I had the honor and pleasure to officiate a friends’ wedding last weekend. We had been meeting for several months to put together a ceremony that was a perfect reflection of the bride and groom as individuals, and the couple they are becoming.

As I contemplated the words I wished to impart, it occurred to me that planning a wedding is a microcosm of life…It has everything in it, from the joy and excitement, the dreams coming true, to the stress and pressures, choices, decisions…And as I considered how they worked together to create their ceremony, I realized if they could continue to implement certain qualities, they could create an amazing future together too.

I call them the 5 C’s…Now these 5 C’s are great in relationship with another, and they also work with being in relationship with yourself. They are Commitment, Communication, Cherishing, Compassion, and Celebration.

When we commit to prioritizing our relationship (with ourself or another) by making time for the person, thinking about them, aspiring to please them, and showing up as our best self possible with them, we set our relationship up to flourish and bloom.

When we communicate, we build a foundation of trust, connection, resolution and growth. Communication is not only about words, it includes subsequent actions too. It is my wish that we all speak until we feel heard, and listen until we are hearing.

When we cherish our partner, or our self, we don’t take the person for granted. Appreciating and acknowledging all the things we love about someone, and noticing all the ways they aspire to please us, are all ways we invite more to appreciate into our life, as well as clue our partner in to what pleases us.

While each C stands on its own, they also build nicely on one another…For example: It’s great when we commit to communicating all we are cherishing in our mate or ourself!

The next C is that of compassion….Life is a journey full of easier times and more challenging ones…Compassion softens the ride, and makes everything better. May we always bring compassion to ourself and our loved ones.

And finally may we always celebrate! May we find small and great things every single day of our life worthy of celebration!

The more we engage the 3 C’s with ourself and our spouse, and any other person we are intimate with, the more we foster and grow the joys that come from loving and respectful relationships!