When It’s Time for a Romantic Upgrade

When It’s Time for a Romantic UpgradeI don’t know about you, but the last month before I upgrade my phone is painful. By then, my old phone feels outdated and sluggish.

It doesn’t have enough storage, can’t really handle the apps I use daily, and, maybe worst of all, it’s just not exciting anymore. More than once, I’ve thought it would be really convenient if I happened to drop it in a lake or run over it with my car…just so I can go ahead and get a new one NOW.

I’m not the only one.

According to a recent study, people tend to embrace more reckless behavior with their phones when they’re looking for an excuse to buy the latest model.[i]

You won’t even risk putting a small scratch on your new phone. But your old phone? Eh, you’ll toss it across the pool so a friend can take your picture. Why not?

Which makes me think of something else. Sometimes we do the same thing with relationships.

I’m sure you’ve experienced this. You’re dating someone, things have gone from good, to stale, to not-that-great. But you’re not quite ready to break up.

So maybe you pick a fight or two. Maybe you’re not as supportive as you’d be otherwise. Maybe you get a little careless with the relationship itself because you’re ready for an upgrade.

While this behavior makes perfect sense, it’s not the best way to handle a dying relationship. It just makes the worst part of dating last longer.

If your relationship is in that not-so-great place, there’s a better way. First, you have to answer a critical question (that I’m about to show you). Then, based on your answer, you should take one of two actions.

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How to Go From Casual Dating to a Serious Relationship

How to Go From Casual Dating to a Serious RelationshipDo you know what a “relationship bomb” is? Even if you’ve never heard that phrase, you’ve probably dealt with a few.

A relationship bomb is a situation where things could easily blow up in your face. Here’s a common relationship bomb: the dreaded state-of-the-relationship talk.

There are times when talking to your man about the future of your romance can be a tricky business. If you approach the topic the wrong way, BOOM!

When a relationship bomb explodes, you’ll almost always end up feeling a sense of disconnection from your partner. Sometimes a bad talk about the future will even bring the relationship to a grinding halt.

That’s no good.

But you can’t just ignore this particular relationship bomb, either. If you need to talk to your guy about where the relationship is headed, you can’t just avoid the conversation.

Ticking bombs that get ignored have a tendency to explode. It’s better to do something proactive.

Fortunately, I’ve uncovered some amazing tips from a literal explosives expert.

Recently, I read about an interview with a Navy EOD (Explosive Ordnance Disposal) professional. [i] Naval EODs defuse bombs for a living. How do they do that without getting blown up in the process?

They follow three simple rules. And the great thing about those rules is they work just as well for relationships as they do in combat.

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Restore the Closeness with Repair Attempts

Restore the Closeness with Repair Attempts - repair your relationshipYou’re hanging out with someone you really care about when it happens…

You say the wrong thing.

He goes silent. His jaw tightens. Tension floods the room.

You’re desperately trying to think of a way to take it back when he stands up. “I gotta go. Catch you later.”

He’s gone without a goodbye kiss.

You’re alone, ashamed and angry at yourself. Why did you do that? Just when it was going so well?

It can happen to anyone. Even if you make a point of being the kindest, most thoughtful person on the planet, you can still end up upsetting the man you want to be with.

The words you said meant one thing to you but something completely different to him. Instead of asking you to clarify, he took it the wrong way. His feelings were hurt, you had no idea what you did to cause it, and it’s all a big mess.

This happens in all kinds of relationships, from romantic relationships to professional ones. So, it pays to take a closer look at what we can do when we upset each other.  Let’s talk about how to feel close again.

The Dance of Intimacy

The perfect relationship should be a harmonious dance. He puts his hand around your waist, you gaze into his eyes, and you swirl around the dance floor with sweet music guiding your steps.

A wonderful fantasy, but nowhere close to reality.

The reality of relationships isn’t easy to watch. You move together in step for a short while, then break away. The music comes in snatches, and you’re not always hearing the same rhythm. It’s easier to step back, because moving as one is too much work.

What do you do when you find yourselves on opposite sides of the dance floor? How do you find your lost rhythm and restore the closeness?

The answer is what psychologists call repair attempts.

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3 Ways to Let Him Know You Need Him Without Appearing Needy

3 Ways to Let Him Know You Need Him Without Appearing NeedyNeediness has gotten a bad rap.

You shouldn’t need a man. You should be independent and self-sufficient. You should seek a partner to complement you, not complete you.

Those “shoulds” come from everywhere. Culture. Advice columns. Friends.

It’s not surprising that more and more women are afraid to come out and speak their hearts’ truest desires. They want relationships. They don’t feel complete when they go home to an empty apartment. They don’t want more girlfriends; they want that one special best friend who’s at their side for life.

Recently, the Dalai Lama co-authored an article in the New York Times[1] about the importance of being needed. He mentioned a study that found that elderly people who didn’t feel useful were at much greater risk of premature death. “Feeling superfluous,” he wrote, “is a blow to the human spirit.”

Today, men are feeling more superfluous than ever.

Avoid appearing needyModern superwomen don’t need them. Women can buy a house, skyrocket up the career ladder, and build a killer investment portfolio, all without a man. Women can even have children without men. Who needs men?

Women need men.

Women need men to love and be loved.

Men need women for the same reasons.

When that natural desire is denied or suppressed, romance dies.

In an attempt to prove how little they need one another, men and women often treat relationships as transactions. “I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine.” These exchanges feel hollow and unsatisfying.

Dating becomes a game of pretending you’re kind of interested but only if he’s interested, and if he’s not interested you’re definitely not interested. Who’s going to break first?

I want to give you 3 ways to break that pattern and show a man you want him in your life, without worrying that you’ll be penalized for appearing needy.

1. Talk about what you appreciate about men in general.

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