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  • Exercise to Cultivate Gratitude and Appreciation in Your Relationship

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    Gratitude and appreciation are essential ingredients for a happy and healthy relationship.

    I’ve been using this exercise more with my clients of late.

    The reason is that when we take the time to appreciate our partner for all the good things they bring to our lives, it strengthens our bond and makes us feel more loved and valued.

    After all, we were smart enough to marry them; we might as well appreciate them.

    One way to cultivate gratitude and appreciation in your relationship is to try this simple exercise:

    • Write down the following questions:

    1) What have I received from my partner?

    2) What have I given to my partner?

    3) What troubles and difficulties have I caused my partner?

    • Take some time to reflect on each question and write down your honest answers.
    • When you’re finished, share your answers with your partner.

    This exercise can be a powerful way to open communication and deepen your understanding of each other.

    Such reflections also help you appreciate what you are getting instead of what you aren’t.

    Reflecting on the troubles and difficulties we’ve caused our partner reminds us of the natural give and take of relationships. It can also cultivate humility by reminding us that we can always be better partners.

    We may also begin to appreciate our partner’s commitment as they stay with us despite the troubles and difficulties we inevitably cause.

    Here are some tips for getting the most out of this exercise:

    • Focus on the positive.
    • When answering the third question, try to frame your answers to show that you know your impact and are committed to being a better partner.
    • Be grateful for what you have. Remember that there is no perfect partner. Everyone has their flaws. But focusing on the good things that our partner brings to our lives makes it easier to overlook what’s annoying & everyone is annoying…

    If you two do this exercise together it can create connection, gratitude, and humility.

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