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Are YOU Putting Your Best Foot Forward?

Are YOU Putting Your Best Foot Forward?

Hi friends. It’s Kirbie today and I’m frustrated. I don’t know about you, but I am tired of wanting to lose the 10-12 pounds I need to lose. I got hot into exercise at the first of the year. Not because of a resolution – I don’t do those, but because my 3 adult daughters and I all wanted to challenge each other. Sadly, only one of us is still exercising and it ain’t me, unfortunately. I have a half-way good reason, but that’s not the point. Are you putting your best foot forward? I know I’m not! Last weekend, I discovered a jewel of a show called Fit to Fat to Fit. The idea of this show is genius really. They pair a personal trainer with someone who needs to lose weight. The trainer visits the client and explains how he (the trainer) will be gaining weight over the next four months so he can better understand the plight of the client. The trainers, some of them a tad arrogant toward their client, learn some valuable lessons, but I learned one or two as well. I’ve watched 3-4 episodes of the show now and what I have taken away from it will hopefully be the motivating factor I need to get moving again – after I recover from this darned bug. On Day 1 of their working out together, after the trainer has gained upward of 50-60 pounds, he puts the client through a pretty tough workout. This afternoon, I watched a woman who just was really hard to get motivated. At one point, the trainer asked her, “Are you going to give up? HUH? HUH? I know you can do this, but do YOU?” Her responses, which I don’t recall now, centered around denying her desire to give up. She was determined, although whiny. He pushed her way past what she perceived her limits to be. And here is where I come in. I know, I am certain, I do not push myself to my limits. I’ve had several surgeries on key joints over the last 10 or so years, and it does somewhat limit what I can do, but even still, I don’t push myself. I need to take some of those workouts I see on PopSugar, the ones I dismiss as “too difficult” and go for it with one of them. I need to stop looking for the workout that looks “do-able” and go for one which looks like there’s no way I can do it – then just kill it. Here is the difference. If I only choose a workout I can do now, what’s the challenge to my body? Sure, there is some, because I’m just that much overweight, but it won’t challenge me for long. It won’t force me to push myself. I’m 53 this May but that doesn’t mean I’m completely incapable of pushing myself physically. In another show, another phrase spoke to me. The trainer said “How many times have you said “I’ll start on Monday”? (when it’s Tuesday). That’s me. I don’t know if it’s the Type A who resides within me sometimes or what, but I do the same thing. For some reason, I put it off, using ‘timing’ as an excuse. So here’s the thing. I’m done making excuses! I’m done finding the workout that is ‘do-able’. I want the workout that’s not do-able. I want to push myself to a point past anything I’ve imagined. I want to be able to say I pushed myself as hard as I could and I did it! I can’t imagine how great that will feel! I challenge you to do the same. Maybe it’s not a weight loss or strength building workout. Maybe it’s a new job or career challenge. Maybe you can challenge yourself to face a fear. Find a way to push yourself beyond what you perceive your limits to be (but be safe, of course!). At the end of my journey, I’ll try to remember to share with you my “before and after” info. What’s your challenge? How will you be putting your best foot forward? Game on! If you’re really ready for a challenge, get ready for Gregg’s new book, Own Your Tomorrow: 14 Steps to Prepare for Love, due out on Amazon on February 21, and on sale for a limited time for just 99 cents! Sign up for Gregg’s newsletter at the top or bottom of this, or any page to stay informed!
Little Ways to say I Love You without saying the Words

Little Ways to say I Love You without saying the Words

Tiffany here. Who would have thought three little words could be so huge? You feel it in your heart, but actually saying, “I love you” for the first time can be a tricky situation, and it’s often difficult to know just when the time is right. Say it too soon, and you risk scaring him away. Wait too long, and he may begin to doubt your feelings, and maybe even the relationship. Good news – it doesn’t have to be all or nothing! There are lots of little ways to show your love without ever uttering a word. You can build your emotional bond by letting him know you care through your actions. It’s the little things that count.

Actions Speak Louder Than Words

Boston dating coach, Gregg Michaelsen tells us men communicate differently than women. While they may not shout their feelings from the rooftop the way we tend to, we need to look closely at the things they do to show us they care. Does he put air in your tires and fill your gas tank before you leave to visit your sister who lives in another state? Does he call and check on you when you have to work late, or bring you your favorite coffee to help you get through a rough day? Does he fix the leg on the antique table your Grandmother gave you, or rub your back when you have a headache? It’s little things like this which prove his love for you. His actions are much more powerful than words. We can do the same with our own little ways to say, “I love you.”

Little Ways To Say I Love You

Keep this list handy for inspiration, and think of your own uniquely sweet ideas which symbolize something special about him, and your relationship.

  • Always kiss him hello
  • Leave little notes on his car windshield or bathroom mirror, or sneak them into his pocket
  • Cook his favorite meal, just for the two of you
  • Bake him cookies – just because
  • Bring him breakfast in bed after a romantic evening together
  • Take the time to get to know, and like, his friends
  • Take the time to bond with his family
  • Text or call him once during the day to let him know you are thinking of him
  • Hold hands whenever you can
  • Watch the Super Bowl with him, even if you hate football
  • Wear that red dress he loves so much
  • Make him a love song playlist, the modern equivalent of a mix tape
  • If you see something he would love, don’t be afraid to get him little surprise gifts to show he was on your mind, and how well you know him
  • Make him a handmade Valentine
  • Laugh at his corny jokes
  • Cut his hair or shave his beard – it’s actually surprisingly intimate!
  • Show appreciation when he does something nice for you
  • Give him the last french fry or bite of dessert
  • Show up with beer, pizza and his favorite movie if he’s had a rough day
  • Listen when he needs to vent
  • Ask him about his day, look him in the eyes, and give him your undivided attention
  • Cheer him on when he needs encouragement, and be supportive, not critical
  • Make a big deal of his accomplishments
  • Try your hand at golf if he loves to play, or a hobby he has a passion for. Who knows, you may develop a new interest!
  • Compliment him
  • Send him a letter if you are away and tell him you miss him
  • You chose him for a reason – don’t try to change him
  • Go with him to boring work functions
  • Ask his advice and respect his opinion
  • Help him with a difficult or tedious task
  • Back him up when someone puts him down
  • Three letters — PDA — because you are proud to be with him
  • Give him a foot massage when you are relaxing on the couch
  • Tell him when he does something you like in bed
  • Always kiss him goodnight

Eventually, if all goes well, one of you will finally say those three little words and mean it! But until that moment, treat him the way you like to be treated, and show him you care through your actions.

If you would like more suggestions on things you can do to strengthen your relationship, check out my book, Pennies in the Jar: How to Keep a Man for Life.

Quickie Workouts for Women at Home

Quickie Workouts for Women at Home

Hi, Tiffany here to talk with you about some recent statistics I discovered. Did you know the #1 New Years Resolution is to lose weight? This is closely followed by goals like getting organized, enjoying life to the fullest, and falling in love. This shouldn’t surprise anyone. Especially after learning the average person gains anywhere from 5 to 20 pounds over the holidays. Why? Because with an abundance of joy that comes with the season there is also:

  • An abundance of stress
  • An abundance parties
  • An abundance of really yummy food

What can you do if you want to shed those extra holiday pounds? It’s a bit cold outside to go for a run or ride a bike. Of course, you could always bundle up, but all those bulky layers can really slow you down. Besides, you are probably SUPER busy now that the New Year has begun. I know I am! Is it even possible to sneak in a workout during what little down time you have?

Surprisingly, there are quite a few effective workouts for women at home. All of them are simple and painless, and a few may be even fun! Best of all, they each can be done 10 minutes or less. Since experts recommend at least 30 minutes of physical activity a day, strive for 3 or 4 mini workouts spaced throughout the day, or go for the long haul and do a few consecutively in the morning or in the evening after work. It’s true, you don’t have to devote hours at the gym to see results!

Best Workouts For Women at Home

  • com offers the 10-Minute-Trainer, a total body workout that activates all your muscles groups in just one move — perfect for anyone with a busy schedule. But be prepared to sweat! This workout focuses on your upper body, lower body, and your core, plus cardio, all at the same time. FYI, did you know that best selling author and relationship coach Gregg Michaelsen is also a Team Beachbody coach?
  • If you have a garage or enough space at home, jumping rope is an awesome workout which increases your heart rate and tones your whole body, plus it can really make you feel like a kid again! Skip yourself slim with the 10-Minute Jump Rope Workout from Fitness Magazine, including the basics to get you started. This workout burns 135 calories fast, and sculpts your shoulders, chest, arms and legs.
  • Speaking of feeling like a kid again, a mini trampoline takes up very little space, and some can even be folded in half and stored away when not in use. This low stress, high impact workout lets you burn calories the fun way, right in the comfort of your own living room. Some mini trampoline manufacturers like Urban Rebounder even provide their own workout videos.
  • Of course, you don’t need fancy equipment to get a good workout at home. Simple exercises like push-ups, planks and sit-ups use your own bodyweight as resistance training, and can easily be done on the floor while you watch TV at night. Streaming workouts like The Daily Burn let you watch workout videos on your computer, tablet, TV, or smartphone.

Of course, it’s always more fun to workout with a friend, or boyfriend. Exercising together keeps you motivated and makes things more fun. Of course, sex is also a great way to sneak in some extra cardio! According to Women’s Health Magazine, sex burns anywhere from 85 to 250 calories, depending on how long you spend in the sack. Plus you can also tone your back, butt, abs, and thighs by working up a sweat with your man.

Regardless of what you choose, pick something which matches your physical and time limitations and go for it! Putting it off until there is a good time to exercise means you’ll be stepping on the scale to even bigger numbers – and more weight to lose than you have right now.

Taking Personal Responsibility to Find Love in 2016!

Taking Personal Responsibility to Find Love in 2016!

Big things are in store for me and you in 2016. I hope you are as excited as I am about this new year! Are you? You’re not??? Why not? Ohhh, I know, you haven’t found a high value man yet. Why not? Nevermind, the reason doesn’t matter. That’s in the past. Today is the day I challenge you to join me in taking personal responsibility for the future. Are you ready? First, let me share what I did for you – I wrapped my truck! Can you believe it? I must be the only dating coach brave enough (or stupid enough according to my guy friends) to drive around advertising my man-taming abilities to women! I digress…enough of nice-guy Gregg – I’m going to get tough now! You need to make a decision. Do you want to find love or don’t you? You have all the tools. I have twelve of the best books on the market covering almost everything you need to know. I hear all kinds of excuses from women who say they can’t take the steps in my books:
  • “Gregg, it’s hard.”
  • “I don’t have the time.”
  • “ Online dating sucks, they are all creeps.”
  • “ I’m overweight so I never get chosen.”
Excuses! I have a close friend who can’t lose weight. I usually stay out of Gregg the life coach mode, with my close friends unless they ask, but I stepped in the poo last week. We’ll call my friend Peter. Peter is 40 pounds overweight and complains daily about how the gym sucks. He tried another gym and he said the same thing to me. I couldn’t take it anymore. I said, “Peter, it’s not the gyms – it’s you. The gym is just a big space with weights and machines which just sit there. They have no personality. You need to do something with them. The refrigerator is very similar – a machine that you need to stock with foods which will keep you thin – but you need to stock it with food which will actually keep you thin!” Yeah, I pissed him off – wasn’t the first time, and it won’t be the last. But do you understand my message? I am holding you accountable this year! I am asking you to take personal responsibility for your life! I want you to find love, but you need to give it more than just a half-ass effort.

Online dating doesn’t suck if you know what you are doing

  • Are you screening multiple guys as I describe in Love is in The Mouse?
  • Are you asking the right questions?
  • Are you rotating your pics and visiting the site every day so you stay at the top?
  • Are you casting your net wide?
  • Are you presenting your best side, both with your profile and your pics?
  • Did you take my confidence course before you started dating?
If you are doing these things for real then you are tossing out the losers, the couch potatoes and the users! If you are committing to yourself and absorbing my information, then you are having success – you have no choice. The quality guys are there, but they need to see you. You need to rise above the others.

Choosing Mr. Right

One of the biggest issues I’m seeing over and over is women are picking and hanging onto the wrong guy! STOP IT! As a single woman who follows my advice, you are surrounding yourself with several men. This helps you avoid falling into a dangerous trap. When you only date one guy at a time, you can immediately latch onto him, thinking he should return the favor. The problem is, he shouldn’t, and why would he anyway? You don’t know enough about him or vice versa. You don’t know if he is emotionally available, dating and totally getting into someone else, or what’s going on in his life which may make him a wet kitten – all things which make him a wrong guy for you. When a guy isn’t right for you, don’t take it personally, be glad you found out before too much time has passed. Timing is everything. This same thing applies to ex-boyfriends and husbands. If he won’t deal with his alcoholism, hasn’t supported himself for the last 12 years, and/or isn’t divorced yet, lose him! I don’t care if his penis is twelve feet long, you need to lose him and find the man who is right for you.

Today is the Day for Taking Personal Responsibility

I say these things because I care for you. We need to step up – all of us! This includes me, in fact let’s make a promise to each other to try harder in 2016.  I am setting new goals and I am going to be there for more of you, more often, with the advice and the motivation you need, but you need to do your part. You need to absorb this information and apply it! Deal? Awesome! Hopefully, I am helping you today or maybe, like my friend, Peter, I am pissing you off – that’s your decision to make but my heart is in the right place. Gregg…your Drill Sergeant. P.S. If you see me in my truck, shown here, in the Boston area, give a shout out and say “Hi!” This has been a huge success! Now, when I walk out of the mall, I have people who want to speak to me!
What is Love All About?

What is Love All About?

Happy New Year! It’s Kirbie today to share with you about a podcast I was listening to recently. It was on a topic many people misunderstand – love. In the coaching Gregg and I do, love is always a huge factor. We are all in one of these phases – I just lost someone I love, I have someone I love and I want to keep him, or I want to find someone to love. Most of our coaching deals with the first – I just lost someone I love. It was this, combined with the podcast, which inspired me to write to you today about this burning question – what is love all about?

You Choose to Love

Love isn’t going to land in your lap. As much as I would like it to happen, love isn’t going to just land in my life. When we meet a new man, something either clicks between you or it doesn’t, but this isn’t love. It’s excitement or infatuation, maybe lust. You can make a choice, though, to learn more about this person, and over time, you build intimacy together and begin showing one another your love.

We all know someone we would describe as being ‘incapable of loving’. A person who can be described in this way is someone who is choosing another emotion, like anger, instead of love. Your emotions are a choice you make, but many don’t realize this. We often coach women to begin listening to the voice in their heads – to hear the negative thoughts and insert positive replacements. This is the beginning of controlling your own emotions.

Think of it this way. You’re driving down the highway, minding your own business until someone cuts you off, causing you to slam on your breaks or swerve. What you do next is your choice. You can choose to be grateful you didn’t get into an accident or you can choose to rant and rave, flip them off, and generally have a hissy fit. Whether you realize it or not, you make a choice.

Your Actions Show Your Love

When you are in a committed relationship, love is something you do, something you show your partner. Love isn’t something you just feel. You choose to love someone by being there for him. If your spouse is up in the middle of the night ill, you choose to love him when you get up with him, to comfort him and meet any immediate needs he may have. This is an act of love. A choice you made to love him by caring for him.

By the same token, you can show someone you don’t love them by your inaction. I have a very close relative who has major medical issues which often land him in the emergency room. His (now ex) wife wouldn’t even lift a finger to help him. He either had to call a rescue squad or ask another family member to take him to the ER. His wife never missed a beat in her life. She showed him she didn’t love him by her lack of action.

When You Love, You make a Commitment

For those of you who are parents, you may understand this better than anyone. You love your children, and you, as a good parent, know that showing your love to your children means supporting them, disciplining them when necessary, encouraging them to learn and grow, and taking on their feeding and daily care. This isn’t something you do because you’re required to. I have seen the results of parents who don’t love their children. It does happen and with devastating results. You make a choice to love them, and with that choice, you make a commitment to their care and well-being.

The same goes for a relationship. When you choose to love someone, you make a commitment to them – to be supportive of their dreams, to care for them when they are ill or injured, to be honest and open with them.

Recognize Love

With all of that said, do you recognize love, or a lack of it, when it is in your life? Gregg spends a lot of time in his books explaining how men love, and much of this fits how men love. We both hear many women tell us “he doesn’t love me”, then they go on to explain how the man in question came over and fixed their car, garbage disposal, garage door or leaky toilet. Maybe he came and hung a shelf, dug a new garden, mowed your lawn or took out your trash.

His actions showed you his love. He chose to do those things instead of hanging with his buddies or watching sports. He made a commitment to you to help you.

On the other hand, does your man only provide lip service? Be careful of a man who only says he loves you without putting actions behind his words. Especially a man who is treating you poorly, hurting you more often than he helps you. He makes many promises, delivers on few, if any. He says he loves you, but he chooses to work 12 hours a day, 6 days a week, spending day 7 in front of the television or out playing golf. He says he loves you, but instead of spending time with you on your one night off, he chooses to go to the bar with the same buddies he was just with 2 nights prior.

So Then, What is Love?

Love is deliberate, not something that just happens. What we often call love is really emotions like euphoria, desire, excitement, happiness and maybe even lust. Those things come and go as quickly as the things which cause them. He says he loves you, you feel excited and happy. He chooses to date another woman, you feel devastation and heartbreak. Rather than listen to what he says, look at the choices he makes, the commitment he has to your relationship or his actions toward you.

The same goes for you. If he doesn’t feel loved, are you showing him you love him? Did you make a commitment to the relationship? Did your actions show him you love him? Did you choose him over an extra 3 hours of yoga class? Love goes both ways and requires a lot of effort.

For more ways to learn about strengthening your relationship through actions, commitment and choice, read Gregg’s latest book, for sale only on the Who Holds the Cards Website, Pennies in the Jar: How to Keep a Man for Life.

The Difference Between Sex and Intimacy

The Difference Between Sex and Intimacy

I was driving the other day, thinking about nothing in particular and somehow, this question came up. Why do people confuse sex and intimacy? I’m guessing something someone said on the radio prompted this thought, but I got so lost in it, I couldn’t tell you who or in what context. It’s Kirbie today with the difference between sex and intimacy.

The Difference Between Sex and Intimacy

We were intimate.” This phrase bugs me. You were not intimate, you had sex. Intimacy is built without sex. Many couples who choose not to have sex before marriage have built a tremendous amount of intimacy. By the same token, many couples who have a lot of sex together have no intimacy. Intimacy is the emotional connection between you – the energy and passion. If you come home at the end of a really bad day, someone with whom you share intimacy will be right there to provide you the emotional support you need. He will pull you close, put his arms around you and make you feel suddenly protected from all of the evil which lurks outside.

How do You Build Intimacy if Not in the Bedroom?

Building intimacy happens in those little moments which almost go unnoticed. The late-night stroll in the park, hand in hand, where maybe you hardly say anything to one another. The support you provided to him when his childhood dog died – you were there, with a hug, to hold him as he grieved the loss. Gregg calls this ‘pennies in the jar’ in some of his books. He talks about collecting great moments together to build up a defense against a break-up. Sitting up all night talking after an old boyfriend announces his engagement, or going out to choose a new puppy from the animal shelter are things which build intimacy. I remember when my ex-husband and I were in high school – we were both 16. His sister had cystic fibrosis, and at 19, she was a case study doctors wrote about. In 1979, people with CF didn’t live as long as she had. After a final battle with her lungs, she asked to go home – she asked to die. He came to my house that evening, in obvious and deep pain. Even though we were only 16, this was a very intimate experience for us. I held him in my arms while he cried and cried over his loss. I’ll never forget it. I think of him to this day. Intimacy also happens in those moments where you know your partner so well, it scares you – and vice versa. He brings you your favorite latte on a Saturday morning, along with your favorite cinnamon raisin bagel, toasted just how you like it. You recognize at lunchtime he’s having a really bad day, so you plan to take him out to dinner at his favorite place, or cook his favorite dinner at home. You go out of your way to play a fun evening for him and his friends when his team makes the playoffs – you get their favorite beer, order up some pizzas and head off with your girlfriends while they watch the game. Another way in which you can build intimacy is to express your love in front of others. If this makes him uncomfortable, this might not be a good idea, but if he’s into public displays of affection, this goes a long way.

How to Kill Intimacy

I’ve also been in relationships where I’ve watched intimacy dwindle away. One sure-fire way to begin killing intimacy is to stop spending time together. If you live together, this could mean sleeping in separate bedrooms – or sleeping at the same time. While having sex won’t necessarily build intimacy, avoiding sex with each other is a sure-fire way to kill it. Becoming a workaholic is another great way to kill intimacy. If all of your energy suddenly goes into your work, you will be too exhausted to devote any time or energy to your partner. You won’t be thinking about stopping on the way home to buy his favorite cut of steak or grabbing the Sunday Times because you know he likes to do the crossword. Allow your confidence to take a nose dive, or watch his confidence tank. This is another intimacy-killer. If your confidence starts to dwindle, maybe because of a setback at work or some other event in your life, it can begin to put a wall between you – especially if you are one who doesn’t share those things well – someone who internalizes everything.

Building a Lasting Relationship

Whether you’re married or dating, you should always be building those intimate moments. It’s not all on you to do it, but it’s something to always keep in mind. When you see your partner start slipping in some of these activities, it’s a signal to you. If he starts sleeping at different times or working a lot, something needs to be addressed. These ‘pennies in the jar’ keep your relationship solid. You can even think of them as one way to avoid the dreaded affair. Never stop accumulating them! You’ll be ‘rich’ beyond your wildest dreams – at least in terms of your relationship.
Are You Setting a Good Example for Your Teens?

Are You Setting a Good Example for Your Teens?

As a divorced mom of four, now adult, children, I look back on my life and wonder if I was the best example for them when they were growing up. It’s Kirbie today to help you not have the same worries I do – I’m here to help you set a good example for your teens. Teenagers are a quirky bunch. They have more coming at them than I did when I was a kid, when the biggest technological advances were cable TV and no party lines on the phone. Today, kids have life coming at them from all angles – social media, smart phones, peers and school. While all I had to worry about in middle school was appearance and friendships, kids today have the added worries of a shooter showing up at their school, being bullied and fitting into a high technology world not all parents can afford. There are a few things you can do to be that good example.

Get Your Own Confidence in Check

Most people know whether or not they feel confident, especially by adulthood. If you feel you are lacking confidence, buy Comfortable in Your Own Shoes and/or To Date a Man, You Must Understand Yourself. Either of these books will set you on the pathway to confidence. Together, they are like a confidence one-two punch. Kids get their cues from their parents. If you are not confident, you are not displaying the behaviors your children need to see – you are not modeling confidence. If you won’t do this for yourself, at least do it for your kids.

Give Praise, not Criticism

The next time you hear yourself talking to your child, or when your child is close enough to hear you, listen to what you are saying. If you are talking to your child, this is even more important. Do you say things like “How did you do so poorly on this test? I told you to study more. You never listen to me.” or do you hear yourself saying, “I know this test was a challenge for you. Maybe this weekend, we can look at it together so you can get the hang of it.” In one instance, you are merely berating the child for poor performance. Your child could have studied so hard for that test, but just not have had an understanding of the material. By berating them, you are only confirming what they think – “I’m not good at this” or “I’m not good enough for my parents.” What you want your child to think is “My parents support me.”

Positive vs. Negative Speak

Another way in which your behavior can negatively impact your child is by speaking negatively to yourself (out loud) or showing behaviors which show your lack of confidence. Listen to your own self-talk. Life has beaten you up, and we are all guilty of negative self-talk. When you read Comfortable in Your Own Shoes, you will learn more about affirmations, but I can sum it up for you now. It’s common to say things to yourself like ‘I’m not good enough [to get that job] [to get a great guy] [to get a college education] [you fill in the blank].” This sets you up for failure, and if you’re saying it out loud, it teaches your children the same skill.

Set the Rules – and the Consequences

I hear this one all too often – single parents don’t feel as if it is somehow fair to impose rules and consequences on their kids – they feel guilty for any marital break and think their child’s life is difficult enough without having too many rules to follow. Drop the guilt and step up. Your kids want rules. They are looking to you to help them avoid negative situations. Where there is a void, something else will fill in. Where there is an absence of rules and consequences, negative influences of peers will fill in. If your child knows that skipping class will result in being grounded from his technology for two weeks, he’ll be a heck of a lot less tempted to give it a whirl. If there are no rules, no consequences, he thinks you don’t care, and won’t care if he skips. This self-monitoring builds self-esteem.

Chores, Expectations and More Consequences

Give your child chores and set expectations. It’s important for kids to learn to succeed, and there is no better way to try something than to try it at home, in a safe environment away from peers. As kids get older, their chores become more complex and their confidence grows. When you set expectations, you are giving them boundaries. For example, if you work late on Tuesdays, you may ask your teenager to get dinner started for you. Don’t just issue an order, explain why you have set this expectation and what the consequence is for not meeting it. Kids will be much more willing to comply if they understand your reasoning. If they just feel taken advantage of, forget it.

Communicate

I read a great tip when I was researching this article – I wish I had done this with my kids – my oldest in particular. This mom created a “Mom Journal”, which was a journal she and each of her kids (individually) shared. The child was able to write anything in the journal, which the mom would read from time to time, providing helpful comments where needed. It is considered a safe zone of sorts. The child can write about anything without consequence and the mom’s only job is to WRITE a response. I love the idea of having this additional method of communicating with your kids. Difficult topics which they may be hesitant to speak about openly can be addressed in the journal. This wouldn’t absolve you of openly communicating in other ways, but it certainly would provide an outlet for more challenging conversations. Let your child know you are willing to listen. They don’t always want you to provide a solution – in fact, you shouldn’t always provide a solution. You should help them find their way to a solution. Your job is merely to listen and be supportive. Your child is looking to you as an example, but it can be difficult to remember how your actions impact others if you are in a highly emotional state or lacking your own confidence. It’s easy to forget how our actions impact others. You have a chance to make a positive impact on your kids, and it’s never too late to start!
Women’s Top Questions For Men Answered!

Women’s Top Questions For Men Answered!

Good morning ladies, it’s Kirbie today, and I just finished reading all of the fantastic comments from Gregg’s post, 8 Questions All Men Would Like Women to Answer, and I think we have a few questions of our own, so I speak for us all when I ask these – but please feel free to ask questions only guys can answer in the comments and we will let Gregg provide us with his “Guy” answers! Help us understand men better!

Why do we have to conform to you all of the time?

As I was reading the responses to the above blog, what occurred to me was this one question….why do WE have to conform to YOUR personality all of the time? Why can’t you guys bend in our direction? Yes, I realize we need to understand how the male mind works, but it seems as if the end result is “this is how men are, deal with it.” Where’s the give and take?

Questions only Guys can Answer | Why all of the adventure?

I don’t know how many online profiles I have read where the guy wants a woman who is interested in his boating, hiking, biking, workout and golf habits? Many available women past a certain age are most likely divorced and raising children. We don’t have your free time…don’t expect us to be interested in spending every waking moment before we met you adventure seeking. Adventure for us is throwing a dark-colored pair of socks in with lights to see if the whole load gets trashed or leaving the 3-year old alone while we go to the bathroom.

Why do you think we want to hear every bodily function you have?

Seriously. Okay everyone has gas and everyone uses the bathroom, but this is not an open invitation to share those moments with us. Close the bathroom door. At least mute the phone if you absolutely must use the bathroom while we’re talking or text us instead! And for heaven’s sake, if you had chili with onions for dinner, start the meal with a Beano.

The 60-minute poop (sorry I know, it’s a gross topic)

Here’s a question only guys can answer. When women need to use the bathroom, we go in, we sit down and we go. We don’t, as my mother calls it, “nest”. We don’t take reading materials. We do what we need to do and we move on. Why is this not the case for men? If you want to read Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition, do it somewhere else. Some day, you’re gonna get hemorrhoids from this (true fact) and we’re not rubbing any cream on it for you!

Shoes, socks and belts

Black shoes go with a black belt – and while we’re at it – black socks – not white socks. By the same token, what’s up with this new trend to wear black socks with tennis shoes? Um no. We don’t expect men to be all matchy matchy like women are, but there are a few no-brainers which make you look like you know what you’re doing – and I know some woman in your life has already told you these! I speak for all women everywhere when I say this – “She is right”.

Have you ever ‘swallowed’ – (no not like that) – I mean have you ever tasted semen yourself?

This could possibly eliminate all of the begging men do on this topic. Seriously – it’s not a salted caramel latte you’re asking us to throw back – not even in the neighborhood. While we’re on the topic of sex, if you would leave your penis alone when we’re not around, it might not take so many antics to get you off in the first place.

Boobs – what’s the attraction?

Women’s breasts are functional – placed there to nurture offspring with highly nourishing milk. Nowhere is it written that breasts are for your entertainment. If men got less giddy about breasts, maybe women wouldn’t get harassed so often when they attempt to do what is natural – feed their child. Due to this male obsession, women damage their bodies with needless and sometimes dangerous implants – all in the name of looking attractive to a man. Personally, after 4 children, I’ve got nothing of interest to offer in this area. For more great answers on this and all topics please visit DatingAdvice.com

Okay, now show me yours

Okay ladies, now it’s your turn to ask your questions! Feel free to ask questions only guys can answer in the comments section below and we will let Gregg provide us with his “Guy” answers!
Are You Ready for a Relationship?

Are You Ready for a Relationship?

5 Signs you’re Ready for a Relationship

There are many reasons you may be ready for a relationship – or not. Age, recent relationship failures, abuse or a host of other things in your past may be playing a role.

Unfortunately, due to some basic urges and needs we all have, we never consider this question before we enter into a new relationship. The sad thing is that you could find Mr. Right, but you’re Ms. Wrong because you’re just not ready.

It’s Kirbie today and in this three-part series, we’re going to examine whether or not you’re ready for a relationship. Next week, we will look at whether or not he is ready.

I’ll give you some subtle things you can look for to help you figure it out. Finally, we’ll wrap it up with some tips on getting yourself ready for a relationship.

You’ve Given up the Party Every Night Lifestyle

Having fun is great – in fact, it’s essential to take time to have fun. The problem is when you party too much or too often. Regardless of your age, you should not be partying to a point where you don’t remember how you got home.

Nor, should you be spending every waking hour partying. Going to a bar once in a while to hang out with your friends or inviting them over for a glass of wine is fine. Having the bartender know your favorite beer and how many to have ready for you per hour is a problem.

You Have Direction

how to know if you're not ready for a relationship

Do you have a clear path of where you want to go?

In order to be ready for a relationship, you need to be able to face life head-on and have some goals. What career path are you following or planning to follow? Where do you want to live? What type of home do you want to have? Do you want to travel? Do you want children? Are you even ready to move in with a guy?

If you’re older, do you want to date someone with younger children, or have more children with a new guy? Do you want to relocate? You need to know all of these things in order to know what type of man you should target.

You Have Your Act Together

Gregg talks about this a lot in his dating advice best seller, To Date a Man, You Must Understand Yourself, so I won’t drone on about it because you’ve surely already read it. Having your act together means you not only have direction, but you have a life of your own.

You have found some things you enjoy doing, and you have friends with whom you do them. You are living within your means and either have, or are building a solid financial base for yourself.

You take care of yourself be eating right, exercising and practicing self-care. You do this because you are worth it, not because someone tells you too.

This also means that you know what your values are. You have an opinion about things like spirituality, politics, work ethics, money, how you treat others, and a host of other things.

Again, these things will help you figure out what type of man you should be pursuing because his value system will be very similar to yours.

You Value the Opinions of Others

When you are a confident woman who is ready for a relationship, you have the ability to not only hear the opinions of others, but to value their side, whether or not you agree. This is also important because it means you have world experiences that have provided you with those opinions.

Nothing turns a guy off faster than for you to giggle and say “Gee, I dunno” when he says “What do you think of [insert random topic here]”. I’m not telling you that you need to become some sort of information savant, I’m saying stay tuned into things going on around you.

Think about things you hear about in the news and form an educated opinion. Take an interest in life.

5 Signs you're Ready for a Relationship

Fill your life with knowledge so you have opinions!

For example, even if you don’t like football, you can still say something intelligent. He may ask, “What did you think of that Patriots win last weekend?” Now, if I were to be asked that question, I’d say something like “Well, it was better to watch that than the awful beating my Steelers took!”

BAM. BUT, I’m a huge sports fan, let’s get back to you – and you’re not so saying something like “Well, I didn’t see the game myself, but I saw the score – impressive!” will at least keep you out of trouble. I mean, come on-you can see that stuff on Facebook!

After you feed him a happy sports tidbit, steer the conversation to something you can speak more about, like “I saw a great piece on hiking in the Smokey’s last week. Do you enjoy hiking?”

You Put the Interests of Others before Your Own

This is a biggie. Too many people in relationships are only looking out for themselves. It’s immature, and it screams, “I lack confidence”. If you’re in a great relationship, you’re always looking out for one another. You’ve got his back and he has yours.

I’m not saying you need to dote on him day and night – so don’t take my words in that way. You then run the risk of making him your hobby, and, again – you’ve read Gregg’s books, so you already know this is a no-no.

am i ready for a serious relationship

Are you ready for a serious relationship?

Here’s an example: you let him go golfing with his buddies on a Saturday morning, rather than whine about the lawn needing to be mowed. Take that time and do something you enjoy.

If you really want to drive him nuts, head out just before he is due to leave, wearing an outfit he has admired in the past, and say something like “See ya when you get home, Honey. I’m going to spend the morning with Victoria looking for a new gym to join.”

He’ll be home from golf as soon as the game is over, and he’ll be wondering all morning what you’re up to. He’ll also be pretty likely to get that lawn mowed before the weekend ends (and isn’t that what you wanted him to do in the first place?).

Here are a few more signs you are ready:

  • You’re not always trying to ‘fix’ him
  • You understand the importance of communication
  • Nobody needs to ‘complete’ you
  • You understand what has caused your past relationships to fail
  • You’re worthy of a good man
  • Your main goal in life every day is to avoid, not stir up, drama

In part 2 of this series, we will examine how to determine whether or not your guy is ready for a relationship, without being obvious about it.

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