Growing a Healthy Relationship

Whew! These past couple of weeks have been crazy. That is why I was so excited to spend Valentine’s weekend in Dtown with B. Can I just say that I am so blessed to be marrying a man who didn’t cringe when I suggested spending the weekend at a marriage counseling seminar?! Oh goodness, he is a keeper! And that is exactly what we did this past weekend. My MOH attends SMU and forwarded me an e-mail from the office of the chaplain about this seminar a few weeks ago. I forwarded it on to Bryan saying something along the lines of “hint, hint!” He replied back that he went ahead and signed us up! I will say that we were hoping that it would be a little bit more challenging- we didn’t learn a whole lot of new information (that’s a good sign, right?!), but we did get a chance to have conversations that don’t really happen on a day to day basis.

The first thing we learned was the importance of affirmations. Not just shallow affirmations, really try to notice specific things that you can point out! The leaders suggested 5 affirmations for every 1 negative message. At first that sounded like a “duh” statement, but start to pay attention to this ratio in every relationship in your life. You might not be as great at this as you think!

We also listed 3 things that we think are going well and 3 things we want to work on in our relationship. Luckily, both of our lists lined up! It is good to check every once in a while and make sure you are on the same page.

And last, but not least: getting to know you questions! My favorite part because Bryan and I’s answers were hilarious, if I do say so myself.

questionsgraphic

Questions to answer about your partner:

1. My partner is most likely to laugh when _________________________.

2. What my partner enjoys doing most ________________________.

3. My partner’s two closest friends are _________________________.

4. My partner’s favorite meal is ___________________________.

5. My partner is most encouraged when ______________________.

6. If my partner could spend two weeks anywhere in the world they’d pick ______________.

7. My partner’s favorite musical group, individual artist, or composer is ________________.

8. My partner’s favorite song is ___________________________.

9. The two people in the world that my partner admires most are _____________________.

10. My partner’s favorite relative is ___________________.

11. My partner’s favorite romantic restaurant is ______________________. (Bryan said mine was CiCi’s- a man after my own heart)

12. My partner’s favorite flower is ____________________.

13. My partner feels most competent when ____________________.

14. One of my partner’s happiest childhood memories is ________________________________.

15. One of my partner’s happiest memories in our relationship is ________________________.

16. My partner would like me to pray most for __________________________.

Questions to ask your partner:

1. What was I wearing when we first met?

2. Where was I born?

3. What stresses am I facing right now?

4. When is my birthday? (Shockingly, Bryan is still working on this one.)

5. What is one of my greatest fears?

6. What is my favorite way to spend the evening?

7. What kind of present would I like best?

8. What is my favorite color?

9. Who is my greatest source of support (other than you)?

10. What do I most like to do with time off?

11. Do I have a secret ambition? What is it?

12. What are some important events coming up in my life? How do I feel about them?

13. What are some of my favorite ways to work out?

14. What is one of my favorite magazines?

15. What would I consider my ideal job?

16. What is my favorite holiday?

17. What kind of books do I most like to read?

18. What was my most embarrassing moment?

19. What foods do I hate?

20. What is my favorite animal?

So, that’s a pretty good list of questions – I would encourage spending time with your significant other this weekend and talking about some or all of the things on the list! It will be a fun way to remember why you like each other :)

Enjoy, y’all!

Rachel

P.S. 450 days until I am a Mrs.!

*These lists were adapted from information we received at the Growing Healthy Relationships Seminar. Information provided by Jay and Barb Barnes from Bethel University and the Center for Relationship Enrichment.

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