I am a denizen of the modern world of dating, in which the telephone has become nearly extinct. To arrange dates and in between them, we stay in touch via text messaging, sometimes lengthy strings of them. I enjoy it, and I can't help but wonder -- what happened to talking? In losing the voice contact, what have we lost?

Watching the snow fall during a recent storm here in the East, I thought about how those tiny little flakes gather together to make a beautiful, wondrous mess.

Wouldn't it be useful if more personal fights had a more professional consideration, with less defensiveness, less reactivity and less projection? The 6th post in the Relationship as a Team series.

The fourth article in the Relationship as a Team Series. Most of us have a convoluted relationship to conflict. If we're not conflict avoidant, we're conflict prone. One of the first steps to finding balance, is to be able to tell the difference between a good fight and a bad one, and act accordingly.

A client came to me distraught. He had been struggling in his relationship. His fiancée was non-responsive to his needs. She was consumed with and depressed about a touchy situation at work and wanted to stay home, enjoy take-out and watch TV, preferably with but even without him.

When I allow the dismal thoughts and stories associated with the feelings to lead ("I am alone," "I will be alone forever," "I am too old, too picky, etc."), the team within is immobilized. I find myself wandering aimlessly in a very bleak forest. But when I cradle my pain in one arm while holding faith, hope and trust in myself in the other, I move through the world with an exquisite tension.

We never think when we are in the midst of our fatalistic inner scenarios that we might actually be deriving some pleasure from it. If you find yourself using dark, internal "drama" as a way to pay attention to yourself and keep yourself company, notice, as you sink into a deep morass or complain to others, what you are really looking for.

With all the choices and information about relationships we now have available to us, I am still surprised by how many people jump into serious partnerships -- business, close friendships and yes, marriages -- without laying any groundwork to see if the other is on the same page about the future. Final post in the Leadership in Relationship series.

When you clarify your roles in relationship and bring consciousness to the leadership in them, something sacred happens. All the energy dedicated to jockeying for power and position gets contained in conscious roles, and frees you up to really focus on loving and on things you love to do together.

In the fourth post in the Leadership in Relationship Series, Amber and her boyfriend use leadership principles to co-create a partnership that diminishes drama, minimizes the tendency to get emotionally wound up and take everything personally, and increase the flow of communication, connection and closeness.