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June 13, 2012

It's The Little Things: Five Ways To Bring Life Back Into Your Relationship

IStock_0complimentSmallThe smallest things are often what make the biggest impact in relationships. Unfortunately, it’s the smallest things that often get dropped.  With the hectic schedules of most people these days, we often forget to add tender sprinkles into our relationships.  We get caught up in finishing that big project, taking our children to endless practices/events, answering e-mails, playing on our phones, doing chores and on and on.  What we forget are the important things.  We forget the glue that keeps our relationships strong.  Here is the glue:
1.    Laugh often: There is nothing more connecting than a good belly laugh.  The moment you and a friend or loved one laugh, you can feel an instant closeness.  Look for the humor in things—even the difficult things.  Life doesn’t have to be so serious.  Learn to lighten up and find your humor again.
2.    Smile: No one likes to be around a wet blanket, it truly gets old.  If you’re a pessimist and constantly complaining, whining or pouting, retrain your brain.  Put a smile on your face and meet people with a positive greeting.  “Fake it ‘till you make it” as they say and soon your smile will come more naturally.  If you’re not normally a downer, simply remember to smile more and greet people in a way that shows them you’re psyched to see them.

3.    Give compliments: Compliments are a great way to show your loved ones they’re still important.  A simple compliment-a-day can add years to your relationships.  Leave a note on the bathroom mirror, your child's lunch box or on the refrigerator.  Send a kind text, a loving e-mail or a funny voicemail.  Don’t be stingy—make someone’s day with a few words of kindness.  They’ll feel better and so will you.
4.    Be playful: Couples, parents and families too often, get way too serious about life.  Remember to have fun.  Be silly, joke around, have a pillow fight…lighten up.  Too often we get too focused on all the things we don’t like that we forget to create moments that we will like.  Life only comes around once—enjoy it. 
5.    Be present: Listen intently when your children speak to you.  Look your partner in the eye and hear what they’re saying when they’re sharing a story with you.  Put your phone down, close your computer, and shut off the TV and BE PRESENT.  It only takes a moment to listen; your loved ones deserve to have your undivided attention for those moments.

Relationships should not be hard work, they do, however, require that we pay attention to the little things.  It’s the little things that create the biggest impact.  Stop letting the little things fall by the wayside and start adding them into your daily lives.  You and your loved ones will notice a gigantic difference when you do.

Challenge: Look over the list above and choose two things to begin to incorporate today in your relationships.  Notice what happens as a result.


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