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Relationship Advice Tips From an Online Counseling Life Coach

The biggest problem brought up by couples during their Online Counseling sessions have given me a lot of ammunition to offer a simple list of relationship advice tips that can help you avoid serious problems in the future. Go over this list and think about how they apply in your daily life. If you feel that you have trouble with any of these issues, book a simple online counseling session and I can work with you or your spouse to help resolve some of the issues.   Don’t Break Your Boundaries The world has changed a lot, and with it so have the basic boundaries that used to define our lives.

There was a time when no one would think of not being home to eat dinner with the family, or stopping to take a call in the middle of a private conversation. If you find yourself giving more time to people or things other than your relationship, then its time re-erect the boundaries around you and your spouse. Make a point to take at least one meal together each day.

When you are talking, even if the topic is light, turn off your phone or put it on vibrate. Only answer if it is an emergency. You will find that after a while, the communication between you has improves tremendously.

Turn Off the Computer, Tablet or Smart Device Granted you are reading this on the computer, and your online counseling sessions are on the computer, but, aside from that, take some time off. Most people spend at least three hours every day on the computer performing mindless activities.  This could be browsing, visiting social site or even playing games on the computer. Checking email is a regular action for most of us, but when you get home, there isn’t really anything that urgent that requires hours of your time in front of the screen. This time could be spent with your family doing things that strengthen your relationship and make everyone happy.

Create Free Time. There is really never enough time in the day, in the current modern society; there is plenty of activities to go around between your kids, your casual obligations, religious obligations, community outreach and so on. It’s easy to forget to spend time you’re your partner in light of all these activities. If you must, try choosing activities that you can do with your partner that will bring your closer together while accomplishing your other goals.

Beware of the Drift As people grow older and get into a routine, it’s easy to drift apart. While this isn’t a sign of loving each other any less than before, it’s easy for that drifting apart to turn into a chasm that can be breached. This often happens when couples have very different roles and lifestyles such as when one partner has a high intensity career that takes up all of their time while the other focuses on children and maintaining extended family relationships. Each person gives all of their attention to being very good at their personal lives, but when brought together years down the road, their lives no longer mesh.

Make Time for Amusement Typically, new couples spend a lot of time entertaining each other and having fun, even while maintaining their careers. That fun time together strengthens the bond and brings couples closer tighter. Often times, as people age or as the years pass, stop spending time having fun, the best relationship advice I can give you is to never let go of your desire to spend quality time having fun with your spouse.

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Dr. Joseph Abraham, Online Psychologist and Life Coach. Director, Center for Human Growth and Business Insights, Mechanicsburg, PA Tel 717-943.0959 http://www.dr-joseph.com/online_marriage_Counseling.html and  http://www.dr-joseph.com/personal-development-coach.html and http://www.dr-joseph.com

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Steps to Take in Your Online Marriage Counseling Sessions

Seeing a councelor for Relationship Advice is never an easy step to take, but for couples who want to save their relationship, it is one of the most important decisions that can be made. Attending marriage counseling can often be tense for couples who are very private, online counseling session are a great alternative in these cases. After choosing to start sessions, take note of a few things that should be covered in your marriage counseling plan.   Admit that you are afraid Women are pretty good at telling what their thoughts and fears are in a relationship, but with men, it’s much more complex. A bit of good relationship advice that can be gained from online counseling is that it’s ok to admit your fears and concerns. Mean feel fear at not being able to live up to the expectations of their families and of not being able to provide in the manner that they desire. Talking about these things during your marriage counseling sessions is the best way to prevent them from creating further rifts in your relationships.   Discovering and admitting your problems Often times, your partner is the one to bear the brunt of your frustration regardless of who is at fault. There may be problems at work or with your social connections, but since your spouse is the nearest one to you, your anger falls on their shoulders. If you are having money problems or health problem the result is the same. Instead of looking to place blame, admit to yourself that there is a problem and work with your spouse to resolve the issue.

Use marriage counseling to find out what causes stress in your marriage There can be any number of reasons for stress in a marriage, economic struggles, academic failures, personal health issues, disagreement with how the children should be raised, the list goes on. Online counseling is a great way to work with your partner to discover the roots of the problem without attacking each other. By finding the causes of stress, you can deal with it effectively and stop it from creating friction in your relationship.   Ask your life coach for help  Asking for help is not a sign of weakness; in fact it is a sign of true strength. You can only increase your position in life by understanding your limitations. There is noting bad about saying you are unable to do something alone. A good life coach will tell you to seek your spouses help when you can manage the bills or deal with another type of situation that affects the family. Online counseling is a great medium to open the doors of communication between your and your life partner.   Be Honest Emotionally When you start your marriage counseling, be honest with yourself and your spouse about your feelings and intentions. It’s ok to say what you honestly feel about something, if you know it may be hurtful, assure that you present in a calm, straightforward and non provoking manner. This allows the other party to view your feelings without biased or clouded emotions.   Have a Long Term Marriage Counseling Goal Attending online counseling is a good step in the right direction, but it only one step in the plan towards putting your relationship back on track. When you start your sessions, map out what you expect to get from the sessions and where you want to be when they end. Apply the things you learn during your discussions to your everyday life and you will see that gradually things start to improve.

 

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Dr. Joseph Abraham, Online Psychologist and Life Coach. Director, Center for Human Growth and Business Insights, Mechanicsburg, PA Tel 717-943.0959 http://www.dr-joseph.com/online_marriage_Counseling.html and http://www.dr-joseph.com/personal-development-coach.html and http://www.dr-joseph.com and http://www.dr-jo-consulting.com

Relationship Advice For Couples Who Work Together

Couples who work together for all intents and purposes are the most successful. That success can bring a great amount of financial security and emotional stability to the relationship, however, the emotional stress of spending so much time together can quickly lead working couples to seek relationship advice from others or even marriage counseling.   There is more than one type of work spouses, there are those who have self owned business and bring their significant other in as a reliable helper, and there are those who meet in the office and develop a relationship that turns into a full time commitment. People who work together in close proximity for any length of time, developing feelings are a natural step. In the case of people who bring in their spouse to their workplace as a form of extra help, it can benefit the business while encouraging a sense of resentment over time in the spouse tasked with taking direction from the other. In either case, it is always to a good idea to keep clear lines of communication open so that the need for marriage counseling doesn’t become acute.   In some cases, there are couples who become very close with the people they work with outside of the marriage, while this isn’t always a bad thing; there is a fine line to be drawn. Regardless of your status, there are a few relationship tips you should follow to assure that your workplace and your home run smoothly. If you are already married, a good idea is to never let your work friendships pass their boundaries into a place where only a spouse should be. A good friendship can be shared without passing the lines of decency. If you work with your spouse, you should separate your work and personal life while in an office setting to avoid conflict.

·     Sharing your marriage problems at work, be it to your spouse or to your close friends is the worst move you can make. Most marriages have their ups and downs and sharing negative information can impact how people interact with you and your spouse later down the road.

·     If you have a close friendship with some in the office and they tell you highly personal information, make it clear that you are open with your spouse. Follow through and actually talk to your partner so that there isn’t a separate personality of you at home and at work.

·     Always be clear about your relationships. This applies to everyone you come in contact with in the office. It makes life easier and removes room for misunderstanding and increases the chances of your relationship needing marriage counseling.

·     Avoid spending too much alone time with people of the opposite sex from your office, outside of the office setting. Human are always temped and spending social time alone creates a bond that can often cross the line unintentionally.

·     Don’t mix alcohol and work, even for social gathering in the office; you should keep your wits about you.

·     Good relationship advice dictates that you should leave the office in the office, of course if you had a bad day, sharing is a good thing, but constantly spending your family time talking about work is a quick marriage killer.

·     Good office etiquette also dictates that you should avoid bringing your personal life to work. Good announcements such as an anniversary, birthday or baby showers are normal, but announcing fights and intimate details are a complete no-no.

 

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Dr. Joseph Abraham, Online Psychologist, Life Coach and Management Consultant. Director, Center for Human Growth and Business Insights, Mechanicsburg, PA Tel 717-943.0959 http://www.dr-joseph.com/online_marriage_Counseling.html and  http://www.dr-joseph.com/personal-development-coach.html and http://www.dr-joseph.com and http://www.dr-jo-consulting.com

Life Coach’s Assessment: It is True That Love and Money Go Together

Money management is a sensor of a relationship and a good reason to seek Relationship Advice. Handling your family money is crucial for creating family harmony, relationship strength and marriage stability. It not only can determine what you can afford and where you can go but also effects the couple’s emotional life and their intimacy quality level. There are many jokes about how ‘money and love go together’ but actually, learning how to manage your family income is a very serious business and a frequent task of a Life Coach.

It is not too extreme to declare that taking control of your family budget is in effect securing a constant flow of positive reinforcements into your love life. Both partners have to understand where their money is coming from; they both should determine where it goes. From a Marriage Counseling point of view the questions are how adequate communication skills they have and how cooperative decision making processes they actually exercise. The more the couple shares the same values the less the difficulty is  once resources are less than desired or expected. Much guidance is needed therefore in situations where each partner’s interest is far from being aligned. Another way to say it: the way a couple manages their money reflects their values, life expectations and their mutual comfort to adjust and compromise.

Budgeting is as essential to married life as doing the laundry and cleaning the dishes    The budgeting process needs a lot of social-relationships skills; some tools may be very helpful, such as the simple calculator or the more elaborated budget planner.

Outlined below are the various budgeting steps and their corresponding human skills that you want to have in order to get a win-win result with your spouse. The first step the couple want to initiate is the priority list; agree about the obligations they are willing to take as well designing a part of their future by targeting the options they both see available and attractive. Communicating about their obligations (like rent, health insurance and alike) would revile their personalities (risk taking versus conservative; immediate reword seeker versus a long runner, and so on) and dominance issues are naturally a focus of a trained Life Coach.

Working on the numbers, charts, graphs and other accounting features will trigger cognitive abilities and activate negotiating skills. This is the stage to observe signs of self esteem issues. A great deal of  Relationship Advice literature exists regarding eliminating contagious remarks / believes such as ‘stay beautiful and silent’, or ‘ your job is to bring the money and my job is to pay the bills’.

Keeping focused on a moving target Creating a realistic budget is worthless unless you monitor your actual financial situation on a weekly / monthly basis and periodically re-assess and adjust your situation. Personality characteristics as stress threshold level, honesty, trustfulness and ability to reject temptations play a crucial role in this never ending ‘budget maintenance’ process. It’s O.K to delegate responsibilities since the job involves various tasks: tracking actual expenses needs the partner who is ‘into the details’ and willing to act as a strict accountant. Over viewing the general expenditure behavior trend should be a team job since  personality differences of optimism / pessimism would most likely appear. Updating and adjusting the budget means making compromises.

Be aware that the ‘do it yourself’ is not definitely cheaper than using the on call professional Life Coach who knows what he/she is doing…

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Dr. Joseph Abraham, Life Coach. Director, Center for Human Growth and Business Insights, Mechanicsburg, PA Tel 717-943.0959 http://www.dr-joseph.com and http://www.dr-joseph.com/online_marriage_Counseling.html

 

 

Life Coach Application of Maslow’s Hierarchy Provides Relationship Advice

A real Life Coach should not rely only on personal awareness or intuition but also be well equipped with leading behavioral theories and paradigms. One of the more successful insightful approaches to people’s relationships is outlined in Abraham Maslow’s ideas about the psychological needs of humans.

It could be a worthwhile practice to listen to a client’s case and draw recommendations for her/him/them in a form of ‘to do list’ based on the gap between the real life story of ‘relationship’ and the expected theoretical way of handling ‘relationship’. A life coach that understands application of the theory will definitely assist clients to trigger and activate affiliation instincts and motivational forces to invest in relationship.

Life Coach’s Relationship Advice needs not to change people, as in psychotherapy, but to be the catalysis factor behind the the client’s evolution or rejuvenation of mutual attraction, affection and the need to see the spouse as a close ally; not only a spectator but a shareholder. Much of the needed ingredients can extracted from ‘Maslow’s Hierarchy’, that reviles the motivational foundation of each of us. The theory postulates that human behavior is influenced by a hierarchy of five types of needs or motives. It is important to follow the original paradigm which indicated that the lowest level needs must be satisfied before people can be motivated by higher level goals.

The basic human needs, called ‘The Physiological’, explains our constant dependency and search for food, water, oxygen, activity, sleep and sex. In counseling it is easy to find that unfulfilled sexual needs and desires are often play a major part in many relationship issues. No wonder therefore that a practical   relationship advice to any couple is to assess their adult interaction and determine how both of them are satisfying their sexual needs. The motivation to achieve harmony here is fundamental for each partner and therefore it is easy to predict that lack of chemistry here would not allow to a mature relationship last for long or survive but suffer permanent tension.

The next class of motivational factors to be discussed is ‘The Safety Needs’ which are naturally linked to any meaningful relationship. This is about everybody’s expectation to be cared for as a child and have a secure fortune as successful adult. Countless songs and stories share the same theme: each wants to assure or impress the partner about his or her contribution for care and devotion as well as for financial creativity, strength and stability. Many relationship cracks can be explained as the result of  one partner’s fear that the other one is not able to contribute either a sufficient emotional care or financial stability.

Intimacy is not sex; it is a deeper sense of bonding and sharing, characterized as ‘Belonging and Love’  by Maslow. This is the next class of needs which explains our motivation to find not only a sex partner but also a close friend; a lover. Affectionate nonsexual relationships are as important as the sexual ones since they fuel the relationship along the time. This need is shown very early in the mating process, as any dating can verify.

Most relationships would crack and not hold for a long time if each one’s need to be respected as a useful and honorable individual would not be met. ‘The Need for Self Esteem’ as the theory named, is a powerful motivating force that attracts couples at the very early stages of their quaintness. Many  couples of ’empty nest’ families go into crisis once one of the parents claims that there is no more respect for his self esteem.

‘Self Actualization’ is the most powerful need according to Maslow’s Hierarchy. It is easy to assess that children and family’s wealth are the common major areas that allow each member of the union a fulfillment of this need. In healthy family life each partner reaches his or her full potential as a result of the relationship and the spouse’s help.

Exploring together how to enhance relationship and intensify life satisfaction and pleasure beyond and above sex and money is probably one of the most prescribed relationship advice for couples above their forties.

To summarize, Maslow’s theory about our basic needs is a great practical tool for the field of  Relationship Advice and Marriage Counseling. A good counselor must know and understand ‘the business of human behavior’; this theory is a great contributor for this effort.

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Dr. Joseph Abraham, Life Coach. Director, Center for Human Growth and Business Insights, Mechanicsburg, PA Tel 717-943.0959 http://www.dr-joseph.com and http://www.dr-joseph.com/online_marriage_Counseling.html

Do You Need a Good Talk With a Freind Or with a Marriage Counseling Professional?

Do You Really Need Marriage Counseling?

What is the difference between ‘good talk’ with a friend or a family member and the discussions with a professional Marriage Counseling?

Actually: what is Marriage Counseling?

Any intervention in which a third party – Psychologist, Marriage Counselor, Life Coach, Medical professional or clergy – provides types of ‘therapy’ for either a married couple or a partnership who tries to resolve problems in their relationship. Typically, the two attend the counseling sessions together, or in the case of Online Counseling – the same phone or computer conference call. There are however many cases in which only one partner may actively participate as each may have different agendas.

So what is ‘therapy’, in the context of marriage counseling?

It is a systematic and structural process in which the marriage counselor, who must be trained in psychotherapy and family systems, focuses on understanding the clients’ symptoms, underlying needs and expectations and the way their interactions contribute to problems in the relationship.

What is the difference between ‘good talk’ with a friend or a family member and the discussions with a professional Marriage Counseling?

Marriage counselors are trained in behavioral science models, psychotherapy processes and techniques and anonymity with no bias to one or the other. Most likely the professional also consults with colleagues or other experienced therapists regarding their cases.

How does it work? Marriage counseling is usually a short-term therapy that may take only a few sessions (1-12 sessions) to work out problems in the relationship. Typically at first the counselor asks questions about the couples’ history and personal background, their past and current roles, dating, sexuality and communication patterns, personal or mutual goals, and their current value/belief system. A summary of the initial meeting with the couple, assessing the aspects of the relationship follows; thereafter participants create a preliminary understanding about their issues, regarding sexuality, recognition, achievement orientation, etc. The process in most cases continues to zoom in on the ‘Identified Client’ – the partner who “appears” to contribute the most to the problems in the relationship. The talented professional will soon diffuse and reveal to both clients the fallacy of one being the sole responsible and help them see the reciprocal nature of the events.

Only with total acceptance of this, can the two explore ways to change their interacting. A well practiced tool is a ‘contract’ in which each partner describes and commits to remedial behavior he or she will try to achieve.

Does it work? I know that my marriage counseling processes help 70-75% of the couples who meet with me to deal more effectively with problems and alternately, years of agony and unhappiness could end within two or three months of working together. Case follow-ups after a year show that those problems with tendencies to reappear do not repeat themselves in most cases. My personal data is aligned with continuous academic research results: effective professional marriage counseling does improve the couples’ physical as well as mental health, while improving their satisfaction with the relationship.

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Dr. Joseph Abraham, Director, Center for Human Growth and Business Insights, Mechanicsburg,PA. 717-943.0959. Online Psychologist and Life Coach: Marriage Counseling, Relationship Advice and Management Consulting. http://www.dr-joseph.com and http://www.dr-jo-consulting.com

 

 

Stop Your Divorce With a Serious Professional Advice

Marriage Counseling is a very real preventative and ongoing choice for a healthy union continuation.

Currently 50% of all marriages will end in divorce. Celebrations of twenty-five or more anniversaries are becoming rare. Marriage counseling and professional relationship advice could and would decrease this trend. You should first try Relationship Advice!

Think of it in terms of gardening or vehicle and house maintenance. As we change our parenting techniques with the growth and development of our children so is our relationship growing which also demands our attention to changes and needs. A relationship advice from a friend or clergy have always been in this area however many couples may need the specialized talents of a “Marriage Counselor” to provide for the appropriate professional relationship advice.

These are the main issues you want to take a professional advice about:

Intimacy versus independence: It is common to adopt declarations regarding the empowerment of the self and individual creativeness. Similar declarations are needed in my opinion regarding the empowerment of true intimacy. More often I find the lack of shared intimacy among couples who use these terms. It has been my observation that in many cases partners with conflict have had deep difficulty to trust each other. This conflict developed either to protect their autonomy or strengthen it. Sadly enough, many of the couples I have met never had a chance to inherit intimacy and heart to heart communication patterns from their parents. Intimacy therefore is a priority on my agenda for the couples’ marriage counseling and relationship advice.

Sexuality: I often check how quickly my clients are willing to examine their sexuality patterns. Sexual communication is complicated and difficult. We knew at the start of our relationship how to keep our sexuality alive with intrusions of work or family obligations. In time, couples develop the tendency to overlook this issue. Related to sexuality is the issue of romance. The effort to ‘fall in love again’, should be considered as a life long term mortgage. A good marriage counseling program will use ‘mechanical building blocks’ in order to keep the romantic spirit alive.

Styles of Communication: Every couple faces situations that are identical to any business team: who does what, why, and when: to purchase, to expand (children?) or not, and so on. Executive roles are part of marriage life, so communication and decision making skills must be analyzed, re-shaped and smartly shared.

Fighting resistance: People love the comfort zone of stability and resist change, even if their circumstance is gloomy. My marriage counseling process always includes some tactics to overcome objections and rejection of new modalities: mirroring and feedback regarding withdrawal from conflict, rules to avoid the tendency to escalate conflict during disagreements in our sessions and rules to avoid sabotaging our progress by provocative acts and attitudes by either partner, in- between our sessions.

Here are three short case summaries: A young couple with no children yet, wanted to break their four year pattern of quickly disputing about (money, location of residence, relatives and social lifestyle) which always intensified into a long hostile silence. Once they accepted my Online Marriage Counseling assessment that it was prior modeling, unconsciously acquired from parents of both sides that caused their bad habits, it was easy to find the alternatives. They quickly adopted constructive ways of decision making and conflict resolution techniques.

A handsome and very rich 40 year old male regressed into a situational depression: he could not function in his life after a devastating break-up with whom he was so ready to marry. Obviously, it was NOT just Relationship Advice counseling he needed, but a re-evaluation of his value system regarding the needs of women. As his Online Counselor and Life Coach I encouraged him to utilize qualities that he previously regarded as too feminine: listening, showing interest, expressing feelings and seeking advice or help. When he started dating again he leaned on his personality, not his money, without a fear of failure.

A couple’s intimacy faded after two years of marriage. Their sessions with me started as Stress Management Life coach and Relationship Advice provider but developed soon into Online Marriage Counseling, once it was revealed that the outside involvement of family members was the main destructive factor in their lives.