Tag Archives: acknowledgement

“It’s not as though I don’t do anything around here!”

"The Kiss" by Mimi Stuart © Live the Life you Desire

“The Kiss” by Mimi Stuart ©
Live the Life you Desire

If someone says, “Did you see all the stuff I did for you today?” ignore your impulse to get defensive or to snap back “I do a lot for you too !” or worse, “Why do you always have to list all the things you’ve done for me!” These types of responses are very detrimental to your relationship.

When people mention the things they’ve done, they simply want acknowledgement and appreciation. Yet many people respond defensively as though they are being attacked. Even IF the other person is implying that you never do anything, show him or her the appreciation desired as follows:

“Thank you so much! I really appreciate it. You are wonderful for doing that for me.” If you want, you could add, “Please let me know when you need help. I would love to do something for you,” or simply do something considerate for them.

So many arguments could be avoided if people could understand the underlying desires that motivate a person’s apparent complaints. It is usually a simple desire for recognition, which should be a joy to satisfy, rather than an excuse to become critical, hostile and argumentative.

To have a loving, trusting, and mutually-enhancing relationship, there must be a constant effort to be kind and see the best in other people and acknowledge them for their efforts. Then everyone will shine and try to live up to their best.

by Dr. Alison Poulsen

Read “Overgeneralization: ‘You never show appreciation.’”

Watch “How to ask for more affection, intimacy and sex…and…how not to.”

Read “Seeking approval: ‘Why doesn’t my father appreciate me and all that I have accomplished?’”


Acknowledging loved ones:
“We don’t really greet each other anymore.”

"Fly By" — Blue Angels by Mimi Stuart ©
Live the Life you Desire

Saying “good morning,” “hello,” “good bye,” or “how are you?” every time you see a loved one or when you leave the house or come back home will make a great deal of difference in your relationship over the long term. It shows that you care and makes your partner feel that he or she is not simply taken for granted. While you don’t have to be melodramatic or sentimental, you don’t want to be perfunctory or hasty either.

An actress recently told me that the way she avoids looking fake when she smiles endlessly for the camera is to think happy or loving thoughts while smiling. If instead she thinks, “I hope I don’t look horrible” or “how long is this going to take?” those thoughts show up in her facial expression, despite the smile.

Similarly, when you greet loved ones, or almost anyone for that matter, they will sense it if you’re thinking, “But where are my keys and how long is this going to take?”

It makes a real difference to put your other thoughts on hold and actually look at your loved ones when you greet them or say “good bye.” Real connection occurs best with full presence of mind and body, giving you the ability to connect with real energy and to receive it as well. The long-term well-being of a relationship is built on all the small moments of acknowledgement, appreciation, kindness, and passion over the years.

by Alison Poulsen, PhD

Read “Respect each other: ‘He’s always talking down to me.’”

Read “Overgeneralization: ‘You never show appreciation.’”

Read “Living together Part I: Manners and Boundaries — ‘What’s the matter with you? Look at this mess you made!’”