a better word. It doesn’t work that way young brother.
Don’t forget the sacrificial aspect of Love. Love does not rejoice at injustice but
rejoices when truth wins out. That’s easy enough for you. You’re a fair man.
Love never gives up, never loses hope or faith and wins out in every circumstance. You’re not one to give up, you will be someone that’s open to marriage counseling, talks with other successful couples that’s been at it longer than you guys, visiting marriage conferences for tune-ups, reading books on marriage and speaking to your pastors when issues arise. You wind up doing pretty good my dude. Your wife feels like she’s the apple of your eye and second to no one, you have been able to prioritize really well. Even your kids know they must respect your bride at all times.
Overall, you’re doing pretty well 15 years in. But, it is a never ending effort. The minute you take your foot off the gas you literally roll backward. You must continually look to show how much you love and appreciate your spouse. And not in a job way, in a we’re not guaranteed tomorrow way.
Before you drop that guy or girl due to boredom, examine how you are spending your time as a couple.
It maybe due to the fact that you have run into a routine just like Danielle Colley did which almost doomed her relationship.
What can help you get out of the rut is creating a series of lists that may put the energy you need back into the relationship and provide a closeness that’s second to none. A list like this can help remind you what really matters, and help maintain positivity, clarity, and peace amongst the craziness of everyday life.
So as the weekend is approaching, you and your partner should sit down individually and create these four lists. By doing this exercise you may find some similar interests that you never knew you had. The four lists are as follows:
Lists of Books you might read.- this list will give you different topics to talk about. You will get a perspective about a person you never expected when you are talking about a fictional story as opposed to what’s happening in social media.
List of activities you would like to do together – according to a recent study 94% of couples are happier when they spend quality time together versus 43% of couples that don’t. By having a list for activities that you would like to do will keep you from doing the same thing every weekend.
List of new things you would like to learn – will keep you brain sharp as you progress in your marriage.
List of places you would like to see – this will help you create long-lasting memories as you explore new places. Traveling to other countries not only give you the opportunity to see new things as a couple, it also gives you the opportunity to explore on you own.
So before you head out to another movie, or dinner, create that list so you can put that extra energy you need back into your relationship.
If you need so help brainstorming some ideas, or if you are stuck in a rut for some other reason, contact me for FREE 30-minute consultation at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Congratulations! Tomorrow you will celebrate your wedding in Qingtongxia, China. You will have one sister, a handful of friends, a hundred or so new relatives, and 20,000 villagers on hand to share in your joy. It will be covered by national news media and bring instant fame to your in-laws, who can count on one hand the number of foreigners they’ve ever seen in person (most of them from this week!)
In a few months, you’ll double own on the love and get married again; this time surrounded by all seven sisters, plus 200 extended family members and friends in the U.S. You’ll have traded your red wedding dress for a long white gown (those puffy sleeves will forever say 1991!) and the humble rural courtyard for a glitzy hotel with a view of the New York skyline. Your husband will know only three people present.
In the short time between weddings, you will have moved from rural China to suburban America. It will mark the beginning of a lifetime of adventure that will include (spoiler alert) living in three different countries and raising two exceptional daughters, who will serve as testament to this marriage. You’re marrying outside your race, religion, native tongue and passport country; yet over the years you’ll managed to not let these define your marriage. Over the next 25 years, together you’ll strengthen and enhance the union of your two unique and complementary personalities.
Despite this rosy picture from the future, I’ll share a few things to consider as you embark on your journey.
Yes, you already speak Chinese, but really make a concerted academic effort to learn to not
only speak and understand, but to read and write at a deeper level. The snowball effect of
studying a mere 30 minutes each week over 25 years will yield fluency you can’t even
imagine today. Flash cards and work books will suffice in the beginning, but it will get easier and more convenient with the advent of internet and podcasts. It will fulfill your
relationships with in-laws and extended family. You’ll be better equipped to have meaningful conversations with more people who know your groom but aren’t bilingual. You will not need to rely on him to translate.
Consider keeping your maiden name
Don’t run on autopilot. Take the time to contemplate the decision by recalling what you
bring, as an individual, into the marriage. If you adopt his name, anticipate what you’ll need to maintain your sense of self. Don’t lose your identity in the titles wife or mother. Fear not, your love of great white sharks and trampolines play a prominent role in your 49 year old life, but you will have a child who graduates from college before you go back for your master’s degree. Take time for yourself. It is not being selfish.
Schedule date nights
Observe them religiously. Give them the same priority you give to your daughters’ swim
practice schedule. Be more creative than dinner and a movie. Consider alternating turns
planning a surprise outing or activity for the appointed time. Remember that simplicity is
highly underrated. He’s more sentimental than he lets on. Similarly, schedule daddy-
daughter time. Give him time and space to develop his own relationship with your
children. Let him parent in his own style.
Don’t be a nag
He will respect and value your decision to delay a career to stay home with the children.
Recognize, however, that he will bear a self- imposed pressure as the sole bread winner.
Go easy on him as he transitions between jobs, and negotiates benefits for your
international assignments. (Yes, you’ll be back in China to raise your children.)
As you celebrate tomorrow, take a good look around. There are many faces that will continue to be present as you celebrate future milestones. There are some who will join your journey further down the road. There are others who will only be here briefly. That adorable 7 year old nephew who is dying for a ride in your wedding carriage will come to live in your home, and become a brother to your daughters. A second nephew will round out your household. Be patient and show grace.
Tonight, you are blinded by love. You cannot comprehend the enormity of his devotion. He is leaving his family, friends, and country behind for you. For You. He will always have your back. And you will always hold his heart. So tomorrow, and every day after: Engage. Say YES. Take more pictures. They will document for future generations the story of the couple who loved each other enough to say “I do” twice.
Today you stand before a judge and commit to love, honor, cherish, and support Lazarus Dempsey, as his wife until death do you part. Right now, you do not understand what this all means. You have seen movie after movie of fairy tale romances and amazing weddings and I would love to tell you that your marriage will be just as romantic and storybook, but honestly it will not.
Your determination not to fail will keep you in this marriage at times when you feel like you want to leave. Coming from a broken home, and listening to your mother tell you that you will never have a good relationship with a man because her marriage fell apart changes you. You vow to never allow this to happen to your marriage and future family. You remember saying to your mother “Just because your marriage didn’t work, doesn’t mean mine won’t, just because your marriage ended after 13 years doesn’t mean mine will”. However, what happens is that you now put a microscope on the men you date. You look for extraordinary signs of love and devotion from your relationships, you constantly look for proof that this man will be the one that will remain with you for life and if these signs did not show up within a specific frame in time, you ended the relationship. In trying to control this process you added countless years of heartache to your relationship life. You turned cold to relationships all together and focused on work. But you learned, you could not have found him on your own, your tests were not the determining factor it had to be God. Well young sis, You Made It, here we are at 16 years of marriage and you are having fun!
Lazarus is from another country and therefore there will be some cultural differences that will creep up from time to time to challenge your view on his commitment level and his love for you. When this happens, I urge you to remember the phone calls that he made to you every morning at 9am to wish you a wonderful day and to pray for you. Remember all the hours he waited for you on a Friday just to walk you to the train station because that was the only time you would allow him before you were married. Then pause and remember that those things did not stop once he said “I Do”.
You are used to doing everything on your own because that is how you lived your entire life before your husband came into the picture. You will have a tough time letting this go but over time you will learn that you have to let go of some of it in order for the relationship to mature and for him to grow as a husband and a father and you as a wife and mother.
Lazarus has never said a disparaging remark towards you and your character, although you will have said many towards him that you will later regret. Remember that this is frustration and that you really can’t live without him.
Here are a few things you can look forward to over the next 16 years.
His unshakeable Faith
Your husband has a strong faith in God and is diligent in prayer and forgiveness. You will question his faith constantly. You will do this to mask your lack of faith and your loose relationship with God. Things have happened in your life that turned you from the word of God and at times seeing his faith in action will make you feel guilty and lost. Just remember that the Bible tells us we are to lead by example and that the husband is the leader of his home in Faith and Family.
Your Anger is Hurtful
When you get angry you hold it in until you can no longer do so and you lash out. Your husband is the brunt of all of this and it is not fair. Remember that you are not the only one that gets angry, you are not the only one with fears and disappointments. Lazarus will help you see this, as his approach to these scenarios is calm, cool, and collected. You secretly admire this about him but your silly pride will not let you acknowledge it. Remember to breathe during the storm and then speak, your words cut like double-edged blades and the wounds you inflict are deep. Don’t make him bleed for the things that were done to you and the people who made you bleed.
His humor is your balance
Aileen, you have so much love, laughter, and compassion for others and you rarely give yourself credit. You feel like you have to keep up this strong wall all the time because you don’t want to let anyone in. Your husband will make you laugh at yourself during times when you want to cry. He has a way of making you tear down the wall, if only for a moment. Laugh during these times and cherish them. These times will shape your marriage for years to come. You will come to look forward to these goofy moments with him because they really are saving your life.
The greatest gifts HE gave you through your husband
Four years into your marriage you will sit y our husband down and tell him the following:
“Laz, I may never be able to give you children. Things that were done to me in my past may have made this impossible. I know how important having children is to you and I do not want to stand in your way. I will understand if you want to leave me, in fact, I encourage you to go and find a woman who is able to bear children. I will hurt, I will miss you and I may be alone for a long time, but I will be able to live with all of that because you will have the children that I cannot provide.
His amazing response to you is as follows:
“Aileen, these doctors are not God and by the way they have spoken to you, I question if they even know God. We will have children in God’s time because God’s time is the best time. Do you agree?
Yes, but secretly you have a little doubt. However, true to our God and his amazing timing your daughter was conceived that night in January 2005. Your second child, yes, a second child will come in March of 2007.
Look at these wonderful gifts and their character and you will see the face of your husband, the strength of your marriage and the love your husband has for you. Your selflessness, as shown in this tough conversation, is one of the things he loves most about you.
Throughout the years to come you will convince yourself that you do not deserve to be loved as deeply and unconditionally as others. You will tell yourself that because of your past you deserve less. I need you to open your eyes and realize that with Lazarus, you have gotten and will receive more than some people will ever feel in their lives. You are blessed, you are loved and you are amazing.
Your husband will call you “Dumb Dumb” from time to time to put out your fuse. This is a long running inside joke and it makes you laugh every time. Remember that communication, something you thought you were great at but have learned through marriage, is the key to your marriage. Remember your father told you “You met your match with this one”. Overall, you cannot see living this life without him and the family you share. He makes you possible!
Although your marriage had an unconventional start, your marriage is storybook, it is romantic and it is the most important relationship you will ever have. Looking forward to the next 16 years and the years to come. Continue to laugh, and allow yourself to be loved and give love every day.
Tomorrow when you wake up you’re going to have a brand new title Mr. Keith Dent married man to Priscilla Gordon. I know that you have already been dating for a year and a half, but this will be different.
The vows that you just echoed to all of your guests at the wedding will take on a meaning that you can’t even comprehend.
Your view of marriage will be challenged many times over. It will make you question your choices, but in reality it will make you question your abilities as a husband and a father.You are used to a patriarchal marriage that was full of energy and was captain of the ship. Your wife will not share these same views. She’s an independent woman who was raised to speak her mind when things look out of whack and she will do so often. Don’t worry, it will be for your own good. Even after twenty years of marriage she will still continue to reiterate that you were the only man she would’ve married.
With that said, here are five things you will have to look forward to in your marriage journey.
Sharing in Caring.
This is maybe the most important thing you will learn. You’re wife is very generous, especially with the people she loves. She will expect the same from you.This will be evident when she buys you a honey bun as a surprise.When you eat the whole thing without offering her a bite, it won’t taste so good.
Your expectations as a husband will change.
Her strength and upbringing will be an advantage especially when you figure out that corporate America isn’t for you. When you take that job delivering papers to support your family she will never look down on you. She will support you every step of the way. She will embrace your hard work and will do her part because teamwork makes the dream work.
Your children will challenge you in so many ways.
When you were growing up, your dad was the true leader of the family. He was the breadwinner, the planner and the disciplinarian. When he spoke, you listened. But, when you were younger you didn’t develop your own voice. You won’t have to worry about that when it comes to YOUR kids. They will laugh at you and question almost everything you say. Be prepared to teach and coach. It will be worth it. Your children will be your biggest legacy.
You will learn conflict and love are part of the deal.
When you first meet your wife’s family, especially her sisters you will be thoroughly entertained. They can be loud, opinionated and most of all competitive. They will never let you live down the times they beat you down in a game of Taboo and Street Fighter. Even though they fight with each other, you won’t be able speak ill of any of them. They will teach you that conflict is okay and that’s what being in a family is all about.
She will help you laugh at yourself.
You are going to end up making so many silly mistakes from going to concerts on the wrong night to not remembering when summer camp for your youngest son is two years in a row. Your wife will know how you beat yourself up over these things. She will help you laugh at yourself. You live, you laugh, you learn and you buy Luvs will be one of her favorite sayings.
All in all your marriage will be one of the most important fulfilling relationships you will ever have. It’s a tremendous blessing that you met Priscilla at Jasper’s wedding. Look forward to twenty more years of a wonderful journey.
Brothas, if you want my advice about marriage and relationships, there is one thing you should definitely know. If you are cheating on your woman, more likely than not that she already knows about it, or at least has an idea.
Most girlfriends and wives are highly in tune with their boyfriends or husbands mannersisms and behaviors not just towards them, but other women as well.
If you disagree with me and you feel you can continue to have an affair without ever facing the wrath of your partner, then you do you. I can pretty much guarantee that there will, indeed, come a time when you walk through the door and find her wide awake and waiting in the dark to ask you a full laundry list of questions.
Keith Dent is a relationship, life coach at Strive2Succeed Coaching. He is the author of the In The Paint: How to Win at the Game of Love and his work has appeared on sites like The Good Men Project, MamaMia, and The Real Dad’s Network. If this is you and you feel you are having trouble telling your partner about that you are cheating, contact me via email and let’s have a chat.
For some couples, the wedding has just ended and you are settling into your marriage routine. For others, you have been married for several years, you are all consumed by your kid’s activities and barely have enough time to sleep, let alone work on your relationship. But this question pertains to both sets of couples. Do you consider yourself a team?
According to a 2014 study that was highlighted in this New York Times article, most of us don’t when it comes to having a decisive marriage. We just simply slide through our marriages and the major decisions we have to make in order to feel like we feel like a team. What’s interesting about this study is that most of us have probably been on a team one way or another; from our sports teams as children to our present work teams. We have always relied on other people to get the job done and to win.
So why doesn’t it translate when we get married? The main reason is our approach. We don’t utilize the team concept when it comes to our relationships. We usually come together because the people we are marrying usually best meet our individual needs, not necessarily the best team. So when we have conflict with our partner or when that partner does something that is far too damaging, we find it’s just easier to change partners.
Even I, who have played on teams almost all of my life, found it difficult to handle arguments with my wife. The main reason was that I focused more on my needs than our needs. One of our more famous stories that my wife usually tells at parties had to deal with one of our adventures to the grocery store to buy formula for our infant daughter, Olivia, 22 years ago. Yes, it’s still fresh. We would normally buy Enfamil with Iron, but on this day, I didn’t have enough money in my wallet to buy it, so stupidly, I just bought the regular Enfamil. Well, most of you know what happened next. My wife was furious that I would put my need to keep a few extra dollars in the bank before the families’ needs of making sure our daughter was healthy and go the best. So the next day, she bought the one most expensive high chairs in the store. What did I say about this? Nothing, because I knew I wasn’t living the team first concept.
Now that 2020 has come to a close, I’m sure folks are ready to turn the page a move into 2021.
Resolutions are great because they gives you a chance to clear your mind, reflect on what’s important to you, and move in a positive direction, provide concrete goals that can give you focus and stability, and show others that you are striving towards your dreams. In fact, 74% of Americans say they’re determined to learn something new, make a lifestyle change or set a personal goal in an effort to better themselves in 2021. You can’t imagine the number of people that will be positively impacted!
When we think about resolutions, we usually think of individual goals we want to achieve for ourselves, like losing weight, getting a new job, or saving more money.
But my advice is that many relationships would improve if partners create New Year’s resolutions together as a couple.
Why is that important?
It means you will have a built-in accountability partner. Remember one of the famous acronyms for team is “Together Each Achieves More.” This will ensure that you and your partner stay committed to the resolutions you create.
You can also have fun with it by making it a date night activity and continuing to do so throughout the year as the two of you check-in with each other to see how your resolutions are going.
Finally, this provides an opportunity to celebrate your successes together. Being intentional about improving your lives will automatically improve your relationship or marriage.
To help you start your own resolution list, here are my 15 best ideas for New Year’s resolutions couples can make as a team.
1. Take a look back at the past year together.
By focusing on what happened the past year, you more than likely would have forgotten the little squabbles that impacted your marriage at the moment.
Looking back on the fond memories of the past year will help you look forward optimistically to the year ahead.
2. Create a nutrition plan together.
It’s hard for an individual to stick to eating healthy when the other isn’t.
Creating a healthy eating plan together with exercise can not only help you lose weight, but you will also have more energy to do fun things together.
3. Set aside time on a daily or weekly basis to check in with each other.
Since communication can be the biggest challenge to a healthy marriage or relationship, it’s imperative that you carve out space to check in with each other.
This shouldn’t be the where you just check-in to talk about your resolutions, but talk about life in general.
4. Create a family mission statement.
This statement allows the two of you, as well as your children, to feel a sense of unity and purpose.
It lets each member know that everyone is truly committed to each other’s success and growth.
5. Pay off a credit card.
It’s no secret that finances can be a source of stress and worry among couples.
Creating a strict budget or using the snowball method to pay down debt can make you generally happier.
6. When it comes to sex, explore how you can be more creative.
If you have been married for a while making sex a priority can be challenging.
By infusing a little more creativity and fun in your sex life will all of a sudden make it a must thing to do for your marriage to thrive.
7. Read and discuss a helpful book about relationships and/or marriage.
Sometimes it’s hard to articulate the things you want out of marriage.
Having a book discussion about marriage can really get to the heart of the matter without trying to figure things out on your own.
8. Take turns choosing a new activity to try together each month.
This does a couple of things.
First, you get a chance to have a new experience as a couple every month. If nothing else, this means you will have 12 new stories to tell by the end of the year.
Second, by alternating who chooses the month’s activity, you will have to keep your partner in mind because you will want them to enjoy the event as much as you will.
9. Create a proactive plan for handling conflict.
As you are working to achieve your goals, you can’t expect every day to be sunny and rosy.
If you have avoided conflicts in the past, make plan figure out how to resolve them by remaining respectful.
10. Schedule your annual doctor’s appointments.
If you have your health, you have everything.
11. Choose a cause to volunteer for together.
This is a great way to live out your values and have a wonderful bonding experience at the same time.
You can get a fresh perspective on your life as husband and wife when you are supporting an organization or a cause that really needs it.
12. Plan to host a dinner party for other couples.
There is strength in numbers.
Hosting a dinner party allows you to talk about marriage in a fun and silly way and helps you understand that you’re not alone. Remember, social-distancing is still in affect.
13. Set a goal with your children.
Creating a family goal will not only teach your children how to set goals for themselves, it will create a strong bond with your children as a family unit.
14. Schedule some time for yourselves.
Even with all of these mutual goals the two of you are working on, you must still leave some time for each of you to take for yourselves.
You will value each other more as a couple when you make the space and room to develop as individuals.
15. Plan a celebration.
If you can make and achieve at least 80% of these resolutions by the end of the year, 2020 will be awesome. Celebrate your growth as a couple.
Happy New Year!
Keith Dent is a certified coach and author of “In the Paint: How to Win at the Game of Love.” If you are struggling to communicate more effectively with your partner and set future goals, contact him via email to learn more about how he can help.
In the #1 episode of 2020, I interviewed actors Herve Clermont, Chris Williams,, and Christopher T. Wood as we discussed their journeys in Hollywood. We covered several topics from how they got started to the different microaggressions they faced trying to hone their craft. This episode was so fun, and it helped me understand their greatness wasn’t just on screen, but what they did daily to challenge themselves and to keep working despite the obstacles. If you didn’t get a chance to hear their stories, check it out now https://blackmenspeak.libsyn.com/black-men-speak-epidsode-6-pt-1.
Is A Unified Black Lives Matter Movement Necessary!
Our first episode was on the heels of the murders of Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. I talked with Professor Saladin Ambar, Fox Sports host of the Odd Couple Chris Broussard, and Educational Activist L-Mani Viney around the issues of police brutality, the nationwide protests to creating policies that will make our nation more equitable. If you missed this flagship episode check out the link here. https://blackmenspeak.libsyn.com/black-men-speak-episode-1