Category: Peter Sandhill

On Building Healthy Relationships

Peter Sandhill

The people we surround ourselves with influence everything in our lives, from how we feel when we wake up to the decisions we make. It’s a blessing when we find people who love and support us, even through tough times. However, building healthy relationships and working through difficulties doesn’t just happen because two people are compatible. They must work hard to build a healthy relationship through communication and commitment from both parties.

The good news is that everyone is capable of building healthy relationships together, even if it is tough work. Below, we’re sharing details on how you can build healthy relationships with your loved ones with the expertise of Peter Sandhill.

What Makes a Relationship Healthy? 

The answer to this question will be different for everyone because every couple is unique. To assess whether your relationship is healthy, you must have a deep and honest conversation with your partner. According to Mr. Sandhill, a true partnership will stem from honesty and vulnerability as you truly get to know the core of another human and all the complexities of human life.

However, some foundational characteristics are proven to keep the partnership fulfilling and meaningful. The following five pillars will form a healthy relationship: 

  • Communication
  • Controversy with Civility
  • Healthy Intimacy
  • Outside Interests and Self-Improvement
  • Evaluate the Relationship

This is not an exhaustive list but rather the foundation that the healthy relationship thrives on. Both people in the relationship need to be satisfied with each of these five pillars for fulfillment. 

Below, we’re breaking down each of the five pillars that Sandhill writes about, so you can gain insight about your relationship.

1. Communication

While this might seem like a textbook answer, it is still as relevant today as it was in previous generations. The key behind falling in love and staying in love is communication. 

When you first fall in love, you present your best self and tend to overlook flaws. As you continue to fall for your partner, you need to acknowledge those flaws and communicate through the now-broken rose-colored glasses. 

Communication involves listening and being proactive when there are misunderstandings. Sandhill believes it’s important for each person to speak up and address their needs as a way to promote communication. For example, if you are feeling neglected by your partner, let them know it is time for a date night. If you recently worked through a conflict, reflect on it and how to prevent it in the future. 

Sandhill also warns against the dangers of side-stepping communication with a partner when there are outside stressors from work, family, schedule changes, etc. Sandhill insists on not hiding anything and continuing personal conversations with a partner, even if the subject is uncomfortable. If you sideline your partner, the foundation of your relationship will start to crumble.

2. Controversy with Civility 

You might read that and think, “What? How? Controversy is inherently uncivil.” 

Well, controversy with civility just means tackling issues head-on without losing your cool. It is listening with an open heart and mind and respecting each other. 

Maintaining civility during a fight means you maintain respect for your partner and their concerns. It may mean letting them walk away or observing non-verbal cues to know when they are approaching their limit. Sandhill encourages people to remember that Rome was not built in a day and not all issues can be resolved before bedtime. The more that you can be patient and stay civil during a controversy, the faster you will resolve and decrease tension. 

3. Healthy Intimacy

Part of a healthy partnership is solid intimacy. Sex should bring you together and not be used as a tool to gain favor. Sandhill reminds us that intimacy also goes beyond sex and includes other forms of touch, like hugging, kissing, or holding hands, all of which can be just as impactful as sexual intercourse. This is because affectionate contact boosts oxytocin, the hormone that influences attachment and bonding.

4. Outside Interests and Self Improvement 

If you do not love yourself, you will find it hard to love someone else. Take the time to develop your own identity and interests outside the relationship. According to Sandhill, this will help you develop independence and make the answer to ‘how was your day?’ all the more interesting. 

5. Evaluate the Relationship

While the word ‘evaluate’ might sound clinical, it is important to check in during those ups and downs. Outside events, like job loss or health issues, can make or break even the strongest foundations. By evaluating the relationship during stressful times, you create opportunities to bridge gaps immediately rather than sort out misunderstandings later.

The Bottom Line 

There is a reason the early stages of a partnership is called ‘the honeymoon phase.’ This is because it can’t last forever, and, according to Sandhill, it’s the least important part of any relationship. What matters is the work you put after the honeymoon phase. 

Remember that you are in a partnership with another human being, filled with the same complex emotions and stressors. The way they approach life may be different, but it is no less valid. 

A relationship is a team and continuing to move forward will be based on those healthy foundations. In the darkest times, reflect on early moments — good and bad — that defined who you both are today. Change is inevitable, and it is up to both of you if you want to embrace it or fight it. Either way, this adaptability and foundation will help you create and maintain a solid, strong partnership. 

Peter Sandhill Discusses the Impact of COVID-19 on Social Wellness

During the first few months of the COVID-19 pandemic, American health officials noted a stark uptick in depression and mental illnesses due to social isolation. The pandemic caused one of the most widespread isolation events in history thanks to social distancing, remote working, and online education. Although essential workers were still able to attend their place of work and socially interact throughout their day, the other 52% of Americans, and 28% who live alone, experienced little to no human contact for the majority of the pandemic. Overall, the COVID-19 pandemic and social distancing orders caused national levels of loneliness to rise by 30% and emotional distress within the United States to triple. For the past 10 years, Peter Sandhill, a workshop leader and wellness counselor, has spoken at a number of conventions and events on the importance of social wellness. In light of the past year’s events, Peter Sandhill will today discuss the importance of social wellness and the risks and warning signs associated with social isolation. 

While dealing with severe depression or anxiety, it is common for those experiencing mental distress to isolate themselves from their family and friends. Although periods of isolation are common for different mental diseases and may not require immediate attention from loved ones, if periods last for long stretches of time, it can affect a person’s mental health, lead to dementia, Alzheimer’s, and increase the risk of heart disease. 

While historically, the groups most likely to experience social isolation were solely the elderly, marginalized groups, and immigrants, the COVID-19 pandemic has shown the American public that anyone can be impacted by social isolation. It is now more important than ever that Americans can recognize the symptoms and early warning signs of social isolation to help themselves and their loved ones during times of little to no social connection. It is important to note that, in the past, researchers have reported that those in specific age groups will show different symptoms of loneliness compared to other isolated people in other age groups. Those between the ages of 18-49 may have difficulty concentrating at work or school and increase their volume of food, while children below the age of 18 are more likely to experience behavioral and emotional distress. However, the most common warning signs of unhealthy social isolation across age groups include: 

–        Lack of sleep and poor self-care

–        Aggressive behavior and apathy 

–        Feelings of extreme depression and social anxiety 

–        Feeling of distress during long periods of solitude

–        Avoiding social interactions or previously enjoyable activities

Peter Sandhill Discusses Methods to Build Environmental Wellness

As many Americans discovered during the COVID-19 pandemic, our surroundings severely impact our overall well-being. Our homes, workplaces, parks, and cities all play a profound role in our daily lives and should be seen as an extension of the self and, moreover, our responsibility. Environmental wellness encompasses this belief and promotes having respect for and awareness of our surrounding and playing an active role in our bettering our community. Peter Sandhill, a personal development counselor, is a major proponent of the seven dimensions of wellness and believes that although environmental wellness is incredibly impactful, is often overlooked by American society. For this reason, below, Peter Sandhill will provide an overview of environmental health and share ways individuals can start improving their personal and shared environments. 

Bring the Outdoors Inside 

One of the most effective and affordable ways to improve environmental wellness is to incorporate plants into your living space. Not only do indoor plants help to improve the look of a space, but they also have been shown to provide homeowners with a variety of health and mental benefits. A variety of studies have proven that indoor plants can increase productivity and concentration, reduce stress levels, and improve moods making them ideal additions to the home or workplace. 

Find Relaxing Spaces Outside the Home

Throughout the day, we can find ourselves overwhelmed by daily life and our surrounding. When we feel overwhelmed or stressed, we must find places to decompress and enjoy the world around us. While people often cite their home as the only place they feel comfortable decompressing, it may not be possible to return home to calm down or take a breath during the workday. Whether it be a park, courtyard, or café, it is important to find a location that has elements of nature, where you can center yourself and de-stress before returning to your day.

Care for the Environment Around You 

As discussed within this blog, the state of the planet and environment play an essential part in our daily lives. To work towards healthier living, we must acknowledge the connection between our environment and our well-being. When building greater environmental wellness, we must consider the ways we can have a positive impact on the environment. Whether it’s recycling, using reusable water bottles, or bicycling to work, having a positive impact on the environment does not only benefit the planet but our mental health.

Peter Sandhill on How Couples Can Maintain and Enrich Their Existing Relationships

Peter Sandhill points to the several ways couples can maintain their connection

Peter Sandhill has shown a profound interest in educating others on the ways that partners can build a healthy relationship. As a motivational speaker, he finds that another important aspect of relationships is the legwork required to keep them fruitful and beneficial for both parties. Relationships are living, breathing, systems, and a concerted effort by both partners to keep things working smoothly will always go a long way towards its longevity. Maintaining a relationship does not need to be difficult, however, and prioritization of simple methods should be successful. Here, Peter Sandhill discusses a few effective ways that couples can enrich their existing relationships.

Keep Quality Time a Priority

Life can be full of responsibilities and, in the thick of things, it can be difficult to ensure that quality time is not lost in the shuffle. Couples that are making an active effort to maintain their relationship should always try to prioritize and protect quality time together. Whether it be date nights, structured free time together, playing games, etc. isolating time for just the two of you will work to maintain the bond that brought you together in the first place. As relationships age, couples sometimes forget the importance of enjoying each other’s company and fully focusing on shared moments. If you keep quality time carved into your schedules, you will remember just how valuable it is for maintaining the relationship.

Show Appreciation

Over the course of Peter Sandhill’s career, he has seen many couples that just did not seem to see eye to eye on their issues. A common point of contention amongst couples is that, as relationships age, they can become routine. For example, if a partner always makes sure that their significant other’s lunch is packed, they may stop receiving thanks for that small act of service. This could be a source of tension if the partner making the lunches values the small display of appreciation for what they have done. Couples should always try to make sure that appreciation is properly shown for both routine tasks and larger ones.  Not only does this show that you fully value what your partner does, but it also keeps negative feelings linked to underappreciation more of a nonfactor in your relationship.

Do Not Stop Listening

When you spend a lot of time with someone, it may not be possible to listen to and recall everything that they have said over the course of your relationship. Still, Peter Sandhill speaks to our natural desire to be listened to and how damaging not hearing out a partner can be to the longevity of a relationship. From simple things such as how work was today to bigger conversations such as wants, needs, and goals, strive to be as attentive and focused on conversation as possible. One of the biggest troubles that couples on the brink of separation face is that they stop listening to each other and working to ensure that the other is truly heard. Peter Sandhill notes that this often spells disaster because, like many things in life, or feelings are subject to eb and flow. To stay in sync with our partner, we should be listening to how they feel now, not simply how things may have been before.

Peter Sandhill Discusses Tips for Building Healthy and Strong Relationships

As a motivational speaker with years of study of interpersonal relationships under his belt, Peter Sandhill is commonly asked questions about how people can utilize self-improvement principles to build a strong relationship with a partner. While there are countless ways to build and maintain healthy relationships, Peter Sandhill notes that many of them boil down to avoiding stagnation and unhealthy behaviors by remaining thoughtful and proactive. Here, Peter Sandhill speaks to some of his favorite ways to play an active role in making a relationship work.

Practice Good Communication

One of the most important facets of a healthy relationship is communication, and Peter Sandhill recommends working on communication skills as a couple to reduce problems along the way. Communication in a relationship can work in many ways. For example, being clear about one’s needs can be great for ensuring that they are met throughout the relationship. People in relationships can sometimes forget that not all aspects of communication are directly verbal. Understanding a partner’s body language cues can go a long way towards communicating and building a healthy union without putting the onus of being understood directly on them. Peter Sandhill also notes the importance of good listening as a component of healthy communication. No one enjoys feeling as though they are not heard out in conversation, and many issues can be resolved by simply listening and working to come to fruitful conclusions.

Find Productive Ways to Express Disagreements

Most couples will have disagreements at one point or another in their relationship, and sometimes the difference between an unhealthy and healthy relationship is how these disagreements materialize. Peter Sandhill acknowledges that disagreements can be great for getting points across, but speaks to how we should be wary of letting these devolve into arguments. After all, it has been proven time and time again that humans are not great at listening to one another during arguments. Instead of yelling and engaging in an unproductive back and forth, always try to contextualize disagreements as you and your partner against the situation. The goal should always be to work on the issue at hand, and the best way to do so is to try your best to be calm when these discussions occur.

Maintain Intimacy

Intimacy in all its forms is often considered an instrumental part of healthy relationships. Peter Sandhill recommends thinking of more than just sex as a reflection of intimacy. Hugging, handholding, sharing enjoyable activities together, and a host of other actions are equally helpful for making you and your partner feel both valued and connected. Intimacy also does not need to be physical either, as connecting on an emotional level is equally important to building and maintaining a healthy relationship. For example, complimenting your partner, making time for dates without the expectation of sex, and sharing thoughts and dreams can be excellent ways to keep the emotional spark as well. 

Work on Yourself

Peter Sandhill recognizes that healthy relationships are much easier to build and uphold when both individuals in the couple are continuously working on themselves to improve. Even the most upstanding of us have behaviors and routines that could be considered unhealthy and could potentially cause stress within a relationship. To build a healthy relationship is not to be completely without these flaws, but to work towards the self-awareness that will allow you to rise above them to be the best person and partner that you can be. Healthy relationships are often comprised of two people that can be perfectly content alone but feel as though these feelings are amplified by being together. While it can be difficult to evaluate oneself and one’s relationships critically, doing so can improve the quality of your interpersonal relationships by fixing them from the inside out.

Evaluate Your Relationship

Peter Sandhill realizes that some couples may find it awkward to discuss their relationship at length together, but it can be a truly valuable tool for evaluating how things are going. When thinking about your relationship, it is always helpful to consider what is working best and what areas you may want to see some change. Peter Sandhill notes that, while this can feel incredibly personal, it is important to remember that wants and needs can change throughout the duration of even the healthiest relationships. Staying up to date and on the same page can ensure that both of your needs are met before anything grows into a potential issue. For best results, never go into evaluating a relationship with only an idea of what you need your partner to do. Always be mindful of what you could do to contribute to the quality of your relationship as well.

Life Coach Peter Sandhill says Tantra can Provide New Perspective some Couples Require

All relationships will have hurdles to clear. There’s no couple who proves to be the completely compatible fit for each other. What’s more, mental and emotional strains put on these people by the ongoing health pandemic can exacerbate existing tensions. It is the opinion of Peter Sandhill, a personal effectiveness coach who largely works with couples, that a romantic resolution is possible. This includes tantra, which is “slow, non-orgasmic sexual intercourse,” according to Best Health magazine. Part of the coaching that Peter Sandhill provides to his clients is rooted in relationship problems; he views tantra as one way to start seeing eye-to-eye with your partner.

For the newcomers, Men’s Journal magazine traces tantra back to being an “ancient” tradition “that influenced both Hinduism and Buddhism.” In some cases, the setting is more important than the actual act of sexual intercourse. This is about bonding with your partner and establishing a deep connection is the first step. This can be accomplished through breathing rituals and eye-gazing techniques. Peter Sandhill suggests taking note of the variety of emotions that occur during these first steps, as they may prove enlightening to review at a later date. The next important step, according to Men’s Journal, is the Yab-Yum position. “The partners should embrace each other fully and try to synchronize their breaths,” the article states. “The closeness of this position helps people to physically and mentally appreciate their partnership to the fullest.” As previously mentioned, sex – in its commonly accepted definition – is optional here. The overall point of this exercise is to get in sync with your partner. The methodical steps that are part of tantra ensure that a slow and deliberate period of close contact is maintained. That might be enough to achieve whatever goals the couple had as part of the process.

“In our over-scheduled lives, we rarely stop and intently focus on our partner. Practicing tantric sex can enhance your relationship and your sexual pleasure in several ways,” according to Best Health magazine. In his professional role, Peter Sandhill tends to agree. A sense of connection can last long after the tantra session and this can improve aspects of the relationship far from the bedroom. That’s also one of the important goals here, as the stresses of 2020 are bound to linger for many more months, if not years. If you feel like your relationship has been pushed to the limit, Peter Sandhill suggests seeking out a life coach or other professional who can shed more light on tantra.