Clearing the Air Take a big deep breath and learn to express the inner you with your spouse. BY WENDY STRGAR
Expressing yourself to your spouse is a key to sustainable love.
Wind power is one of the fastest growing alternative energy sources available. What could be cleaner than capturing the power of the moving air and turning it into energy? This is a powerful metaphor on a personal level and one that translates into making the relationship you share with your spouse sustainable.
The air in your relationship flows from the communication that passes between you and your partner. It is the currency of your relationship. It has the power of a wind generator to capture the essence of what it is to be intimate. It is the source and fuel for physical intimacy.
Taking into account significant gender differences in communication styles and comfort is an important beginning—women communicate with about 10 times the number of words as men. It’s knowing things like this that will push your relationship to levels of great satisfaction.
Everyone needs to stretch themselves when learning to communicate. Our willingness to share ourselves in breadth, openness and depth reflects our ability to be intimate. Self-disclosure is literally a breath of fresh air for many married couples, which can limit most conversation to dealing with the mundane tasks of managing a life. It is easy to fall into this place where discussions remain on the surface, our busy lives often leave little time for processing our own feelings or the complex work of expressing them.
Having conversations of depth require not only time, but trust. First, we must trust ourselves. Low self-esteem is hard on relationships because we cannot really build a bond of trust with another if we are not comfortable with ourselves. Issues can easily become confused and communication easily muddled when it is continuously layered with a lack of self-confidence of one or both partners.
For many of us, developing the skills for meaningful communication include a willingness to express ourselves and a genuine effort and interest in listening. There is little that makes us feel as deeply valued and loved as someone taking the time to truly be present and hear our story. It is an art that is often overlooked in all our dealings, but is particularly damaging in intimate relationships. Learning to listen actively and respectfully adds miles to the life you share with your spouse.
Trusting your partner enough to share honest, central and meaningful aspects of oneself is a true aphrodisiac. It creates a continuous cycle of deepening self-disclosure and safety that is at the heart of thriving relationships—who knows how much energy you might store up for a hot summer night.
Wendy Strgar is the founder of GoodCleanLove.com, which provides products and advice for sustainable love. If you have questions about products or toys send them in and Wendy will be happy to share her knowledge. When visiting the website, use coupon code NEWSITE08, to enjoy a new year 15 percent discount.