What is a Healthy Relationship? This should make things clearer

We all know what it is like when we meet someone new, and we fall head over heels in love with them.  It does not matter what the do or say, as to you they are perfect.  However, you should always be aware of what a healthy relationship consists of.  This can keep you out of trouble.  If you know the signs before you get into a relationship this should help you to attract the type of partner that you will actually be loved and cared by, and in return you can do the same and of course live happily ever after, just like you have always dreamed………well maybe not ‘ever after’ but for a long time at least, and at least you will be happy 🙂

healthy-relationships

So what is a healthy relationship?

A healthy relationship is a relationship where you feel happy, safe and secure.  You completely trust your partner, you are not afraid of them, and they do not make unreasonable requests of you.

What makes a healthy relationship?

  • Mutual respect. Do you respect each other? Do you listen and understand each others point of view? Do they know the real you and you know the real them? Can you be yourself or do you have to act like someone else.  Mutual respect is a sign of a healthy relationship.
  • Trust. You are talking to a guy, laughing and joking when your partner walks by.  Do they act jealous and ask you if you are sleeping with each other/seeing each other behind his back, or do they say hi and join in the conversation, completely trusting you.  If there is trust between the two of you this is a sign of a healthy relationship.
  • Honesty. This goes hand in hand with trust.  If you do not or cannot tell the truth then you cannot expect your partner to trust you.  Most people know when another person is lying, even if not straight away.  Are you open with what you are doing or who you are with or do you feel you have to cover this up from your partner.  Do you feel they know you are lying but you justify it because you feel your partner will be upset with you? If you cannot be honest this is a sign of an unhealthy relationship
  • Support. In the good times and the bad.  Some people thrive on drama and are great when the going gets tough, but forget to be supportive in every day life when you need that extra encouragement to finally sign up for that college course you ve always wanted to do or take a part in a local play.  Offering support to you consistently is a sign of a healthy relationship.
  • Fairness/equality. Give and take.  Do you spend as much time hanging out with his mates as you do your own, do you take turns in choosing which movie you are seeing at the cinema, or who will be making tea.  If a power struggle starts and one of you are constantly trying to get your own way then this is not fair, nor is it equal and this is a sign of an unhealthy relationship.
  • Separate identities. In a healthy relationship, everyone needs to make compromises. But that doesn’t mean you should feel like you’re losing out on being yourself. When you started going out, you both had your own lives (families, friends, interests, hobbies, etc.) and that shouldn’t change. Neither of you should have to pretend to like something you don’t, or give up seeing your friends, or drop out of activities you love. And you also should feel free to keep developing new talents or interests, making new friends, and moving forward.
  • Good communication. Women are from Venus, Men are from Mars.  You’ve probably heard lots of stuff about how men and women don’t seem to speak the same language. If something is wrong and your partner asks you, stay calm and speak to them about what is upsetting you.  There is no use in bottling up your emotions and feelings as it achieves nothing.  If you are not ready to speak, tell them you would like a little space, but you will discuss it with them shortly.  The right person for you will allow you this time to gather your thoughts and emotions.  If you can communicate effectively this is a sign of a healthy relationship.

By now you should understand what is seen as a positive, healthy relationship.  If you believe you are in one of these then a big ‘hi 5’ to the both of you and long may your happiness continue.  If you have read this and feel you may be stuck in an unhealthy relationship maybe it is time to consider if the relationship is worth taking forward.  Should you have found yourself in an abusive relationship where your partner is controlling or you have been groomed into things you are in a loving, healthy relationship, then you need to get out of it and quick.  Stay strong, find local professionals to help you and you will be ok.  Nothing in life can survive if it is toxic.

healthy-vs-unhealthy-relationships

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Panic & Anxiety: Stress Check

http://missfoureyes.wordpress.com/2014/02/26/the-monster/

I read an article this morning and as anxiety is something I do suffer from, especially when the going gets tough, I decided to share with you some symptoms which will help you to identify if you are stressed, and hopefully you can then take steps to chill the hell out 😉

  • General fatigue
  • Dry mouth
  • Frustration
  • Nervous coughing
  • Sudden tears for no reason
  • Unable to control crying outbursts
  • Over reaction
  • Irritability
  • Binge drinking
  • Talking too much
  • Chain smoking
  • Fiddling with your hair
  • Pulling out your hair
  • Sudden sweating
  • Headaches
  • Upset stomach
  • Heartburn
  • Sudden anger with little or no reason
  • Sudden heart pounding or palpitations
  • Muscle aches
  • Overeating
  • Constant feeling that this is no enough time
  • Tic/twitching eyebrows or mouth
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Nervous coughing
  • Drumming your fingers
  • Tapping your foot
  • Clenched jaw
  • Turning red faced
  • Headaches
  • Feeling of expecting bad news or something bad is going to happen
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Sudden inability to express yourself
  • Impatience
  • Nail biting
  • Constant picking fingernails or face
  • Trying to do two or three things at once

It is advisable to keep a stress diary, record your feelings on a daily basis.  This is a good way to track your feeling and emotions and remember exactly how you felt.  If you are anything like me, it is likely you will feel different on almost a daily basis.  If you can recognize you are stressed this is the first step in being able to control it.

If you are stressed or suffering from anxiety, there are many ways in which you can have treatment, and not just with medication. I am personally a fan of complementary medicine such as:

  • Aromatherapy, applying oils directly to skin or in oil burners (a great supportive treatment)
  • Exercise, instant mood lifter.  The hardest part can be getting yourself to do the exercise.  Whether you choose to go to the gym or out for a big hike, play football, cycle or golf, as you finish the exercise you feel immediately better about yourself.  Keep trying until you find something you enjoy.
  • Massage
  • Hypnotherapy
  • Meditation

Personally, I have found one of the best ways to help with stress is practicing yoga.  Many people believe yoga is a type of religion, but this is not true.  You practice controlled movement and stresses with breathing which I have found to be very effective.

Do not forget, if you are feeling stressed or anxious, to visit your doctor, who will be able to offer you advice and point you in the right direction for help.  It may be that there has been some life event that has initiated the symptoms and counselling may be helpful.

stop stressing start living

I really try to remember that we are only here once, we need to live our lives as much as we can.  I find it helpful to keep a gratitude diary, so that I remind myself to be thankful for the small things in life.  This keeps things in perspective for me and stops me from slipping into depression.  What coping mechanisms do you use?  We would love to hear them

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Solving Storage Problems for Children: I’m Hooked!

http://www.fieldsofblue.co.uk/coloured-pencil-coat-hooks.html

I had a problem.  Every day when I collect the children from school and take them home, as soon as we walk through the door the same thing happens.  They take their shoes off in the hallway and place them on the shoe rack (good work kids) then on the way from the hallway to the lounge area they take their coats off (whilst still walking) and drop it on the floor at the point wherever the coat is off their arms.  (Aarrrgghhh!!!) This is not so great!  This same action every day grates on me.  One day feeling rather stressed out I said “Why every day do you do this?” My youngest daughter who was 5 at the time, looked at me with a blank look on her face and simply shrugged her shoulders.  She did not even get what I was talking about, it was a look of ‘who cares? What’s the big deal mum.’ My eldest daughter, aged 7, looked at me and said rather nonchalant “Because there is nowhere to put it.”

I had always asked them to take their coats upstairs to their bedroom, but when I actually thought about it, when returning from school the first thing they want is a drink and a snack.  As the kitchen is not on the way to their bedroom the likelihood of the coat arriving there before they arrive in the kitchen is zero.

I had to think of a resolution.  Obvious…right? I suddenly had a ‘tahdah’ moment – COAT HOOKS

Oh……coat hooks.  Simple resolution, right? No……

Because if you are anything like me, you wont be happy with the ordinary coat hooks that you can get in your local hardware store….

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This particular example is £210, yeah it is solid wood (which is always a bonus with me) but where is the design, it is not attractive and the hooks are not always going to be covered by coats.  My thoughts were I would like something which is different, and attractive and could be made into a feature.  I also wanted something which my children would actually use, something they find to be a novelty.

After some searching I found the perfect solution.  A fabulous six coat hook rack which look like a set of pencils.  It looks like a great feature and you can even put in photographs of your children so they know who’s hook is who’s – so no more arguing! Win-win situation.

pencils

The rack costs just £119.00 (but if you are quick can get it on sale at a discounted price of £89.00) and can be purchased from http://www.fieldsofblue.co.uk/ But be quick as there is only one left in stock!

For those of you who would love something a little more shabby chic by style, there is a great alternative also available from Fields of Blue, at an exceptional value price of £19.95, and it still offers you the option of inserting photographs so as to avoid the arguments over who’s peg is who’s.  Alternatively, you could insert some of your favourite pictures of small paintings done by yourselves or your children.  Be creative 😉

hook

Since getting the hooks, the problem is solved, my children not only now put their shoes on the shoe rack, but they also remember to hang up their coats.  No more stressed mum upon return from school, and additionally, we always know where coats are in the morning on the way out of the door!

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How wiser words can come from children than from some adults: Indigo Children?

I am beginning to think my youngest child is actually an angel from heaven, you know the type ‘cheeky’ angel with a bit of slight devilment which keeps everyone on their toes, but are actually truly amazing.  If you have heard of the term ‘indigo-child’ I think I am somewhere near.  From here on in, I will call her Indigo.

She has done two things since Sunday which make me incredible proud.  Sunday was her birthday, she was 6.  I treated her to a day trip out and of course lots of presents, including her nails done at the nail salon-she was adamant!! (Me: Are you sure darling, you are only 6. Indigo: But mummy I want my nails doing just like you) How could I say no?!  Anyway, as I tucked her up in bed on Sunday evening she threw her arms around my neck and said “Mummy this has been the best birthday ever, thank you so much for what you have done today!” She released my neck grabbed my cheeks with her tiny hands and planted a kiss on my lips, let go and gave me the biggest grin.  My heart melted.  It is not every day a ‘just gone’ 6 year old is able to show such gratitude.

The second thing came just last night, two days since her birthday.  She knows I have been having a bit of a tough time recently.  I treated her to homemade pancakes, it was Pancake Tuesday after all.. I let her smear on the nutella and rolling it up she said “mummy you are the best mummy in the world!” She then began to sing to me whilst eating her pancake “lean on me…..when you’re not strong, I’ll be your friend……I’ll help you carry on…”  We are know the song by Al Green I am sure, even if you did not know it was Al Green that sang it, you will know the song trust me…. I do not even know where she has learnt this song.  And when asked, she does not know either!

At this point I could have cried.  How I have managed to raise such an emotionally aware child I will never know!  She flashed me a big smile and said “Mummy I lean on you all the time don’t I?  You can lean on me today.”

I love this girl, I am proud she is my daughter, she is like my little shadow, she will follow me to the end of the earth if that is where I am going.  I wake up in a morning and there she is in bed next to me, after she has sneaked in, in the middle of the night.

No matter how hard life gets, there is one person who can always put a smile on your face.  For me it is my youngest daughter.  We have such a connection, that we do not even have to speak to each other and we know what we are thinking.  I believe she is a soul mate of mine (yes relatives, friends etc can be soul mates too…..)

Indigo, you are truly amazing and always an inspiration to me.  You never fail to amaze me with your wise words, too wise for such a young girl.  I love you xxxxx

Related:

http://www.sophiagubb.com/how-to-tell-if-you-are-indigo/

Going Backwards? It is not possible, time will never allow it

I had my first child at 17, needless to say I was nt married and the relationship did not last. By 28 I had given birth to my second and third children.  I still was not married, nor did the fella ever intend to propose, mainly as he knew he had some sort of control in this matter, and all I ever wanted was the happily ever after.  So I planned the wedding, and when our third child was 6 months old, we got married.  I was never proposed to, and he never said he wanted to marry me, but he did. I am now divorced. Single again and have been for two years.  I am dating, for the first time in my life.  I meet men, go on dates and if I want to see them again I do, if I don’t  then I don’t.  For the first time in my life, I realised I actually had a choice in relationships.  My children are older now.  I go out with friends, I go on holiday with them, weekends away to festivals and allow myself that time to let my hair down.  I am truly living a single life.  With three older children in tow.  They of course also get my time, but as I am sole carer, with not much of a break I allow myself some freedom now and again.  I benefit, but so do they.

I had a career at 21, working in a law firm, receiving a large pay check at the end of each month and a decent annual bonus to boot.  At 30, I left, I’d had enough of the rat race and returned to university.  I am a student. I also work, part time.

I had a house at 21, albeit with a mortgage but it was mine.  After a failed engagement and then a failed marriage and all the financial implications that came with that (thanks ex-husband for eternally lumbering me with your debt) I now live in rented.  Although it is not all bad, as in actual fact this is the first house that actually feels like home to me, since leaving my parents home some 15 years ago.

At 21, despite having a child, I had savings.  Maybe this was because it was before the recession hit us, I do not know.  But I now no longer have savings.  Another way I have gone backwards…..?

I felt at one point I had it all.  Husband, children, career, money. But I did not.  I did not have my freedom, nor my happiness. I was sad, and despite being surrounded by my husband and children I felt lonely.  Nothing fulfilled me.  I felt like a shell, an outline of a person with nothing inside. Empty.

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I used to be very creative, but all of this had fallen by the way side to make time for my career and my children.  I was desperately trying to hold everything together and it worked for a couple of years, but once the cracks began to show, no matter how much I tried to plaster of them, it was just a temporary fix.  I had to strip back to basics, and reassess my life.  At first I thought I had thrown everything away, until I realised I had in fact just began to clear everything away.  The things which I no longer needed in my life as they served no purpose, and in fact made me very unhappy.  However, I am happier now than I have ever been.  I still have problems in my life I have to deal with, but I do not ‘struggle’ to deal with them.  I am not constantly stressed out and have managed to develop a ‘whatever will be, will be’ attitude.  I believe sometimes we are so conditioned by society that we believe the house, car, husband, children, career blahdy blah is what is going to keep us happy. Having lived that live, it did not work for me, and I know plenty others that it has not worked for either.

If you feel unhappy, it is time to assess your life.  Do not be frightened, as you have to do this, for yourself. You have a duty to live life in the most happiest, fulfilling way that you can.

I had difficulty allowing myself time.  I felt guilty, feeling as though I had to be there for my children 24/7.  So I not only felt guilty when I went out for dinner with friends, or for a weekend away at a spa, I felt guilty when I went to work!  Working 10 hours a day in a law firm, meant most days I did not see my children for more than an hour a day-combined from before and after work.  It made it more difficult for me to accept as when I tried to explain it to my husband, he was so money driven (mainly as I paid his bills) that he failed to even consider a reduction in my hours.  So when I was finally brave enough to take a look at my life, and after my now ex-husband had left, I know the next thing on my list was my work.  I had always been interested in people and what made them tick, so I chose to do Psychology.  I left my work, which had always served as a security blanket and I took the giant step of becoming a student. This freed up a lot of my time, and now I can take my children to school every morning and collect them from school three days a week.  The guilt of not being a ‘proper’ mother (this way my ideal of the type of mother I wanted to be) to my children has gone.  Which now means I can also take time out some weekends, guilt-free.

Your steps do not have to be as life changing as mine, I am in no way advocating that every one packs in their jobs and gets divorced.  This worked for me, and I am still in transition after two years, but every day I am a step closer to where I want to be.  So even though I looked as though I was going backwards, (and believe me, many people questioned me, and some thought I was in mid-life crisis) I actually just cleared the decks so I could move forwards. I AM HAPPY.

happy

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My Funny Valentine: Weekly Writing Challenge

Finally Seeking my Daniel Cleaver

http://www.theproblemismen.com/rants/badboys

I read an article this morning, and it really got me thinking. The link for the said article is above, check it out it’s a very interesting read although do me a favour…..wait until you have finished mine 😉

bad boy

Until fairly recently, I was one of those women that always chose a bad guy.  Bad guys ranging from down right little toe rags who eventually ended up in prison (thankfully after I had seen sense and had nothing else to do with them) to the ones who were emotionally unavailable and sometimes manipulative and abusive.  They generally were very hot (though not all were model look alikes), had an air of cockiness about them and nine times out of ten were great in bed. But all turned out to be the same, once they had me hooked they turned off the charm, the cockiness became arrogance and my pride and confidence once again dwindled.

It was not until I began studying Psychology that I began to consider why it was that I chose this particular type of man.  I could only watch on in envy as my girlfriends settled down with reliable, dependable men and built a life and a family together.  Instead I was left picking up the pieces of yet another failed ‘relationship’ where it had fallen apart because I was nt getting from it what I wanted.

Since my divorce in 2011, I began to look at what was going wrong. Previously it was all too easy for me to blame the man because he did this or that (or indeed he did nothing at all).  Coincidently this tied in with when I began my degree.  I began to learn about attachment and I quickly began to understand that the cause of my obsession with ‘bad boys’ developed due to the poor relationship with my father.  I loved my dad growing up, but due to the separation of my parents I did not see him that often.  In his past he was a bouncer and probably classed as a ‘bad boy’ himself and I really believe that I was looking for that, for some sort of compensation.

Since realising why I was always attracted to a certain type of man, I have taken the time to be on my own to work out what I really want.  Whilst taking this time, I must admit I developed quite an obsession with the likes of ‘Bridget Jones’ Diary just for the pure fact she also came to her senses by the time she was in her thirties and finally chose the ‘nice’ man.  The thing is the ‘nice’ man is the man that treats you right, who is emotionally available and wants to be with you.  The man who does not make you feel insecure, always second guessing whether you are together or what he is up to. It does not mean they are less appealing.  For this valentines I am pleased to say I have chosen a ‘Daniel Cleaver’.  He is a nice guy, he shows me interest, he is chasing me….but guess what he is also very good looking, very interesting, sexy as hell and the funniest guy I know!

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Related Article:

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/02/10/writing-challenge-valentine/?blogsub=confirmed#blog_subscription-3