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In this episode Joel and Antonia talk with Raj & Gaby Sundra of Relationship Fun & Games about being proactive in romantic relationships.
In this podcast you’ll find:
Raj and Gaby Sundra of Relationship Fun and Games.
When we think about relationships we think about all the relationship problems that come up.
Too many good relationships end because they get too difficult. We want to encourage couples to look at relationships in a whole new way:
We want to take the work out of relationship work and make it play. A little bit of intention, attention and action spread out over a little time goes a long way.
We grow up expecting relationship to be simple so we face every problem as if there is something wrong rather than seeing problems as an opportunity.
The right person can often trigger a lot of challenges.
At our engagement party we were pulled aside by a close friend who told us, “I don’t think you should get married. It looks pretty messy.” He wasn’t far off. It was messy.
The problem isn’t the problem. The problem is you think the problem is a problem. The problem is actually a path.
What is working about our relationship? We created our own wedding vows. What we wanted our relationship to be about and who we wanted to be. What things we share together that make us super excited.
The same guy who told us we shouldn’t get married later gave us the idea to create a business around making marriage a success.
Your mess is your message.
Hold the paradox that all is well and let’s take this to the next level.
What feels right, and what feels effortless is a guiding star for what you should be doing.
If you see challenges in your relationship, that isn’t a bad thing but may be a good thing.
What would it be like if you just married yourself? The right fit person is quite different from you.
We lean into challenges in so many areas of life (business, health, parenthood, etc) but when it comes to relationships we expect it to be easy.
Imago by Harville Hendricks – we choose our partner to heal our unhealed wounds from our earlier years. You choose the person that is perfect for opening your unhealed wounds. Embrace that it is your job to teach them how to heal your wounds.
The very thing that you don’t love about your partner is there for your transformation and if you work with them it is a part of their healing and transformation as well.
Every challenge gives us an opportunity to grow. There are things inside a relationship that would never have come up as a challenge in any other relationship.
The growth you gain through your relationship propagates thru all areas of life.
- How long does it last?
- How bad does it get?
- How often does it happen?
There is a Dynamic that when we get stressed we take it out on the person closest to us.
- Instead of saying, “I’m not your enemy” say it more positive – “I’m your number one fan.”
- Instead of saying, “Don’t take it out on me” say – “Do you need some loving?”
Be proactive about saying what you want.
When we are experiencing a lack in ourselves it is easy to project that onto another person.
Our mate mirrors back our ego. The major fear is that if we show up tarnished our mate won’t be able to love us anymore, so we double down on being right instead of admitting we’re wrong.
How can we lower the threshold for what constitutes nastiness? Calibrating a thermostat. We create lower thresholds for how we allow ourselves to talk to each other. If we have not attended to that thermostat we may allow things to get to a point of name calling, but you can decide to not allow things to get to that point.
- Peace practices
- Play practices
- Passion practices
Shift how you interpret things and the narrative you are choosing by simply changing your emotion.
Can I get a do over?
John Gottman’s Magic Ratio – couples need a 5 to 1 ratio of 5 positive experiences to every 1 negative experience.
Say 5 positive things about the thing you just complained about. By 4 and 5 you have more intimacy than when you started. It actually makes things better.
Drama Free Diet
Our ideals don’t always match the reality of a situation.
The best way to get out of an argument is not to get into it in the first place
Don’t wait for your partner if they aren’t invested in personal growth. Your changing will impact their changing. If not, maybe the relationship is too toxic and it is time to move on.
Vow of the Month
Say it every day at breakfast to each other. Focus on one vow every month so they aren’t just forgotten. Aligning and grounding to our relationship.
What promises did we make on our wedding day? Most don’t remember. Go ahead and redo the vows, if necessary.
Shared Relationship Vision:
- Create a vision for your relationship.
- Set goals around it
- What are the things most important to the relationship?
- What are the things most difficult about the relationship.
- Take a top level view of the whole list and condense it into a short paragraph.
Raj and Gaby’s shared relationship vision:
“I love my marriage and my wife/husband. We are playful, peaceful and passionate. We are hot for each other and express it daily. We generate with intention and communicate with care. We seek to understand, spot and meet each other’s needs and delights. We contribute to the world and we are on top of what needs to be done. We are abundant with our finances, time, energy and love.”
What is it that I want in my life? Articulate it and then make it happen. We have that ability. We may have failed in the past, but we really do have the ability to create our reality.
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