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The Valley, May 2014

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3 Ways To Restore Joy How does a fairytale romance end up as a source of confusion and unhappiness? Is there anything you can do to preserve that special feeling you had for one another at the beginning? Can those feelings be revived? I hear these questions so often from couples struggling with increased stress on their relationship. Maybe you feel the same way. Look at the reasons why a good relationship can become negative, and what you can do to prevent or reverse that sad trend. There are three ways you look at your life that can be adjusted to bring back the joy you used to share. Focus, Filters, and Priorities

Our individual perception and attitude color how we view the world. Our version of reality is based on what we focus on, how we filter the information, and the way we set our priorities. These three factors also determine how we respond to the world around us and how we interact in our closest relationships. Your partner is the most likely to see your “true colors.” Do you like what you see? Adjust Your Settings to Joy 1. Adjusting your focus. When your relationship was new, you focused on all your partner’s amazing qualities. No matter what the rest of the world doled out, you never let it put a damper on the wonderful time you spent together. You focused on one

another in a loving, joyous way. Do you still focus on your partner’s good points or has your attention drifted to faults and shortcomings? Do you still give one another undivided attention and admiration? Or has the stress of everyday life cast a gray shadow on the way you interact? Focus is the most powerful way to adjust your impression of reality. Suggested solution: Make a conscious, consistent effort to recapture the kind of focus you had when you first fell in love. Turn your attention back to those amazing qualities, and let go of anything that doesn’t feed your sense of joy and appreciation. By focusing on the positive perception of your partner, your partner may also respond to in a kinder, more appreciative way. Relationships are based on cause

and effect. If you change the cause, the effect will change. 2. Adjust Your Filters. When you and your partner first got to know one another, did you find those little idiosyncrasies irritating or entertaining? Did you see unique personality traits as refreshing or in need of change? The way you view your partner has always been your choice. You can choose which filter you use – murky gray or shiny bright. When you look through a critical or judgmental filter, you see the bad things. When you look through a joyful, grateful filter, you find more and more reasons to appreciate your partner’s unique attributes. By using a positive filter, based on love and appreciation, you can filter out many of the annoyances that rob you of the joy you both deserve. Suggested solution: Think of a positive time in your relationship. Combine a positive focus with a positive attitude and you’ll start a chain reaction of joy and satisfaction. No matter what happens in other parts of your lives, make an effort to greet your partner with love and appreciation. 3. Adjust Your Priorities. When

“Fair & Balanced” means Spin gets Equal Time

your relationship was a priority, you shared a wonderful tingly feeling of love and joy. Has your relationship been bumped out of first place – substituted with cares, worries, faults, and stress? This is not about how you divide your time, it’s about what’s most important to you. Many of us spend more time working than interacting with loved ones. Which owns your heart now? Make your relationship a top priority. Give time to your partner and don’t allow other parts of your life squeeze out the joy. Do it because you want to rediscover the joy of being together, working as a loving team. Your heart will return to your relationship. Suggested solution: How have your priorities changed? Be honest with yourself. Have you swung your attention away from the relationship and given it to things less worthy? Ask your sweetheart. Figure out what steps you can take to put your relationship back in the number-one priority spot. When you put your relationship first, you’ll share life together again – interacting with renewed joy. Go Make it Happen! Use positive filters, focus,

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May 2014 the valley new online  
May 2014 the valley new online  

The Valley is a FREE monthly newspaper serving Mifflin and surrounding counties in central Pennsylvania.

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