By: Davida Brown If you answered yes, you are R E A D Y to jump start your marriage in 2015, then how about showing some gratitude? We all know that gratitude is great, but could it really improve or even save your marriage? Experts seem to think so. The act of being grateful changes the way you see the world, and also how others see you. A grateful heart isn’t as easy to cultivate. Yes, it is easy to appreciate what you have when things are going well, but as we all know, life is full of bumps and those good times are often followed by some real struggles. To be truly grateful, we must cultivate feelings of appreciation at all times, when things are easy and when things are hard. Are you ready to give gratitude a try in your marriage? Start today and see what changes you can create. To give you some ideas for getting started, we’ve found a few areas to focus your gratitude. Start with one and add in the others as you get in the habit. Fostering Gratitude for Your Spouse Think back to the early days of your relationship with your spouse. What did you admire about them? In the early stages of a relationship we tend to focus on the good and overlook the bad in a person. As time moves on, this focus shifts. The person you are with remains the same, but it becomes easier to see what your…
By: Davida Brown Romantic Comedy is my favorite genre. Romance films make me feel warm and tingly, as they pull on all my heart strings: love, commitment, faith and unity. I happened to watch “the Vow” a few days ago, and there was a scene in that movie that made my heart stop, a line that captured the essence of what I say day in and day out to my clients. If you’re not familiar with this movie, it’s about a young married couple, Leo and Paige, who are in a car accident, resulting in Paige losing a chunk of her memory. To Leo’s chagrin, she has no memory of him, their relationship or marriage. The movie chronicles their journey back to each other. During the movie, we learn that Paige and her parents were estranged for a number of years. Paige can’t remember why and no one in her family will tell her what caused the fallout. Eventually, Paige discovers that her father had an affair with one of her friends. Paige is distraught and angry. She confronts her mother, spewing contempt. She doesn’t understand how she could stay after what he did. Her mother responds, "I couldn’t leave. I made a choice. I chose to stay with him for all the things he’s done right; not leave for the one thing he did wrong. I chose to forgive him." Her words hit me like a mack truck. YEEEESSSSSS, I screamed inwardly. Marriage is a choice. Choosing to stay…
By: Davida Brown It's 2015!!!! I woke up bright eyed and bushy tailed, excited about all the possibilities of the new year. In many respects, a new year represents an opportunity for a fresh start, a new beginning. As I think about all the things I want to accomplish, all the changes or adjustments I want to make in my life, my marriage and continued success thereof is front and center. 2014 was an awesome year for the Browns and hopefully for you too. If you're happily married, you know that a happy marriage doesn't just happen. Focus, attention, and yes effort are required to make it successful and thrive. So as you map out your goals for 2015, consider these tips to enhance, improve, and move your marriage forward. Prioritize your marriage - Your marriage should be a top priority. There are 1440 minutes in every day. No matter how busy you are, you can carve out 5, 10, 15 minutes for your spouse. Think of it this way, you make time every day to eat, even on your busiest day. Why? Eating is a priority. It's something you aren't willing to go a single day without. Treat your marriage the same way. Refuse to go a single day without doing something to feed your marriage. This may require that you evaluate your daily routine and cut out non-essential activities. Trust me, the end result is worth it. Have an open mind - In 2014, you and your spouse…
“If I had to do it all over again, I’d never get married.” Ouch. I hate hearing these words. Unfortunately, so many wives and husbands feel this way. I’m a champion for marriage, a true ambassador. My marriage isn’t perfect --nowhere close-- but I love my marriage and I love being married. My husband and I are great as individuals, but together we are a force. We have each other’s back, want the best for each other, and at the end of the day are willing to do WHATEVER it takes to get through our problems, together. And we’ve had some whoopers. Would I do it over again? Heck yeah, in a heartbeat. When my clients say things like, “I’d never get married again,” I feel compelled to find out why. Every marriage is different, but I tend to see patterns. Here’s a very common one. One spouse believes that he or she is in the marriage alone, that his or her spouse doesn’t care, or that his or her spouse isn’t willing to put in the work. Most often, that’s not the case. The other spouse wants the marriage just as much. This is a classic case of where one’s perceived reality is not the true reality. The fact is, most husbands and wives want their marriage to work. They want to have a thriving marriage. How to do so is where they differ. When a couple is ill-equipped to handle conflict in their marriage, one or both may…
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