Nurturing Commitment - Relationship Goals

Nurturing Commitment | The Kardia Blog Happy Monday everyone! I hope you all had a wonderful Easter weekend! I sure did, the sun was out and birds were chirping. It's so beautiful :)

I'm so excited to be co-hosting the Marriage and Relationship Goals linkup with Amberly, Charlene, and Rebecca today. This linkup has been one of my favorites since I've started blogging. It encourages me to intentionally work on my relationship with Caleb every day through goal setting.

At the very beginning of 2015, Caleb and I choose a word to focus on in our relationship for the entire year:


This is the first time I've linked up since January. Hopefully now as the semester is winding down and I'm less busy, I can linkup every month! Our goal for January was to nurture our endeavors and grow them as a team. Since then, Caleb and I have made a point to help each other with different aspects of our lives. In his business, I answer the emails and set up the website. For my blog, he takes photos and helps me come up with ideas. We've learned to work together to accomplish things.

Keeping with the theme of nurture, this month we'll be focusing on:

Nurturing commitment

Like Caleb said in his analogy of our relationship being a plant, we need to strengthen our relationship and become more like a team because it will make us stronger. As a young couple, we'd like to work on showing each other commitment in our everyday lives. Here are three ways we plan to do so this month:

1. Planning for the future that includes each other.

Being in college, I see a lot of young couples break up around graduation because they simply had different ideas on what they wanted to do with their life. Maybe the relationship just wasn't right, or maybe it's because they didn't spend time talking about their future together. 

I believe that one way to strengthen commitment in any relationship is to talk about the future. When planning for the future, make sure to plan with the other person's feelings in mind as well. Maybe one of you would prefer to live closer to family after graduation, so instead of looking for a job anywhere in the U.S., try searching for one closer to home. Including the other person in your future plans shows that you're committed to loving them.

2. Making time for things that the other person likes. 

One aspect of true love is that is selfless and thinks of the other person's needs before their own. While we're both very busy people, we want to make sure we make time to do activities that the other person likes. Things like going to Menards to shop for materials and parts, or going to a big Easter egg hunt instead of working on different projects (true story). While we may be sacrificing a few hours of personal time, how much greater is the benefit of time spent together? A lot.

3. Doing things that makes the other person feel loved.

This goes along with number two, but adds a little more to it. We want to actively be feeding each other's love language. Things such as making a home cooked meal or spending time talking at the park on a sunny afternoon can help bring us closer together.

These are only a few ways we plan to nurture commitment in our relationship. It's an ongoing process that will never stop. Commitment never gets old.

How will you be nurturing commitment in your marriage/relationship this month?

Marriage & Relationship Goals

New to the Marriage & Relationship Goals Link-up? Goals help our relationships grow stronger and get better with time as well as help us to continue moving forward and avoid the "ruts" of life. This link-up was created in hopes of inspiring your relationship with your significant other no matter your chapter in life and love. We would love for you to join us in making the things we do in our relationships intentional. If you would like more information, click here.

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Introducing the Flourish Linkup

The Flourish Linkup with The Kardia Blog Happy Friday everyone! :) I am thrilled to be able to share something with all of you that has been percolating in my brain for a few weeks. (Percolate is my new favorite word! It means to brew or spread gradually) I'd like to introduce to you the Flourish linkup, my vision behind it, and how you can be a part of it :)

Part goal setting, part journal, and part action, the Flourish linkup is a way to help you discover how to be successful, prosper, and thrive - in your own way. Every person is different, and the road to what you define as success will be different than what other's will be. The linkup will be held the first Friday of every month, with the first linkup being February 6.

My dream is to help people live a life of purpose. Don't waste away your days. We all have a purpose, and we all have goals. Let's make them a reality.

For me, my life has one major goal. Everything else falls underneath it in various hierarchies. That one major goal is to share the love the God and to spread that love and encouragement to others. I want to see people be happy and thrive doing what they love!

You see, the goal of life isn't to make a lot of money, or live in the biggest house, or have a so-called "perfect" life - because nothing is perfect. The goal of life is live a life that means something. You'll feel fulfilled in life if the way you've lived it means something to you. Why sit around and not do anything? Take action. Go Flourish.

[Tweet "The goal of life isn't to make a lot of money; it's to make a life that means something."]

Outlined here is the general format for the Flourish linkup posts:

1. List 10 things you are grateful for

Gratitude changes everything. The first step to living a life you love, is to love what is in your life. Taking the time to write down or share what you're grateful for can dramatically change your viewpoint on things. So each month, begin the linkup by listing 10 things you're grateful for. You can go more in depth and explain why if you'd like, or you might choose not to. You can write this in a bullet list, a numbered list, or even in sentence format; whatever your heart desires.

[Tweet "The first step to living a life you love, is to love what is in your life. via @britthouchins"]

2. I will Flourish...creatively

This is where you can let your mind go wild! Each month's prompt will be the word that comes after Flourish. So, February's prompt will be Creatively. This section is where you can share how you plan to Flourish in that area of life. For example, you might outline a plan of action: steps to how you will become the best version of yourself in that area. I'm not setting rules for this section because I want it to be open to whatever your mind comes up with. I want whatever is posted in this section to be personal and mean something to you. How will you Flourish?

I'll also list a few questions to go with each prompt to help you get started. You don't need to answer the questions, they're just a starting point, but you can if you wish.

Ideas to get those brain juices flowing:

What is one thing out of your comfort zone that you will do this month? How do you foster creativity? By taking walks? Sitting in silence? What are some of your talents? What hobbies do you enjoy doing? How can you use your talents to bring joy to others? 

3. Reflect

Each month you'll have the chance to reflect on what you posted about the previous month. What worked? What didn't? What can you do differently? How can you use your strengths, skills, and passion to play to your advantage?

But since this is the first linkup, this is what we'll do instead: Tell us what the word "Flourish" means to you. 

And that's it! :) I'm super excited to learn from all of you and to join you on your journey to success! Let's go Flourish!

With the first linkup a whole month from now (February 6), if you'd like me to send you a reminder email the week before, sign up using the link below! I promise to only send you the reminder email and not spam you with random junk.

If you signed up yesterday, I just found out that the confirmation email that you needed to click went to everyone's spam for some reason :( I have it fixed now! So if you signed up yesterday, could you please sign up again :) Thanks!

Sign up for the Flourish linkup email reminder

The linkup will go live the first Friday of every month at 12 am EST. You'll be able to submit your take on the week's prompt, as well as discover how other's are planning to Flourish in the different aspects of their lives! My hope is that this linkup will encourage you to take steps, however big or small, towards becoming the best version of yourself. Don't aim for perfection, but refine what works for you. Here's to Flourishing in 2015!

The Kardia
<div align="center"><a href="" title="The Kardia"><img src="" alt="The Kardia" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

The Flourish Linkup Rules

1. Follow your host on Bloglovin'

2. Share your post based on the week's prompt! Please link to the actual post and not your homepage. It makes the posts easy to find :)

3. In your post, share the Flourish button or a link back to this post - this helps let others know more about the linkup.

4. Visit and comment on the post before yours and then visit and comment on at least one other blog. Leave encouraging comments! This is a community of dream seekers and we want everyone to strive for the best :)

5. Remember to use the hashtag #IWillFlourish when you promote your post on Twitter and/or Facebook, or if you post a picture of how you're Flourishing on Instagram!

I really hope you'll join in! :) I can't wait to read everyone's posts! Here's the link again if you'd like to sign up to get the reminder post about the linkup so you don't miss it:

Sign up for the Flourish linkup email reminder

I also hope to begin offering co-host spots eventually :) Keep an eye out in future posts for that announcement!


P.S. Read all about the other major changes happening on the blog in 2015!

Gratitude Project // 01

Gratitude Project Happy last Monday of 2014 everyone! I've written before on how I'm striving to be grateful everyday, especially in the small things. Gratitude really does change everything. It's such a wonderful feeling to look back and reflect on your day and realize how much you have to be thankful for. One of my sweet blogger friends, Janelle from Simply Love, has an amazing vision and project that I'm happy to be participating in today! The Gratitude Project is her way of documenting and sharing the simple moments in life. At the end of every month (the 29th), she hosts a linkup where you can join in on the sharing! All you have to do is share what you've been grateful for in the past month in photos. Fun, huh? :) I encourage you to join in!

If you follow me on Instagram, you might have seen this post a few days ago. I'm super grateful for the amazing mug Charlene from Bisons to Buckeyes got me for the Christmas exchange, for my beautiful Day Designer that's almost too pretty to write in, and for a fresh, new year! I can already feel 2015 shaping up to be an amazing year :) My word for the year is Actualize. Do you have a word for 2015?

Day Designer | The Kardia Blog

I was dreaming of a white Christmas...because there was absolutely no snow on the ground. Sadly, it really didn't feel like Christmas to me because of that. As long as I can remember, there has always been snow for Christmas, even if it snowed right on Christmas day.

Even though I was a bit disappointed in the lack of white-ness on the ground, it did happen to snow two days later! And it was beautiful :) A nice, soft, sparkly layer of clean, bright snow greeted us on Saturday morning. What a gorgeous scene to wake up to.

I'm dreaming of a white Christmas

This picture is from November back in Lincoln. A friend and I were walking across campus in the sunshine when it began to rain. A sunshower! As we were running across a parking lot to get inside a building, a huge double rainbow appeared in the sky. This picture doesn't do justice. It was the most amazing thing ever.

Double rainbow

I'm so grateful that my amazing roommate, Naomi, got to come to Minnesota with me for a few days! We did spend most of our time in the Mall of America, but still ;) She helped me check off #100 on my 101 in 1001 list!

Mall of America

One of the last Vespers I went to before break was a special music program. One of the participants was the Jesus Painter. My jaw literally dropped as I watched him paint the story of Christ's life and crucifixion to music. If only I could take one of those paintings home with me.

Jesus painter Jesus painter Jesus painter
And of course, I'm thankful that this man is in my life. I don't know what I'd do without him.

couple photography

simply love

What are you grateful for? 


P.S. Check out my bucket list!