Monday

Is Jealousy Destroying Your Relationship? Banishing The Green-eyed Monster From Your Relationship

Jealousy is a common problem that couples present when they go to counseling. When one partner chooses jealous behaviors, the dynamics of the relationship change. They are no longer a couple in an Adult Relationship.

Now they are caught in a cycle of Investigator and Suspect. The Investigator spends an enormous amount of energy checking up on the Suspect, who may or may not be doing anything reprehensible. The Suspect spends time defending and explaining his/her behaviors. They are locked in a pattern which will destroy their relationship and they usually don’t what to do.

Both partners are miserable playing this game. The game is all about Control. "If I don’t check up on her, she'll make me look stupid" or "He'll make a fool of me." People who choose jealous behaviors may not realize that their behavior looks pretty silly or even crazy. Their partner didn't "make" them look stupid.

I was actually told by several women that "all men cheat." If this is your belief, you are probably an Investigator. Problem is: you have to sleep sometime. You can’t chain yourself to your partner. You have decided that you alone are capable of controlling your partner’s behavior. What’s more, you've decided it's your Job as his partner to keep him from cheating on you.

What a way to live your life, spending your time spying on each other! Trust is a decision. It’s not based on how the other person acts. If you choose to stay with a partner who is not trustworthy, you are doing so with your eyes open. If you are choosing jealousy without cause, you are doing so to control your partner.

The very things you do to control your partner are the things that will drive your partner away. Are you ready to try something different?

Keep in mind that jealous behavior is a choice you are making. It starts with your thoughts: I wonder where he is. She’s probably with someone right now. Why didn't he call me when he said he would? Why is she wearing that dress? Who was that woman who called him?

These thoughts lead to your behaviors, such as calling excessively (read, more than twice during work hours), listening in on phone conversations, checking phone lists and emails, interrogating your partner, and many other destructive behaviors.

You begin to feel awful after imagining all of the things your partner is doing (these are thoughts; you can change them). You can also change your behaviors if you choose to. If jealously is destroying your relationship, there is hope if you are willing to do the work.

First, if you're with someone who is trustworthy, you can change the thoughts that are plaguing you. Whenever you get those thoughts that start your heart racing, ask yourself the following questions:

What evidence is there that my thought is true?
What evidence is there that my thought is false?
What would someone else say about this thought?
What other explanation could there be?

After you answer these questions, decide what new course of action you will take based on this exercise. Repeat this as often as needed. Hopefully, you will soon find yourself feeling calmer and less ready to play the Investigator and Suspect game.


About the Author
Michelle E. Vásquez is a Licensed Professional Counselor in private practice in San Antonio, TX. Relationship blogs: http://languageofrelating.blogspot.com and http://awaresingle.blogspot.com.

Friday

Love Revisited: Helpful Do’s & Don’ts For The Widow/Widower Embracing New Love

Is it possible to mourn the loss of a beloved spouse and, while still grieving, to not only meet someone special, but fall in love and begin to build a new relationship that includes a commitment to sharing your lives? Can we overlap our loving and our grieving? The answer is a profound: YES! But, to smooth the path, keep these helpful Do’s and Don’ts in mind:

• Do allow yourself the joy of healing and moving on.

• Do allow yourself to feel good when this happens.

• Don’t feel guilty. You have been respectful, loving and caring towards your late spouse. Time has passed. It is healthy to want your life to move forward. Try to recognize your emotions every step of the way and not shy away from inner scrutiny, or back off from facing your emotions.

• Do know that it is possible to combine families with adult children no longer living at home.

• Do know that it will not always be smooth sailing; there will be moments of arguments and disagreements to work through.

Commonly, jealousy, fear, abandonment and money issues come up, even for your grown children. Will he leave “her” in “his” will? Will he forget about us? Will he respect our grieving? Be aware that often even the adult child feels, “I am not ready for this.” I want my dad/mom to be happy but not so fast….I’m still grieving for my mom/dad; I’m not ready to think about a “replacement” for his or her love. It may be hard for children at any age to fully understand that the bereaved are lonely and, if the widow or widower had a good marriage, this can further motivate the longing for another partner. There is also the sense of urgency, i.e., “time is running out and life will not go on forever”.

Tactfulness, thoughtfulness, and consideration for the feelings of children of all ages are so important, as well as the understanding that fathers and mothers grieve differently than their children who have their own important timetable. One cannot hurry the process of your grief, your adult children leading their own lives, or that of younger children.

While you want your life to move forward, a sensitive and understanding parent needs to recognize and be especially responsive to the needs of children living at home; children who are grieving the loss of their mother or father. The child needs the "daddy" or "mommy" that’s left. They need them to be emotionally available. Equally important, children commonly have expectations that they have exclusive rights to this parent. Dealing with young children still at home, requires an added set of challenges.

• Do listen carefully to what your child is, and is not saying.

• Do not have a new partner or romantic interest stay overnight too soon.

• Do be sensitive about the messages that you are giving your children about this new person in your life.

• Don’t have someone spend the night until they are special in your life, so that your child doesn’t feel the emotional confusion of a string of overnight guests.

• Do continue to impart important values to your child, reinforcing that love is special. Remember your behavior as a role model for your youngster.

• Do understand that someone new entering your life is confusing for your child and may come along with resentments needing to be understood and dealt with.

• Do be aware that the children are smart and can resent a new “mother,” even if she is not posed as such.

Grieving adults are entitled to happiness. Yet the grieving family members may experience confusion, conflict and rage. “I want mom back.” “I never wanted her to leave.” I want you (as my parent) not to be alone….but I’m not ready for this. Sometimes, it can’t be articulated but felt.

Keeping the channels of communication open for discussion, dialogue and sharing of experiences requires listening, and not necessarily agreeing. Each party needs to be heard and wants to be understood. Joy is to be treasured; the challenge lies in working it out in a way that is respectful to all family members.

About the Author
Marilyn Stolzman, Ph.D., L.M.F.T is the co-author with Gloria Lintermans of THE HEALING POWER OF LOVE: Transcending the Loss of a Spouse to New Love, http://www.championpress.com. Visit with Gloria at: http://creativegrief.blogspot.com

Tuesday

Relationship Tune Up - 7 Key Points to Avoid a Break Up or Break Down

"Every three months or 3,000 miles."

That's how the sticker in the left upper corner of my windshield reads.

It's a matter of common knowledge that we are supposed to maintain, service, and tune up our cars if we want them to run well and last.

In my experience, it rarely occurs to us to do the same thing with our love relationships.

More and more of the couples I see are not in need of long term therapy, they are more in need of a short term relationship tune up.

7 Key Points

What first attracted you to each other? - This is the first question I ask most couples because it helps to be reminded that your partner has some great qualities that led you to want to be in this relationship.

What are some of the strengths of your relationship? - Instead of all the things that are wrong with your relationship, what I want to know is what are some of the strengths of the relationship upon which we can build in order to solve the problems with which they are struggling.

When have you been the closest? - One of the easiest ways to tune up your relationship is to do the things you were doing when you were the closest.

You may have noticed that the first 3 questions were all focused on positives in the relationship.

This is done on purpose. One of the dangers of traditional marriage counseling is a focus on what is wrong or defective with an individual or the relationship. One of the many benefits of relationship coaching is a focus on using the strengths in the relationship to build up the areas where the relationship is weak.

What are your partner's emotional needs and what are your own? - If you do not know, hear are the two crucial questions to ask:

1) In order to feel loved by me, what do you need to feel in our relationship?

2) What are some ways I can meet those needs?

What is your partner's love language and what is yours? - Some folks need to hear it, some folks need to see it, and some folks need to feel it.

How do the two of you "do conflict?" - Conflict in a relationship is inevitable. Fighting is optional.

What is your vision for your relationship? - Without a vision, a relationship can perish. Here are a few questions most couples never take the time to even think about, much less ask:

1) If we could design our relationship any way we wanted, how would we like it to be?

2) What goals do we have for our relationship?

3) What do we want to give, and what do we want to get in our relationship?

For more immediately useable tips and tools for your relationship, visit relationship coach Jeff Herring's interactive website at SecretsofGreatRelationships.com


Author: Jeff Herring

Wednesday

Men Wake Up! A Good Woman is Man's Best Friend

Yes dogs are loyal. They will stick by you to the very end. They will still love you even when you forget to feed them, stay away too long, yell at them, and so on. But dogs can't give you what you need when your spirit is reaching out for someone to complete you. Let's be real, dogs aren't a man's best friend, but a wise woman is. Notice the key word here is "wise." A foolish woman is a man's downfall. We see that all the time in the media. A political, entertainment, or sports figure decides to go out with a woman who has strategically placed herself at the right place at the right time to obtain one's material wealth. After attempting to destroy the man's reputation, she may find temporary fame and fortune (many women don't) and then when the lights are off she is by herself name-dropping to some friends.

Men overlook wise women all the time for the ditz. The reasons are endless from beauty to status, but whatever the reason, a wise woman will come out on top every time. For purposes of this writing, let's define wise as "having or showing wisdom, good sense, or good judgment, sensible, aware of what is going on, informed," according to the Webster's New Ideal Dictionary. So to be with a wise woman is essential for a young man striving to become a better man and an older man looking to make the remaining years of his life something special.

So why is it that men in the beginning of a relationship want the wise woman, but later on find her unattractive, boring, not what they had in mind, different, strange etc.? Could it be that the man overlooked beauty over brains? Maybe he still wanted to party and travel as a single man? Or he simply couldn't handle the challenge of thinking deeply, acting honestly, and being sensible? Not every man is ready for adult conversation and responsibilities. Some men as they grow older become weary of being the focused professional, able to handle challenges in a single bound. The superman title gets old for some. Just like women at certain times in their life just want to let their hair down and have a good time, there are men who want to do the same. But what's wrong with having it all with a wise woman who can be a help mate in fulfilling your dreams and aspirations?

I have personally talked with men over the years who are confused as to what it truly means to have a serious relationship with someone. Their take on a good relationship is similar to that of a high school crush. They expect to be in love forever--holding hands, kissing, and playing under the covers. However, they don't anticipate the stormy days when they aren't the likeable, funny guy that their mate fell in love with in the beginning. These clueless men's feelings become easily wounded when she objects to a silly joke, wants some space, or finds fault with them about something. They have associated a bad day or bad mood with a "throw the baby out with the bath water" type of relationship drama. Before you know it, they are holding grudges and looking for the next woman who they can feel those butterflies with. Yes, there are women who act the same way, but this article is not about them, it's about men who need to understand the importance of having a relationship with a wise woman and not a foolish one.

The men that I have talked to unfortunately didn't have a mother or a father around them who taught them what type of woman they needed that could be an asset to their lives. Instead, they were told to get involved with certain women for shallow reasons such as "she is pretty, she is older, and she has money..." But what they weren't told was that the woman who can complete them is the one who will be a beacon to their lives. Like a lighthouse, she will show you the way in a storm. When you have lost your job, succumbed to illness, witnessed a relative die, or fell into a depression, she will pick you up and usher you were you need to be in life.

So what are the character traits of a wise woman? She is kind, considerate, and respected by family and friends. She is a planner, organizer, and detailed oriented. She is an independent thinker and no longer needs her mother, father and other relatives to guide her life. She has stopped saying, "Well my mother said...grandma told me...daddy reminded me..." She has a faith and is spiritually gifted. She may possess any one or all of the spiritual gifts as defined in the Christian Bible. For those who do not understand her, she is looked upon as a know-it-all type. Wise women who have allowed compliments to go to their heads are not looked upon with favor by those closest to them, because they are not disciplined enough to know how to communicate with others in a loving manner. However, in the public, they are admired. These women also tend to be bossy, arrogant, and sometimes unforgiving. They use their intellect to cast revenge and anger on others purposely. "God told me to tell you...You are stupid...You are a fool...that's why you are going to hell!" These are the kind of things that wise women will say that make them look no better than a fool! They can be too wise in their own eyes at times and turn people completely off. "You should do this...why don't you say that...do this because I said so..." She is always talking, but never listening. Yet, a wise woman who is in control of her emotions, humble, and loves others is a person who can be cherished. She is saying, "I am here for you, if you need me."

A wise woman watches your back. She sees trouble coming from all angles even from your own family and friends. She may have never interacted or seen some of them, yet she knows that this person(s) is a potential problem or may threaten the household in some way. When your mother or other family members are being controlling and want to make you do what they want you to do when they want it, a wise woman will remind you about your current responsibilities and advise you to take a stand. For those of you who are married, you should already know this, and if you don't then here's your wake up call. A wise woman will tell you about that gut feeling she has about certain women at your workplace and although you maintain your innocence it doesn't mean that you won't slip up, so watch what you say and do. Wise women will also warn you when things in the house aren't working, the car needs a tune up, and the children are misbehaving. She isn't telling you these things to aggravate you, but she wants you as the man of the house to do your part. She knows she can't do everything and she doesn't want to take over unless pushed. And being pushed is never a good thing for anyone. You can defile your wise woman at home and turn her into a bossy nag who will make you wish you never laid eyes on her! However, if everyone does their part the household will run efficiently.

A wise woman will create a schedule on how the household should best operate. She will manage dates and times so that everyone knows what is ahead. She isn't trying to control your free time, but she wants to be sure of the following: there is time for the two of you, time for the children and time for the extended family and friends. She knows that if she doesn't make some time for all parties particularly the in-laws, she will be blamed and looked at by your family as someone who is keeping you away from everyone while henpecking you for her own benefit. She knows how people think and she wants to be sure that you and the family is always looked upon with favor.

Wise women are very good at saving money. She isn't interested in spending every dollar in the house for herself; rather, she knows that bills need to be paid, groceries, toiletries, and other household goods are needed. It makes sense to her to buy in bulk and save; rather than buy in singles and pay double. She is the master at seeing what the future holds. She knows that an emergency savings will be necessary, an education fund will need to be set up, holidays are coming, and so much more. So she spends hours researching, heads to the store with sales papers and coupons in tote looking for the best deals.

A gift that most wise women have is one of instinct also known as women's intuition. She may have tapped into it in the above examples when she came to you with a series of warnings and questions. Some of these wise women have dreams, visions, and unexplained feelings. They just know when something is wrong or when it is right. She may tell you suddenly to do something that you would have rather put off or stay away from something or someone, if you listen to her and do what she says at that time, you may benefit. She also knows when she is being lied to or betrayed, but she won't always say, because if she is one of faith, she knows that God will deal with you or those around her accordingly. It is better to avoid lying to a wise woman at all costs. The consequences aren't ever worth the price of putting your relationship with her at risk.

So before you do the following: write that smart woman off who may be interested in you, end your current relationship, or think the grass is greener on the other side, consider this, wise women are rare nowadays. There aren't many who come from stable homes with a mom, dad and siblings. There are few who aren't materialistic and even fewer who grew up amongst prayer warriors. If you are one of those men who have fallen out of love with your wise woman, then work real hard to fall back in love with her. Take some time out and remind yourself about the good ole days and do something special for her and yourself. A wise woman is a keeper.

For more articles by Nicholl McGuire, Click Here!

Tuesday

Six Reasons Why You and Your Fiance Shouldn't Be Getting Married Right Now

Everyone around you has told you get married to your girlfriend, boyfriend or fiancé and you would like to, but you seem a bit apprehensive. There are obvious reasons why you are not ready and then there are some that aren't so obvious. The information contained in this article will help you uncover what has been bothering you about marrying your partner and why it is best to just put off your marriage plans.

One. The Ex

You are still involved with a previous mate. When you find yourself still doing the following: helping them whenever they need you, going out to eat with them, visiting them at their home, speaking to them intimately over the phone, emailing them about your personal life and inviting them to check out your Internet web pages and even worse still being married, you are not ready.

Two. Past Memories

You often think of the "good ole' days." Some people enjoy the memories of their single life, so much in fact, that it depresses them to think that one day they will be married. Others can't get over reminiscing about the ex and reflecting on how things would have turned out had they done certain things in the relationship or had the ex did some things differently for them.

Three. Your Partner's Family

You don't get along with anyone on your mate's side of the family. They invite you to family events and you never want to attend for a variety of reasons. There are more than a select few in your partner's family who are critical of you to your face and behind your back. When you tell your mate about their behavior, he or she doesn't do anything about it.

When you and your partner make plans to do something together, he or she has to always include someone from his or her family. Your mate's family often call or drop by at strange hours of the night. When you tell your partner how this makes you feel, he or she defends their actions and argues with you about it.

Whenever your partner's family is in trouble he or she is always bailing them out. When you tell your partner how this makes you feel and how this affects items being bought for your own home, he or she finds excuses for why they feel what they did is the "right thing to do or "don't worry over it we will be blessed."

Four. Employment

You or your partner can't maintain a steady job. In addition, you may not be happy with your career and education. Without being at peace with those issues, you may not be satisfied with the money you make either. There are some people who can't seem to make up their mind where they would like to work and have a problem committing to any job.

Five. Children

You don't want a family, but your partner is open to the possibility. When your partner brings up this subject you may be the one who becomes emotional about it. Then again, he or she might be. If so, you definitely don't want to commit to them for the rest of your life if the two of you can't agree on this subject. If you know you can't afford it right now, don't get married to someone who thinks that you can at this time. Most of all, if you or your partner has unresolved issues with how your parents treated you, put off having children until you are at peace with your past.

Six. Bad Habits

You have bad habits you can't seem to quit. Partners who stay out all night and come home whenever they feel like it will not all of a sudden just stop their inconsiderate behavior just because you got married. If you or your partner makes plans to enjoy life without the other on a regular basis, why bother getting married?

Continuing to smoke, drink or do drugs when your partner has asked you to quit is definitely a sign you need to put off marriage.

Spending money you know you don't have on things you can't afford will cause future arguments, so don't get married until you have a budget that you can follow on a consistent basis.

You can prevent a future divorce if you don't ignore the signs that you see in the present. Marriage is just as so many have described, "Work." It can be enjoyable work or just a job, it's up to you to decide which you will choose. Build a foundation now that will last a lifetime for you and your partner by doing what you can to better yourself, before you get married!

Nicholl McGuire

Seven Things You Can Do Today to Become a Better Wife

Having problems in your relationship? Are you the one who is to blame for the majority of the issues that have recently surfaced in your marriage? Maybe it was a mood swing contributed to PMS or menopause or maybe you have been really stressed out lately. If so, then the following tips will help you make some quick improvements in your marriage, before your man starts thinking you are no longer interested in him.

1) Overcrowding your husband's personal space? If you have been breathing down his neck on a variety of issues and not seeing any results and he has told you to back off, why aren't you doing it? Then again, maybe you are so in love with him that you want to know his every move, of course he will understand, right? Wrong, give him some space and let him come to you with his problems, issues, or confessions of how much he loves you from time to time.

2) Have you been dying to tell him about what happened to you each day at work, home, or school? You may think you are doing a wonderful thing by telling him everything when you feel like talking. However, you may want to find out if when you are ready to talk is a good time for him to listen. Time the conversations you plan with him better to achieve undivided attention.

3) Praise doesn't just work for children and animals it works for men too. If you want to see him smile, even a little bit, show you care by looking into his eyes ever so affectionately, and saying, "Thank you. I really appreciated what you have done for me." Thank you can also be expressed by turning on the game for him whether he listens to it in the car or watches it on the television. Buying a small token of appreciation such as a favorite snack will also make him feel you care.

4) If you have been married for years or a recently wedded, then you should know by now whether your husband is a great help around the house or your worst nightmare. So if you know these things, why anticipate your husband will always help you with cleaning and organizing the house? Most men will do tasks in unexpected spurts. Meaning today they may be in the mood to do everything you ask, and then won't be willing again until days, weeks or even months later. You will have to plan how you will get other tasks done between now and when he is in the mood again. Even if it means you will have to hire someone to do it. If he doesn't want to spend the money, then he will have to do it and if he doesn't you will have to teach him a lesson, particularly if you make your own money. He will just have to receive one less gift for his birthday and Christmas.

5) Many women nowadays work just like men do; therefore, there are more and more women who don't cook just like men do. Although it seems fair, many men still want their women to cater to them. If you know that you can't cook and your man is raving about another woman's cooking even if it is his mother, you should take the time and do some research on how to cook. It doesn't have to be his favorite meal, because you risk being compared to another woman's skill, but it should be something that both of you have eaten in the past at a restaurant. The quickest way to a man's heart is still through his stomach.

6) There are still mothers threatening to tell their children's father for wrongdoing. The last thing he wants to hear is a list of your concerns regarding the children when he gets off of work. Sometimes for serious offenses you will have to speak with him immediately. However, many aren't that important. Don't always wait on him to discipline and teach the children.

7) Some women can rain firestorms on their men when they are angry at them. Are you one of them? If so, the quickest way to push your man into the arms of another woman or in some cases another man is to yell and name call during disagreements. Try to stick to the topic that makes you angry and express how it impacts you and everything around the two of you. If he is at fault, ask him how he intends to solve the matter and what you intend to do if he doesn't. If you truly love him like you say you do, you will make yourself communicate with him using a respectful tone that you would use if he was your boss.

Take some quiet time and consider anything your mate has told you he doesn't like and work to stop old habits. You will need to be reminded by him, family or friends of what it is you are doing that is causing problems in your household. Anything that is being done which affects everyone around you may need more than just will power and it is up to you to make the doctor's appointment, read a book about your problem area, and/or seek the counseling you need to change.

When you find that you are making great strides in becoming a better wife, don't expect him to be a better husband. You may tell him about the things that bother you; however if he isn't willing to become a better husband, you are in this alone. Instead, you should secretly hope and pray that by him watching your positive actions, he will want to change. Remember change is a process it doesn't happen overnight.

Nicholl McGuire

How to Deal with Your Lover Who Can't Handle Conflict

Another opportunity has come to discuss a problem in the relationship, you want to tell your lover how you feel, but you don't want the problem to go unresolved like last time.

The last time was one of those times that ended with "You just love to argue, don't you?" It wasn't that you loved to argue, but how many times must you keep on having to bring up problems before your mate gets the point?

What will you have to do to get through to them? The following tips will help you make your point whether loud and in their face or quiet and polite.

First, try the "we are two reasonable adults" approach. Ask to speak with them a moment and let them know you will only be a minute. Tell them what is on your mind in the most polite way. The best way to describe your tone and demeanor would be like speaking with a sales clerk at your favorite store. "I just need for you to help me with something I have been trying to figure out. When would be a good time for you to join me in tidying this house up?" Be prepared for excuses, objections, and attitudes. Any time you ask someone to do something they really don't want to do, they usually aren't happy. If you don't want to be negative right along with them, don't look at their facial expression and stand there silently until you get an answer.

Second, if you tried to be reasonable with them, and you still haven't received a response. Try the "gentle reminder" approach. You basically tell them once again what you need. You might want to post a note somewhere around the house to remind them. The note is a powerful tool in case he or she claims you never asked them anything. There is also text messages and email to further remind them.

Third, when you have tried being nice, your mate who rather run from conflict and accuse you of "loving to argue," will have to face you again. This time you will be offending them because you are approaching them yet again about an issue they still have yet to address. It's unfortunate that you have to approach them with issues like a collector trying to collect on a debt, but what is the alternative? Keeping your mouth shut on issues and praying doesn't always work. Gossiping with your family and friends about the matter will only add fuel to your fire. Doing spiteful things to him or her will only cause more confusion. So you will have to face him or her again with the problem except this time don't give them the opportunity to come up with a solution, rather you create one that is in your best interest since Larry "who doesn't like to argue" keeps avoiding you. For instance, "Larry after trying several times to talk with you about problems in our relationship, you have been avoiding me. I have no choice but to feel that you don't care and if you don't then please let me know so that I can make other arrangements." Of course, Larry's ears are perked up now. "What other arrangements?" While you have Larry's undivided attention you may want to start with the most important issue. You may not get to all of the issues at that moment, so bring the others up at a later time.

People who can't handle confrontation of any kind whether it is loud or quiet will always find something to do, walk out of a room, or find something else to talk about. They are hoping that you will forget about what you had to discuss with them, but don't. We live in a world where there will be war and rumors of war, but all can be avoided if people just allowed one another to make their point be it loud or soft whether you agree or disagree. Some talking is always better than no talking. However, when things become heated, take a break, but do come back to the table and finish your discussion. Avoiding conflict will not get any results for you or the one you love.

Nicholl McGuire

How To Find A Husband The Wrong Way

Too many times single women will go hunting with girlfriends in search of a potential mate only to come home heartbroken once again, because no one seemed to be right for them. There are many good reasons why that occurs, here's one main reason: don't look for a man with women! The following information in this article will provide you with all the things women do wrong to get a man and may answer the question why some of you are still single after 35.

Some single women have either an extreme positive attitude or an extreme negative attitude. Where is the balance? No one wants Bubbles for a wife, maybe a lover, but not a wife. If everyone tells you how bubbly you are, it isn't always meant as a compliment. There are men who don't respond well to a woman who thinks that even a gloomy, rainy day with ice and snow is just "great!" Know how to tone your voice and body movements down a notch. No one is asking you to kill who you are, but you will have to consider making a few adjustments.

Now, Bubbles has a negative friend, named Attitude. Attitude is angry at every man who has ever lied, cheated, or showed up ten minutes late. She falsely assumes that anyone she meets will treat her like a b*tch, because everyone else did. Well, if they have, maybe you like Bubbles, will have to remember to tone it down. Toning the attitude down doesn't mean being a weak mouse, but what it does mean is you will have to make some adjustments in your personality if you want to be talked to by a man, maybe even asked out on a date.

Avoiding others to help you find a husband. What is wrong with asking someone who knows you well? If you have in the past and it didn't turn out well, consider who you asked and how many people you asked. Finding a husband should be a project that you would want everyone who cares about you involved.

Telling men too much about yourself on the first date. No man wants to hear about your sexual conquests with other men no matter how open he seems to act. He is just testing you to see if you are wife material or "slam bam thank you ma'm" material. Go ahead and tell him only what he wants to hear and you won't last a year with him. He has dated women like you before, so he knows "the type." Ever hear that statement before? Do less talking and more listening.

He isn't interested in all your money and achievements. If you list everything you have ever done that was outstanding, he may feel like you are more of a competitor than a lover. Once again, think balance when you are talking to your potential husband. Think: "A little about me, with a tad about the family, add a cup of my interests, stirred up and served with my boundaries - sex tonight, tomorrow, months from now or we will talk about it when the time is right."

Tacky appearance. In other words, you don't bother to keep yourself up physically. Like men, too many women make excuses for how they look yet they dare criticize another for being too tall, fat, ugly, smelly, etc. Be sure that you aren't looking like the way you despise. If so, do something about it, before someone boldly calls you out on your flaws in the future and if you can't help certain things, then enhance your stronger attributes.

Going places to find men in places you don't like. If you don't like meeting men at a club, then why go there? if you rather meet men at a fitness center, then make yourself go. Don't go to places that you know in the past has brought you the kind of men you rather live without.

Assuming you know yourself better than everyone else. You don't always know what's best for you, because if you did you would be married by now. Consider what everyone has been telling you about yourself. Take the good, bad, and ugly about yourself and make the needed changes.

Not allowing yourself enough time to heal. You haven't gotten over the last man who hurt you before you are in bed with another. How do you expect to heal from your past wounds when you are bringing those into your new relationships? Enjoy truly being single without allowing a man to visit, stay the night, or even call you. You will know when you are ready when your family and friends notice that you haven't been seeing or mentioning any man in your conversation.

You don't bother to "really" pray. When you have prayed it probably went something like this, "God you know I am lonely, send me a man about six foot with dark hair, handsome, with a job, etc, etc. In Jesus name Amen." What kind of prayer is that? Instead, you should pray, "Lord help me to become a better person, strengthen my relationship with you and if it is meant for me to have a husband then let it be so. I won't bother praying about a man any more since I have more important things to do such as needing your help with..." You already prayed without ceasing on the husband part for years I am sure, there has been potential husbands...now it's time to pray without ceasing in other areas of your life.

From checking your attitude at the door to praying to God for guidance, whatever you have done or will do to get a husband, remember to focus on what matters the most and that is your own personal happiness. Many times women who have found husbands found them when they weren't looking for them. Allow yours to come to you without you holding up a big sign of desperation stating, "I need a husband, are you the one for me?" Utilize the tips, then come back and tell the world your story.

For more articles by Nicholl McGuire, Click Here!

Friday

12 Things to Know Before Starting Your Next Sexual Relationship

These days you may find yourself pondering on having sex with your new friend. There is something special about he or she and you may be starting to fall in love. It is a wonderful feeling knowing that this person may be "the one", but do you really know him or her? What could you possibly be risking in the future by having sex now? The following tips may help you decide whether having sex right now is really a good idea.

1. Know the person's first, middle and last name.

Although this tip may seem obvious, you would be surprised at how many people have sex with someone and are unsure whether they have a middle name, what there last name could be and whether the first name is their birth name.

2. Find out where they were born, where they currently live and where do their closest relatives live.

Let's say an emergency occurs while you are with he or she and they are unable to speak. What would you say if the police asked you, "Where does your friend live and can you get in contact with his or her relatives? It would be very embarrassing if you couldn't answer these two simple questions.

3. Know more than one phone number to reach them, and an email address (if they have one.)

Think about the future. Many situations may arise and a secondary phone number may be extremely helpful. Whether you or they have a concern or need to be contacted by family and friends, people should know where to find you.

4. Ask questions about where they work and how long they have been employed.

The good times don't last for long, so it may be to your benefit in the future to know whether they are employed or not and where. If you ever have to serve them with court documents and can't reach them at home, you will be able to contact them at work. Worse case scenario, if you ever need help from the police, they will know where to find him or her. This is also helpful information to determine whether they are hoping to use you as a future meal ticket.

5. Find out when was the last time they visited a doctor and a dentist.

This is important for your own health and safety. Don't have sex with someone who can't seem to keep up with his or her doctor's appointments. They may have a disease that has yet to surface.

6. Be certain they are or aren't ready for a family.

Women have been known to get pregnant rather quickly in a new relationship simply because they may be more likely to let their guard down when they are attracted to a new mate. If you know you aren't ready for a family, take the initiative and bring your own contraception. This way you know it hasn't been tampered with prior to having sex.

7. Be prepared to reveal your sexual history.

When you start asking question about his or her sexual history, know that yours will also be called into question. Tell the truth. He or she doesn't need to know how many partners you have been involved or that you have been seeing a psychiatrist for sexual abuse, but he or she does have the right to know if you have a sexually transmitted disease. If you take the time to explain what you have and how he or she can protect themselves, you may be surprised he or she may still want to have sex. It is unfair not to tell. If you want a relationship built on trust and honesty, then tell the truth.

8. Encourage them to talk about the people they are most often in contact.

You can do this by asking the following questions: Who is their best male or female friend(s)? How often do they hang out with their friends? Where does he or she like to go? Do they keep in contact with old classmates from high school and college? Are they affiliated with any professional or social organizations? Do they go on business meetings with female co-workers, often work late and attend happy hour with his or her friends? The plan here is to find out how serious they are when it comes to a relationship. They may have friends they enjoy having a little more than an occasional lunch date.

9. Know whether he or she has been married before, divorced and has children.

He or she may have marital problems, but still live with their spouse. They may also be separated, but not officially divorced. What would happen if after you had sex, you decided you wanted to marry, but he or she is still married? If he or she has children, consider whether or not you want to be a future step-parent.

10. Ask questions about family history.

Make a note of patterns of alcohol, drug, physical and verbal abuse amongst the family as well as mental issues. There is a good possibility that he or she may be severely impacted by their family history. Also, you may want to consider asking questions about religious and political affiliations. You don't want to have a relationship with anyone who is unwilling to settle or compromise when it comes to your beliefs. Avoid unnecessary trouble in your life by seeking relationships that you know you will not have to change the things that you do and say that build your self-esteem and overall make you happy!

11. Be sure you have a good idea of his or her daily routine.

What is a typical day like for them? Do they usually work and come home the same time everyday? Do they visit their family through the week or on weekends? Are they outgoing or a homebody? How often do they eat and usually what time of day? What you are looking for when you are making observations are patterns. You don't want to ask too many questions that you could find the answers just by watching. The last thing you want is for them to make false assumptions about you. Part of getting to know someone is knowing what their schedule usually is like from one day to the next. This way if you begin to see a series of patterns that are different from the usual, you will be able to detect whether he or she is telling you the truth about their life when they aren't in your presence.

12. Notice the details of his or her vehicle such as the gas tank whether it is often full or empty and how much money he or she spends or saves.

When ever you get in his or her car notice if the gas tank is full or often empty, he or she either is forgetful or just doesn't have the money to keep the tank full. Observe the detail of the car and how it runs. A man or woman who can't maintain their only means of transportation is struggling with money.

Also, listen to the kinds of restaurants and entertainment facilities he or she suggests you both visit as well as places he or she may have traveled. You will be able to make the determination whether you have something in common. In addition, you will also learn whether you can afford to go out with his or her type.

When you take a moment to ponder these issues prior to sex, you will save yourself years of heartache. Think of how quickly you will be able to determine whether this person is irresponsible, a liar, flirt, gold-digger, an abuser, or other things that could cause future relationship problems. As you have heard, sex complicates the relationship particularly when you have it prematurely. You may learn more about this person simply by giving yourself time to observe his or her behaviors, know family and friends, and most of all build trust!

For more articles by Nicholl McGuire Click Here!

Wednesday

How to Know Your Boyfriend is Abusive

When a woman first meets a man she doesn't know his upbringing, the company he keeps, what he likes to do in his spare time and most of all whether he has a disease or not. She can only make a determination of the man's character initially by how he looks, his mannerisms, what he says and how he treats her and the people around them. As she becomes increasingly more interested in him, she begins to trust him and will gradually let her "guard down". She will buy him gifts, offer to help him with cooking and housework, impress his family and friends and take part in his interests. While she is growing a fondness for him, he may be ready to have a relationship with her, but struggle with a dark past in the process.

What is in this man's dark past that the woman is not aware? For some men, it is a pattern of abusive behaviors toward women. It may have started when he witnessed his mother being beat by his dad, a live-in boyfriend or someone else. There may have been a time that a woman sexually abused him. Other instances of abuse could have occurred to him by a controlling mother or some other female authority. Whoever or whatever the situation, the man is aware that he exhibits inappropriate behavior with women, but no matter how hard he tries he can't seem to stop. This man may have prayed, visited the local church, talked with friends, read books, saw a counselor, took drugs, etc. but for whatever reason he just can't seem to break the cycle. This unsuspecting new mate doesn't know what she is about to experience with this man unless she recognizes the signs early and gets out permanently.

Every relationship starts off similar to what was described in the beginning of this article. No one really knows what they are getting themselves into until later, but in time the darkness comes to light and it is up to the woman to get out of the relationship as quickly, safely and peacefully as possible. The signs don't always show up right away. When people who have not had similar experiences make comments such as, "Why didn't you see the signs?" or "Why did you stay?" Some women may have turned a blind eye to those signs, been too busy to really notice, felt comfortable with him because a relative or friend did similar things or simply didn't care because they didn't want to date anyone else.

The following is a list of signs to watch out for early in the relationship to determine whether the man has abusive tendencies or has abused women in the past.

Someone tells you or he admits that he has hit women in the past.

He refers to all women he has dated in the past with derogatory terms. He may also refer to his mother using such terms as well.

An extensive collection of pornography and videotapes some of which are violent. He may try to tempt you into trying sexual acts that go against your better judgment. If you object, he may threaten to do them with someone else.

He tells you of abuse he has witnessed or has been a part of toward women. When asked if he has ever sought counseling, he says, "No, I never felt I needed it." He may feel guilty about it and promise that he won't do it to you.

Finds fault with all your family and friends once you have confided in him about them or he has met them. Later, he will use what he knows against you in an argument. (More details on this in point 10.)

Shows up unannounced at your job, home, or places you visit (may lead to stalking). May offer to take you to any of these places on a daily basis so that you may grow dependent on him.

Calls you often wanting to know your plans and in some cases you may have already told him, but he may be checking to see if your story has changed. He expects you to call him wherever you go and will become angry if you don't.

He doesn't like who he is and makes regular references about himself as being "stupid," "ugly," "dumb," and asks you, "Why do you want to be with me?" He will also resort to name calling whether he is arguing with you or "just being funny."

He attempts to control money you have earned and abuses possessions that you have acquired. He often asks for financial assistance, takes over your car and tells you how you should conduct your household. He may encourage you to live with him so that he can further control you.

He threatens to commit suicide when you try to break up with him.

He threatens to kill you over anything from wanting to end the relationship to talking to other men.

When you object to negative behavior he has done in the relationship such as mention he is cheating, caught him in a lie, hold him accountable to a promise, etc. he pushes, shoves, kicks, bites, chokes, grabs, or performs any action such as these to control you. (Note: some men may not do any of this, but will use mental abuse such as place blame - make you feel as if you are going crazy, use sensitive stories you have shared with him to belittle or degrade you, talk negatively about your family and friends to make you feel as if you have no support system.)

When he is angry with you he keeps you in a room with no access to a phone. He may lock you in the room.

If he doesn't like how you are acting around others whether it is being too friendly, talkative or affectionate, he will make false accusations to insight an argument so that he has an excuse to verbally or physically assault you. His attempt is to get you to "behave." Another attempt at controlling you. For many women this tactic works over time, particularly if you are dependent on him financially and/or physically.

When you want to visit with a friend, go out to the movies or some other past time, he oftentimes vehemently objects or he uses tactics to make you feel guilty so that you will stay home.

He will try to convince you that he is sorry for what he has done and will never do it again, only to do it again, and again.

Every man who has a history of abusing women knows the kind of mental struggles they contend with behind closed doors. Recalling when a female authority figure such as their mother was abused or his self. They remember how devastating it was to witness and/or experience such violent behavior during their childhood. Yet, some men rather than handle the pain positively, will encourage the hate they have toward women, using them for their own desires and then abusing them when they don't comply. Without mental help, some men will emulate the male mentors that were around them. If they witnessed a man they looked up to hurt women, then they may do the same things. This is one of the main reasons why women must remove their children out of an abusive relationship otherwise their children will only repeat the same behavior later in life.

For more articles by Nicholl McGuire,Click Here!

Friday

How to Avoid Loving Someone More Than You Love Yourself

It happened again. You loved someone more than you loved yourself and now rather than this person walking out of your life, suddenly they died. Now of course this is a scenario that hasn't yet happened to most of us, but what if it did happen? What if everything you ever did or said with this person became nothing more than buried six feet deep in the ground? How would you move on?

Do we ever really give thought to something so serious when we are enjoying the company of our mate, most likely no, but we should. We need to step back and look at how much of who we are is wrapped up into our mates. For those of you who are spiritual, you know that God has a way of giving and taking away without explanation. So now it is time to reflect and begin to take action that will make us more self-reliant and protective of our hearts.

1. Ask yourself how much time are you spending with this person?

2. What have you gave up to be with this person?

3. What do you do with your free time when this person isn't around?

4. How do you cope when this person is ill?

5. Do you have any personal hobbies or interests that don't involve this person?

6. Do you ever go anywhere on a regular basis without this person besides work?

7. Are you giving more to him or her than you are receiving such as physically, mentally and spiritually?

8. Are you getting anything from this person in return daily, weekly, monthly that is making you a better person overall?

9. Do you feel after talking or visiting with this person you are mentally or physically drained?

10. Can you survive without him or her if she suddenly died?

Once you have answered these questions honestly, then think about the answers you gave. If any answer included descriptive words like "always, alot, much, many" and similar words, then you need to ask yourself other questions, "Is there any balance in my relationship with this person?" and "Am I really giving myself space to relax and meditate or are they taking up all my personal time?"

Everyone needs some time to think without interruption. Make the time alone to examine what your life's purpose is and what you can do to make a difference in this world. Your world should not revolve around another person, place or thing. As with everything, eventually we grow weary and burn out particularly if we are not happy with ourselves and the choices that we have or hadn't made. So be sure that you are in a healthy, stable relationship that even if he or she dies today or tomorrow (or you should die today or tomorrow) that neither of you have a Romeo and Juliet kind of relationship. There is so much to living besides loving and serving one person.

For more articles by Nicholl McGuire, Click Here!

Monday

How to Deal with Sexual Desires When You Are Single

It is hard living by your self at times, watching couples hold hands, kiss, talk intimately, smile warmly at each other on TV and when you are out in public. These reminders are of what you use to have with someone you once loved. The desire to have a mate may come at a time when you are vulnerable with nothing to do or when you are feeling excited, happy about life and would like to share it with someone special. Yet, you made a promise you would give yourself time to get over someone, focus on your goals, build a foundation for yourself or help someone in need. Whatever your reasons, you are still human and no matter how much praying, fasting, or creating distractions you do, the desire to have someone can sometimes be overwhelming.

Before you do something foolish like stay up late looking at pornography, go out to a club to pick up someone or call off work to watch erotica movies all day, there are various ways to overcome your desires and get focused again.

First, examine what is enabling your desires recently to have sex that wasn't there before. Was it a new attraction that crept up into your life such as a potential mate, movie, music, conversations or books? If you aren't ready for a relationship, then you will have to do whatever you can to distance yourself from the temptation. Don't go out with the person alone. Avoid inviting he or she to your apartment or going over his or hers. Spend time in public places, rather than private ones. Stop reading romantic books, watching sexually explicit movies or participating in conversations that are feeding your desires.

Next, avoid stressful activities. Sometimes if you find yourself working out, almost obsessively, you could be triggering emotions to find another form of release. Spending long hours at the office might not be helping any more. Working with the opposite sex closely, when you don't have to, may also cause stress (particularly if you find him or her attractive.) Too much of anything isn't good. Find a healthy balance.

If you aren't working out, drinking alot and participating in other behaviors that aren't good for your health or are too embarassing that if anyone knew they would run away from you, then start making an attempt to quit. Know why you do what you do, what you need to do to stop and make up in your mind that you will do whatever you can to quit. Some of the things you may be participating in could have contributed to break-ups in the past. It's time to stop blaming your past and make yourself accountable for what you did to contribute to a cycle of bad relationships.

Think of other things that you can do to detract from your needs to have sex. For instance, don't stay up late at night watching TV or surfing the Internet. Advertising on both mediums late at night appeal to your demographic. Ads that are sexual in nature come up more often during this time. Companies know that most people who stay up late at night don't have too many responsibilities and will likely watch TV when there isn't much else to do. Instead, listen to a minister on television, watch the news, an intense documentary, children's cartoons, or a G rated movie with no intimacy involved.

Consider making some extra money by taking on a job that you will get some fulfillment. Maybe you always wanted to work at a certain restaurant, amusement park or somewhere else, use the opportunity of freedom to get yourself out of debt and build a substantial savings for the future. Your potential mate will definitely appreciate you for it!

Make a plan to travel your neighborhood, surrounding areas, out of state or overseas. Read the newspaper or register with a website that alerts you to current happenings locally. Make a list of what it is you would like to do. You may enjoy visiting nearby coffee houses or taking bus rides. Being able to entertain yourself without someone will make you more interesting when you are ready to have a relationship.

Learn something new. Check out the classes that are offered in your local community and select something you may be curious about. This will make you more marketable, interesting and knowledgeable. Employers can appreciate anyone working for them that enjoys learning new things.

Spend time with family. You may not come around them very often, but at least make some additional time in your schedule to visit, help with chores, or take someone out to eat, run errands, go to a play or visit a park. Back when you were in a relationship, you may have promised them many times you would see them and never got around to it. Make up for lost time. You never know you may need them one day to watch your future children. Remember holidays and if you don't show up, send a card or gift. Show them that you care.

Become a volunteer for an organization whose values you believe. The sky is the limit when picking a charity, research the legitimacy of the company, where the money goes and how long have they been around. Check to see what contributions they have recently made to society. The seeds you invest in a cause will always come back to affect your life in various ways.

Start a business. Is there anything you are talented in that you can turn into a business? You have all the time you want to stay up late, run errands for your business needs, invest money and so much more to build a business. The freedom you have to dedicate to a dream business is a blessing! Once you know your talent, research similar businesses to find out how they are doing. Find out is it really worth the investment. Talk with retired professionals for insight. Read books about your business. Create a business plan. Save money. Then when you are ready to begin and are sincerely passionate about it, follow your plan and get it done. Set timelines to get things done.

If you are a divorced parent, consider making more time with your children. Schedule an appointment to see your children's teacher, go on a field trip or attend meetings for parents. When you had a relationship with your significant, you may not have spent the time you would have liked with your children. Schedule times with your children that you will be able to obtain now and in the future. Don't ever put your children off to be with someone.

Catch up on all your medical appointments. No need to keep putting them off. Later, when you are ready to settle down with someone, you won't need to cover up the fact that you haven't visited a dentist or doctor in years. Also, if you may have to start a medication for a health problem, at least you are doing it in privacy and you don't have to worry about hiding pill bottles. Hopefully, you won't need to take any medication by the time someone new comes into your life, but if you do, at least you will be comfortable in sharing the information with he or she by that time.

Consider visiting with a counselor for any unresolved mental or physical issues you may have. For instance, if you had a traumatic event that recently happened, you may want to talk with a professional about it. The last thing you would want to do in the future is bring unresolved emotional baggage to the new relationship. No one will ever need to know about your counseling sessions unless you to tell them. Do it now while you can privately without being judged. Be sure that all of your paperwork is put away.

Visit churches with friends. Once you find one you like, be active. Join the choir, help with church related tasks or accompany the staff on trips. You may be surprised at what you might learn being around people who have a faith.

Value your moment of being single to save money. This is a time for you to do everything you had always wanted to do with your money. As you know, when you are in a relationship everything has to be discussed. It is better to do and buy the things you want before someone comes in with an attitude of control, jealousy or any other emotion to keep you from doing what you want to do. Buy the sports car, motorcycle, ward obe, take the trip or whatever else you want to do. It's your life enjoy it by yourself and be willing to share it with someone you love later! He or she will appreciate you for having it altogether!

For more articles by Nicholl McGuire, Click Here!

Saturday

Ten Internet Dating Tips

The following tips will help you with your quest to find someone who is right for you online.

1. When reviewing the photos of people on social networking sites, be sure that you don't pick someone who is seen in all his or her photographs smiling with their mouth closed, wearing a hat, sitting down, wearing an unusual amount of makeup, or standing behind someone or something. This person is obviously trying to cover up their hidden flaws. They may be balding, obese or very short, have terrible looking teeth, covering up birthmarks, freckles or pimples or they may have some kind of handicap.

2. If you should find someone who has done this in all there photographs, ask them in your email to send you a recent photo. Now he or she may not have one, but give them enough time to get one taken. If they are always coming up with an excuse, move on.

3. Don't rush to ask for phone numbers. If you find that you are anxious to speak to this person over the phone, think about why. Is it because you haven't had sex in awhile, you are just curious about his or her voice, and/or he or she is saying all the right things in their emails? Whatever the case, write as much as you like until you are comfortable with the answers you are receiving and that you honestly care for this person. (If they seem as if they are putting you off, not responding to email in a timely manner or answering all emails with little or no detail, move on.)

4. Be sure when you are writing your first emails to them that you aren't getting "too serious". Don't get into your desires of being married and having children right away or writing a history of every Tom, Dick and Harry or Jane, Mary and Tina who ever broke your heart. Find out what their likes and dislikes are, what they enjoy doing daily, where do they like to go, what kind of hobbies they love, how do they feel about their job, family, and friends. In later emails, you may want to bring up the serious topics in such a way that would not make them run for the border. For instance, when asking about a mental condition, you may say that you read somewhere how most mental illnesses are genetic and that you found out from a friend that he is bipolar (don't make up a lie, but use a true case.) Do they know of anyone who has suffered from the disease?

5. Don't forget to spell check your emails. Many educated people who can spell well, frown at emails that are riddled with spelling and grammatical errors. Be sure to read over what you write aloud. This helps when you are trying to find out if you communicated your point well.

6. There is no set time on how long you email back and fourth, so don't set a limit of how long you will do it. He or she may have other email pals or gals, but don't let that push you to ask for a date sooner rather than later. Sometimes those other email pals or gals are in a rush to meet and then ultimately hang themselves being disrespectful, pushy, lying, cheating etc. It is better to play the best friend or confidante role to get what you want long term rather than the one night stand.

7. Remember in your emails to acknowledge birthdays and other holidays. Ask about family and friends by name (if you know any.) It makes the receiver feel like you have been thinking about them and sincerely care.

8. When he or she feels like they can trust you, you may want to send them something special in the mail. Reassure them that you wouldn't surprise them on their job or at home, but that you just want to send them something nice. If they aren't ready to share their address, don't take it personal just say, "Maybe next time."

9. Now that you have survived the email relationship, you may want to ask for that all important date. Start the email off by saying how much you enjoyed writing, but you would like to exchange phone numbers. If they say no, be patient, at least you know that they will be thinking about it. The reason why it is a big deal for some people is they feel if they talk with you on the phone that eventually it will lead to something more and if they aren't ready they don't want to lead you on.

10. When you set up the date, time and meeting place, be sure to leave a note in your apartment and tell someone close to you where you will be going. Better yet, if you can have someone at your home to take a photo of the two of you or glance at the license plate of his or her vehicle, you will be playing it safe.

For more advice by Nicholl McGuire, Click Here!

Perfectionists Can Be Suicidal: How to Avoid the Dark Thoughts of Suicide

The frustration of writing and re-writing a story over and over again until it's just right, putting together a piece of furniture for hours, fixing something broken that can't be fixed, perfectionists can relate. Bawled up papers everywhere and tools strewn around, loved ones visiting your mess while helping you pick up your thoughts off the floor, consoling you with, "Is there anything I can do." Gently rubbing your shoulder, "Why don't you take a break?" You respond, holding back your tears of frustration, "I'm fine, thanks."

Memories of trying to stay between the lines of some goofy image you had to color back in elementary school come back to haunt you while sitting on the floor ready to give up. The voice of your parents standing over you, "Now that isn't your best work, try to color nicer. Stay in the lines." No matter how hard you tried, the white spaces never seemed to fill in quite right and crayon lines seem to go over black lines every time. To slow a building emotional outburst, you just kept coloring over and over again making more mistakes but hoping the picture would be to your liking and appease everyone else. Yet, once you completed the picture it was ugly and you were ready to throw that away along with the crayons, until mom came in to stop you.

There was also those days, back in your twenties, you came to work to find that nothing was left clean and organized as you left it, some one helped themselves to your pens, went through your drawers and made off with a notebook and opened up your snacks, the boss would hear about it. You were also still angry from the night before, because no one bothered to clean the kitchen at your home, pick up their shoes in the living-room or notice the dust mounting on shelves and you have found yourself having to stay up until almost 1 a.m. trying to organize things.

Bawled papers, trying to stay in the lines, and keeping a tidy environment was only just the beginning of how you would handle everything in your life from relationships to shopping. If it isn't any good just throw it away, you have told yourself. The standards that you have created for yourself are not easy to follow and they are your measuring tools for everyone else. There is no forgiving yourself for mistakes; therefore, it is often difficult to forgive others. You have a no nonsense policy about everything in your life and if someone has a valid crisis, concern or problem, you tell them, "That's just an excuse."

You have either received high honors and rewards or fallen short of getting them in the past and you never quite got over the times you fell short. You often wonder why can't you be more like this person and that one and are angry for everything you ever did wrong to yourself and others. In every relationship and project you begin, you have a great zeal and passion. You give 110% until...the warning signs come that the person you are trying to impress doesn't seem to give you as much as you give them. The project that you have been working on for months is becoming a headache and you are afraid you have bitten off more than you can chew. Where is the way out? When there seems to be none, when control is out of your hands, you grow distant into a dark world of hopelessness and emptiness. The sun doesn't shine as bright as it use to, the rain doesn't give you any peace, nights are sleepless, food doesn't taste good and all you can do is dwell on everything that is wrong in your life. In fact, you have grown to despise yourself and everyone around you. The dark thoughts have come to kill you and you are convinced that if you throw yourself away like you do paper, that all will be alright with you and the world--not so fast.

Let's go back to the frustrated writing scene, when you wrote and wrote eventually you did come up with something to write about didn't you? When you colored and colored you did end up with a completed project whether it was good or bad, right? Well, the thought of going to someone who understands you and will remind you of your strengths and weaknesses is what you need right now. You may call him Jesus, John or Mary, whatever the name, your first step will be to get on the phone and/or out of the house, surround yourself with a positive person, healthy place or thing that motivates and inspires you to move on. Make a doctor's appointment, there may be something more serious going on inside your mind - a chemical imbalance. Your problem may be coming from drugs, alcohol, unresolved past issues and negative people. Define the problem and find the solution that will help you feel better about you. Once you have done that, you will begin to feel better about others. You will find that the choices you have made in your life have caused the hurt that you have been experiencing. If it was a bad relationship, then you already know what you must do. If it was a bad experience, then you know what you will have to think about to change your thoughts.

Perfectionists can be their own worst enemies. They demand a lot from themselves so they demand a lot from others, but they are also some of the best employees because they will ensure that a job gets done and done right. A healthy balance in one's life of proper rest and achievement, a forgiving spirit of self and others and an appreciation of life is all one needs to begin to overcome dark thoughts. Don't let the dark thoughts get the best of you today, love yourself and focus on making a positive impact where it counts. Avoid spending time on people and things that only drain you of your energy and aid you in your depression. Consider moving to a place that may be better than where you are living, but whatever you do, don't throw anything in the trash unless you can afford to lose it.

Note: And just a reminder, make that doctor's appointment and be clear about what kind of symptoms you are having such as: headaches, backaches, missed or long menstrual cycles, hair loss, bad dreams, loss of appetite, thoughts of suicide, interests you use to enjoy but no longer and a combination of other symptoms with these...something is definitely wrong.

For more articles by Nicholl McGuire,Click Here!

Editorial: How to Communicate with People Who Mask Their True Selves

They smile at you, appear to be friendly, seem to have it altogether and most of all they seem just a bit too overjoyed to see you as they put their arms around you. Chances are you have felt uneasy around them although they have a bright, beautiful smile on their masked faces. The politician, preacher, mother, friend or foe are masters at wearing masked faces.

So what exactly is a "masked face"? It is a front, disguise or a well-rehearsed expression that appears on the face. Underneath it all these faces are crying inside. They are battling with past hurts, resentment, bitterness and anger. "I have to smile," they tell themselves. "Because I don't want the world to see my pain." As we all know, the world isn't kind to emotional people. We are uncomfortable around a man or woman crying. We try to "make light" of situations. We say uncompassionate things like, "Shake it off!" or "It isn't that bad." When in all actuality what hurt people are going through is really bad, and it shouldn't matter what you or me think, if they or us have to let tears go sometimes, then let go. Ever wonder why people turn to drugs, cigarettes, alcohol, sex and food for comfort? Because the world tells them, "No one cares." Why would anyone want to share his or her deepest feelings with a world that doesn't care?

Have you ever tried to share your feelings with your loved ones about your problems only to get a response of silence? Sometimes they are careful not to say anything for fear that they may say the wrong thing, but in other cases you know they were never really listening to begin with, when they grab their cell phone to make a call, pick up the remote control to the television and turn it on, or go out of their way to start speaking to someone else with that annoying "wait just a moment" gesture. Then your left standing there wishing you had never opened your mouth, because you feel worse than you did before you started talking.

have arrived at a conclusion in my analysis of the "masked faces" and that is they are no more special than you and me. You may have been envious initially when you first met them saying to yourself, "I wish I were more like her." She seems to have her life on track. However, that just might not be true. Then of course, there are those couples who will smile at everyone and affectionately hold one another, but at home are they really that way? Not always, with one in two marriages ending in divorce everyday, do you really believe it is happily ever after?

The next time a "masked face" that you assume is very much happy, yet you have this tugging in your spirit, gut or whatever you want to call it, take a moment with he or she and make small talk. Spend a little more time listening to them and watch, before long the hurt will show up in their eyes, because they really needed that moment of release. All the while as you witness their pain, encourage them to do something bigger than themselves. Ask the "masked face," the hard questions such as: What is your purpose for living? How would you like to be remembered if you died today or tomorrow? Remind them of the people they love and those who have gone on before them. Tell them your own personal story of triumph in hard times. Lastly, be careful of what you say and do, because this is a vulnerable moment with you that they will most likely remember for the rest of their lives. This isn't a time to kick a man while he is down. Avoid bragging and presenting yourself as the authority of life's solutions to problems.

For more editorials by Nicholl McGuire,Click Here!

Things You Should Do to Get a Woman

Let's face it, it isn't easy getting the woman you want, there is alot of work involved; and then even after the fresh haircut, new wardrobe and some extra cash, things still don't work --it can only mean one thing, back to the drawing board!

If you are willing to invest in your look, then you are willing to invest in the education of "How To" get a girl and we aren't talking about freebie tips from the Internet. Visit www.improverelations1.blogspot.com It is at this link you will find some books written by experts skilled in solving relationship issues. Proven strategies that work. So put on your thinking cap and click today!

But if you still would like a few freebie tips to get you started finding the woman that is right for you, then do the following, if you haven't already:

1. Revaluate you appearance and body. Oftentimes men are in search of women without a care about their extra belly fat or smelly breath. Ask a close relative or friend what is it about you that would turn a woman off. You may already know the answer to that one, so do something about it!

2. Find an interest or hobby that will make you stand out in the crowd. Women know about men's love of sports and lazy weekends in front of the television and if you do this, then you need an upgrade. There is more to a man besides his penis and money. Smart women know this and will not settle with you for long if you have nothing more to offer besides who is the best basketball player and which baseballplayer has the most homeruns in history- big deal!?

3. Stop involving yourself with so many affairs. The women friends, the guy friends and everything else in between. Some of you are so interesting and outgoing to the point that you don't know when to settle down. A woman would like a man who knows how to balance his time. There is the day out with the guys, but there are no days out with the girlfriends, so if you think that once a woman has sex with you she will continue to be fine with that, think again. The best advice you should take is keep women friends at a distance and if you must be involved with the woman friend make the time to introduce her to your new significant which leads to point four.

4. Don't keep secrets. Whatever you did in the past and you know it won't resurface then keep that to yourself. But if you have, a stalker, outstanding credit card debt, you shop at the local discount store and you have parking tickets, then be honest. Don't be flamboyant with your money when you know you don't have any or hide behing a bush when your stalker is in the neighborhood!

5. You have a history of physical abuse and/or verbal abuse. If you never sought counseling the last thing you need to do is get a girl. Do you really think that when times get rough in the relationship that she will not yell at you, possibly throw something and you won't be tempted to hit her? The reality is you will hit her, so don't test yourself, get the help you need before you start dating again.

6. Don't get your family involved in everything you do in trying to find your girl. If you get them involved in everything early on, they won't suddenly stop asking you questions and wanting for the two of you to make it to every family event. Be private about some of the things you desire in a relationship. Avoid calling everyone so often during the week that you find yourself trying to think of something to say.

7. Keep your desires to have a baby and a wife to yourself. Not all women are going out with a guy looking for a husband and a baby. Nowadays more and more women are putting off the wedding gown for a business suit. They aren't interested in being a homemaker as much as their mothers were and so if you feel a woman should be thinking that way, staying home and being a parent to your children, you may want to strongly consider whether you want an American woman. There are some women who think this way, but a vast majority aren't as interested at least not early on the relationship. So ask questions, but don't be so quick to speak about your views.

For more information about topics such as this and other interesting things written by Nicholl McGuire, Click Here!

Thursday

8 Signs that Show You Are Losing Your Mind in a Relationship

You ever wonder why some people you meet seem to be "out of their right mind" when talking about their relationships with the opposite sex? They tend to laugh often when nothing is funny, say things that make no sense, become extremely anxious over the littlest of things, and their judgment when it comes to relating to the opposite sex seems rather toxic. What is it about these people that make you say, "She's crazy or a little off. He's odd?" In some cases, he or she may be on a prescribed medication, participating in drug use, had a past injury or even a nervous breakdown, but in a not so obvious case, he or she may have had a traumatic break up with a mate they had been head over heels in love. Now some of you reading this would say, breaking up with someone can cause mental issues? Yes it can. The following information will tell you how to spot signs in your own behavior that show you are gradually losing your mind in your current relationship.

One - Obsessively thinking about him or her. No matter what you do you think about your mate all the time to the point that it is hindering how you work, eat, sleep, and play. This isn't the kind of rational thinking like, "I forgot to tell her I will be home late." Instead, this is the kind of thinking that questions everything he or she does. "What is she doing? Where is he going? Did I tell her I love you? Should I tell her about this, I should have never told her about that?" These thoughts play like a broken record in your mind. For the average person, the thoughts may come and then go once you did whatever you needed to do for your lover. However, for the obsessive thinker, he or she is constantly questioning his or herself on issues regarding their mate. They lose sleep over these issues, feel afraid about what they should do about them, or nervous that his or her lover will do something harmful to them if they say or do certain things.

Two - Obsessively talking about him or her. Whenever someone calls you or you go out with family and friends, you are always making a point to talk about every little detail about your lover. "Did I tell you he is working on a project. He doesn't like that seafood place. I don't know why he chose me. He is going out of town this weekend." He, he, he, she, she, she, do you have a life that you can talk about without talking about your lover? Next time watch how often you mention your lover in your next conversation, this will tell you whether you are losing your sense of self with him or her. Then ask the person you are talking with, "Do I talk about my man or woman too much?"

Three - Acting compulsively and/or irrationally. Think about the way you behaved in your daily life before you met him or her. Are you participating in behavior that causes you constant worry? Do you find that your life prior to meeting him or her was exceptionally better? He or she may have a problem with how you organize, clean, cook, fold your clothes, or something else and you find that no matter what you do to appease them, it is never good enough. You find yourself constantly checking on whether you did an action that he or she may have complained about and you feel as if you are losing your mind trying to fix the situation. Some examples include: turning labels on can goods so that they are in perfect order like in a grocery store, being extra careful not to let dust show up anywhere on furniture, arranging shoes and folding clothes in a way that only suits him or her, and making meals in a certain way that you know you can't seem to get right. These are only a few examples, but think of those extreme details you now pay attention to that you didn't before.

Four - Justifying your mate's negative behavior. He threw a tantrum at the local restaurant, because he had to wait longer than expected. She told the sales clerk off because she didn't like her attitude. When you share an incident with a family member or friend about your lover, and they may a comment about your man or woman's behavior, are you defending him or her? Your chest begins to tightened and your stomach is getting upset, because you are offended by what your family or friends said about your mate's actions, "But you don't understand...you weren't there...you don't like him anyway...I should have never told you." If you remove yourself from the situation, could your mate have handled the matter better? When you find that you are doing a lot of defending and being offended, look out, you will eventually be pushing the people out of your life that love you the most, do you really want to do that?

Five - Condoning him or her for abusing you. "He was drunk he didn't mean it. She had a bad day, we are okay." If you find yourself talking yourself out of good ole fashion common sense, then you are indeed losing your mind in this relationship. Being verbally or physically assaulted is not okay, no matter what the reason.

Six- Blaming yourself and/or others for your mate's unhappiness. "If you hadn't talked to him, mom, that way he would come over more often!" If your mate seems to have one issue after another with someone who has always been close to you, chances are they are more than unhappy, but jealous of your relationship with that particular family member or friend. Be careful listening to all their criticisms about your family and friends, they may be trying to keep you all to him or herself. Behavior like that isn't to be praised; it is a sign of bad things to come.

Seven- Isolating oneself from family and friends. Are you beginning to hear concerns from well-meaning family and friends about your not coming around them anymore? If so, then you are on your way to becoming successfully manipulated by your mate. He or she doesn't want your support system around you, because this means that you will be able to get the help you later need to get away from them. Your mate knows his or her own weaknesses, but they will work real hard to ensure you never find out about them. Don't be a fool for love and lose your mind in all of the wonderful things they do and say to you. Without family and friends, you will not be living up to your full potential and staying true to who you really are on the inside.

Eight - Needing him or her to approve of what you do. Find yourself always asking, "What does he think about this and what does she think about that?" Sometimes you will have to question how your mate feels about something you would do, but how often are you doing it? Do you find that you have to consult with your inner voice about everything, from what to buy to where to go and what does he or she think? Some choices are best made without your mate's input. Your opinions are what make up who you are, without them; you are nothing more than your mate's puppet.

Take the time to analyze some of the things you are doing right now that may potentially set your relationship up for failure. It's okay to love someone, but when you make he or she your life, you have just lost your mind. Then, when your relationship breaks up, whether by mutual agreement, surprise, death or something else, you may be the unlucky person with a nervous breakdown.

Protect your heart and mind in all of your relationships by staying true to yourself and doing the things that reflect who you are in the best possible light.

For more articles by Nicholl McGuire, Click Here!

Wednesday

7 Tips When a Man Has Fallen Out of Love with You

You discovered one day that the man who pledged to make you his wife and build a future with you is now disinterested in the relationship for a number of reasons. You talked, pleaded, and cried hoping to find one simple reason from him that could bring you peace, but after all of the probing you still feel miserable inside. What do you do? How do you make this man fall back in love with you? The answer to both of these questions is very simple, "Do nothing." Stop analyzing, trying, suggesting, conversing, yelling, or anything else that will only leave you feeling frustrated and angry. Rather, look inward, focus on loving you. The following tips will help you get on the path to healing while you're in your deadbeat relationship so that once you are free, you won't be like so many other women rushing back into their partner's arms or the next man's rebounding from your heartbreak.

Number One. Stay true to yourself. This statement means a variety of things depending on who you ask, but for the purpose of this article, it will be defined as not trying to be something you are not, doing or acting in a way that isn't like you, trying to appease others but behaving in ways that aren't you. You know that every woman in this world is flawed, so embrace both your strengths and weaknesses and work on the things about yourself that will make you feel better. Chances are the man who you are with has been exposed to a single woman or many women that he would rather be with and since he isn't quite ready to give you up, he will try to suggest things you should say or do that are similar to what another woman in his past or present life has done or does. Don't take on that responsibility. Stay true to yourself, if you don't cook, you don't cook. If you don't like sports, you don't like them. Why put unnecessary stress on yourself to appease him?

Number Two. Don't try to make him fall back in love with you. If you have already saw the evidence that he is definitely not in love with you anymore such as spending a lot of time away from you, ignoring you, not keeping promises, and lying, then why feel obligated to work on the relationship? It takes two people to want to commit on making the relationship work. If one is in love and the other is not, chances are the relationship will not last. Save your time, money and passion for the next person you meet. If you make a wise choice in men, the next one will almost always be better than him anyway.

Number Three. Find a hobby or some other extracurricular activity that is beneficial to your health and wealth. Creative people are very good at designing things that not only showcase their talent and make them feel good inside, but are profitable as well. You could use the extra money when the time comes to move if you currently live with your partner.

Number Four. Be open to the possibility of falling in love with someone new. Being open to a new relationship starts while you are in your deadbeat one. If you choose to close off the possibility of meeting someone new due to your disappointment and hurt being in your current relationship, then you are creating your own personal baggage full of unresolved issues. Resolve your problems while you are in the problem. Vow to be a better woman in the next relationship, embrace some of those criticisms he has mentioned about your personality, work on them and be good to yourself. The new and improved you will look good for the next guy you meet. This is the sweetest form of revenge!

You had a life before you met your current man and you will have one after him. So use the time while you are with him to find out about what interests you. People evolve and you may have changed significantly while being with this man. Ask yourself, "What is it that you once did that you enjoyed, but stopped doing since being with him?" Pick up where you left off with this hobby. If not, then find a new hobby. People find out what their hobbies are by going to events, attending religious services, reconnecting with old friends, reading newspapers and magazines, surfing the Internet, watching television shows they normally wouldn't, eavesdropping on other people's conversations, talking about the past with family and so many other ways. Remember redirect your focus off of him and on your activity. If you are passionate enough about your hobby, career goals, etc. then in time you just won't care about what he is doing or who he is doing it with, because you have your own life. Once you start to feel this way, start packing your bags. This is a clear sign you are ready to embark on your new life without him!

Number Five. Avoid the need to overachieve. You will notice sometimes when people are in an unfulfilling relationship they never mention their mate, their mate never bothers to attend any event with them, they always have an excuse for his absence, and most of all, the unhappy lover works late often and expects everyone else to do what she is doing. Watch it, this may be you. Keep in mind, not everyone is in your situation, so be careful making broad statements and behaving in ways that say, "I hate men." You may lose friends that way. There are many couples in this world that are in love and they know when to leave work. Overachievement looks good on paper, but it isn't good for one's health. Find a healthy balance between work and play.

Number Six. Make time to mediate. One of the worse things you can do, while you are in this unfulfilling relationship, is surround yourself constantly with a bunch of distractions. You drive while the music is playing, you walk while talking on the cell phone, you turn on the television as soon as you hit the front door, you are surfing the Internet for long hours, and more. You will need to give yourself some quiet time to reflect on whether there has been any change in the way he treats you, a plan to leave the relationship and anything else that requires careful thought. You don't want to overwhelm yourself with so much activity that you make rash decisions then realize you want him back. When the time comes you will want to make a clean break and never look back. Couples, who don't make clean breaks in relationships, find themselves later cheating with the ex while being in a new relationship. Therefore, they kill any opportunity for building a healthy, prosperous relationship.

Number Seven. Gradually break off all ties. Now that you have come to a place where you know that you know! You will need to tell him, but you don't want to rush to do it without handling all sensitive and legal matters first such as the checking, savings, credit accounts, unpaid debt, taxes, property etc. The key to breaking up with someone is to do everything gradually. When you make any sudden movements, such as rushing out the door with just the clothes you're wearing, cutting off all credit cards, draining bank accounts, and packing all in a single day, you may put yourself in harm. Even though he doesn't act as if he cares about you, doesn't mean that he won't react negatively to the news, so do everything with much thought and slowly. Get others involved such as the police if you ever feel threatened. Protect yourself from any future legal issues by documenting conversations, phone calls, promises, making copies of important papers, recording conversations, having witnesses, using spy cameras or anything else if you feel your situation has evolved into a serious matter.

Utilizing these seven tips will not only provide you with the confidence to leave a loveless relationship and better yourself and circumstances, but they will also help you meet someone new without carrying so much baggage in your new relationship.

Nicholl McGuire

She's Crazy by Nicholl McGuire

She's Crazy by Nicholl McGuire
Dating or married to an angry woman?
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