12 Ways To Break Bad Relationship Habits

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winter couple
... and live happily ever after.

Do you have bad relationship habits? Of course you do. Who doesn't? That's why we asked over 100 YourTango Experts the following question: What are the most effective ways to overcome toxic relationship habits?

The top three picks were: replacing them with more positive behaviors/habits, attending couples therapy and attending individual talk therapy. But those aren't the only ways to overcome bad habits. Here are 12 additional, expert-endorsed strategies you can try:


1. Get past your past. Very often, without realizing it, your toxic relationships repeat patterns from your childhood. Look at the pattern that you are replaying. Now consider what from your past you are still "working out." Once you deal with the real, root issue, you're unlikely to get involved with a relationship that's toxic in the future. —Dr. Karen Sherman

2. Take stock. Too often in relationships we wear "love goggles" that don't allow us to look clearly at who a person really is. Take a sheet of paper and make two columns. On one side, list the things you had hoped for in a relationship. On the other side, list the reality of what the relationship is like. Keep this list in your wallet for emergencies! —Dr. Karen Sherman

3. Imagine. Nothing works as well as visualizations for the future. Start by seeing the best of you — how you walk, hold yourself, manage yourself in all your empowered strength. Next, visualize a partner who respects and appreciates you. After all, you become what you imagine. —Dr. Karen Sherman

4. Female pow-wow.  Form new emotional bonds and have daily conversations with female friends working through similar breakups and transitions. These supportive conversations can warm your aching soul. —Dr. Eryn Oberlander

5. Body care. Take good care of that body that's going (temporarily) untouched and unnoticed!  Exercise, massage and self-applied body butters and perfumes are good substitute sensual treats. —Dr. Eryn Oberlander

6. New ideas and voices. Gift yourself some new books or magazines to fill in the void of this in-between time. Learn new ideas and concepts, which can even be sprinkled into new date conversation. If your ears crave those masculine tones, listen to audiobooks read in baritone! —Dr. Eryn Oberlander

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Article contributed by

Dr. Karen Sherman


Dr. Karen Sherman is a Psychologist and radio host of Your Empowered Relationship as well as the co-author of "Marriage Magic! Find It, Keep It, and Make it Last" and award winning "Mindfulness and The Art of Choice: Transform Your Life." Her experet advice is sought after in print, radio, and TV. 
Connect with Dr. Karen through her FREE 21-day program or monthly newsletter
Location: Long Island, NY
Credentials: PhD
Website: http://www.DrKarenSherman.com


Location: Plainview, NY
Credentials: MFT, NCC, PhD
Specialties: Couples/Marital Issues
Advanced Member

Kathe Skinner

Marriage and Family Therapist

Kathe Skinner, M.A.





Location: Colorado Springs, CO
Credentials: LMFT, MA
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