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Are you sick and tired of not getting what you want in your relationships…?
Do you have trouble speaking up to communicate your wants and needs?
Do you nag your partner – then get hyper-sensitive when they don’t respond the way you want them to?
Do you struggle with when to stand firm and insist on getting your needs met… when to give in?
My guest in the Dating Den, Andy Horning breaks down the challenges couples face and strategies to get them to experience the beauty of a real relationship, scars and all!
Andy graduated from the University of Michigan. He is a Couples Therapist (and my couples therapist).He is the host of the Elephant Talk Podcast and he is a Teacher at THE institute for personal growth, The Hoffman Institute.
The Biggest Challenges Couples Have [2:46]
Couples often say the challenge in intimate relationships are bigger, deeper, and harder to crack than in any other types of relationship. It’s because vulnerability plays a big part. When blending two lives together, it is hard to know when to give up or when to lean in and work through it.
Couples tend to make the other partner wrong in order for them to be right. Andy says it’s good to separate your beliefs from the person you are dating or in a relationship with.
Do you know how to ask for what you want?
The Litmus Test of Love [10:11]
Andy encourages couples to notice and engage in differences. He says it is okay to notice and be aware of differences but not to the extreme of micro-managing your partner. The important thing is to talk about your differences with your partner from a place of understanding. Individuals in a partnership should own what they are feeling and then let go. It’s not their job to play both sides of the court, so to speak.
Vulnerability is super important, but it’s not easy.
Interest-Based Negotiations [17:46]
Going deeper into each person’s needs and interest can help couples work through difficulties or misunderstandings. When we stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our partner and put the issue in front of us, instead of between us, it is easier to work together to solve it.
The Damaging Myth of Romance and Love [22:17]
Andy says we should understand love comes with disagreements, discomfort and person growth. It doesn’t come with a neverending unbridled joy. That’s only in fairy tales and the mythology.
Looking at disagreements as a normal part of coupledom instead of letting differences put pressure on your relationship is key.
Couples can use intimate partnerships to create damage and pain or to get everything they want in their lives.
Are You Feeling Disconnected? [30:05]
Andy says integrity is of the utmost importance when we communicate. Our internal message should match our external message. Our needs wants and vulnerability is important to express.
If you can simply say to your partner, “I’m feeling disconnected” it can make all the difference to your relationship.