Most people start relationships without knowing how to keep them alive over time. With romantic and business partnerships, tension and frustrations often build, causing trust and connection to fade. Did you know there are structures for forming relationships, and practices for continual “relationship hygiene,” that make them less likely to fall apart? Today’s guest and I discuss this!
I remember being young and watching my parents fight about taking out the garbage.
My mom would pull the drawstring on the top of the bag closed, steaming with anger about the fact that my dad hadn’t done it himself. She was pissed that she had to remind him, AGAIN!
My dad would make light of her frustration and then share his own strategy for getting it done on his own timeline and complain that she was nagging him.
I wanted to yell “Stop it! You guys are not fighting about the garbage! You’re fighting about the resentments that have built up from being misunderstood, unheard and unsupported!” (I tried to say this a few times but it didn’t go over well.)
Their 50th wedding anniversary just passed and sadly I saw that important conversations, about how they don’t feel loved or connected, still haven’t happened.
This doesn’t have to happen to you!
Whether you’re single, or a few years or decades into a relationship, it’s important to keep it vital and healthy. Think of keeping your teeth healthy. You don’t just brush them once and then leave them to rot! You brush them a couple times a day, to ensure you get rid of the build up!
It amazes me that relationships are similar, but most of us were not taught relational hygiene practices.
Today’s Man Alive Podcast is with a dear friend and colleague, Michael Porcelli. We have facilitated Authentic Relating Courses together for many years and have been practicing relational hygiene together for more than a decade. Michael is a consultant, coach, educator, writer, speaker, group facilitator and founding member with Bedock Culture and Leadership. He is someone who has a strong sense of relationship clarity and integrity.
In this conversation we discussed:
- Foundational communication tools many people never learn (that sadly results in 50+% divorce rate!)
- What it’s like to have relationship agreements that allow for both partners’ values and desires to be experienced
- How to start challenging conversations in a way you’re more likely to be understood and stay connected
- Tips for clearing the air when a relationship feels strained or dull
- An upgrade to apologies that does a better job of repairing and strengthening a relationship
After listening to this podcast check out one of my solo episodes — How to Show Emotions Without Seeming Weak. It’s important to me that you know how that sharing your truth, fears and whatever is vulnerable to you does not make you less manly or powerful!
Curious what you’d need to become a better leader and lover? Take the quiz
Michael Porcelli is a consultant, coach, educator, writer, speaker, group facilitator and founding member with Bedock Culture and Leadership. His main areas of professional interest are centered on the dynamics between human beings, technology, and the social world. He’s a leading expert in the practices of Authentic Relating and the Circling Method. He is a former course leader with the Authentic Man Program and Director of Training and Faculty Development with The Integral Center in Boulder, Colorado.