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Success B al an ce Immaculate Spaces I t’s a proven fact that coming home to an organized, uncluttered living space has a significant impact on stress levels. But even thinking about reorganizing your home can start giving you palpitations. Luckily, you don’t have to be a Feng Shui master in order to do it right — all it takes is applying a few simple principles. To start, don’t try doing it all at once. Take things one room at a time. Which items do you use in that area? How often? Which items would be better placed somewhere else in the house? Most importantly, which things do you not need at all? Don’t be afraid to be somewhat ruthless with assigning possessions to the trash or donation pile…your aunt will never know you threw out those cutesy stuffed animals she gave you for your 30th birthday. If you haven’t used something in over a year, you probably aren’t going to miss it. Items you want to keep but don’t use frequently, or which you’re holding onto purely for sentimental reasons, should be stored in a watertight container in an out-of-the- way location, such as an attic or closet shelf. Is there a table or counter where you’re always tossing your purse or keys? Place a small table with a drawer or a cute box or canister there to hold them. Assign a drawer in your desk or kitchen for items such as pens and paper, so they don’t end up scattered all over your house. If you tackle the job one small area at a time, you’ll have your whole house in order before you know it. You’ll quickly notice the difference in how you feel when you come home to relax in a tidy, uncluttered space. Conflict Crunchers Discord is a part of life — but it doesn’t have to run the show. While everyone has their own way of settling disputes, some are more effective than others, especially the ones that can turn trouble into inspiration. 26 Sex Talk Are you someone whose sexual desire has plummeted out of sight? Do you feel mystified by your disinterest in sex? Are you angry and frustrated about your sexual relationship? According to author Michele Davis, boosting the marriage libido is crucial in a marriage. Sex is an extremely important part in keeping a marriage together. When it’s good, it offers couples the opportunity to connect emotionally and spiritually. It builds closeness, intimacy a sense of partnership. Sex is a powerful bind. When it’s weak, couples begin to doubt, distance themselves and that’s when infidelity may play a role in the marriage. When people believe their spouse is not attracted to them and their feelings are not being heard, they begin to feel depressed. This causes a big void in the marriage. Explaining these feelings to the other spouse can be hard, and is often dismissed. I’ve had clients explain that their spouse has said, “If you weren’t so controlling you would just accept that I am not that physical.” I call this emotionally unavailable. So what do you need to do to stay happily married? Be more tuned to the feelings and needs of your spouse. Once you start paying more attention to your sexual relationship, your partner will become a happier person. It means you are willing to be more emotionally involved by thinking not only about yourself but about each other. When you show you are more caring by making sex a bigger priority in your marriage, your spouse will appreciate your efforts and become more caring toward you. Your spouse may begin to open up more and notice your strengths, rather than criticize you. So get started. Dedicate more time to each other. It may even take you back to the times in your relationship when it was just right. L isette Beraja is a Psychotherapist, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist & Founder of Beraja Counseling Center. For more than 10 years, she has provided guidance and counseling to individuals, families and couples. She is also a Florida Supreme Court Family Mediator and an 11th Judicial Court approved Parenting Coordinator. To set up an appointment, call 305.858.7763 or visit BerajaCounseling.com. Breaking Point Private Moment Comedy Central Emotions can run hot before they eventually cool down to saner temperatures. Before you launch into a full-scale war, take some time to simmer down. You may find your big issue looks a lot smaller after a few hours. Sometimes the open-door policy isn’t best. Often airing out problems in public can turn into a magnet for drama. Try hashing things out one-on-one in a place where you won’t be interrupted. Adding humor to a situation can be an effective way to diffuse tension — but be careful to do it properly. Laughing at the wrong time, or in the wrong way, can be like pouring gasoline on a fire.