Keeping Love Strong

Keeping Love Strong

We’ve all done it: we’ve been guests at a wedding and watched how happy the bride and groom are. We’ve brought gifts, expressed good wishes, danced, and watched them leave and begin their new life as husband and wife. At First Class, we’ve also had the privilege of providing professional transportation services for these very special occasions.

But here’s something: how many of us have, one or two or five years down the road, found out that our friends are splitting up, that a once-happy marriage is ending in divorce?

Most of us have had that experience too.

Carol Bruess has studied relationships for years, and we thought we’d share 4 points we got from a lecture she gave at St. Norbert College. If you’re interested in building strong relationships, today’s post is for you! 

  1. No one’s going to get out of dying. (That’s a universal given.) But, here’s an interesting thing: There’s a positive correlation between how well integrated a person is socially and overall health. 
  2. Bruess talked about the work of John Gottman, citing that criticism, defensiveness, and stonewalling wreak havoc on relationships. In contrast, to strengthen a relationship, you want to respond to what Gottman refers to as “bids.” At a very simple level, “the bid” can be explained like this: When someone makes an attempt to engage with you, you can either turn toward, turn away, or turn against. Turning toward means responding like you care about it while turning away looks more pathetic. And if someone turns against? Well, that one’s pretty self-explanatory. It may sound simple but how one responds to a partner’s bids is actually a huge determiner of how well a relationship will hold up over time. 
  3. While technology has blessed our lives in innumerable ways, Carol advocates being mindful of how we use our digital devices. The information she shares suggests that many of us get comfort and, yes, even “connectedness” from our phones. And here’s the bottom line: so much screen time is actually affecting the quality of our relationships. 
  4. Carol also mentioned the value of telling stories to our families. Talked with them about our lives as well as the lives of our parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents. Why is this so important? Studies have shown that individuals who are more familiar with their family’s stories tend to enjoy great emotional health. So what does all of this mean for our relationships? How can we build stronger marriages? We can recognize the value of our interactions with other people. We can benefit from the research of John Gottman and apply it. (Be careful to avoid negative behaviors, and make an effort to respond to bids!)

We can be mindful of how we use our digital devices and be sure to give care and attention to the relationships that matter most. And lastly, we can take time to tell our stories. Here at First Class, we want your wedding day to be absolutely beautiful. We specialize in providing seamless transportation so you can truly enjoy one of the most important days of your life. If you’d like to learn more about our wedding transportation services, we’d love to talk with you. Call us today! 

The information for this post came from the following lecture: Check it out to watch the whole thing and learn more.