Beliefnet
Doing Life Together

footballI don’t like to lose, but when you are a Chicago Bears fan like I am, losing is a regular thing. Oh, and let’s not forget the Cubs too!

Everyone likes to win. But last night, during the football playoffs, some people on social media needed to get a grip! These are only games people!

Yes, I get intense during those games too, but when time runs out and a winner is declared, it’s time to give it a rest and lose with grace.

What does it mean to lose gracefully? For some of us, this review might help!

1) Remember, it’s only a game. Unless you gambled big on this game, the cost of losing just means our team is out of the playoffs. OK, we don’t like it, but this isn’t hunger games! Put it in perspective.

2) Are your kids watching  and observing you when you lose? Don’t forget you are modeling for your kids how to handle losing. They are watching and learning. Hot headed kids usually come from hot headed parents. Think, this is a teaching moment.

3) The shrink is me likes to look at WHY we lost. Last night, horrible defense was the culprit. And personally, I think it is time for a new quarterback. But no on in the Chicago Bears organization is asking my opinion. This is one of those times I have no control over why we lost. In those cases, you have to let it go and not ruminate on what went wrong. When you do have control (e.g., the coach), it helps to look at what could be different next time. We can learn from losses if we use them to review what could change. Failure is a chance to learn.

4) Let off steam during the game but don’t get out of control. When my son was playing soccer in middle school, the parents became so out of control that we were asked to be completely silent for one game. We could only applaud when a child scored a goal. The rest of the game, parents could not comment or talk. It was a little weird, but the parents got the message. Too many were over the top with their yelling and screaming. I’m thinking some of those kids were going to have major daddy issues over the comments yelled at them. Again, it’s only a game and not worth damaging a relationship.

5) Acknowledge the winner. At the end of the 2010 Superbowl, Peyton Manning left the field without shaking the hand of winning quarterback, Drew Brees. Really, Peyton. If you get the chance to do this again in 2014, let’s have a little better attitude. Ok, maybe Peyton was disgusted with himself for the loss, but shake the hand of the opponent and show some respect. Don’t sulk! It’s not becoming.

In the end, losing brings out character–good, bad and the ugly. We’ve got a few more games to go. We can all practice our losing skills because only one team eventually wins! And how we accept loss may be remembered as much as the winning.

 

 

 

Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house,

Not a creature was stirring, but I felt like a louse!

As I gazed at the packages all in a row, I was aghast!

The tree looked bulimic due to my past.

I slumped to the floor and grabbed hold of my man,

We have only two children. There’s enough here for ten!

 

We stared at the swollen piles of toys

Surely this is too much for one girl and boy!

Slowly we picked through the huge bulging pile,

This one can wait for a little more while. 

One for next year, maybe one for a treat,

Whittling the stack, our eyes again meet,

 

We came to our senses,

We lessened the gifts.

Enough was still there

No one would get miffed!

 

Next year, we pledged

Will be different you’ll see

We’ll keep it in balance

When on Santa’s knee.

 

The season is known for its gift giving treats

But Christ was born, to sin’s great defeat.

The baby asleep in that manager so small

Would bring to us peace and joy for all.

 

Our children will know the true meaning of this,

A Christmas where Christ is truly our bliss.

So gather around that more sensible tree

And remember, Jesus, was born for you and for me.  

By Dr. Linda Mintle

Remember the reason for the season!

 

Today’s blog is a 30 minute radio show I did on dealing with difficult family members during the holidays. We all have that obnoxious uncle, cranky grandparent or out of control cousin. How do you deal with these people in the season of good cheer? Listen! Click on the picture for tips on surviving the relatives!

Dr Linda radio

According to marriage researcher, Paul Amato, 60% of divorces in the U.S. are from low conflict couples. This means these divorces were not characterized by abuse, addiction, repeated infidelity, or even high conflict. The marriages just fizzled. Couples stopped paying attention to each other and lost the fun and excitement of relationship. It’s the old, “We are drifting apart,” syndrome.

But the fizzle can easily turn to sizzle with attention and care:

1) Create boundaries around the relationship by reserving time together. Say NO to activities and YES to time alone.If you allow all the distractions of modern living to creep in to your lives, there will be little time for each other.

2) Talk about the relationship becoming mundane and decide to change a few things. Imagine what would add a little zest to the relationship. Novelty revitalizes a relationship. Try new things together. Get out of your routine.

3) Avoid the blame game. It’s the first step towards the slippery slope to divorce.

4) Talk about time for chores, work and tasks around the house. Divide the labor and assign tasks based on skill and what each person likes to do.

5) Control your anger and forgive quickly. Don’t sit on angry feelings and don’t vent them in ways that are disrespectful. Deal with your negative feelings and repair issues quickly. This keeps the emotional bond strong.