Jewish families around the world are preparing for the festival of Chanukah, also known as the Festival of Lights and Feast of Dedication. It is very happy and enjoyable time for families, an eight day holiday commemorating the dedication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem at the time of the Maccabean revolt. The festival is celebrated with the kindling of the lights of the candelabra: one additional candle is lit every night for 8 days, often accompanied by singing special songs, playing games and exchanging gifts. Another custom is eating oil -based foods such as doughnuts and potato pancakes as a reminder of the oil that was used in the temple.

Sitting with my clients this week, I was struck by how many couples could benefit from this wonderful festival of renewed dedication. Partners could benefit hugely by committing themselves to eight days of renewed dedication, faith and hope.
Here are some suggestions to help your relationship get into the Chanukah spirit:

*Focus on what you have in your relationship rather than what you don’t have
*Slow down and make more time for each other
*Spend more time listening to each other
*Discuss how to make these eight days more special than others
*Be more conscious of how you speak to your partner, the words you use and the tone of your voice
*Plan something unexpected that you know your partner would love
*Be more affectionate, warm and loving
*Laugh and have fun together

Happy Chanukah
Dawn Kaffel