Relationships

Episode 85: Avoiding Drama Triangles

Understanding and responding to drama triangles

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There are a number of ways in which humans behave when drama, anxiety and intensity increase between themselves and another. Some responses are helpful and lead to resolution. Other methods actually make matters worse.

One way in which anxiety and friction are managed between two people is to pull in a third party to vent and complain to. There are helpful versions of this and unhelpful versions.

This episode looks at the triangle dynamics that can form as a response to increased stress and what are the ways in which this process known as triangulation can play out. Any complex system, be that family, a business or our romantic relationship is at some point going to hit a point of challenge so it is useful to know what can happen as a result.

Episode 84: Looking At Affairs Part III

What to do when faced with the reality of an affair

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In this final episode of looking at affairs, we look at what to do if we are faced with the reality of unfaithfulness.

What are some of the better ways in which to support ourselves through such a challenging time?

Do you stay or do you go? Are there larger considerations?

How I respond now will either help my future moving forward or adversely affect my future relationship health. How can I best support myself? How specifically do I start to look for the support I need to heal, resolve and move forward?

This episode may also be of help to those looking to be of effective support to a loved one who is going through dealing with an affair.

Episode 83: Looking At Affairs Part II

Red flags to look out for & how to deal with an affair

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Continuing on from part 1 with the idea that monogamy can no longer be safely assumed in the modern relationship arena, what can we do?

How can we continue to have honest and open discussions around the strong possibility that at some point temptation will present? Denial and refusal to have the challenging conversations can leave us very vulnerable indeed.

In this episode, we explore possible red flags that our partner could be engaging in an affair. What can we watch out for?

How do we then begin to approach the situation? Are we even ready to approach the situation and risk that the truth might be very confronting indeed? Sometimes if we confide in friends or family, their good intentions but their own baggage around infidelity can force us to take action before we are ready.

Episode 82: Looking At Affairs Part I

Challenging assumptions about why people are unfaithful

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The way the modern relational landscape is moving it has never been more important than now to begin to examine some of our outdated assumptions about why people are unfaithful.

As long as there has been committed relationships there have been affairs. We need to be able to accept that they happen and begin to work out better ways to approach and deal with them when they do.

The idea that "It will never happen to me!" is a very high risk idea to hold. How can we have more open and honest conversations with our partner regarding the inevitable times that we may find ourselves attracted and fascinated by another? Refusing to look at the things that can threaten our idea of a stable relationship isn't a safe way to go.

If we understand that things can and do change despite our best intentions then we can better deal with and face reality.

Episode 79: Romantic Relationships and Boundaries

Strengthen your romantic relationship by discussing boundaries

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Boundaries in romantic relationships are so important and add to connection or distance depending on how we respond to them. Boundaries are about what is and isn't ok in relationship for us, and it is very likely that our partner’s ideas, or at least some of them, will be different from ours.

Boundaries in relationships is a vast area and will vary from couple to couple. However, there are ways to approach the discussion of boundaries in a way that can maximise receptivity. If done well and from a place of calm non-reactivity it can greatly add to the strength of the relationship.

I hope this episode gives you some strategies for maximising success with healthy boundary setting!

Episode 77: Tips for Starting The Second Family

How to create the best new family dynamic we can

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The most rapidly growing relationship style is the remarried or step family relationship. Some individuals are not only on their second family but beginning the third.

It is important to know what can make this journey so much more challenging for not only the new couple but the children they bring into the new arrangement.

How can we best support the children, ourselves and our present partner going forward to create the best new family dynamic we can?

Through developing a better understanding of what awaits we can plan for how best to meet our challenges.

I really hope this episode informs you of what will need to be addressed. All the best!


Episode 76: Keeping Our Romantic Relationship Healthy

Keep the magic and desire alive

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Modern relationships are changing and under pressure like never before thanks to all the external demands of our everyday lives, career and social pressures.

The thinking and expectations for people have changed around relationships and it has never been easier than now to leave if it isn't working out.

This episode looks at some key elements for helping us to create stability in our relationships whilst also keeping alive the magic and desire. 

Relationships no matter how suitable require continued work and investment. It can become so easy in the face of all our modern life demands to push our romantic relationship to the back. Do this continually and we really begin to put ourselves on unsteady ground!

I hope this episode provides some important touch points to help support successful relating!

Episode 75: Over Involved at Work and Under Involved at Home

How much time are we spending where?

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Do I consistently bring my best thinking and most positive self to the business, whilst family and home is where I go to shut down?

Nothing wrong with the home being a place to regenerate, but if all our family sees is our most shut down, preoccupied self it really leaves our relationships vulnerable long term.

It can be so easy to slip into these patterns as a relationship progresses, especially if our family model was something like, dad worked all the time and mum looked after the kids. When dad came home he wasn't to be disturbed and we came to expect very little contribution from him on the family front.

It is amazing to go after a great career or build a dynamic business but if it comes at the consistent neglect of those we claim to be doing it for or who supposedly mean the most to us then some rebalancing might be needed. If not we can lose it all.

Episode 70: I Apologise For How I Apologise

How to apologise effectively

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Ever been on the receiving end of a hollow or what you felt was an insincere apology? There is a way to apologise effectively and then there are plenty of ways to deliver an apology that can lead to more disconnection and frustration.

The ability to deliver an apology that works can leave the receiver feeling acknowledged and validated. Who wouldn't want that?

This episode looks at what to do to deliver an apology that works and also what doesn't work. Genuine apologies lead to repair and this leads to us feeling safe in our relationships both in the workplace and at home!

Episode 69: Artful Vulnerability in Conversation

Promote deeper, richer connection between ourselves and others.

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Ever tried to have a conversation with someone where you thought you'd risk showing yourself only to find that you came away feeling frustrated and unacknowledged?

The ability to share effectively in conversation relies on both parties involved. There is the responsibility of the sender and the responsibility of the receiver. This episode looks at the message sender and what we can do to promote deeper, richer connection between ourselves and others.

What are some of the key elements to consider when we want to share with another, things that are important to us and also leave us feeling a little raw. How do we take conversational risks in genuine vulnerability whilst doing the best we can to maximise a good conversational result for both the sender and the receiver?

Having more tools and strategies around effective conversation is just so vital to the ongoing health of both our personal and professional relationships.

Episode 67: Art of Giving

Giving to others from a place of joy rather than resentment

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When we give to get this can often blow up on us and leave us feeling resentful!

What space am I giving from? In relationships be that with a friend, romantic partner or in business, there are times when I have engaged in giving purely because I had an agenda and expectation for myself.

I am going to keep score of what I have done for you and what you have done for me. I am ahead, so now you owe me! This type of approach and conditional giving can weaken relationships rather than strengthen them.

How do we give to others from a place of joy, non-attachment and never at the detriment of ourselves? How do I include myself in a loving way when it comes to giving to others?


Episode 56: Two Key Pressures In Relationship

Reduce resentment, and build desire, passion and connection

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Long-term stable relationships are wonderful but they can also trigger old relationship patterns from our Family of Origin in how to manage anxiety and intimacy. Depending on what type of Family system we grew up in we may not have the most workable skill sets on board to make it work effectively long term.

This episode is inspired by the book, Growing Yourself Up by Jenny Brown who is a family system specialist. 

Through exploring these two potential points of stress covered in this episode that can emerge in the relationship we can reduce resentment and build the desire, passion and connection.

I hope you find value and insight in this episode that helps to support you having amazing relationship going forward!

Episode 50: Fostering Intimacy

How intimacy transforms relationships

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With so many relationships not going the distance and people in relationship wishing for a more intimate connection with their partner, what is missing?

Many people express a desire to be more intimate and then find that they are unable to sit in the vulnerability that arises as a result. Instead of challenging our partners to be closer, the paradox is we need to examine and understand what it takes for us to be closer.

This episode looks at some of the differences in Self Validated Intimacy vs Other Validated Intimacy and what are the consequences in relationship when we adopt either pathway to attempt to bridge the gap between self and another.

When we can really begin to know who we are, validate that and not be reliant on solely the positive reflection of our partner to feel good about self, relationships can transform!

Episode 47: Identifying Emotional Abuse

Identify toxic patterns in relationships

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When we look at abuse in relationships there can be both physical and non-physical. Both are stunningly toxic and damaging!

In this episode, we look at continuing to develop our understanding of the impact of non-physical abuse because it is so pervasive. Emotional abuse can include verbal abuse, but episode 47 looks at the often more subtle abusive patterns that over time erode our self-belief, self-trust and self-esteem. This can leave us feeling unloveable.

When we can identify these toxic patterns, such as the various ways in which our partner can withhold from us to modify our behaviour, we can make changes and set boundaries.

Through identifying emotional abuse patterns we can begin to heal and move towards healthy, joyous, loving connection in relationships.

Trigger Warning: Some people may find some of this episode confronting, please make sure you seek appropriate support.

Episode 43: Understanding Verbal Abuse

Elements that make up Verbal Abuse in relationships

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Verbal like physical abuse happens behind closed doors and the victim can feel isolated, confused and as if they somehow are to blame.

This episode uses Patricia Evans' insightful book "The Verbally Abusive Relationship" as a reference and a resource.

Through understanding some of the patterns of toxic verbal abuse we can reclaim our right to healthy relating or keep an eye out for our friends and family members who may be in this type of terrible experience.

What are some key red flags to look for in relating between two people, and what happens when we are playing by different relationship rules that we weren't informed about?

Episode 42: Elements of Secure Relating

How do we know that we are in a relationship that is built on a foundation of secure relating?

What are some of the key aspects to help us navigate into the kind of healthy relationships we desire to have?

This episode explores some of the key elements that are consistent in relationships that have secure attachment at their core. Knowing this assists us in keeping relationships on track or side step finding ourselves stuck in avoidant/anxious relating with our partner for too long.

I hope you find this episode a helpful resource.

Episode 41: Rushing The Relationship

Missing out on true intimacy

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Sometimes in order to deal with the uncertainty of future relationship history, we rush at the beginning. The rushing is designed to reduce anxiety about the relationship and the person we have just begun with.

Rushing, however, creates a fantasy and a false intensity which can mean that we miss out on true intimacy having a chance to develop.

Slowing down, setting boundaries on how much time is spent together and not racing to claim relationship status can be important steps to developing a lasting relational platform.

We need to stay out of fantasy and prematurely making up long-term nesting plans as it keeps us out of the present and really getting to know another as they are.

Episode 40: They Aren't Going To Change

Can we take the necessary steps of courage on our own behalf?

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In this Episode we look at the desire we have for our partner to change and do something different. When are they going to be more loving, considerate and acknowledge how I feel?

Some people choose to hold onto a fantasy that their partner will change despite the everyday evidence that clearly shows nothing is different at all! Why hold onto a wishful desire that in time they will finally see the error of their ways and completely transform.

The likelihood of this is slim without engaging in some form of active, recovery, healing, self-development or recovery work. It can be painful to face reality but it is the gateway to a more wondrous, loving and fulfilling relationship experience.

Episode 39: Using your Relationship as a Crash Point

Bring your best self home

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Modern life is so demanding and we can get pulled in so many directions. As a result, we can unintentionally put our intimate relationship on the back burner.

We give all day to others and then come home and crash onto the couch, disappear into social media and forget to connect with the one we love most.

If we continue to use our home and our relationship as a place to go to shut down then ultimately our relationship will be at risk. We lose the spark as we are only giving our best selves to our customers and the big wide world. All we have left consistently for our partners is the crumbs.

We need to make sure we bring our best selves home once in a while like we did when the relationship began if we want to keep the stability and erotic alive!

Episode 36: Part II More Resources on Modern Parenting

Keep the parent/child connection strong

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Keeping our attachment bond strong with our children is central to the health of the parent/child relationship. Without healthy attachment, every aspect of parenting and guiding young people to developmental maturity becomes so much harder.

This Episode continues on form Episode 35 and heavily utilises the ideas put forward in the amazing book for parents "Hold on to your Kids" Why parents need to matter more than peers by Gordon Neufeld Ph.d and Gabor Mate Ph.d.

This episode looks at some of the approaches that can help keep connection strong in the face of so many other elements of modern culture competing for the attention of our children.

A valuable episode for any parent, I hope you enjoy!