Category Archive : couple therapy blog for Indian couples

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Most Desirable Qualities of Successful Partners

According to India’s Top Marriage Counselor Shivani Sadhoo

Couples Therapist Shivani Sadhoo says all these years as a psychologist and marriage counselor, she has carefully observed the attitudes and behaviors of people who consistently succeeded in their long-term intimate relationships.

Several of those qualities are evident in a new relationship but are mostly much less vital in the long run. This blog from India’s leading marriage counsellor shares a few gender-free, common examples.

Shivani Sadhoo opines that although these are all essential requirements most people look for in new relationships, they are, in all truth, driven by the personal qualities that lie beneath them, and those characteristics are not always sustainable over time.

But there are a few personal qualities that are guaranteed to sustain and deepen love and commitment amongst the couple over time that is mostly not as evident early in new relationships. They crop up over time and are driven by the core beliefs and personal philosophies of those who are determined to lead and live a meaningful life in whatever endeavours they participate in. These are some of the qualities.

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Humility

Quite a wise person once said that the roots of humility and humiliation are the same: being on your knees. If you are being pushed into that position, you will feel humiliated. It is so much simpler to comfortably stay humble, and deeply grateful for the capacity to be in amazement and wonderment of the experiences that keep everyone worshipping the blessings of life.

Fairness

Agreements and the rules that define those are mutually opted by both individuals in an intimate relationship. Fairness is the commitment to either live by those sacred alliances or to go for renegotiation if they no longer assist the relationship’s ideals and principles. When there is mutual fairness, score-keeping never exists.

Courage

It is most scary to take the risks required to challenge oneself and others in a long-term relationship when the outcomes might be difficult to bear. Yet, your thoughts, beliefs, and actions withheld to maintain a questionable harmony mostly backfire when those pent-up behaviors erupt. When a couple supports one another to stay present and real, they can better face the truth of what is.

Translucence

Honesty, authenticity, and transparency are the foundations of trust. They predict whether your partners will be who they say they are or not. Gaslighting and ghosting never exist in these relationships. The people in these partnerships make mutual decisions formed based on reality rather than assumptions formed in confusion and conflict.

Resilience

There will always be hurdles in every relationship, both from within and without, and certain couples have more than their share of losses. Yet, remaining broken and buried by those legitimate heartbreaks probably steals time and energy from recuperation. Though a few people are simply born with more capacity to rebound, resilience can also be learned. The past is for lessons, not for rehashing or reasons to helplessly fall down again in defeat. The present is for debriefing what went on, what was learned, and what could be done differently in the coming time.

Interested and Interesting

Long-term relationships quite often fall prey to the same-old predictable interactions. Though it is most comforting and more secure to know what your spouse might or might not do, it is never as compelling as new thoughts and personal transformations. Couples who balance commitment to their relationship with constant personal transformation are the most probably to keep each other engaged.

Accountability

No relationship is able to survive an unequal responsibility for the things that go wrong. Nor can it tolerate promises for transformation that never materialize. Accountability will only serve its purpose if behavior alteration follows the recognition of contribution. Certain behaviors are much more difficult to change and attachments could get in the way, but being aware, open, and honest about one’s own frailties goes a long way when repairing is mandatory.

Humor

Seeing the lightness in things while they get too heavy. Relieving tension in self and others. Laughing at yourself. Making others feel good. Shaking off your own sadness. These are critical reasons for humor being a wonderful quality that mostly helps a situation heal. But it is also true that humor can also be used as a tool for wounding. When humor is used as sarcasm, mocking, or teasing, or an effort to get out of accountability, it is not healthy relationship conduct.

Chivalry

Almost every relationship is, for the most part, transactional. You all strive to keep your commitments but, certainly, reasonably expect reciprocity when you need it in return. But the fairness that forces those agreements sometimes should be upended by an unexpected crisis that needs giving beyond the fairness that is generally present. Chivalry is an act of selfless motive that comes from a different part of the self. It is a non-conflicted work of giving without any expectation of getting.

Nurturing

You are always all the ages you have ever been, and there are times when the child in you desperately requires a safe haven to feel, to cry, to complain, and even to yell powerlessly. The nurturing that is needed for any intimate relationship to thrive is the simple comfort of a pseudo-parent-child interaction sans judgment. Being able to crawl into the haven of loving arms not just can heal the moment but also heal the trauma that might have driven it.

Ease with self

Those lucky souls who know who they are, what they can give, what they require in return, and who live life equivalent to what they expect of others are individuals who have suffered their losses and rejoiced in their joys. They have found methods to integrate the completeness of their life experiences in a composite of quiet confidence. They are at ease with believing what they presently know and are still open to altering their perspective as new experiences enter their lives.

How social media May be Killing Your Love Life or Marriage?

Social media has been ruling everyone’s life, work and relationships for quite some time now. It has portrayed a series of positive and negative aspects in our relationships; certain people met their soulmates via social media while others divorced after finding out their significant other cheated on them via social media apps.

Shivani Sadhoo says, it is no surprise that social media has triggered a number of conflicts among people, particularly among married couples. So, let us find out the negative impacts of social media on married couples as pointed out by India’s eminent couples therapist Shivani Misri Sadhoo in this blog.

There is no “us” time anymore

Scrolling through your social media app feed seems more interesting and engaging than talking and laughing with your loved one about your favourite TV show. The more time you spend on your phone, the more you will miss out on those little moments of happiness and fun you can have with your partner. Thus, this leaves you close to nil or little time for your partner.

Jealousy over other’s lives on social media

Jealousy is a quite negative emotion that can impact an individual in various conflicting ways. Couples who extensively use social media face issues of jealousy and over-possessiveness over online friends and activity. Higher social media activity with others can also strain your relationship with your loved one.

Self-esteem problems

No matter how much your significant other assures you of your beautiful self, you will still continue to drown in doubt and low self-esteem issues. Social media harmfully robs you of your confidence and esteem, leaving you to compare yourself to others and their projected perfect lives, and marriages. As a result, most people end up comparing their relationships or present status to the ones they see on social media, leading to bitter and unhappy marriages.

Increased probabilities of infidelity

A small chat or commenting on your ex-flame’s picture could spark signs of possible infidelity in your marriage. Studies indicate that the probabilities of people cheating over the virtual world or social media is quite high. Several partners have reportedly found their partners cheating on them via social media platforms.

Over sharing emotions

Several people vent out their frustration on social media by talking to an online friend about the problems that have been presently going on in their marriage. Sharing minor details of your marital conflicts is alright, but solely to an extent where it doesn’t involve you sharing every single piece of detail of your marriage with them. This eliminates all possibilities of open communication with your spouse because you end up relying on social media friends to vent out your problems.

how to grow a highly romantic relationship

5 Absolute Ingredients Needed for Growing a Highly Romantic

Yet Very Stable Relationship According to Couples Therapist Shivani Sadhoo

Unluckily, relationship skills and self-care are never taught in school. Yet, these two aspects and life necessities can certainly have a huge effect on any person’s happiness and success in life.

And things become even worse, amidst the chaotic and hectic modern-day life, where most people don’t even have quality time for themselves. So, just imagine how those people can have time for others. And this is the case with several couples too, where they simply have no time to contribute anything to their relationship.

All, these later contribute to arguments, and quarrels, eventually leading to quitting the relationship. On the other hand, we have couples who even in the midst of all the chaos and dramas are living a dream-like relationship that is sometimes even hard to imagine, if that actually is possible. Relationship coach and couples counselor Shivani says, this is very much possible to have a loving and happy relationship.

top marriage counsellor shivani misri sadhoo

Through this blog, India’s eminent couple’s therapist Shivani Misri Sadhoo shares 5 such ingredients that are needed for nurturing a super romantic, yet absolutely stable relationship.

Knowing yourself

In the process of life, several of us learn to hide our feelings, strengths, desires, and personal goals. If those are hidden from ourselves, we cannot show up as complete people in a relationship. Thus, taking time to look inside of yourself and visit the hidden areas of your feelings, experiences and desires help you to show up as a genuine and honest person.

Too many of you are taught by well-meaning figures to bury your feelings and to be ashamed of your dreams and to simply plain keep others happy. It never works in a relationship. So mostly as Shivani says she hears from couples: “I just do not know who he or she is. I get such mixed signals or no response at all about where we want to go together, in life.”

In knowing yourselves, you do know what you personally need to keep on your own pathway towards success and happiness and then you can communicate that to your partners. It all starts with yourself “Do what you love!”

tips to make relationship highly romantic by counselor shivani misri sadhoo

Practicing self-care

Do you know the number of people who are simply plain burned out in life, lately? You have been tested in your abilities to survive and adapt during certain current tough challenges here in your life. Being the best version of yourself in a relationship means you know how to and you do all it takes to be healthy in mind, body, and spirit.

When you do not feel good, or you are too stressed or lack faith in yourself or in the future, you cannot be a good partner to anyone. You all know the steps to take for good self-care, but do you really practice these behaviors? As human beings, you need good sleep, exercise, healthy food, time outdoors in nature, adventures, and fun, constant learning, and a belief in something greater than yourself.

Whatever your religious or spiritual thought process may be, spending time with the practices will enhance your vibrational level and lead you to better self-care and creativity.

Communicating in a positive way

As in any relationship, differences will arise. And in fact, in relationships with the biggest differences, growth and deeper learning takes place in an attempt to relate to one another. So enjoy the differences and learn to try to understand each other and those differences.

If you can learn to converse from your heart rather than putting your partner on the defensive, overcoming differences and learning to be more open can truly be fun. For years you have been learning about “I statements.”

They are truly heart statements. Here is an instance. Your partner comes home late. A typical reaction would be a question like “Why are you so late while coming home?” The implication here is that the individual is in trouble or has misbehaved.

A heart statement would be “Oh I really miss having time with you and I get sad or worried when you reach home later than I expected.” Observe how the communication is about caring, about loving the other one instead of interrogating the partner.

Letting do-overs

When conflict and misunderstanding occur in a relationship, it is mostly difficult to practice positive communication. In those situations when buttons are being pushed harder and frustration or anger grows, take a break from the discussion.

During that break genuinely try to imagine what your partner is looking to communicate and where he or she is coming from. Then go back to your inner communication and approach with the aim of understanding, accepting, and loving the other person.

Any one of you can call a Do Over or a Break as things get even slightly heated. In calling a break, again bring this back to yourself with statements such as” I genuinely feel bad with how this is going and I wish to find a better way to understand and support you.

How about if we try the same discussion again when we both feel prepared?” There is so much respect and love in that manner of dealing with misunderstandings or differences.

Keeping passion and excitement alive

As you keep growing in your individual passions and your learning, you bring excitement into a relationship.  This journey is meant for learning and growth and not retreating into comfort or any mundane.

Fear might create a desire to protect yourself from facing life’s tough challenges head-on. The only two fears everyone is born with are fear of falling and fear of loud noises. The remaining ones have learned fears. The good thing about learned fears is that you can unlearn those fears by facing them when that opportunity arises.

As you individually face your fears, you create adventure, fun, and stimulation in the relationship. The passion enhances in response to those behaviors. Words such as “this is interesting” or “challenge accepted” can help assist you in your self-talk as you take on the challenges life gives you. Think of the energy you bring home to the relationship as you keep moving ahead in life and following your dreams.

As you could see, the best relationships need self-focus and an honoring of your true selves. Then when you show up to your partner an incredibly positive and fulfilling relationship will take place.

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My Spouse Does Not Find Me Attractive Anymore

Couples Therapist Shivani Misri Sadhoo Says, Learn the Signs and Ways to Rekindle Attraction within Your Relationship

For a relationship to grow, certain things have to be in place: love: to maintain the bond, tenderness, and care that drew both the partners together. Trust: a vital foundation every bond requires to promote a sense of security between significant others, and definitely—attraction—because passion added with excitement keeps the fire burning in any successful relationship.

It’s difficult to put any of these factors above the other, this is due to the fact they all work in sync to keep a relationship going. However, knowing that your spouse experiences an electrifying thrill from mundane things such as your smile, how clothes fit on your body, or maybe even simply watching you work in your element, is a feeling that is not easily traded in a relationship.

This is why at the initial signs that you no longer spark a fire in someone you love, it could feel more than a little unsettling.

This blog by leading marriage counselor Shivani Misri Sadhoo tells about specific signs that might indicate a decrease in how attractive your spouse finds you. In case signs are there, you will also learn ways to rekindle the lost attraction.

Here are some red flags that may indicate that your spouse is facing difficulty to see you as attractive.

Your spouse is spending more time away from you

When your partner is spending more time away from home or from you. This could be worrying. Yes, it is also true if you and your partner are spending less time together is not always a concern. Sometimes individual spaces are needed. But if your partner repeatedly gives excuses as to why they can’t talk or spend time together. Then it is a sign of losing spark.

marriage counselling tips by shivani sadhoo

Putting less or no effort into the relationship

A sad indicator indeed. Your partner is putting no or less effort in the relationship. Planning activities become things of the past, and getting responses through phones and texts becomes daunting. This is painful specifically when earlier your partner was diligent in making you special early on.

Waning sex life or intimacy

An important factor to determine is how your spouse feels about your physical relationship is to examine your sex life. What does getting intimate generally feel like? Are you and your partner taking time to speak and discuss it? This particularly could be noted in married couples. A drastic change in pattern while getting intimate indicates how attractive your partner finds you. When intimacy is completely missing or there is a lack of it, this is a sure sign your partner is losing interest in you. Or another sign is when your partner getting intimate becomes just a general routine for them, they do it just for an obligation nothing more than that.

Frequent fighting

Sometimes small fights are fine, but if your partner has become more irritable towards you and does not waste any opportunity to quarrel with you even on the slightest of issues. It is a sign of waning attraction.

Ways to rekindle the attraction within your relationship

Knowing your partner no more finds you attractive could be painful. But being aware might be the vital cog to transforming your relationship. Here are some ways to rekindle the lost spark shares Shivani.

Have an open communication

Speakto your spouse openly and honestly about the alteration you have noticed in their attraction to you. Learn how they view you, or if your conduct has changed to an extent that might be causing them to pull away. Knowing all this could give you a clue or two that will take you towards resolving the complexities.

Spend some time apart

Spending time apart does not mean completely cutting off entire communication. It is vital to check from time to time while being apart. But when you spend some time apart by going on some solo trip or going on a vacation with your friends, this may give your partner the opportunity to miss you and also a chance to rediscover your lost self. Perhaps a reunion after this brief separation could ignite lost attraction even more.

Do basic romance

Just remember how you met earlier. With your partner’s indulgence, you would be able to take your relationship back just to the good old days. Go on dates again. Take care to groom yourself and look good again. Send intimate texts or go to movies or dinner dates. Keeping close to your partner and breaking the monotony could help revive the lost attraction.

faling in love again marriage therapy

How to Fall in Love Again, Post Coming Out of a Traumatic Relationship?

Scenario: You look back on life post your last, specifically toxic breakup with a newfound sense of contentment and peace. You were in a relationship with someone who hardly ever valued your time and was never emotionally present. Then started the gaslighting: denying your feelings, not acknowledging at all the very real issues plaguing your relationship, always looking for an easier way out. Sounds familiar? Perhaps for many.

Your relationship always hurts you and you are still trying to come to terms with reality. You are not thinking about falling in love again, since it is out of the question for you now. You are now terrified of love. Fearing if you fall in love again, someone may again take the part of you and turn their back

Shivani says individuals who have had traumatic breakups show physical and emotional signs of distress. In several cases, intrusive thoughts occur. The abandonment issues simply got worse while a few lose the ability to care about others and keep a distance. In certain scenarios, trauma is not mandatorily a by-product of a bad romantic relationship but has deeper roots during childhood.

India’s eminent Couples Therapist Shivani Misri Sadhoo shares some ways to come out of trauma and fall in love again.

Unmask and counter the traumatic experiences

People are mostly unaware of the patterns that are an outcome of traumatic experiences. If you are fearful of falling in love again, it could be because you are holding on to a pattern of mistrust. Actively acknowledging, addressing, and countering your trauma with a therapist is the first healthy measure in the process. Find a qualified counselor who can navigate how many levels of trauma can impact you. It is a journey you should take in a safe environment. Do not lose patience. Unmask your traumas in a systematic and gradual method rather than startling yourself into it.

Understand trauma is just a part, not your complete self

A parts approach to navigate through traumas. Trauma never completely goes away and anyone telling you the same otherwise is only deluding you. But you can regulate it. You start by acknowledging that your traumas do not form the whole of you but just a part of you. Otherwise, you will end up giving your traumas plenty of power.

Re-develop your self-esteem

Once you acknowledge and understand your trauma plenty of healing can begin happening. Coming out of a traumatic relationship not just means the ostensible loss of the relationship itself, but also a loss of your sense of future. It is essential to keep the two separate in order to re-cultivate a healthy relationship with yourself. Your identity gets attached to them and you cannot imagine your life without them. This is why, it is vital to stay away from any addictions, specifically, casual sex and hookups. Everyone wants to heal quickly and move on swiftly but there is a shortcut. Take your time to heal. A break-up is a good time to reset. Search inward and begin with trusting yourself again.

Form a healthy support mechanism

People mostly become victims of confirmation bias—seeking and concentrating just on those experiences around them that confirm their fears. Let’s say you had a break-up and you constantly surround yourself with people who also faced a break-up and they are constantly feeding your mind with something. This is in spite of the fact that your circumstances are completely different from theirs. After all, all break-ups are not the same. This is an outcome of confirmation bias and you need to avoid validating your fears. It is important that you do not surround yourself with people who will belittle your experiences or gaslight you. Surround yourself with positive people or at best seek a therapist.

Be rational with evaluating the threat

Probably the sole bright thing about coming out of traumas, specifically in romantic relationships, is that you end up being truly aware of any red flags. That is if you are not repeating the same pattern again. But mostly, in the process of avoiding any red flags, people end up being overly cautious with potential partners. It is vital to not be hyperactive. You need to distinguish between red flags and the normal imperfections in any relationship.

Probe yourself, and how it serves you

When you end up isolating yourself because of bad past experiences, that way you simply end up further hurting yourself in that process. You need to interrogate yourself: What are you safeguarding yourself from? By living in an illusion, that no one will have the ability to hurt you if you do not go out, you are anyway still going to hurt because of the loneliness that comes with that mindset.