5 Secrets from Happy Couples Help Even the Romantically Challenged Feel the Love on Valentine's Day

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While happy couples freely celebrate their joy on Valentine's Day, many romantically challenged partners wish they knew the way to deeper love and understanding. 5 new relationship insights from happy couples help others feel closer even in less-than-perfect relationships, says Kristin Rosenthal, LPC, of Mount Vernon Family Therapy.

While Valentines Day offer happy couples the opportunity to celebrate a joyful relationship, romantically challenged couples often want to know what to do to feel a more loving bond.

"Partners with long term troubles can't expect a quick fix. But there are simple steps each person can do to improve their happiness now," says Kristin Rosenthal LPC, a professional couples and marriage counselor and author of the 5-part article series: Developing Happiness As a Couple. Understanding what makes happy couples remain happy, and what erodes good will are important first steps in knowing what to do when you want to deepen your bond with your partner.

In time for Valentine's Day, 5 new relationship-boosting insights learned from happy couples are available by email at http://mountvernontherapy.com. New research has found that the good will which fuels love thrives on small, simple gestures that are part of a daily routine. For every one negative interaction, about 30 positive interactions take place in a partnership that is thriving.

Goodwill gestures that help build happiness for couples can be very simple:

  •     Laughing together
  •      Kisses when leaving or returning
  •     Asking politely for favors or help (Honey, could you...)
  •     Exchanging smiles, hugs, or a pat on the shoulder
  •     Giving a short recap of the day in conversation
  •     Doing a favorite activity together
  •     Snuggling during a TV show

Steering clear of harmful habits is just as important. Partners can now understand behavior patterns that undermine feelings love and good will, thanks to recent findings.

Counseling practice and research shows that the road to serious trouble tends to follow a pattern. It often starts when partners become critical and defensive.

Defensiveness can be hard to recognize because it comes in so many forms:

  •     Denying responsibility
  •     Casting blame back and forth
  •     Making excuses
  •     Accusing a partner of negative thoughts as if mind-reading
  •     Changing the subject
  •     Dismissing a concern when it's brought up

Partners need to find new patterns to get to the feelings behind these defenses. Beneath the anger and frustration lie the feelings your partner really needs you to ask about, name, validate and help with.

Partners can change course if they are able to replace defensive replies with a new response.

Putting words to your partner’s feelings -- and yours too -- can go a long way to help bring calm and open the door to deeper understanding. By working to name and help with hard feelings, you generate more of the good will, appreciation and love that happy couples enjoy.

Those who wish to find more new ways to grow their relationship can get all 5 of love-building insights by signing up for the free series of articles, Developing Happiness as a Couple, at MountVernonTherapy.com

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Joanne Masterson
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Kristin Rosenthal
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