The post-holiday transition to “real life” tends to inspire the motivation to create some new habits and undo some bad ones. The let-down also highlights the places we’d like a total overhaul – like in our marriage.

But, starting over in your marriage can feel overwhelming, if not absolutely impossible. Our tendency is to feel stuck in a rut because that’s just the way it’s always been. Or to feel stuck because no matter what you do, it seems like you’re beating your head against a wall.

It helps to reframe the context, to change your focus from what has been (and what’s not changing) to who you can become. If you think about it, there is no other realm of your life in which you are so deeply challenged to consider who you are and who you want to be. If you let that be the filter for your motivation to change, then the wiser questions to ask yourself are: What’s my next right step? How do I become the person I want to be? What do I need to do to create safety, trust, friendship, and camaraderie? Then seek the support you need and begin to do those things.

Your spouse may not choose to make the same changes, and your marriage may not look much different to the onlooker. Yet, you will be different. Your perspective will be broader, and your attitude more gracious. You will also more readily see how to build healthy boundaries into your relationship, and by looking to God to guide and protect you, you can focus on the hard work of personal growth.

We would love to help you take steps to make 2016 a great year for your marriage. Contact us for a free 20 minute consultation and to learn more about how we can help at 206.219.0415 or

Sharmen Kimbrough MA

Sharmen Kimbrough, MA has a passion for helping untangle the chaos of relationships and has expertise in healing from verbal/emotional abuse, narcissistic victim syndrome, and issues surrounding separation and divorce. She has more than 10 years of experience in non-profit and clinical settings, and has a Master’s Degree in Professional Counseling from Liberty University. Her work with the Marriage Recovery Center has brought healing to hundreds of women and couples who are dealing with abusive behaviors in their relationships.

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