The challenge for this coming year will be--what next? Hope others will share what they're doing to keep the excitement alive. Could use some more ideas!
Thanks to TimeHeals for the following creative mental exercise that could produce ideas for our new topic Growing your Marriage from Good to GREAT!
I agree that exercise and taking care of oneself is the key in most cases. I think the depression is a given considering the event being dealt with.
While I do endorse physical fitness and think it's part of good mental health, by excersises, I meant tasks that you can complete that change perspectives. But definitely rest, excercise and good nutrition are musts.
For example, if somebody had a strong past-negative bias, here's a good 30 day (or lifelong) excercise for them:
1. Every day for one month, list 10 things that you are grateful for in life (people, things, etc. Anything. One day, "dryer sheets... because they smell good, make my towels soft, and my dogs like playing with them after I am done using them" topped my list).
2. Every 2nd week, list three challenges that you have faced and then describe how these things made you a better, stronger or more appreciative person.
After a month, review the lists and compare them.
Maybe we could create a thread title like "Little Blessings Produce Large Benefits" or something like that.
I played similar mind games when I was desperate and, at times, suicidal.
I became thankful for the little home conveniences many take forgranted unless they've lived in or visited 3rd/4th/5th world countries....like:
* light switches and wall sockets that work (beyond candles)
* hot water that comes out of a faucet (beyond well dipping and fire heating)
* flush toilets (beyond bushes and outhouses)
* having a garage and a push-button garage door opener
* all kitchen appliances, but especially microwave and refrigerator
TH, your being grateful for "dryer sheets" reminds me of similar seemingly tiny things (we often take forgranted) that make life easier....like:
* resealable pull tab openings on cookies and bleach cleaner wipey packages.
* Zero water pitcher that removes ALL solids from tap water (and from my old Brita pitcher water).
* Gorilla tape, better than duct tape cuz it holds things even in the rain
* cell phone with voice mail and unlimited minutes
* computer (especially web access, email accounts & picture storage features)
So how can being thankful for tiny things help one's marriage grow from good to great?
For me, it creates a mindset that fosters gratitude for what I have and increases my enjoyment of my personal life, my marriage, my family and my overall mission in life. This provides the foundation for me to help launch the following:
* How to help us and others recognize things we/they have for which to be grateful.
* How to appreciate current conditions and why that's important in the pursuit of happiness.
* How to visualize what we want and where we want to go in our personal lives and marital relationships.
* How to accomplish those visions and goals for ourselves and others in the near and far future.
No, I don't have all the answers but TimeHeals posts inspires me to explore how being grateful for the little things will positively affect our relationships and marriages. There is a remote possibility that such awareness will reveal that many are better off than they realize. At the same time, it can also inspire many to be grateful for what and use that as a foundation to seek better lives for themselves and others.
Any other ideas? Please help us out by starting a list of tiny things for which you're grateful and gradually we'll explore these concepts to see how they can help us Grow our Marriages from Good to GREAT
P.S. After giving permission to repost this here, TimeHeals mentioned other exercises to be "dug out." I'm looking forward to seeing these soon.