You come home from work and you see your husband sprawled out on the couch watching television, while dishes are piled up in the sink.
You get mad.
You’re thinking: Really, he’s just sitting there while there’s work that needs to be done?
You’re not thinking: He’s exhausted. He just finished a tough day at work and he’s stressed out. He needs to relax a little.
These are the kinds of things that occur often in relationships and can sometimes result in a fight.
Choosing to “believe the best” of the other person, however, can help avoid conflicts and help relationships thrive.
That’s just one of the eight tips that Veronique Polo, a life coach at CREATION Wellness Center in Zephyrhills, will discuss on Feb. 22 at 1 p.m., during “Eight relationship tips — A class on taking any relationship from conflicting to thriving.”
CREATION Health is part of Florida Hospital Zephyrhills, which is part of the Adventist Health System.
Polo said the advice she’ll be providing applies to relationships of all types, including romantic and family, as well as friendships, neighbors and colleagues.
She said the tips came from books she has read and her life experiences.
The goal, she said, is to provide practical information, which people can use in their day-to-day lives.
“So many times you go to a class, and you’re like, ‘Well, that’s great theory, but how does that work in my life?’” Polo said.
The life coach said “The 5 Love Languages,” a book by Gary Chapman, can help people better understand the needs of those they are close to in their lives.
Chapman’s book discusses these five love languages: gifts, words of affirmation, acts of service, quality time and touch, Polo said.
“The most important thing about the love languages is understanding what the person needs.
Not just what is natural to you,” she said.
She used this example: “One of my dearest friends, she loves gifts.
“I can text her how much I appreciate her. I can wash her car. She will like those things, but what really she appreciates is if I get her a little necklace that’s meaningful, or a gift card,” Polo said.
To her friend, a gift demonstrates that someone thought about her and what she likes, and went out to spend both time and money to get it for her.
For someone else, quality time may be much more important.
“There’s no right or wrong love language,” Polo said.
The key is understanding your loved one’s needs and making a commitment to seek to meet them.
She describes it like this: “There’s a love tank, and you are either going to fill it or not.”
She also noted that relationships can’t be one-sided.
“There are deposits and withdrawals, and people can’t keep making withdrawals, if they don’t make deposits,” she said.
The way to discover your loved one’s love language is to observe them, she said.
What someone gives, is likely their love language and what they want to receive, Polo said.
A wife might be wondering: ‘Does he really love me?’
Meanwhile, her husband is thinking: ‘I always give her gifts. I’m always telling her I love her.’
The thing is, her love language might be quality of time or acts of service — and the husband is totally missing it, Polo said.
So, the wife’s love tank is not being filled, Polo said.
That’s why it’s so important to communicate, the life coach added.
“Don’t suffer in silence.
“So many times when we feel hurt, misunderstood — we regress, we isolate ourselves. That just inflames the problem,” she said.
Communication is a two-way street, she added.
“Don’t assume what your mate is thinking. Ask them questions.
“Being open about your thoughts and your feelings is how you get clarity in a relationship,” Polo said.
It’s also important to realize that each of us is responsible for our own happiness, Polo said.
“We blame others. We think: ‘I’m not happy because I don’t have money. My husband doesn’t make me happy, or my kids are brats. Or, whatever. It’s everybody else’s fault but yourself. You need to realize, you’re in control.
“It’s not your circumstance that makes you happy. It’s how you see it,” Polo said.
What: “Eight relationship tips — A class on taking any relationship from conflicting to thriving.”
Where: Florida Hospital Zephyrhills CREATION® Health Wellness Center Education Room, 38233 Daughtery Road, Zephyrhills
When: Feb. 22, 1 p.m.
Cost: Free, but registration is required
Info: (813) 779-6476 to register
Eight relationships tips:
- If you can’t listen, don’t talk.
- Believe the best.
- Safety, security, love, acceptance
- Learn about the love languages. They are: Gifts, words of affirmation, acts of service, quality time, touch. (What someone gives is likely their love language, and what they want to receive)
- You can’t control others, only yourself.
- Stubbornness is the silent killer.
- Take responsibility for your happiness.
- Don’t suffer in silence. (Your mate can’t read your mind and you can’t make them guess — that’s unfair.)
Source: Veronique Polo, life coach at CREATION Health Wellness Center in Zephyrhills
Published February 14, 2018