Relationship Rules

“They may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel.”
— Carl W. Buechner

The past few weeks have been very busy in work, and there’s less time for me to write my thoughts here. However, I still made the conscious effort to read after work so here I am, sharing bits and pieces of what I learned about the book I’ve read.

First off, my reason for reading this book is to obviously understand how romantic relationships work. I thought, maybe I need to learn about this aspect of life before I actually try to dive into it. I think I’m ready for a relationship, but after reading this book, I realize there are lots of things to learn! Haha!!! Plus, most of my girl friends are in a relationship so it’s really hard when they’re going through a tough time and I don’t even know what to say to console them. So here I am, admitting I’m very rusty in my idea of dating and romantic relationships so I’ve scouted books about it.

After scanning Amazon, I’ve bought Relationship Rules by Janice Hoffman for just about $5 (kindle version). It is quite a quick read, with about 12 rules about relationships discussed by the author. It is more like a guidebook for both men and women on how each can wiggle through the world of their romantic relationship. This book includes advice on what to do specifically addressed for men, and then women afterwards.

I’ll be sharing the 12 rules mentioned in the book here, and if you’re quite interested to specifically know more, you can also buy the book. I’m not affiliated in any way with the author, but I guess her guidelines about romantic relationships helped me a lot as I’ve used her book to give insights to a friend who recently went through a breakup. While reading the book, it was also easy for me to pick a verse or two from the Bible that might relate to those rules.

So, without further ado, here’s the 12 Relationship Rules outlined by Janice Hoffman in Creating a Love that Lasts:

  1. Help your partner succeed in making you happy. Leave hints, notes, or wish lists. In this way, a woman can get what she wants without asking directly, and a man can feel successful in making his partner happy.
  2. Listen without interrupting. Refrain from giving unsolicited advice or suggestions. Practice putting yourself in your partner’s shoes.
  3. Help your partner relieve stress. Women relieve stress when they can talk freely about their emotions and feel heard and understood. Men relieve stress by disassociating themselves from their thoughts and feelings.
  4. Appreciate your partner for their efforts, big and small. Men are motivated by being appreciated; women are motivated by acts of caring.
  5. Know how men and women keep score in a relationship. Women grant points for the positive things men do, say, and give. Men give women big points for being let off the hook and for being appreciated.
  6. Every day, pledge to give your partner one loving act, one affectionate gesture, one kind word or compliment. Never miss an opportunity to tell your partner how much you care.
  7. Know when to take a time-out. Make sure you schedule time to talk later. Women especially need to know they won’t be forgotten or blown off.
  8. Set aside time to spend together at least once a week. This is your time to reconnect, not to discuss finances, children, or careers.
  9. Be aware of how you spend your sexual energy. How you behave around the opposite sex will have an effect on how you relate to your partner.
  10. Take responsibility for your own happiness. By doing this you will find more peace and joy in your life.
  11. Actively practice forgiveness, both for your partner and for yourself. We all make mistakes. Forgiveness is the foundation of a strong relationship.
  12. When you love someone, tell them. Never assume they already know.

The rules I’ve shared here are exactly the points of Janice Hoffman in her book, but she also added specific advice for men and women on how these guidelines can be applied in real situations. To be honest, these concepts are eye-opening for me and once I’m in a relationship, I’ll be sure to refer to these rules. 😊

How about you? Do you agree with these rules? Do you have experiences that may relate to one or more of these rules? Hit the comment button below if you do! 😁

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Lineage of Grace & Sons of Encouragement

For the past month, I have been reading the book series Lineage of Grace and Sons of Encouragement by Francine Rivers. I have been affected by these books in such a way that it is necessary to blog about the wisdom and the faith I’ve learned along the way.

 

For my next series of posts, I’ll be sharing my thoughts about each book as an answer to the Seek and Find portion. I hope that you’ll bear with me and be encouraged eventually.

 

To start, I’ll give you a background as to why I’ve chosen the series. As a Christmas present, a friend gave Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami. I enjoyed reading the book as it allowed me to immerse into the author’s unconscious and conscious mind about the protagonist’s coming of age while in the university. It talked about love, death, depression, sex and how these can affect the person mentally and emotionally. However, the after-effect of the book made me go back to the reason why I veered away from books dealing with such things:

 

Depression is just lurking any time of the day, and my mind is a battleground I need to defend from the enemies. Whatever I put into my mind will affect me spiritually, emotionally, physically and intellectually. Books and music are my weapons to keep defending my battleground against the enemy.

 

I have been depressed for a few days, so when I chanced upon Francine Rivers (my fave author) and her book series in Kindle Store, I bought the books and was not disappointed so far. Here’s a quick description of each series:

 

  • Lineage of Grace is a book compilation about the stories of five women in the Bible who have become part of the lineage of Abraham to Jesus Christ. These women — Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, Bathsheba, and Mary — have been mentioned in the Bible for their faith in God, and their stories tell about the risks they have to take to show their faith and fulfill their calling. This book has been 2009 Retailer’s Choice Award winner, and no wonder why. I have finished 3 of the 5 books and I felt compelled to write my own realizations to share to you.
  • Books included: Unveiled, Unashamed, Unshaken, Unspoken, Unafraidlineage-of-grace_300

 

  • Sons of Encouragement tells us about the stories of five men in the Bible who supported and stood behind the heroes of the faith in their journey to lead the people of God. These men — Aaron, Caleb, Jonathan, Amos and Silas had their hearts turned towards God. As each man responded to God’s call to support His chosen leaders, each became a man with courage and purpose, and eventually changed the course of history for the Israelites, and for anyone who believes in God.
  • Books included: The Priest, The Warrior, The Prince, The Prophet, The Scribesons-of-encouragement_3001

So there. A short description apt for the series of posts I’ll be writing in the next days or weeks. Though these series have been only a work of fiction; these, however, definitely gave me an idea on what could have transpired during the old testament times. It arouse in me faith like no other, especially when reading the miracles God made through Moses and Joshua. I admit, I have a hard time reading through the old testament, but these work of fiction gave me a reason to look forward to reading those stories in the Bible again.

 

For anyone interested in reading the books in the series, I highly recommend it! You can even refer to the Old Testament stories in the Bible if you wanted to have a peek at what will happen at the end. Hehe.

 

Lastly, the books are good for group discussion with its Seek and Find portion. Definitely, if you’re up to learning more and applying it to your daily life, you can answer those and have a conversation with your trusted friends. These will be a good introspection practice on your end. 🙂

 

Answers to Prayers

Happy New Year! 🙂

 

I hope you’ve had a good fill of the previous year, and that you are quite looking forward to new and exciting things this 2018. As for me, I have updated my so called “faith goals,” in time for Victory Makati and Every Nation’s annual prayer and fasting during the first week of January.  I have started participating in our prayer and fasting about 12 years ago, when I was a sophomore in college, and just a new convert from Roman Catholic to Born-Again Christian. Ever since then, I make sure to set-aside time not only to lessen the food I’ve accumulated the previous year (wink), but most especially to humble myself before God at the start of each year.

 

So now, about my faith goals. These are actually prayer requests I have, but I’m in faith that God will answer them within the year. Some are small and petty, some are life-changing. Over the years, I’ve come to realize how immature and self-centered I am when I was younger, and how God has shaped my character (and my prayers) to what He wanted me to become. When I look back, I’m thankful that I’ve received YES from certain prayers, and a consistent NO from other ones. I thought to myself, if I have instead received YES from those prayers, I might not be where I am supposed to be right now, plus I maybe miserable right now. 

 

Before anything else, I’d like to give you an idea about what I believe are God’s answers to our prayers. There are three I can think of:

 

YES – these are always according to what God wants to happen in our life, at the moment. He gives a resounding YES if our prayers are according to His will — that is, it is not opposite to what the bible says, and according to His perfect timing that will either help us, or use us to help other people. 

NO – these answers will be hurtful to us at times. There will also be times when we get confused to receive a resounding NO from God, but He knows everything. So He definitely knows the best for us and it’s only a matter of trusting Him for a better one. 

NOT YET – it means, WAIT my child. Our prayers may be according to God’s will, but not yet in His perfect timing. God wants you to grow in your character while waiting for an answered prayer. That could be more patience, more faith, and more contentment where God has put you where you are right now. 

 

With these answers to prayers, let me share to you some personal answers from prayers I’ve had over the years, in hopes that it may encourage you to remain hopeful for a better 2018:

 

FAMILY – if you’ve followed this blog over the years, you’ll know I came from a broken family and my father has left us in the dark years ago. When I was assigned in General Santos City for work, I had the opportunity to see my father again, and tell him I’ve forgiven him for what happened, as I’ve written in this post . This answered prayer is  my most memorable answered prayer, yet cross fingers.

 

RELATIONSHIPS – for some time, I’ve been asking God to meet people whom I can consider as real friends, who will be there for me through ups, down, and all the sideways of my journey in life. God has given me a support group (as you can read here) to whom I can share my life with, and while waiting for a romantic partner, they have made my life joyful, colorful and contented with what I have at the moment.

 

CAREER – for this one, after I graduated in college, I’ve always asked God to give me a career and put me in a workplace where I would grow professionally, emotionally, and spiritually. This one is tricky — because there are so many times I want to resign from work, or look for another place to go to for financial reasons, but all throughout, I’ve realized that God has been teaching me and allowing me to grow professionally, emotionally and spiritually through my workplace. In this post, this one, and another one, God has been faithful all throughout. Have I mentioned last year about an answered prayer? God gave me a promotion to the next level in my current role — where I am not that stressed, but instead enjoying the projects I’m doing right now to improve one aspect of PH education. What’s more, I have a supportive manager and colleagues that I’m truly thankful for.

 

MINISTRY – since I started my walk with God when I joined Victory, it has been my desire to share the unconditional love I’ve received to anyone who is willing to listen. So in the past three years, thankfully, God has used me as an instrument to become an encouragement to a group of women, and lead them to a more fruitful spiritual walk with God with my motivation as written here.

 

So there. Those are the answers to my prayers. How about you? Are you in faith for new things this year? Let me encourage you with this verse:

6-7 Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.

Philippians 4:6-7 (MSG)

Sharing my Music

When I’m busy, stressed, down, tired or disappointed, I always go to my music playlist to lift up my spirit. Whenever life throws rocks instead of lemons back at me, I make sure to listen to these songs so I can just build a house made of rock, and become stronger than ever before.


 

Doctor Day Today

For the past week, I’ve been under the weather due to changes in season. Well, actually, this has become an annual thing due to my allergy (allergic rhinitis).

1) Allergic Rhinitis 

What is allergic rhinitis?

Allergic rhinitis, otherwise known as hay fever, is an inflammation in the sinus that occurs when our immune system reacts to allergens. Symptoms include nasal stuffiness, sneezing, itchy nose, and watery eyes. If it gets worse, additional symptoms include dry cough, sore throat, headache and clogged ears.

 

What causes allergic rhinitis?

As someone with allergic rhinitis, when I  breathe in an allergen like pollen, mold, animal dander, smoke or dust, my body releases a chemical called histamine. Histamine is a chemical my body releases that helps get rid of foreign matter inside — in this case, the allergen. Since the body is on defense mode with the help of histamines, inflammation then happens on the sinuses, which produces more mucus; thus, giving the vibe of runny nose, sneezing and other allergic symptoms.

 

Triggers for Allergic Rhinitis

It started when I was still in college. I have weak immune system and during ber months, changes in season make the trees and flowers release more pollen into the air. I didn’t know it by then, but I remember, I was bed-ridden for almost a week because my allergy led to complications in my respiratory system. I was having difficulty breathing, and with runny nose, my normal buddy would be a tissue or a clean handkerchief. I thought it was just simple cold and cough, but when I checked with the doctor, I discovered I had allergic rhinitis.

 

So then, I bought medicines and had my bed rest. After a few days, I was back on track and became productive once again.

 

But then…

 

Through the years, every time the season changes every October to November, I realized my allergy will kick in. I’ve consulted with several doctors regarding my allergic, and had variations in my medicines. One thing is for sure though, my over-the-counter for a year would be different the next year. I guess my body becomes immune.  That’s when I realized it’s important to have a consultation with a doctor every time this allergy starts to manifest.

 

Another info my doctor told me: allergic rhinitis can also be triggered by either of these: extreme heat, extreme cold, extreme stress and smoke or jeepney exhaust. If I get to situations with these, more likely, I’ll be experiencing my allergic symptoms in no time. So, what do I do?

Strategy for Relief

There will be times it’s easy to ditch this allergy, but mostly, it’s like these symptoms wanted to stay and camp out on my body. So I normally try to avoid the triggers. For medicines, I always have to consult the doctor just to make sure I’m not immune to my medication, but in case of emergencies, I always have these available in my wallet:

Antihistamines, Decongestants, Antibacterial tablets 

I won’t be mentioning any brand, as it is important to check in with your doctor. But just in case, these info might help as well.

 

2) Tooth Extraction
I can’t remember the last time I had tooth extraction. So, when my dentist mentioned I’ll be scheduled for one because really, my tooth hurts, it made me nervous.

My dentist gave me antibiotics a week ago to consume before my schedule. I actually forgot to take in some days and when I mentioned it to my dentist, she specifically scolded me, saying I have to complete the cycle; otherwise, it won’t be effective. I was tired taking so many medicines I just agreed to what she said.

Anyway, I’m on the dental chair, and I’m scheduled for three tooth extraction. My dentist started the procedure by giving me anesthesia and there, for almost two hours, my dentist was able to extra two teeth. One in the upper part and one in the lower part. I still have another one scheduled, but I waved the white flag as I feel so tired with the procedure. I guess I’ll just come back tomorrow.

With these procedure, I realized two things:

  1. Take good care of your teeth while you’re still young.
  2. Take good care of your teeth even when you grow up.

 

As you grow older, your teeth will form part of how you look, and with a deformed teeth, you’ll have less confidence about yourself. Well, I have sweet tooth and when I was younger, every time there are candies available, I would always grab one and forget to brush my teeth afterwards. Now that I’m older and always checks with my dentist to ensure my teeth won’t hinder my productivity, I realized it’s quite expensive and might be too late to salvage parts that will not grow any longer. 😦

 

So, as I’ve been to the doctor for most of today, here’s my realizations:


1) Rest is important. 

No matter how busy we are, our body can only do well until a certain exertion. So, it is really important to have those complete sleep and play once in a while to avoid expensive medicines. Our body gives us signals it’s time to slow down your pace and enjoy every moment of our life.

 

2) Follow your doctor. 

If your doctor advised you finish taking your medicines for seven (7) days, do it. It is to make sure your body will respond effectively and not take on more complications.

 

3) Exercise.

I’m not fond of exercising because my goal is to gain mass. Whenever I exercise, I feel a lot lighter, and away from my ideal  body weight. However, one of the benefits of exercising is that it increases the strength of your immune system to any diseases. I remember when I was in college, one of the reasons I have less attacks for my allergic rhinitis is because I started swimming. Twice a week back then, I would be under the water. After several months though, I felt much more stronger and much more alive. Now that I’m working, I realized exercise is much more needed to keep our body healthy.

So now, I’m on my way to bed and taking my time to rest. One good thing about being sick though is that I have more time to rest and read. If you are reading this, I hope you take time to take good care of yourself no matter how busy you become. Why? Because we only have one body and God wants us to rest too, just as He rested on the seventh day. 🙂