Couple, Depression/Anxiety

New Year Resolution 2019: Take Charge of the Change

scrabble resolutions
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Now that the Holiday season is coming to the end, most people are at the “the resolution preparation” mode. I certainly feel my 2018 flies by so quickly, especially at the end of 2018. Earlier this year, I made a decision to move my office to a new location. In October, I started to plan the move and in November, I was busy with the move. In December, I am still adjusting to the new office and still trying to put everything to its place.

I certainly have a lot of changes in 2018.

As I reflect this past year and the decision to move, I realized that I had learned something about CHANGE to help with my 2019 planning.

Continue reading “New Year Resolution 2019: Take Charge of the Change”

Couple

Surviving Holiday Stress with In-Laws (II)

woman and man sitting on brown wooden bench
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No matter it’s Chinese, American, or Hispanics, etc.. I can’t tell you how many times I have heard the partner by marriage saying: “You made me feel like an outsider;” while the partner who is biologically related to the extended family saying: “I am stuck in the middle between my spouse/partner and my parents.”

 

So, how do you unstuck from this situation? The key is to make your relationship and your spousal relationship as a priority and see your partner’s feelings is yours no matter you agree with him/her.

(The Part I of Surviving the Holiday In-Law Stress is here.)

Continue reading “Surviving Holiday Stress with In-Laws (II)”

Couple

Surviving Holiday Stress with In-Laws (I)

candle celebration christmas christmas decoration
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I grew up in a big Taiwanese family. My dad has four siblings and my mom has five siblings. I often joked with my friends that the craziness of my family drama trains me to be a good couple’s therapist. Taiwanese is the culture with traditions during holidays. Holidays are the time when all the in-law issues played out. I often saw the fights between my parents because of the in-law dramas.

Continue reading “Surviving Holiday Stress with In-Laws (I)”

Couple

[Couple Relationship] How much do I give to my relationship?

50%How many percentages do you think your responsibilities are in the marriage?

I have heard many people said that marriage is 50-50. That is, I put in the 50%, and you put in 50%, and they combined to be 100%.

Do you agree? Why? Continue reading “[Couple Relationship] How much do I give to my relationship?”

Couple

How Do You Give Love?

heart shaped pink and purple flower garden
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According to Dr. Gary Chapman, there are five different love languages, words of affirmation, quality time, receiving gifts, acts of services, and physical touch.

The person whose love language is “words of affirmation” knows how to compliment others with words. He/she uses words to show the love to his/her partner.

When your love language is “quality time,” you enjoy sharing common interests and doing things that connected the two of you.

When your love language is “receiving gifts,” the token that symbolizes the love and special occasion are essential.

The person whose love language is “acts of services” shows love by acting on it. They do everything for their partner, and they do it for the love of their partner.

When your love language is “physical touch,” you use a hug, a kiss, and touch to feel and to show your partner your presence, care, and love.

One of the languages might be the strongest, and there might be a couple of them are equally strong. You can take the test to determine your love language.

So, what happens when the partners have a different love language?

Continue reading “How Do You Give Love?”

Couple

How Do You Ask for Support

two person holding hands while sitting on grey cushion
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The idea of this post started with an innocent conversation with a friend on Facebook. My friend lives in a tiny apartment in a big city. He posted something on Facebook like this: “Why would anyone fry fish at midnight?”

I responded with: “maybe your neighbor is hungry?” 

The messages exchange on his facebook wall went on for 5-6 times when I realized that his original post was not a question but a complaint. 

I burst into a big laugh as I experience this scene in my couples’ counseling session. Continue reading “How Do You Ask for Support”

Couple, Depression/Anxiety

Which role do you play, victim, persecutor, or rescuer? — Drama Triangle “I am OK. You are OK.”

drama triangle

In the interpersonal relationships, we all shift in different roles in different relationships. As I mentioned above, we even play these roles with ourselves at times. However, if we regularly locked in specific roles in our lives, we lose the flexibility to live our lives here and now. That is, we lose the flexibility to behave based on the situation and people involved. We become to live the life to fulfill the expectation of that particular role. No one wants to continually rescue other people. No one likes to be frustrated and critical of other people’s behaviors all the time. No one wants to feel like a victim and powerless in his/her own life all the time. When we are fixed at a certain role, we lose the joy to live our lives to the fullest potential. We also start to accumulate resentment and dissatisfaction.  Continue reading “Which role do you play, victim, persecutor, or rescuer? — Drama Triangle “I am OK. You are OK.””