When setting intentions for the new year it can help to focus on on what you want in your relationships. Here are 5 suggestions.
I've talked a lot about the impact that NRE can have in previous posts - but a lot of the issues that I see people dealing with are really about NRE affects someone's ability to maintain existing relationships. This post is all about how you can tend your existing connections while you're in the middle … Continue reading Five ways to tend to existing relationships in the midst of NRE
A sex menu is exactly what it sounds like: a menu of items that you enthusiastically enjoy at least some of the time. It is a way of increasing your sexual intimacy by communicating clearly about your desires in a way that goes beyond the basic yes/no/maybe list. Some people like to work together with … Continue reading Beyond yes/no/maybe lists – the sex menu
We take breaks when we are very upset to down-regulate our emotions. The whole purpose of the break is to reduce the intensity of your emotional activation because that makes it much more likely that you can have a constructive conflict with the other person. Unfortunately, lots of us weren’t taught how to do this … Continue reading De-escalating your distress during a break
When you initiate a break in conflict it is usually most effective to focus on the fact that you are initiating it for your own benefit, rather than making observations about someone else's emotions or needs. We are the experts in our own emotional state and our own emotional needs. When we express those it … Continue reading Communicating around breaks – Part 2 – Initiating a break in conflict
As I said in the first post, breaks are a controversial topic. That means that lots of people have really different views on whether or not breaks in conflict are even an OK thing to do. That means that there are two parts to communicating around breaks – the first is about having conversations that … Continue reading Communicating around breaks – Part 1 – making agreements about breaks in conflict
I’ve already admitted that this is one of the relationship skills I struggle most with, but on the plus side that means it is one I’ve given a lot of thought to. We all have a default when it comes to breaks in conflict. Some of us default to thinking that breaks are an excellent … Continue reading How do I notice whether I need a break?
There are few subjects more fraught than whether or not it is a good idea to take a break in a conflict. People have very strong opinions on both sides. Some people see taking a break as essential to their mental health, their ability to calm down and hear the other person, or their ability … Continue reading Conflict skills: Taking breaks in conflict
I love to find different ways of exploring my sexuality because each new approach seems to bring up new desires, new perspectives or new ways of talking about what I want with people I enjoy sex with. I delight in that exploration, especially when it increases my connection with the people I love. This approach … Continue reading Negotiating sex (and kink): map your erotic values
You might have seen several of my past posts about breakup planning, but I've not gone back to talk in more details about transition planning. The reality is that many of our relationships undergo transitions from time to time. These are rarely traumatic when they are moving towards deeper intimacy, in fact, they frequently involve … Continue reading Transition planning