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Archive for the ‘Love Language’ Category

How To Find And Keep A Man

Cover of "He's Just Not That Into You"

Cover of He's Just Not That Into You

In this day and age where it is common for couples to have marital problems and get divorced based on those problems – I thought I would write an article devoted to some well-known ‘secrets’ about finding, loving and keeping a man.

1.  Find a man who thinks you are the sun and the moon and most of the galaxy as well. I love the movie, ‘Run Away Bride’ – where Richard Gere tells Julia Roberts – ‘you need someone who can’t wait for you to wake up in the morning – just to hear what you’re going to say’.  If you have a man like that in your life – you are blessed.  I can’t tell you how wonderful it is to be loved like that.  Greg thinks I’m cute when I first wake up in the morning too!  Greg’s strong stubborn love has literally kept our marriage in tact – when we hit a rough patch.  This is the kind of love you want.  Don’t settle for anyone who will not die and even take the fall for you.

2. Looks are deceiving. A shy guy that is hard-working and has integrity beats the ‘hot’ guy that some girls have to have.  They totally miss the nice man with the kind eyes who will move heaven and earth for them.  Looks never impressed me – if they were there – then it was a bonus – but it was not a deciding factor for me.  Look deeper.  Dig.  You may just find a diamond in the rough.  Choose someone who will protect your heart and never make you cry.  Those men who don’t protect your heart and make you cry are not worth it. Choose someone who prefers you to every other woman he has ever met.  Imagine growing old together and raising a family with him.  Someone who will never look at anyone else the way he looks at you.  Someone who you can trust.  Forever.

3.  Choose someone with a similar background and faith. I believe there is enough struggle in marriage that you should not intentionally give yourself another one.  When someone comes from a similar home and faith – you have that to draw on when times are tough – when raising children and especially teenagers – it takes wisdom and perspective from both sides.  And sometimes your similar faith in God is all you have.  Give yourself every advantage when wanting your marriage to work – long-term.

About 4 years ago I purchased the book ‘He’s just not that into you‘ because I had heard great  things about it.  It reveals the truth behind the verbal and non-verbal phrases and excuses men use when they are ‘just not that into you’.  Because it is written by a man – and how they think   I decided that my daughter needed to have this book.

She had been through some difficult relationships – and was not picking up on the ‘signals’ of non interest early on – therefore propelling herself back into the misery of ‘first time – shame on you – second time – shame on me’ syndrome.

I have some of my own things I wish to modestly submit – having had a few years experience with men.  30 to be exact ♥

1.  You must develop a deep friendship.

Having a friendship with Greg saved our marriage when it went through a dry patch and emotionally hit rock bottom.  He was always first and foremost my best friend – and that saved us.

2.  Expect that things are not always going to feel romantic. If you expect that your marriage will be  always be romantic and based on ‘feelings’ – and I’m talking about passion and intimacy – and feelings of happiness and well-being -you are going to be very disappointed.  If you or your partner gets bored easily and cannot ride things out –  then you may as well pack it in.  Long term marriage isn’t for you.  Very quickly the ‘thrill is gone’ when couples live together – have irritating habits – have children, bills, family problems – and life in general goes sideways.  Feelings like, “I love him – but I’m not in love with him‘ or ‘I don’t feel it anymore’ – are very normal – and it needs to be addressed as such.  When this happened to me – I thought there was something horribly wrong with me – not realizing that you won’t always feel like it.  Some days you won’t even like each other very much.  NORMAL!  I wish somebody would have told me this.

3. Treat him like a King – and he will treat you like his Queen. The woman sets the tone in the home – and with a man.  Even in friendship – it is usually at the pace of the woman.   So – be the first to respect and honor – and it will be returned – how can it NOT be?  A man worth marrying and having in the first place – wants to fall hopelessly under your ‘spell’ – and die in your arms.  We woman tend to get grouchy and ‘naggy’ all the time – instead of growing wiser and adapting to the simple needs of our man.  And I say simple – because men are not as emotional as woman and can compartmentalize issues and relationships in their lives easier than we do.  The basic needs of a man – that include (and are not limited to) food and sex –  and a fundamental need to be admired.  The person that they most want to impress is you!  So you must admire them!  If you don’t – someone else will.  I guarantee it.  Strip a man of his manliness and pride – and take him from being your ‘hero’ and reduce him to a mere shadow of a man by nagging or belittling him – and you are in for SERIOUS issues.  There will be emotional removal, physical absence and much more.  Women have a need to be cared for, listened to and told they are the most wonderful and beautiful woman in the world.  If you don’t listen to her heart – emotionally care for her or express your feelings for her – there are FIVE guys waiting in the wings – lined up to tell her what you will not. And very soon – you will be emotionally shut out.  Don’t let that happen to you.

4.  Bring the fun back into the relationship. I’m proud of my many relationships with my guy friends – we laugh and have fun!   Woman bring a ‘child-like’ quality to the men in her life – and to the man she is married to.  I love to hear ‘you make me laugh’ from my guy friends and especially my husband. He loves that I tease him and love to have fun.  And when he teases back – I know he likes me.  I have enough guy friends in my life including a son and son-in-law – to understand that when they tease – it means you are IN!  And just as women set the tone in the home and for her children – I believe that a woman sets the tone in a love relationship.  Set the tone through humor.  Humor and  laughter can ease the tension of a stressful work day and external stresses in his world.  Make his world a safe and fun place – lighten the load with laughter.  Discover what it is like to have fun again!  Go on dates.  Laugh at each other.  Lighten up!  Enjoy each others company – even when just eating a meal or watching TV.

and finally

5.  Be honest with each other about everything. Trust each other enough to tell each other the truth.  It’s a sad thing when there is no ‘safe place’ to confide – either because when tried – it was quickly dismissed as trivial or not important – or because you stuffed things so deeply you don’t know how to share them.  Try to work through that fear and work on  being completely and totally honest.  A man will respect you for telling the truth – no matter how much it hurts.

God Bless you and your relationships!

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The Love Relationship

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Image via Wikipedia

I was in the gym today with Greg when he said something that sparked a long humorous conversation.  He was trying to tell me something – I didn’t hear correctly – started to interject something totally different – and he stopped me and said, ‘You’re just not hearing me – you’re not hearing my heart‘  Oh brother.  I say ‘Oh brother’ because he is saying it with TONS of sarcasm in his voice – and a chuckle at my expense!!

This has been a part of our love relationship for years now.  The differences in us that make us laugh.  Greg making fun of women – (mainly me) and imitating  all the silly ‘girly’ phrases and things we women do.  It works for him – because he always manages to get some kind of reaction from me – and he likes that.  And I tease and poke fun at him – when he becomes too serious – or too stuffy – and it always makes him laugh.

Men love to make fun of women.  Case and Point:  The movie ‘Titanic” – where the old Rose is saying about her memory of Jack (the man she loved) – ‘he saved me in every way a woman can be saved’.  Greg loves to make fun at that movie – and especially cheesy lines like that.  His first response is – ‘You’ve GOT to be kidding, right’?  But I know what she meant by that line in the movie – women get it. Women understand these deep mysteries of feelings and emotions – and Men pretend they don’t. When probed – I have discovered that men really do get it – it’s just not ‘manly’ to admit it.

Now why is this?  Men have feelings and emotions – this is for certain – and no one can hurt a man like a woman can.  Remember the recent series “Men of a certain age”?   Actor Ray Romano tells his son about women, ‘they have many ways they can hurt us”.

So if this is true – and men feel the same feelings about love and other things that we do – why is it considered weak – or ‘girly’ to admit it?  Very few men will admit to crying at a sad movie – although I’ve seen both my husband and son do it – but not many others.  Most men are guarded when it comes to expressing those ‘touchy feely’ feelings.  And I believe it is drilled into them as little boys to be tough and not show emotion.  That somehow it weakens them to admit they struggle – or have fear – or are afraid – or feel helpless in the midst of love – or can be hurt enough to cry.  Remember the song in the 70’s by the group ’10cc’ where one of the lines is ‘Big boys don’t cry’?  How sad that men believe this – how sad that they are made to feel they must be like this.

It is interesting that when you know a man – really know him – he is not afraid to reveal some of that emotion.  But he must feel safe. And just because they don’t feel like they always can express emotions like a woman can – does not mean that they don’t have them.

I’ve been married to this man of mine for 29 years this Sunday – and one of the great things I’ve discovered is this:  we are different – but we are basically the same underneath all the layers.  Our emotions are basically the same – with different reactions to pain and hurt.  We both know what it feels like to be vulnerable and misunderstood – or to be used and tossed aside.  We both understand love and relationships – and have felt all sorts of emotions in relation to each other and in raising children.  We both can still make each other laugh – and we’re great friends – even through some of the rough patches that life has thrown at us.  And that’s so nice to know. ♥

He will continue to tease and make fun – I will continue to make him scratch his head in confusion – and make him laugh – it is our dance.  And so our journey continues – with its mysteries and lessons – and its laughter. It is our story – it is our love relationship.

Making Marriage Better

Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; Philippians 2:3

Today Greg and I were having one of our “discussions” in the “talking room” over coffee. We were discussing a very heavy topic – “Christ and the Church” which led to the topic of how it says in the Bible that “marriage” is to be a model of that concept. However – it is a poor example – especially in light of all the bad marriages in our world today. It would be like trying to explain how God is like our “loving Father” to someone who has been abused by her earthly Dad.

But I believe this is a “picture” – just a glimpse, if you will – of how God intended for marriage to be – even though we are imperfect and fail at His model – over and over again. Why do we fail at it? Because we are flawed human beings – everyone of us at the core is selfish and wanting our own way. Our hearts are incredibly wicked – holding in them, secrets that pull us in directions that are in direct contradiction to what was intended for us. We are “prone to wander” – and we do.

Because of this selfish, willful nature – we become imperfect mates to our spouse and vise versa. It goes against our nature to “submit” – or put our own desires aside and prefer our mate’s desires and wishes – over our own.

We have all seen this happen – either in our own relationship – or in someone close to us. Feelings are marginalized. People are not validated. A marriage that may have started out full of life and passion – loses something over time – feelings change – life happens – people grow apart doomed to lead very separate lives. Lifeless, dry and empty. We have all heard the saying if we have been Christ followers all of our lives – “we don’t believe in divorce – MURDER yes!! But not DIVORCE!” And life continues on that “happy” note – lives of “quiet desperation” – seeking fulfillment and understanding from somewhere else – or from someone else – people of like minds – who validate us and encourage us in our daily journey to try and understand the life that has been “tossed” at us – and the “feeling” that may have changed for one reason or another.

But to “regard others as more important than yourselves” takes an act of my will. A daily discipline of my heart and mind. It means I still may want to have my own way – even hold things in my heart as a “secret” – but still – I will honor you – because I value you. I will even try to let go of those things that I want – and concentrate on loving you in the best way I can demonstrate it. And the “secret” things that I hold onto – the things I “stuff” so that you won’t see them – in time will not have as much of a hold on me anymore. And in time – by leading my heart – I will be able to let go of it entirely.

Ephesians 5:21,22

Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ

Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord.

This is such a key scripture. We do it because we reverence Christ – not because we always feel like it. And in doing so – we become more like that model that He originally set up for us. Christ loved the church and gave Himself up for her – how much more should we be willing to at least make an attempt at it?

Now do marriages fail in spite of this great principle? Yes. Usually because people lose sight of this model – are simply unwilling to submit to one another and give themselves – all of themselves – heart and mind in preference of the other. In those cases – there is usually no hope for that couple. And they usually live in a “cold war” situation – leading very separate lives – finding fulfillment elsewhere – or leaving the marriage entirely.

I want to challenge you today – just like you must be willing to be a friend in order to have friends – you must also be willing to prefer your mate over your own desires. It does not mean that you will hit the mark every time – that is impossible because we are human – but if our hearts are right – and we make the attempt to value that person in our lives – be the very best mate that we can be – then this is a start to making a better relationship – and a better marriage. Learn your mate’s “love language” and speak it to them every day. You will see a turn around very quickly in your own heart and attitude as you “serve” the other person in love – and you will find a sweet surprise of your own – that what you give away – will soon come back to you. And you will be blessed.

Have an AWESOME day – as you prefer one another.

God Bless

March

I can’t believe how fast this last year has gone! March is here already. I love March – it has many great memories over the years. March is my birthday month – it is also the month I became engaged when I had just turned 20. Now 29 years later – it is with very fond memories that I look back – but also look forward too ☺

I have learned much over the years about how different people process important events in their lives – by knowing the 4 different personality types – and also by learning and studying the 5 love languages. If you are not familiar with those – let me list them for you:

1) Words of Affirmation

2) Quality Time

3) Acts of Service

4) Physical touch

5) Gift giving

Most of us – Okay – ALL of us make the mistake of giving what WE like getting. It is only natural – it’s what makes us – US. However it can feel very disappointing when things are not returned to us – in the same manner in which we are giving them – because – it may not – (and most likely IS NOT) their love language.

For example:

I love “Words of Affirmation” and “Acts of Service” the best. It doesn’t mean that I don’t like the other things – just not as much. Gifts are nice – just not MY love language. So I’m not a great card and gift person – but I do understand that others really like this – so I really try. I am an encourager so I will use my “words” to build up and encourage others. It is what I like – so it’s what I tend to give. But I’m also a very private person – needing quite a bit of space. And even though I love “physical touch” especially with Greg, my kids and my special close friends – I would also say that I love my times alone too. I tend to give people a lot of time and space – because it’s what I like. I don’t like to talk much on the phone either – I would rather write – because that’s where I’m more comfortable – and it allows me that “space” while still connecting. My family and close friends understand that about me.

My husband LOVES “quality time” and “physical touch”. He doesn’t like being alone – but he knows that I do – so he’s had to compromise on this point over the years – allow me some time and space by myself to regroup and refresh. He wants my TIME more than he wants my WORDS. And a hug and kiss go a LONG way with him. He gives me “acts of service” because he knows that it speaks to me – so he does MANY things around the house to help me. And since resigning his church position over a year ago now – we have logged HUNDREDS of hours talking – in the “talking room”. I have really needed this from him – and he has been willing to learn how to connect with me emotionally and to really listen. It has been great!

For others of you – it may be a card or a gift that you need to give someone. You may need to offer an “act of service” to someone you love. Or you may need to give someone some “space” – or some “time”. Find out what their love language is – and then do it!

Learn how others can recieve love from you – by learning what speaks to them. Do you like a lot of fuss on your birthday? My husband and many of my family members do. But I like things in a more quiet way for mine. I love the “words” from people – gifts are nice too – but I don’t like much fuss – it makes me uncomfortable. Celebrating with people close to me is the best – very quiet like. My husband knows this – and is great about making it special for me – in a way that speaks my “love language”.

How do you celebrate special occasions? Do others speak your “love language”? Remember we tend to “give” what we want to “receive” from others. Be sensitive to others today – be a “love language” expert to those closest to you today!

Have a super AWESOME March 1st!!

God Bless

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