Creating Our Own Best of - Worst of List for 2011

As the year closes, the media is full of “Best of - Worst of” lists. This is also a good time to create a “Best of - Worst of” list with your partner. One of the things that people forget to do in a relationship is to review events that happened between them and get a better understanding of how it is that the events transpired as they did.  It’s important to have a goal for doing this to make things better in the upcoming year. When you both have the goal of improving the relationship, then you can talk candidly about events that didn't go so well. It’s just as important to talk about what DID work well as it is things that didn’t work well.   

This is not a “blame game” where you get a chance to accuse or punish each other for some transgression. It’s a time for reflection and letting go of blame. 

“No, I didn’t handle that situation very well. I was tired and stressed out from work and it was probably not a good time for me to go out drinking”. Once you’ve faced a situation like that, talk about how to prevent it from happening again. 

“The next time I have a day like that, I’ll call before I leave work and let you know that I just need some space to relax.” This is a good exercise for clearing the past and making way for a better future! And, if done right it can be fun! 

“I assumed that you were mad at me for denting the car. That’s why I got mad at you because I could’ve really gotten hurt. When you told me later that you were just scared that I might get hurt, I felt like a heal.  If anything like that ever happens again, I’ll know that it really bothers you and give you some space to calm down.

” Remembering the best of last year gives you fuel for creating an even better year ahead! 

“We both had such a great time on the big hike last June. Let’s plan a couple more hikes like that for this summer.” 

“I had a lot of fun when you showed up at my office and brought lunch! It was a great break in my day and I felt more productive that afternoon. I would really enjoy it if you did that every once in a while!” 

“It was fun volunteering together at the food shelter. Let’s find a couple of other places where we could do that this year.

” When you feel like you’ve pretty much gone through your “Best of - Worst of” lists together, do one more exercise to put some excitement into your new year! What new things can you do together this next year that you never even considered last year? 

Really put yourselves out there with this exercise! Be creative and a little wild! Go paragliding! Enter a marathon. Take a cooking class. Write a book together. Or start a group to show others how to do these exercises!  

Planning some kind of activity with each other like this gives you both something to really look forward to!  And when it comes time next year to do your yearly review, image what it will feel like to say “I’ll remember for the rest of my life the smile on your face when you climbed out of the plane with your parachute on for the first time!” 

It’s moments like that where real growth and togetherness occurs!

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