Friday, January 20, 2017

Why are Boundaries Important in Dating?

Setting dating boundaries is very important. What is a boundary? I am sure there are different things that come to mind when you hear the word ‘boundaries’. What we mean here is having something like a fence around your property. It shows where your property ends and someone else’s starts. So it is a property line. This is very important for dating to go well. That takes us back to the fact that dating is not a problem but the problem lies with the two people involved. Lack of dating boundaries results in problems. Note that dating is experimental. It is important therefore for the two people not to put lots of emotional investment into a relationship as they date. Failure to guard against this is dangerous if the dating does not finally lead to a marriage relationship.

Dating brings about two important issues. These are freedom and responsibility. Once there is a problem on these two things, dating will not go well. Freedom is about the ability to make choices, which are based on values not guilt or fear. Commitments should be a free choice. Responsibility means ability to carry out tasks that ensure a healthy and loving relationship. Each of the dating candidates must be able to say no to anything that violates his values. Dating should be about love. True love must be properly guarded so that it may mature and then deep commitments to each other may follow. In order for this to happen, freedom and responsibility are necessary.

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.” (1 John 4:18).
“But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ”(Ephesians 4:15).
Establishing and keeping good limits can result in a great love relationship.

How do boundaries help in a love relationship?

1) They define you
Boundaries show who you are and who you are not. Things with which you agree and disagree will be clear when there are boundaries. With dating boundaries in place, problems will be prevented before they happen. It is important to clarify your values, morals and preferences. Then it becomes easier to solve problems. Let people define you according to your own definitions of yourself.

2) Boundaries protect you
They enable you to keep in the things you want and keep out those you do not want. With the dating boundaries, toxic and unhealthy influences by people are kept out of your life. So you are not exposed to such toxic influences.

Those who are prudent see danger and take refuge, but the na├»ve continue on and suffer the consequences.” (Proverbs 17:12).

Boundaries help protect your heart. So you know what to let in and what to keep out. Within yourself, you have good treasures to guard and nurture. They include sincere love, which is your deepest capacity to trust and connect with others. You have your emotions to protect, which enable you to own your feelings and not allow someone else’s feelings to control you. Furthermore, you have your own important things, which we call values. Your life must express and reflect what you deeply care about. There is a need to have control over how you act in your dating relationship. So you have your own behaviors. Have freedom to express your own stances and opinions about yourself and your date. You have your own attitudes and you are the only one that is responsible for what is inside your boundaries. Your life is like a garden. So you need to weed out what is not important and that which is toxic. Nurture the good and develop it.

We note that boundaries are important when dating. If you had not set your own, develop them now. They are important. They will define and protect you. You will keep your dignity no matter what finally comes out of the dating exercise. You are valuable. Keep your values. Those are the things you care about.
For a dating program, contact us at lifesolutionstraining@gmail.com.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Get Over your former love wounds before entering into a new relationship

Have you ever suffered as a result of wounds from a previous love relationship? More often than not, people suffer some bruises from former love relationships especially when those relationships get terminated. People have been bruised and battered by life. They are left with scars. Different people react differently to such occurrences. However, there is a positive side to the scars of life. Do not focus on the negative side. The positive side to it is that you learn some valuable lessons that can help you in a future relationship. This happens if you have a positive attitude.

If you were hurt by your last relationship, you need to be repaired and healed first before you look for a new lover or partner. This will avoid pretense and instead, you will show the real you in a new love relationship. Any potential lover of your life wants to see the real you. Pretending to be someone you are not may lead to the two of you suffering. Some bitterness or negative responses may arise when you are with your new lover, which are a result of the former hurts. So you need to be ready to meet a new lover.

Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled” (Hebrews 12:15).

A mistake in a new relationship may lead to more hurts and bruises. If you are not ready, there will be problems even if you can find someone who will love and care for you. Someone who enters into a new relationship with hurts and bruises may survive for a while in the comfort of a partner who loves and cares. However, the bad side of it is that once the healing process is complete, the person may start changing and become a new one (the real). He may start looking at things differently and feel like he is not in a right relationship. That may result in problems and the love relationship may not last for long.

The favor you can do for yourself and the potential partner would be to hide for a while. Let your wounds be healed. By so doing you will be fair to yourself and to the potential partner. That is taking responsibility and exercising true love for the other person. The other person does not know your condition but you do. Instead, facilitate your healing by enjoying your friends and family until you fully recover so you can move on with your life.

For relationship coaching, contact us.


Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Why is Dating Important?



Dating is a stage of romantic and/or sexual relationships in humans whereby two or more people meet socially, possibly as friends or with the aim of each assessing the other's suitability as a partner in a more committed intimate relationship or marriage according to Wikipedia.   Now, if we talk about dating, what comes to your mind? Well, there are different views when it comes to the issue of dating especially believers. Some say it is not good for Christians; whilst others say it is good just like it is for any other person regardless of religious beliefs. Both arguments have valid points. However, the challenge is with the conclusion an argument draws. We shall look at the two arguments and then draw a conclusion. According to Wikipedia, dating is a stage of romantic and/or sexual relationships in humans whereby two or more people meet socially, possibly as friends or with the aim of each assessing the other's suitability as a partner in a more committed intimate relationship or marriage.

The argument against dating

The conclusion against dating is as a result of the negative tendencies according to the proponents of this argument. Here are some of the tendencies:

1) Dating does not necessarily lead to commitment but to intimacy. Becoming intimate without commitment to each other is not desired for various reasons.

2) Dating tends to skip a very important stage of a relationship, which is friendship. Friendship is very important and it should precede a committed love relationship.

3) The dating couple substitutes the love relationship for a physical relationship. It has been noted some people quickly enter into a sexual relationship before understanding what true love is.

4) Dating isolates a couple from other important relationships most of the time.

5) In most cases, dating distracts young adults from their primary responsibility of preparing for the future.

6) God’s gift of singleness gets overlooked. Dating tends to cause discontentment with singleness and yet it is also a wonderful stage of life.

The argument for dating

May it be indicated that as much as the problems indicated in the argument against dating are valid and genuine, they are not necessarily caused by dating in itself but by the people involved in it. That means if one avoids dating, it does not mean the stated problems will be cured. The cure for such problems is the same as that of other life issues. What is the cure of life issues? The Bible is. The Bible is needed to ensure spiritual growth and maturity as much as it is needed in handling relationship issues. The problem lies with the issue of values and characters of the people involved. Avoiding dating cannot remove such problems if they exist in the lives of these people who are dating. There has to be set boundaries during the dating period.

What are the benefits of dating?

1) People get the opportunity to learn about themselves, others, and relationships before commitment. This provides a safe context. One gets time to discover the opposite sex and skills on issues of relationship. This must be done around people who care about you. This may include your parents, friends, youth pastor, coach, and others.

2) Provides a context for working through issues. That which people value now may change overtime. What you value now may not be good for you in the future. So dating allows you to discover your long term values. You might not marry the person you first loved. Why? Some changes take place as you discover yourself.

3) Relationship skills are built
Some necessary skills are not learned in families. A lot of work and skills are required in intimate relationships. Communications, trust, listening, sacrifice and honesty issues arise during the dating period. You become aware of your immaturity. You get to learn about relationship and how one function in a relationship.

4) It heals and repairs
Some people pass through hurts when they are young. They may have missed an opportunity to be loved. You find that they never experienced love. During dating they start feeling loved and accepted. That way they receive healing from someone that accepts and nurture them. The interesting thing is that many people do not marry their first love. This first relationship tends to be an environment for growth and healing to some. These singles get prepared for their final love relationship.

5) Dating is relational and has value in itself.
Some people use others selfishly in dating. They use it for self-gratification. However, some enjoy knowing the other person. So they give and receive in a godly way, interestingly not in a way that leads to marriage. Unmarried people do not share parts of themselves as they are expected to restrain from sexual intimacy. That is true love. Love that rushes to sex before knowing each other and getting married later is not true love.

6) You get to know your likes and dislikes in the opposite sex
There is so much that one learns about relationships during dating. One might desire to get something opposite what he experienced from relationship in a family situation. But he may discover that for a love relationship there is more than what he is making up for. You may discover that the attributes you thought you needed are not necessarily what is good for you.

7) You learn self-control and delay of some other gratifications
Some people think that a love relationship is just about sex. Sex needs to be forgone in dating. First learn to relate and to care for each other without sex. Once you mature in that first, there will be fewer problems once you get married. After getting married you can then climax your love with sex. Let there be boundaries in your dating and that will protect both of you. There is time for everything according to Ecclesiastes 3:1, “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.”
 
There is a good reason for dating. Dating in itself is not evil or bad. Immature people overstep boundaries and then bad consequences follow. Handled with care, dating can lead to a fulfilling love life that will last. First learn each other and become friends and discover if indeed you are compatible for marriage. If you feel that you are not good together, terminate the relationship. Set boundaries help you both not to be clouded and then think you are in a true love relationship. Once you have developed the relationship and are both satisfied that you were meant for each other, you can commit to each other and then get married. After that you can start enjoying sex.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Finding the True Love of Your Life- Be Yourself



Finding the true love of your life is a cry of every normal human being on earth. Some are still scouting for that true love. Others are in the process already and they doubt if the one they have is the true one. Everyone desires to be truly loved. Some tried and they got disappointed along the way and they decided to stop looking. You can still find your true love, it is not too late. I admit that finding the true love of your life is not that easy. Why? People are complicated. So that complicates the process. Finding the true love of your life is a good thing. Let us read together the following scriptures:

Pro 18:22 Whoever finds a wife finds what is good, and receives favor from the LORD.

1Co 7:2 Because sexual immorality is so rampant, every man should have his own wife, and every woman should have her own husband.

It is easy for one when he sees someone he fancies to get tempted to become a different person. He tries to become what the potential life partner is looking for. But such a reinvention of self is short-lived.  Sooner or later you will be found out if you pretend to be something you are not. You cannot pretend forever. When the potential love of your life finds out you might lose badly. Just think of the golden rule. If you were to date someone and later find out that the person was faking himself or herself, how would you honestly feel? The possibility is that those who are true to themselves would just terminate the dating process. Or if they had pre-committed, they would resentfully terminate the relationship.

One may ask, “What if I am in a relationship now and I am not really myself?” You can come out to the open now before it is too late. “What if the relationship comes to an end?” you ask. It is better for it to come to an end now than later. That might save some very deep hurts. The foundation of true love must be honesty because if not, it will end badly. After all, you may find that your true character is what your potential love of your life is looking for. Never fake yourself because you might find someone who is not suitable for you. By so doing you may attract the wrong partner and that is not what you want.

I believe that out there, there is someone who is looking exactly for the kind of person you are. That person is looking for an original that you are. This is someone who will not have a problem living with your failings and flaws. So be true to yourself and be who you really are. Be proud of yourself. No one is like you on earth. You are different. So allow yourself to be different.
Why do some people fake themselves?

These are some of the reasons among many:

1) They are insecure. Someone who is insecure lacks self- confidence. He feels inadequate.
2) They feel that the potential love of their life is looking for something better than they can offer.
 
Be yourself. Know what you stand for. You must know what you are looking for yourself. Have your own requirements to be met for a life partner. Do not be moved. As you remain true to yourself, be patient. Do not bow to pressure. Good things come to those who are able to wait. That is why I offer a relationship coaching program to prepare you for the love of your life.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Identifying and Dealing with Marital Problems

Two loving people enter into a marriage relationship because of a genuine love relationship. They have a goal of making each other happy as they promise each other to love and to cherish. That done, does not mean there will be a smooth road ahead. Let us here what God says through the Apostle Paul about the solution to marriage conflict:

Eph 5:22 Wives, be in subjection unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.
Eph 5:23 For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, being himself the saviour of the body.
Eph 5:24 But as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives also be to their husbands in everything.
Eph 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself up for it;
Eph 5:26 that he might sanctify it, having cleansed it by the washing of water with the word,
Eph 5:27 that he might present the church to himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.

Above is the solution to marriage conflicts. But before dealing with the above solution, let me highlight the following.

Marriage conflicts are inevitable

What do I mean by that? I mean that every active marriage relationship will have some conflicts, meaning differences of opinion or viewpoints. In a passive love relationship there is withdrawal by one marriage partner. It may be the husband or the wife. This is not a healthy relationship because it means that one partner is withholding or suppressing some feelings. This is dangerous because it is like a person who eats but does not go to the toilet to relieve himself. What do you expect to happen in that case? As a result marriages were not that happy ones. There were long- term resentments. Women especially felt inferior and treated like children. But that was not God’s intention.

Many years ago the culture of some societies dictated that as much as a husband and wife wanted an amicable solution in a conflict, it was difficult most of the time. The easy way out was for man to make a decision and the wife would simply obey. This was mostly influenced by how decisions were made in other areas of life. Men dominated and controlled everything in society. However, in recent years there has been a significant change in many cultures due to the introduction of rights and equality in all areas of life including the marriage institution. That is why there is a lot of divorces and unwillingness to get married by some today. Each spouse has got his or her way of pursuing happiness in the marriage, which results in conflicts as happiness is no where to be found with such attitudes. If one does not find happiness his or her way, that partner opts to move out of the marriage in pursuit of happiness, independence and exercise of rights. This does not mean there should be no rights for each partner. They are important and should be respected.

Commitment to a common goal

Marriage conflicts can be solved amicably even though it is not that easy. Above we read a scripture, which is God’s prescription to marriage challenges. Let us acknowledge that as partners in a marriage relationship, we have different roles to play or functions and needs. As long as each partner plays his or her part conflicts will be minimized. Dominating each other as it was done by some long time ago did not bring a solution, but suppression. Too much emphasis on equality and rights this days has also not brought a solution but lots of divorces and single parenting thus resulting in weak foundations for children.

The roles and needs
  1. Husband
A husband needs to be respected. It should not be difficult to respect a man even if you do not agree with him. A real man does not have a problem listening to your point of view as a woman. He also needs a woman who will allow him to lead in the family as mandated by God. So when resisted for a long time, he either withdraws, becomes violent or gets out of the marriage. His duty to the wife is to love and cherish her as Christ loves and gave Himself for His bride the Church.

2. Wife

A wife needs to be loved, cherished and understood. When ever she speaks, she does it out of her feelings. As a husband you need to get that if you want a lasting marriage. Love expresses itself by giving. Give love to your wife. Take care of her needs. When loved, a wife does not have a problem carrying out her duties or responsibilities. That is natural to her. She gives her all when loved. So your duty and responsibility as a wife is to respect and submit to your husband. If you do that, your husband will love, protect, feed, and take proper care of you. But if you hurt his ego, there will be trouble in the marriage and it will quickly manifest itself in your home. Most men have a problem with hiding how they feel.

Any good solution to a marriage conflict should result in the growth of the love relationship. There should be no unresolved issues in the marriage because such results in long term resentment. That is not the right way to live. There must be a win/win solution and it is possible. A marriage relationship is not the same as politics where each party’s goal is to defeat the other. In politics there is never a promise to take good care and cherish each other as parties. However, in a marriage institution spouses were joined by love and good promises. There was a promise to take care of each other in both good and bad times. So there must be a common goal which unifies the marriage. There must be a will from each other to make the marriage work. As a couple, you are not competitors. You are differently made, you have different roles.

Willingness to understand each others perspective

Love for each other in the marriage relationship is key. That should drive each partner to be willing to understand the other’s viewpoint. A partner must be willing to listen. Each spouse should drop selfishness. Driven by love and desire to make each other happy will result in an amicable solution in any conflict. With positive motives you will find that differences just fall away. As a result a couple grows in loving each other. Once the key problem has been identified, it becomes easier to deal with the real problem. Dealing with symptoms of a problem does not resolve the conflict.

May I conclude by saying that a rewarding love relationship is possible. The love partners need to be both objective about an issue of conflict and be willing to solve it. You have different needs and roles as husband and wife. Let each stick to his or her God-given roles and what you need will automatically happen. The fact that there is a conflict, it shows that you are different. You see issues from different angles. Let us use those angles to clearly see an issue and then make a good decision. Do not compete because you are lovers not competitors.

For a coaching session, you can contact us. Be blessed!