Once we’ve changed our blueprint, rewritten our story, set our boundaries and finally found healthy love, we may feel like taking a break, but meaningful relationships require continued effort. If our relationships feel disconnected or dulled, Cole says to become more “self-sexual” by hitting the gym, visiting the spa or doing whatever feeds our bodies. When we feel good about ourselves, and in turn more deserving of love, we are better at communicating our needs.
And communication is key. Cole recommends reading or revisiting Gary Chapman’s iconic book, “The 5 Love Languages” (Northfield Publishing, 2015) to ensure we’re showing love the way our partner prefers to receive love. If we’d like something in the relationship to change—we’d like him to be more romantic or we’d like her to help around the house—Cole advises against pointing out how our partner is failing us because that rarely inspires change. Instead, she says, changing our behavior forces our partner to respond differently.
In terms of overcoming a major breech of trust, like infidelity, the first step is to recognize that the slip is a symptom of the actual problem, not necessarily the problem itself. Lack of intimacy, absence of appreciation, unresolved resentment, boredom—these are the issues that often underlie an indiscretion. Getting to the root is painful but entirely necessary. If we can move forward from hurt, Cole says, our relationships can be even healthier and more connected.
Make a sound investment